Toddler shoot, need advice

Netskimmer

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Hi all,


I have been asked by a co-worker to take photos of her and her two year old at a local park and I was hoping to get some advice. I have never really done anything like this before. I have refused to accept any form of payment for this and told her that it would be my first time doing this and she is fine with that. She just wants some pics to look back on with her son, nothing really fancy but I want to do the best job that I can for her. All I have at this point in the way of lighting equipment is a few flashes and light stands. I also have a Wescott umbrella, a set of reflectors and a small, flash mounted soft box . I assume that I will need to be fairly mobile to keep up with a two year old but I could use the lighting set up to get a few posed shots before turning him loose.

What suggestions can you folks offer me?
 

cgipson1

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Use your 500, just in case there is a TOXIC DIAPER? ;) <just kidding!>

Shade is good if you use diffused flash for fill... stay away from harsh sunlight as much as possible. Late afternoon / early evening (golden hour) can rock!
 

amolitor

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A 2 year old outside?

I'd use a fully portable rig, diffused flash in one hand camera in the other. Two year olds are wiggly and mobile. Getting the kid to be in one place, and happy, for more than a few minutes is pretty unlikely. It gets less unlikely if you REALLY NEED the kid to not run off. They know. Somehow, they can tell.

Plan to be filling with flash, not key lighting, so you don't need much.
 

runnah

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Coordinate with mom. Try to get them after a nap and a snack.
 

skieur

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An 18mm to 50mm zoom, taken in the shade, fill flash, and get down at the level of the child or use an articulated screen.
 
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Netskimmer

Netskimmer

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These are all great ideas! She is wanting to do this early 9-10 am, before it gets too hot out, but I might be able to get her to come out later in the evening.
 

frommrstomommy

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somewhere there was a whole thread dedicated to tips of photographing children I believe..
 

Designer

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If mommy is willing to help, have her hold the scrim or reflector, as required. It will give her a sense of contributing, and get nice pictures.
 

jowensphoto

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These are all great ideas! She is wanting to do this early 9-10 am, before it gets too hot out, but I might be able to get her to come out later in the evening.

I'd see if she could go a bit earlier, something between 7 and 8. The light starts to get pretty harsh mid-morning; if you don't have a lot of open shade, that can be difficult.

My best tips for shooting kids: use whatever the Nikon version of AI Servo is with BBF. Also, wear a white shirt -- then you don't even have to worry about carrying a reflector!
 

cgipson1

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These are all great ideas! She is wanting to do this early 9-10 am, before it gets too hot out, but I might be able to get her to come out later in the evening.

If the kid is an early riser.. then I would suggest earlier, say 7am to 8am... you don't want harsh sun, and that can happen at 9am in some locales. But you don't want the kid sleepy and cranky either.

(Edit.. I see Jess beat me to this, lol!)
 
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Netskimmer

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7-8am would be rough on me, I work nights and would probably not be getting until 4-6am after a 12-14 hour shift. I suppose I could just try to stay up and do the shoot before going to bed. Great idea regarding the white shirt. Would it be better to use the shorter lens or the 70-200, being farther back would allow me to track him a little better.
 

runnah

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I suppose I could just try to stay up and do the shoot before going to bed. Great idea regarding the white shirt.

Don't shoot tired.
 

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