Deborah Allen

the blog

He’s THREE! This little boy melts my heart. For those of you that know him, you know of his intense need to love and care for those around him. He is sensitive, a rule keeper, an organizer and lover of anything involving trucks and tractors. His biggest thrill right now is his light up Batman sandals and new toy car transporter.

This morning we headed downtown for his portraits. I didn’t tell him where we were going. Which is usually not a good idea for him. We pulled up by the Standing on the Corner Park, changed out of his Olaf t-shirt and into his big boy, 3T shirt. Barely being three, his attention span is about 2 seconds long. And that is not an exaggeration. We spent maybe 10-15 minutes at the park. He ran and explored with much excitement!

Being the son of a photographer, he is so tired of me taking photos of him when we are supposed to be playing. So the moment he looks at me and I bring my camera to my face, he turns and runs the other direction.

The trick in this situation, or with any other toddler who is not wanting to sit and smile, is to let them play. Then, moments here and there, I will request 2 seconds of their attention for a photo. If I were to force him to sit still, look at the camera and smile over and over, he would have resisted completely. Or given me a forced, cheezy grin.

My plan was to play at the park for about 10 minutes and come home with only 2-3 keeper photos. I set realistic expectations. And allowed him to be a three year old. In turn, I came home with several keepers that I LOVE. And I have his natural smile in almost every photo! And we left the park with no resentment or frustrations.

Let’s sing a song!

This is what happens when I tell my son “Okay look at me and smile!”

“Do you want to climb that tree?”

To recap:

  • Keep your toddler in the loop. Tell your child that you are going to a park (or wherever) to play and “there will be a nice lady there. And she is going take some pictures of us!”
  • Change into their portrait outfit when you get to location. It’s not worth having a potty accident on the way.
  • Set realistic expectations with your photographer for your child.
  • We’ll give your child lots of mini breaks to play away from the camera.
  • Come with the intention to leisurely spend time as your child plays and laughs

I have lots of tricks up my sleeves for kiddos during portrait sessions. One of the most written compliments about Deborah Allen Photography is how “amazing she is with our kids!” Which is exactly what I want to hear!

Happy Birthday Tayce! We love you buddy!


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