Monday, March 18, 2019

How I Get My Kids To Smile In Photos





People ask me how I get my kids to smile in photos.

"They always seem happy!" I'm told and I answer, "Oh, that's because I gave them $5 to smile."

I'm kidding.

If I did that, I'd be broke. I take a ton of photos.

When my kids were small, I could make farting noises, and that would do it.





Or I'd run into the side of the house, which hurt, but apparently my pain made them giggle.








But as they got older, it became tricky. Suddenly the fart noises were "lame" and when I ran into the house I was asked if I needed medication.




So what do I do now?

Well, I try to think back to a meme that made them giggle. Or a video. Or a TV show. For example, my son loves The Office, so I made a bunch of "that's what she said" jokes.




My daughter can be trickier. Her birthday is this week, and I wanted to get some photos as I did with my son.

She went, "Maybe I just won't open my eyes," and I answered, "Fine," and clicked away.




You can't give up easily with tweens and teens. You just can't. You have to go with it. Block off at least a half hour.

To get her to laugh, I was speaking to the neighbor's dog, who was barking on the other side of the fence.

"No Fluffy, you can't be in the photos," I said, and Natalie found this hilarious.

"I don't think his name is Fluffy!" she giggled.




Yes, she still stubbornly had her eyes shut, but you know, the photo invokes her joy.

You never know what will make tweens laugh.

"I'm still keeping my eyes shut," she told me.

"Amazing, my eyes are shut too," and then she opened HERS to check.




Surprise!


Then she went, "I'm going to be silly," and I said I'd still take her photo.





I let her get the silliness out of her system, because eventually she will take photos for me because she knows I won't give up. I've had a camera in her face since I pushed her out of me.




She might have thought my face WAS a camera for the first half of her life.





And when they begin to cooperate, they might go back to being a goofball, but those photos are memories too. So take them.



I find the less berating I do, the more willing they are to go back to regular photos.





Look, there's a reason why she's wearing a sweatshirt that says Sassy Since Birth. (It's from Forever 21 if you have a sassy girl too.)





So just a reminder: when photographing older kids, have patience. Be silly. Let them be silly.





And you will get some good shots.





74 comments:

  1. These are great tips! I love your previous tactics!! HAHAHHA so clever and funny

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  2. Your daughter is one camera girl. She has the talent of how to pose perfect and give those funny expressions too. By the way, farting noises is funny hahaa. Yeah, kids grow up and then we have to change the ideas accordingly.

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  3. The things we do to get out kids to smile. You go above and beyond the call of duty that is for sure. Birthday photos are fun and your daughter did a good job.

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  4. I think you're great at this so thanks for the tips!

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  5. Great tips! My nephew is pretty stoic so I'm going to try these out and see what happens!

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  6. I think these are really good tips. It can be hard to get those teens to smile! Your kids are extremely cute and they should smile!

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  7. I never thought about this but when I look back, I know what your daughter feels! letting one be themselves is the best way and it looks great and natural too!

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  8. These are great tips! It was so much easier to get my son to smile in photos when he was smaller.

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  9. These are such great tips to follow. Thanks for sharing. Now I know what to do the next time kiddo doesn't smile. LOL

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  10. These photos were so cute and I love your daughter! Reading the conversations you two had for the photos was adorable.

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  11. Seriously I loved this post! So many parents can benefit from reading this post! All these photos were so cute thank you for sharing!

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  12. Love your tips. I have one child who loves to be in front of the camera and the other smiles so dorky.

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  13. Gorgeous photos, your kids look great in them. Loving that they found it funny when you hurt yourself. Isn't that typical of kids these days lol.

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  14. I agree, it used to be as simple as a funny noise when they're really little and you'll get reliable, genuine smiles. It's getting harder for me too.

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  15. These are some really great ways to make kids smile in the photos ... to be honest I'm still having some problems with that myself! I'll try to think of strange noises next time! :D

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  16. My son has the worst forced smile. It looks like he is in pain. So I do a lot of these same things. Usually say something I know he will find funny, and just like that, you have a great picture.

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  17. I hate when the kids do the forced smile. I always try to come up with something funny to say

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  18. My kids have weird forced smiles. Sometimes I'll say something super silly that will get them to laugh, but usually it's just awkward!!

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  19. It can be such a struggle to get kids to smile for photos. My daughter is a camera hog and loves posing but some of my friends' kids are stoic

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  20. great tips for getting your kids to smile! this is so cute :-)

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  21. Genuine smiles are just the best. Yes, its effort sometimes but rewarding really.

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  22. I do a lot of pretty embarrassing things to get my kids to smile, but it works!

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  23. I love the photos you got! The sillies are important, too, because that shows their big personalities!

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  24. I love this so much! These photos are amazing. I love the silly photos, they are the best!

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  25. This brought back so many memories! My son would giggle over the silliest things when he was little. I remember a particular giggle-fit in the grocery store because he sneezed and I said "Bless You" funny (mainly just in baby talk).

    Now he's 13 and it definitely isn't as easy! He loves the office as well though

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  26. Oh this is priceless. It's funny to see the ways you could make them laugh change as time goes by. Thanks for sharing this with us. This definitely made me chuckle!

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  27. Kids love weird words, my nieces and nephews love poop talk so if you talk about poop they laugh...GROSS!! LOL!!

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  28. You're speaking my language lol. As the kids grow older, it's challenging to get them to smile but your tips are on point.

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  29. Oh I agree, it so sometimes hard to get their photos. haha! Sometimes my sister gets mad and just give up. I'll try these tips soon!

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  30. Great tips. Kids can be so difficult to capture in photos. Your tips are funny and they have certainly evolved over the years. Beautiful shots. Well worth all the farting noises, etc.

