How to Photograph a Child’s Birthday Party

How to Photograph a Child’s Birthday Party

I’ve been asked by parents of children to photograph their birthday parties numerous occasions and each time it has been a lot of fun.

Photographing children isn’t always easy – and photographing ‘the birthday party’ presents it’s own unique opportunities and challenges as a photographer.

There’s nothing worse than getting to the end of a party and realizing that while the camera was out that no one bothered (or had time) to pick it up and take some shots. Give someone the job and release that person from other party duties to just take photos. This way you’re guaranteed to get some shots and will have something to remember the day with.

One of the most important tips I can share is to get down low when taking photos of children. The biggest mistake I see in party photos is adults taking shots from a standing position looking down onto a scene.

Most children’s birthday parties happen inside (at least in part) where lighting can be tricky. In most cases there will be some artificial light which can leave your photos with different types of tinges. The easiest way to overcome this and ensure your shots are true in color is to learn to use your white balance controls.

Another way to add interest to the shots is to focus in on the details of the party. I find that many of these shots are best taken before the guests arrive and might include shots of the cake, photos of balloons and other decorations, photos of presents stacked, shots of a set party table.

The focus of children’s parties is generally the children – but the adults attending the party can actually present you with some fascinating shots as they watch on. Sometimes their reactions to what the children are doing can be quite fascinating and its worth including them in shots – particularly those adults in the immediate family of the child having the birthday.

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