Photography for Kids
Almost everyone has a digital camera these days than it was a few years ago, and even kids do have it too. Kid’s photography is a great hobby. Today it is a lot easier to help your kids become travel photographers, in city tours, even in national parks there are many opportunities to teach kids how to take good digital photos, giving them a greater appreciation of their surroundings, particularly when they travel, and as an activity for them so they won’t get bored.
Sometimes kids see the world from a different perspective than adults do, and the shots they get are very different from what we get from our higher vantage points. Now, with digital cameras, kids can take as many photos as they want, unlike during the film years, where kids are limited to use a camera because it is expensive to buy a film, processing the film, and having it printed.
Don’t give them too much directions, they may feel like they are in school not in a vacation or travel, it has to be fun. However there are a few tips you can give your kids about how to take a good travel photo.
Buy a camera just for your kids. Kids don’t need expensive cameras. A point-and-shoot is best. By taking a lot of shots they will figure out what is pleasing to them and what looks good and what doesn’t.
Pre-plan your shots.
Talk to your kids about where you are traveling and what might be seen. Get them excited about the potential photo place and the photo opportunity. Show them some good locations of good photo opps, but allow your kids to discover on their own.
Hold the Camera Straight
While shots that are not straight can be quite effective (more like a candid feel) it is good to teach our kids to check the framing of their shots before hitting the shutter. Remind them to watch at the horizon if it is straight.
Find a point of interest
Show your kids the point of interest of the place, location or subject before taking a picture. Once this is identified, they can then think about how to highlight it through positioning, using zoom, fancy settings on cameras.
Get shots of major landmarks and famous monuments. Let them try to take a picture of a famous building in an unusual or unique way (angle, composition or lighting).
To get an interesting shot look around and notice if there are any people doing interesting or unusual things, for example street performers.
Know the Rule of Thirds
The Rule of Thirds is perhaps the most well-known principle of photographic composition. If your kid can’t completely understand the Rule of Thirds, teach them how to place their subject off center of the frame can be enough.
Against the Light
The most important tip is to teach your kids about photography is about using light. They should take photos with the light behind them most of the time, but can do it too against the light sometimes if something is blocking the sun or the light (example: building, a tree etc.)
Review photos with your kids
One thing that you can do to help your kids improve their shots is to sit down at the computer with them. Talk with them about how well they did and point out things that could be done better next time to improve results. Pay particular attention to the shots that they do well with as this will give them positive reinforcement and inspiration to keep this going during travel or in any occasion they might like to do it.
When your kids become travel photographers they will also become more observant about their surroundings and thus gain more from the trip experience.
Lastly even though your kids have used a digital devise to take the photographs make sure you get some of their travel photos printed, framed and create a gallery in one of your walls, this gives credibility and respect to their photographic work.
Teach your young travel photographers about the rules when taking a picture in a museum and how the flash detrimentally affects artwork. On a digital camera you can adjust the ISO to a higher setting when taking photos in a museum
Tell your kids about taking photos indoors and out and how you need a flash when there is not enough light. Show them on the camera how you can choose a light setting to suit your circumstances (cloudy, sunny, snow).
Tell your junior travel photographers that they always need to ask permission to take a stranger’s photo as in some cultures it is forbidden to get your picture taken and asking shows respect for the person.