How To Take Creative Photos of Your Kids

posted by Andrea | 12/3/2011

Due to the recent birth of our beautiful baby girl, Nora Faith, I’ve rounded up an All-Star list of moms who effortlessly seem to manage work, home, family, life, and everything in between! You can read all their words of motherly wisdom here, as well as how they manage to “do it all” while still living a life they love.

I’ll be sharing my own thoughts and baby updates soon enough, but right now, I’m simply soaking up their trusted advice while cuddling with my new baby girl! 

The following is written by Jodi from


I’m so excited to be writing here today for Andrea, I’m a big fan personally and was excited when she asked me to take her maternity photos earlier this fall.

I have two kids and two hard drives full of photos… tens of thousands of photos, not to mention the boxes we continue to move around with us. I take a lot of photos! 😉 So when Andrea asked me if I’d share some tips on creative photography for kids and also about how I store and organize my photos, I just couldn’t resist.

First we’ll cover a few tips on how to get the best shot — and I promise your point-and-shoot camera is all you need in order to get a frame-able shot.

Your Best Friend is the ANGLE

What angle are you shooting your photos from? Your eye? Are you always above your subject?

Don’t be afraid to move your camera around. I shoot a lot of my photos from my knee – I simply hold my camera at my side and shoot photos.

Oh mom! You're so funny, it's true!


Try not to always be at eye level with your subject – getting way above your child makes for an interesting point of view as well.


No One Likes a Poser

Posing your child for every photo you want to take is unnatural. Are you going to want to look back at their years as little kids and think – Wow, they really sat still with their legs crossed a lot.

Um, no. Your kids are fun! Their active! They love to play … get those shots, too!

I know when we look back at photos of when our kids were younger we are always smitten with the ones where they’re not paying attention to us because we truely captured them in that moment.

Memorial Day

action shots, not full body

Every Photo Doesn’t Need to be a Full Body Experience

I’m sure you’ve noticed in a lot of my photos, there are pieces of my children missing . Heads, arms, tops of faces, limbs … I specifically zoom in or crop or angle my shots so that this happens often. I love the little things about my kids. How a shirt fits their baby tummies, their belly buttons, their toes, the adorable manner in which they dress themselves.


Jessica jumping

Most adorable sailor I know


And it’s ok NOT to have a smile in every photo. You’ll be smiling when you see the results!

My family :)

Use Everyday Objects as Props

It is fun to have little photo shoots with my kids — and when that happens, I get a box of stuff out or buy some balloons and then go hunting for a back drop. Setting up a sheet in your basement as “the place to take photos” is not allowed. NOT. ALLOWED. Stop it.

Have fun with it – I open my closet and let my kids find something they’re interested in. Hats, socks etc. They do the cutest things with them and if I had an agenda I would have missed it.

They have to be enjoying the props and surroundings in order to cooperate for a photo. If you put your kid in a basket and they scream – it’s ok to take the photo (screamers are great memories) but then try something else.

My favorite stinker

Using creative props

One Month

Those are my creative tips for now: basically don’t be afraid to try something new. And have fun!

If you’re not having fun with your camera then don’t pick it up – when that happens to me I actually give my camera to my daughter (who is 6) and she gets creative with angles and subjects. It’s fun to see what someone else can do with the same machine I use.


Storing your photos

I wrote about how I store my digital photo files on my website last month. Check it out!

Printing your photos

I don’t print as many photos as I should to be completely honest. And I wouldn’t suggest printing every “great photo” you take. It’s overwhelming in 5 years, I promise.

When I do print photos I use Snapfish exclusively. Their prices are great and they stand behind their quality. If I have an issue they reprint and send me another package at no cost to me. When I want a canvas print I’ve used Canvas People and have been equally as pleased with the quality and price.

I’d suggest doing a yearly or quarterly digital book of your photos and I’m going to start doing a yearly recap book.

Because I take so many photos I often have doubles and triples of a shot. I pick my fav and then delete the others. I use Flickr to store shots I’ve edited or use on my blog and I can always go back and download them again as well.

What are some of the best tips you’ve implemented in your photography to get the shots you end up loving of your kids?

Jodi Schaap, affectionately known as JodiMichelle, believes the best in people. She’s passionate about intentional living, being involved in her communities and living naked on paper.
Married to a Serial Entrepreneur and Mother to two, Jodi dreams big through her Life List and takes you along for the ride. She chronicles a series of How To’s, Tutorials, DIY junkies and Ideas over at

Filed under: FamilyChildrenPhotography

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  2. Paulette


    I feel inspired…I’m the world’s worst photographer, but these tips may help even me! I’m going to give it a try. Thanks so much, Jodi!