Thursday, October 1, 2009

Getting a great smile

Mommy Tip of the Day: To take a great picture of your child, have them talk about something they love while you are taking their pictures. This way they will be thinking happy thoughts and won't have to force a fake smile.

I have noticed that a lot of kids have a hard time giving a natural smile. or...maybe it just runs in my family. I hope not. I hope that I have not passed on some defective gene that makes it difficult for her to give a natural smile, but I will tell you that I have a hard time feeling natural and relaxed when I smile, especially when I am holding that smile for a long time until someone finally flashes the picture and I can at last relax.

Since I plant to take a lot of pictures of her, I had to come up with a way for her to be happy and relaxed without having to force a smile that scrunches up her face. My daughter is beautiful. What mom would not say the same thing about their daughter? However, my daughter, left to her own devices, was not blessed with the photographic gene. When you ask her to smile, she shows you all of her teeth, scrunches her face and closes her eyes. In no way is this the picture of her that anyone is trying to capture.

Since I am adding a new line of doll slings to my Snuggy Baby products, it is only natural that I would have her model them for my pictures. Unfortunately this is not the face that will have everyone recognizing her natural beauty and talk about the cute girl playing with her doll. Instead I am afraid that they will be wondering what horrible thing she was smelling or just why in the world would she ever make that face.

My daughter loves to tell stories. Well actually she wants me to tell her stories about her daily life, but I have her fill in all the details. So to get her to smile and relax, I started talking to her. We had a conversation about her friends: who they are, what do they do together, what does she like to eat, listing all of the people who live her, etc.... I kept asking her about everything that she likes. We will even sings songs together when I am trying to get her picture. Anything that I can think of doing that she likes, that keeps her relatively still, and that keeps her engaged with me instead of trying to wander around the backyard and away from the backdrop.

Now by no means am I a professional photographer. I cannot give you tips on getting the best lighting for your pictures or choosing the best angle or how to make the most of a picutre with photoshop. I am just a mom who takes pictures of her little girls, and hopes that she does well enough to not turn people off when they look at pictures of her Snuggy Baby products. My timing is still off as to when to snap the picture, because a split second before and after each of these pictures she was looking right at me. But I think that these pictures still show her personality and she does not have a scrunched up face where she is smelling something very bad.

Now if I can just figure out how to get her to get her to stand still, not wander away from the backdrop and to keep her hands out of her mouth, then I will be set.

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