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  31. it's so beautiful when kids smile in photos. They are so sweet!

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  32. OMG! I have been off blogland for so long and I could not believe the pictures! How big they have gotten!!! ❤️ ❤️ ❤️

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  33. What some great tips for making your kids smile in photos, it always looks like your having a wonderful time in the photos you take.

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  34. Great ideas I will try with my kids thx

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  35. It's hard to make smaller kids smile in photos! With mine I make goofy faces and sometimes goofy actions too.

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  36. Kids can be so much fun. It's all about knowing what will make them laugh as they grow and adjust.

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  37. Love this. It's not always easy to get kids smiling for photos. I like her sweater. It suits her well.

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  38. i love you consistently take pictures of your kids and you capture the joy. The pre-teen and the teen years kids think they get too cool to take picture but i am happy you are finding ways to make them smile and capture that moment for life.

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  39. There is nothing more beautiful than a spontaneous and sincere smile, even if in the picture it is always difficult to get it. Excellent technique!

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  40. Sometimes it is harder then others to get smiles from our kids! I know mine hates posing for me and my work, but if someone else, like family is around, then he loves to ham it up!

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  41. I take a lot of pictures of dogs and kids and i know how hard it is to get the right pose and smile, Your pictures came out so nice and the kids are all smiling.

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  42. It's so difficult to make my toddler smile. I mean I catch her smiling but when I have to take the picture she just changes her face or starts moving. I have to take like a billion pictures love this tips

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  43. Oh my gosh I want that Sassy Since Birth top, so cute! Your kiddos have beautiful smiles!

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  44. These are great tips. I agree that my kids were easier to amuse when they were younger. Now it's harder to get a genuine laugh in a pic lol.

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  45. I have to bribe my kids. When they wont smile, I just remind them that they love getting new toys.

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  46. I have resorted to having my husband dance like a ballerina behind me. It works every single time, except with the 14 year old. She just thinks he's lame.

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  47. lol I have to offer chocolate, tv time, ipad time to make mine smile lol...Awesome idea lol

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  48. Smiles can definitely light the mood in any sense. To genuinely capture the joy of your child is priceless. I love when you talk about the fart noises. That make me laugh. I really enjoyed it.

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  49. My older one does not smile much in photos she is going through that moody and broody phase. my sister in law photo shopped a smile onto her face. my younger daughter smiles quite a bit. but I am sure we will get there soon with her so these tips will come in handy! I will try them out on my oldest! Thanks for the helpful tips

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  50. Great tips! When I was a teenager, my family would joke I'd never get a license because I would have to have my picture taken! I was so self conscious of my smile!

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  51. Those are funny pics. And you are right. They will make great memories.

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  52. You have such a sweet personality. I love that. So cool. You sound like a parent who really is involved with your children and one whose kids are lucky.

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  53. As much as I want my kids to smile normal in photos the "real" photos are sometimes even better. Where their true personalities shine. Then you look back at them and remember how they were at that age. I have a photo of my daughter with the most adorable pouty mad face and it's still to this day one of my favorites.

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  54. So sweet and fun! Got any tips for taking photos of my 10 mo. old Grandson? He smiles ALL the time except when I go to snap a pic!

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  55. These photos made me smile too! I miss my kids when they were still babies.

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  56. Such cute and fun photos! Actually, that is my struggle with how to smile for taking photos. That is really hard to do with a toddler but you make it! Thanks for the ideas!

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  57. These are great tips.And I really enjoyed reading this post with the shared images.Your daughter is so cute.I will sure try these tips with my kid too who is now starting such playing with me when I want to capture him. :)

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  58. I always say something silly to get my daughter to laugh before photos. I love being able to capture that moment.

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  59. Such fun photos to look at. I'd tell some jokes too for my son to smile or giggle. But sometimes, I just let him do his own thing and I take candid pics. -LYNNDEE

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  60. Hahahaha outsmarting your teen - you are a PRO!!! Love these tips!!! Getting kids to smile is a struggle, getting all 3 of mine to pose nicely is damn near impossible LOL!

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  61. We do one silly face and one smiling face--it always works!

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  62. Great tips and even greater smiles!! This was such a good and happy read.

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  63. Such a nice reading and great tips x

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  64. My kids always smiled for me. I just love seeing kids happy!

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  65. Tiffany La Forge-GrauFebruary 27, 2020 at 6:46 PM

    I wish it was that easy to my kids to sit still and smile. They always give me a hard time!

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  66. You can always tell a huge difference in a fake kid smile and a real one. You've nailed it! The pictures are so cute and genuine. I'll have to keep these tricks in mind for the future.

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  67. My daughter do make it out to Forever 21 a time or two. I think she would really like the shirt. We will have to check it out. And that's great you have found ways to get your kids to smile. Mine isn't really doing the smiling thing at this point. Not sure why.

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  68. It has been difficult to take a picture of my niece now. She's 5 and sassy! I need a lot of patience!

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  69. Their smiles are so cute! I know it's not that easy. They are either shy or just don't want to smile. Great tips!

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  70. Great tips! I always struggle to make photos of my beautiful nieces, never easy!

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  71. I work with preschool kids and it is hard sometimes to get them to smile and have them all of them to look at the camera at the same time. I just make up a silly phrase or stand behind the camera, being silly to make them smile.

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  72. Kimberly CroisantMay 23, 2020 at 7:26 AM

    WOW - those are some great smiles! I've been taking pics of my son since I started blogging 10 years ago - he's now a natural!!

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  73. Such adorable pictures. Such lovely smiles and contagious joy. Truly, getting tweens and teens to smile can be challenging, but you've got some great tips here.

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  74. These pictures are so adorable!! I love how you get them to smile; it's so genuine!

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