Ahh, the first day of school… it can come around all too quickly for those of us who love abandoning routine for summer.
Or maybe getting the kids back to school can’t come quick enough (for all the universal reasons we mums are familiar with at the tail end of summer holidays!).
Wherever you stand, we’re all about to start getting school supplies ready and thinking about new shoes and school lunches when it’s time to head back!
The new school year presents a whole bunch of photo opportunities that are perfect to create a photobook for your child to treasure when they grow up.
In fact when I was writing this post I dug back into the archives for my own daughter’s first day at school, and it was lovely for both of us to look back on.
So we have some ideas to help you tell the story and like all good stories, it will have a beginning, a middle and an ending.
When you head out to buy the new pair of school shoes, capture them trying them on or being measured for them. Include the whole store from back a little, and then take some close ups of little hands tying shoe laces or fastening the buckle.
Ask them to stand up and take a creative shot of just their shoes on their feet, and don’t forget their beaming smile!
I love the sweet photos of little ones proudly wearing their uniforms, especially when they’re too big at the start of the year!
Don’t forget the details such as:
Get your little ones to help prepare their sandwich or snack and photograph them as they do.
Also take a looking down shot of the packed lunchbox all ready for the day.
There are so many opportunities to get creative with this one alone! Gather their shiny new supplies and try shooting from different perspectives. You’re only limited by your imagination, but try these ideas:
Not only do these shots help to tell your story, they’re also great shots for your album or collage of the day.
You can get some really cute purpose made signs and blackboards to do this of course, but I’m all about simplicity and least cost for biggest bang!
Write on a large piece of paper “first day of school”, including the date and their year level. Alternatively, get them to do it!
As you head out the front door, ask them to pose for a shot whilst holding it in front of them. Get in close also and take a shot of that sign remembering to include little hands clutching it.
The front porch is a great spot for this shot as it shows them leaving home for the day, and as a bonus you’ll usually find nice soft light in that open shade.
On the last day of school do the same thing, and when these photos are shown side by side you can compare their growth and change.
Just before you enter the school, take a shot of the school sign, and make it a wide one that includes the school grounds behind it. A wide angle lens is the best choice for this shot as it allows you get in close to the sign whilst still including the environment.
Related: What Lens Should I Use
As your child inevitably meet their friends as they enter the school grounds, get some group photos! You could get creative here too, and take some close up shots of friends holding hands, and the back of them as they walk into their classroom to start their new school year.
Great light is key to beautiful shots. It really does make the difference between snapshots, and beautiful, professional looking photos.
So set your child up to cover her books or prepare her lunch etc in an area with lovely natural light. Sit them either facing, or to the side of, a large window. If you see really bright areas of distracting light in the shot, they’re too close to the window, just move them a little further away.
Your covered front porch is a great place for flattering light as it’s an open shade area so this is a great spot to capture that first day of school photo just before they head off for the day. If you don’t have a covered front porch, try the photos just inside your front doorway which will also offer some open shade.
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