I know the scenario. I've been there myself. Trying to get 3 kids ready for pictures. Hair brushed, hairbows in, bowties straightened and I could go on and on. By the time you make it out the door and into the vehicle, you have at least one kid in meltdown mode. You get to the photographer, turn around from the drivers seat, point your finger and say, "Just say cheese! I just want one good smile!"
Then, as soon as you get inside you've gone from one kid to three in meltdown mode. Don't feel bad! You are NOT alone. I would venture to say about half of my clients have this happen every single time they have portraits made. I mean, really, what child WANTS to go to a photographer and sit still for 10 whole minutes, much less an hour!? Let me give you a hint. Most likely your photographer knows what they are doing and can coax out some smiles within a few minutes. The absolute worst thing you can do is try to direct what you want your child to do during the session. Be calm and let the photographer do most of the talking unless they ask for help. This usually results in cooperative kids and at least a few smiles :)
Most of my clients already know this and I could not ask for any better parents than the ones that visit me for portraits. I've worked with a lot of them for years and after the first couple of times saying, "Did you get anything at all?" and then being pleasantly surprised at the view and order appointment, we've developed a trust relationship. They normally just give me free rein.
Let me show you what I'm talking about. Meet Taylor. I've photographed her since she was a newborn but this particular day she was having some separation anxiety. Mom had just started back to work after getting to spend over a year at home with her and now she was in daycare (had just started that week). The first shot is the very beginning of the session and the last one was less than ten minutes later. Her mom just allowed me to work with her for a few minutes, sitting right beside her the whole time. This helped ease the transition from "She's leaving me here in the floor!" to "Oh, this isn't so bad ... I'll just sit here and laugh at this crazy lady with the camera!"
SOOOO, long story short, next time you take your child to have their portraits made, take a big deep breath, let it out and tell your photographer, "They're all yours!"
Bless her little heart!!
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