10 Steps To The Perfectly Photographed Smile

My Huck via Elise Soukup.

Babble recently published a Digital Photography Guide with tips on everything from what settings to use on your digital camera to tips on how to edit your photos in Photoshop. Useful!

I was most interested in the article on getting that perfect smile on camera, since, well, here comes the truth: I am horribly unphotogenic. It’s tragic. No, really, I mean it is tragic. So I read the article called 10 Steps To The Elusive Smile greedily, like an unphotogenic person hoping to suddely become very photogenic. How’s that for a metaphor? (Simile?)

It turns out it’s an article on getting your kids to smile. Oh! Well, that’s useful too, isn’t it? So I immediately turned what I’d learned on Huck, and what do you know? Smiles all around! (Doesn’t solve my problem.)

A few of the best tips for getting your child to smile beautifully in photos, after the jump.

TIP THE FIRST: Try snacks!

You know how you can hand your kid a pretzel stick and suddenly everything is right in the world and they are grinning excitedly from ear to ear? (Just my kid?) Bring along snacks and don’t be afraid of having a little food friend as a prop in the photo. If it makes him smile, you’ll hardly notice anything else in the shot.

SIMILARLY: Try toys!

Especially if the toy is his favorite toy of the moment, you’ll appreciate having it in the photo for later when he’s all grown up and you’re feeling weepy and nostalgic and you can look at it and say “Ohh, you remember old Bob Dog?” (Bob Dog was my favorite stuffed animal. Oh, Bob Dog!)

TIP THE THIRD: Use natural light.

No flash photography! Ever!

TIP THE FOURTH: Get down on their level.

Though sometimes it is fun to capture “a day in the life” by shooting your kids entirely from your point-of-view, when you’re going for the head shot, you need to bend, squat, sit, or lay flat as you need to and really get even with them. The right angles will improve your photos a million percent. No, I didn’t do the math on that, just trust me though.

TIP THE LAST: Keep shooting!

Guess what, it’s digital! You can delete it later!

For more great photography tips, head over to Babble’s Digital Photography Guide, and tell them I sent you. (Not really.) (I mean, unless you want to.)

Need more baby photo tips? Check out these pointers from Me Ra Koh!

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