I’m a mom. My kids are grown but I remember. Parents are busier than ever now. I know you are smart and know these things, but here are some reminders just in case:

1. Feed your child before you come. Bring snacks and drinks. I always have snacks and drinks in my studio, but what if they don’t like what I have? They are in a strange place. Familiar food is comforting.

2. Make sure they are well-rested. Plan the photo session around nap time. You know how long it takes for your child to fully wake up. Most are cranky with strangers when they first wake up so plan that into the equation, too.

3. Bring a favorite stuffed animal for the young ones. They can hold it while I’m photographing them and it usually adds a little comfort as well.

4. Try not to make a huge deal about the photo session. It can put a lot of pressure on some kids. Make it sound fun. It will be!

5. Don’t fret if they aren’t looking at the camera. I will wait as long as necessary. Try standing behind me to get their attention. But don't stress out if they look everywhere but where you want them to look. Not every portrait needs to have the subject looking into the lens. It's a new day.

6. When they aren’t in front of the camera, I have crayons and coloring pages. But feel free to bring one small toy. If you bring more than one, it will be hard to get them to focus on the camera when they need to.

7. If all else fails, bribe them with something special after the shoot—ice cream, a new toy. Dreadful parenting, I know.

Just know that I’ve been there. I’m not judging. I’m not annoyed. If you need to reschedule, then let’s do that.

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© Copyright Tracy Whiteside, St. Charles, IL 630-234-9506