I have a lot of great photos of my kids when they were younger. Mostly because I had a photography studio, and every so often, I would just haul them into the studio and take some pictures. New background or props to try out….bring in the kids.
Now that I am not using photography as a direct source of income, and I no longer have an indoor studio, I realized I am missing out on a lot of these great images. Originally I made it a goal to get my kids out once a year to get a little more than iPhone and point and shoot pictures of them, and go for something good. Since then, I have upped that to twice a year. Once in the Spring and once in the Fall.
Here, I wanted to tell you how the Spring photos went for 2016.
We are new to this area, having moved last summer. There are a lot of gorgeous places around. Downtowns, college campuses, gardens, etc. Some are close by, and some are a bit of a drive.
I started out by buying the kids coordinating shirts in a solid color. I made them all dress up, and took them to a college campus, that I had not visited before. I searched for suitable sites, and just could not find any I like.
This is the difference between shooting weddings (or some other event) and purely shooting for yourself. As a paid professional, you have to produce the absolute best results, under the given conditions, and you have to do that every time. Well, even though those are the best under the given conditions, they might not be the best you could do if you had control of everything.
I could have taken some pictures, and they would have been “okay.” But, I wanted them to be great. So, I didn’t do the best I could. I waited untilI could do better. So, no pictures that day.
After that, the idea hit me to do something a little less formal. My kids don’t generally dress up, and wear khaki’s like I had them dressed up the first time. So, why take their picture that way? We live in the mountains with lots of farms around, so I figured going more casual and finding a cool barn to shoot at was a better approach.
I looked and looked while driving and either didn’t find anything suitable, or found lots of cool places where I was afraid to ask the owner to use their barn. Across the street from our church was an abandoned barn. It had all the features I was looking for. It has wood with nice character, a cool floor on the porch, and a porch with an overhang.
The overhang is important. It blocked the light from above, and made the porch slightly darker than the light just outside in the open air. With this difference of light, I just had to turn the kids to take advantage of the difference in light, and create the light patterns on their face that I wanted. The remaining was have them pose and stand how I wanted, which I have found is tougher with your own kids than when doing it for clients.
My son took this picture of me taking pictures. It is cool because it shows the angles I was shooting at, the location, the porch, and the amount of light on the porch and just outside the porch.
I brought light modifiers in case I thought I needed to soften light, or to reflect some fill. I could have used them, but I chose not to in this specific case.
In case you are interested, all the photos were taken with a Hasselblad 503cx. The full body shots were taken with the 80 mm CF T* Zeiss lens and all the tight shots were taken with the 150mm CF T* Zeiss lens.
Here is one more “taking the picture” shot and the following picture is the result of that setup.
A few of the remaining photos.