‘How to’ photograph your everyday – better!

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When I had my first daughter I wanted to take photos of her, like most parents do. But after awhile, I wanted to take better photos. I saw such raw beauty in the everyday moments and I wanted to capture that, to hold on to it, to create a return ticket to a memory, otherwise gone.

I want to share with you some tips and tricks I’ve learned so you can capture some great images of your everyday. Grab a tea, sit back and read on.

1.) You don’t need a ‘big fancy camera’.

We carry our iPhones with us every day and they do a lovely job of capturing video and images of your kids. I use mine all the time for those everyday moments. I edit the photos in VSCOcam and often post them to Instagram kind of like a virtual family album.

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2.) That LIGHT.

If there is one thing photographers know, or should know, it’s light. Light has quality and direction and when you begin to see that you’ll take better photos. For now choose full shade or a cloudy day is a great way to manage light. Stay away from bright sun in the middle of the day to avoid contrast and shadows. Indoors try to use natural light, in other words, big windows! See what  happens when you photograph in different light. Play with it. Have fun.

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5d Mark ii 50mm

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3.) Wait!

We pull out these digital cameras and we want to snap, snap, snap. Wait. Take a moment. Yes, you could holler at everyone to look and smile and take ten photos in a row in hopes eyes are open and everyone is smiling. Or, you could wait. Wait for a victory smile after a pee on the potty, snuggling up with a favourite teddy, reading their little brother a story. Let them play, wait for life to happen, then capture it. I pride myself on not being a ‘smile and say cheese’ photographer, because I believe, the everyday moments tell a much better story.

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5d Mark ii 50mm

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5d Mark ii 50mm

4.) But how?

Get down to their level. With my six-year-old, I like to have a conversation and get her thinking or laughing then I snap some in-between moments. With my three-year-old and my two fourteen-month-olds, I have to wait and anticipate as they are always on the move, as you can image. Remember to get close and capture the details. I love dirty summer feet, chubby toddler fingers or round baby tummies. Try different angles, over a shoulder, a reflection or I love a bird’s eye view.

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5D mark ii 24mm

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5d mark ii 50 mm

5.) Get in the frame

We are usually on this side of the camera, taking photos. However, try your best to get in front of the camera. Don’t wait until your hair is done, or you lose that baby weight you are carrying. Your kids deserve to look back on their childhood and see who was there every step of the way. I like to pass the camera to my husband or I often prefer to set up the tripod and use the timer or remote for some self portraits. If you’ve never done this, go for it. It can be a lot of fun.

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5d mark ii 50mm – 10 second timer

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5d mark ii 50mm – 10 second timer

6.) Invest

We want you to take the everyday images. We want you to do it yourself. However once a year you should invest in a photographer. Years from now you won’t remember eating out at that fancy restaurant, or that expensive coat you had to have. Having beautiful family heirloom photos are a treasure. They really are. Invest in this art. Invest in these memories for your children.

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5d mark ii 50mm

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5d mark ii 24mm

I really hope you enjoyed this post. Please come visit and say hi! I would love to connect!

Jenna xx

Jenna is part owner of Hobbs Photography and Film, mother to four ragamuffins and wife to a crazy farmer. They live in the Canadian Prairies and spend their days outside on their farm. She is passionate about photography and motherhood and is most comfortable with a baby on her hip, a camera in her hand and her feet in the dirt. Her favourite thing to photograph is real life, as it happens.







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  1. I loved reading this. I needed this. I sometimes focus on getting my boys dressed up and taking smiley shots, but should really spend more time taking those photos of real life. Thank you for sharing this information!

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