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Tips for Photographing Your Baby

A few people have asked me about photography lately (I tend to use Instagram for photos much more than Facebook) – so I thought I’d post here. I promise, none of this “You know whats best for you” business happening here, the bluntest Tips for Photographing Your Baby ever. I’ll let you know exactly which lens I use and which post editing apps. I get so annoyed with blogs that say “do your research”. I’m like, “Honey, I am doing the frickin research, just tell me now!”.

THE GEAR

Buy the body – not the kit. 
It’s much cheaper. I did my research, this site had the cheapest one (yes, vs. Singapore as well).

I got a Canon 6D for the wifi ability and Emma told me it’s full frame. Now, I can’t say I know exactly what that means, but I know it’s important.

If you’re starting off, I’d recommend the “nifty fifty” lens. But don’t be a duff head like me and get it in a box set with a remote. You won’t need the remote because the EOS Remote app has a remote control built in. You can use your phone as a remote. WAHOO!

I wanted a tripod for family photos and travel. I was looking for the Manfrotto BeFree one, but they didn’t have it at Singapore Airport, so they showed me Giottos Virtuvian and it is freaking awesome. I must admit, I was a bit nervous to touch it for a while. It looked SO SO SO complex. But after a couple of uses, I really got into it. Now I take it places a lot, which is lovely if you don’t know what the plans are and you can just whack it into your handbag (yes, it fits into my Bao Bao Tote Bag).

THE APPS

Okay, now that we have the gear sorted (you can use your iphone too you know… But it just might not be as satisfying). It’s app time.

EOS Remote is free – it’s a bit slow to load and I wish the camera remote function would be available in landscape as well as portrait – but whining aside, it does the job pretty easily.

VSCO Cam – if you follow me on Instagram, you’ll know this is where I get my goodness from if I haven’t worked in Lightroom first. This is HANDS DOWN the best photo editing app I’ve ever used. Thank you Bianca you gem.

Lightroom – I used to use the app version, but it didn’t really do magic vs. VSCOCam. I now use the desktop version for photo album pictures and more hard core photo editing. This is the next level. Do it.

I use other basics like Squareready and Quick, Chromic and iMovie (video editing). They’re handy to have and don’t cost much, if not, they are just about free.

THE LEARNING

I didn’t start in the deep (money wise). My mum had a Canon and my friend lent me his Nikon for a while. The money felt like a lot and I really wanted to make sure I really wanted it and would use it.

The first class I took was with The School – Brooke Holm. It was really worth it. I felt thoroughly out of my depth, but I could see the silver lining when I came home and caught Aru sleeping.

Then I did a class with Emma and she helped me set up my camera better. I’d highly recommend this. Basic stuff like RAW images instead of JPEGS and reconfiguring the focus.

I did read the camera manual.

I’ve got a design background so I’m comfortable with Adobe products (Photoshop and InDesign in particular). I’ve still needed to do online research and watch videos to get my head around Lightroom. It takes a bit of time, but it’s worth it.

I’ve also stalked Photography Concentrate. They are smart humans.

The last, but probably most important thing I did was “take a picture everyday”. It improved my pictures immensely and I think thats the difference between the awesome and the everyday. It’s doing it everyday. As far as yoga, meditation, healthy eating and photography go, its the latter than I’m managing to keep up daily.

THE SET UP

Neutrals – I always try and put Aru in neutral clothes. They photograph so much better. Although Vivek and my Dad don’t understand this. They’re huge fans of yellow, orange and blue for my poor baby.

No furniture – I can’t believe I’m saying this, but having a house with no furniture has proved to be the best thing. Our floors are blank and the walls are empty canvases for Aru’s face.

Wait – I try to wait. Often. Aru is absorbed in his thing and will look up at me after a few seconds. That makes all the difference.

Tripod time – if you spot a scene you want, take the time. Even if you need to make it home in 30 minutes, rush and use 15 minutes for tripod time. Those moments don’t come back. Speaking of tripods, check your composition mid way between shoots. You may want to move a person around so it balances the scene better.

Don’t wait for later – the scene will change and you might not feel the same way. Just do it. Now.

Our lives are everyday. That is the reality. Don’t wait for a holiday or the perfect scene. Capture your everyday, it is much more precious than 4 weeks in the year.

 

xx

K

 

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4 Comments

  1. baloo bugram

    Hey karishma, nice little blog. I did some photography shots of my friends kid and your are spot on, its all about waiting.

    Another tip for you is using multi shot feature. Sometimes I do that to take some quick snaps post composition and setup. That way you get the killer smile you might not necessarily get with individual shots.

    • karishma

      Super handy! I’ve read about it, but haven’t tried it yet 🙂 I’ve got a few family ones to fix 🙂
      Thanks Baldeep 🙂

  2. Catherine

    Hey Kish

    Love your blogposts, keep up the awesome work 🙂 I’ve got a couple of photography related questions….

    (1) I imagine it’s easy to take hundreds of photos of Aru each week but how do you keep on top of the processing, archiving etc? Maybe it’s best just to be selective about when/what you take pictures of (easier said than done?!)

    (2) How do you share snaps with family who are abroad? I can imagine my mum will want to see multple photos everyday! At the moment we just sent pics home via whatsapp but wondering if there are other ways that work well.

    Thanks xo

    • karishma

      Hi Catherine!
      1. I only load onto my Mac the ones that I really, really, really like. I’m a bit ruthless with deleting – if there is a minor flaw and another picture does the same job but better, then I cull it. I also find that deleting straight from the memory card is the easiest and most effective. When I was travelling, I would delete on a flight or a train ride. I find it too hard to be selective as I photograph – I probably should get better at that because I certainly wouldn’t be surviving in a film age 🙂
      2. We have two main groups on Whatsapp – V’s side and my side. That way we just spam them and it’s fast – I can’t think of any other app which does the job just as well. But I also just set up a Flickr account (or revived my 8 year old one) and uploaded our latest ones to a private album. That said, no one engaged much. I’ll be printing hard copies of a Europe trip via a website I recently discovered — https://www.artifactuprising.com . I’ve given myself a goal of sending it to print within a month of arriving in Melbourne. Nearly there 🙂

      Hope it helps!
      x
      K

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