Ok, a little Beatles reference.
Today we would like to welcome author Laura Oles who has graciously agreed to contribute an article a month to photoinduced. com
These will be real world tips and advice from one of the best photographic writers we know. Truly. She has authored a book called ” Digital Photography for Busy Women “ which has become one of our standard reccommends for a great overview on digital photography.
Getting Your Kids Behind the Camera
I know what youâ€™re thinking.
â€œYou want me to give my childâ€”the one who loses her shoes so often Iâ€™ve had to attach a GPS unit to themâ€”my shiny, expensive digital camera? My kids canâ€™t keep missing puzzle pieces in the box, and the dog would starve if I didnâ€™t feed him.
Woman, have you lost your mind?â€
Hear me out on this one. I understand how funny (and reckless) this idea might be at first, but I have to tell you that our six-year-old now takes pictures on a regular basis, and one photo was so good that I mistakenly gave my husband credit for it.
â€œHoney, this is a great shot!â€ I said, showing him the LCD screen. The picture was of our twins, and I was amazed at the composition. It was a clear shot, and their expressions were fabulous.
â€œI didnâ€™t take that,â€ he said. â€œYouâ€™re right, though. Thatâ€™s a great shot.â€
As someone who has two parents as professional photographers and has spent much of his life in the picture business, he should know.
I remembered that I had given my daughter (while I was close by) the camera and she had taken several pictures. We then got busy and I never went back to look at what sheâ€™d done.
Turns out the kid is learning a great deal about framing a shot.
Not only does giving your kids an opportunity to take photographs build excitement and foster creativity, it also demonstrates that they are being trusted with something very special: your digital camera.
For those of you whoâ€™d like to explore this further, here are a few tips Iâ€™ve learned along this journey of turning over my favorite toy to someone who still canâ€™t reach the sink without a stepstool:
â€¢ It is a Privilege to Be Earned: Using your digital camera is a BIG deal, and it requires certain behavior. It also means that the camera will be put away if the rules arenâ€™t followed. By explaining how important the camera is to you, your child might be better inclined to heed the warning.
â€¢ Show Her What to Do: Our first rule is â€œmake sure the loop is around your wrist.â€ If the camera slips out of a little oneâ€™s hands, at least it wonâ€™t hit the ground. This is a good tip for grown-ups, too. Also, show her how to point the camera and look at the LCD screen. Let her try shooting a couple of pictures to get the feel of it. Many kids are also quick at understanding how to push the button half-way to get the lens to focus on the subject.
â€¢ Start Slowly But Stand Back: For first lessons, let her take a set amount of photos and tell her the number in advance. You can then look at the pictures and discuss what she liked about each one. But let her take pictures of whatever she wantsâ€”no coaching.
â€¢ Give Her the Opportunity to Learn: We get many blurry photos, but we also get some beautiful shots, and her style is different than mine. Each child sees things her own way, and letting her can give you an inside look into her perspective. You might even find you can learn a thing or two!
–Laura Oles is a photo industry journalist and the author of Digital Photography for Busy Women: How to Manage, Protect and Preserve Your Favorite Photos (Compass Trade Press. LLC, ISBN 0-9774727-2-8).
Thank you Laura ,for this insightful, fun article. See you next month!