“How do I get sharp photos of my kids when they won’t.stop.moving?!”
That’s one of the single most asked questions we get about photographing kids. And as it happens, we had a tonne of gorgeous photos of kids in motion shared by our grads lately, sooo…
Please enjoy this week’s highlights reel, a collection of ten of the best photos of kids in motion!
Check em out, read the tech tips so you can nail focus, and go try some of these photos yourself!
Shutter speed is the element of manual mode that freezes or captures motion, depending on the effect you’re after. The faster your subject moves, the faster the shutter speed you’ll need to freeze that motion.
It takes time and experience in manual mode to know intuitively what shutter speed to choose for a particular speed of motion. But until then, start with around 1/800, take a test shot and adjust if necessary.
The following article explains it in more detail, including a shutter speed guide for common activities you might want to capture.
Related: Shutter Speed for Sharper Photos
Normally when you take a photo, you half depress the shutter, the camera grabs focus and locks, then you shoot. The problem with this method is your camera often locks focus on something other than your subject, putting your subject out of focus.
The good news is you can control this completely simply by switching your camera to manual focus point selection mode. This enables you to choose the focal point that the camera uses to focus, and by choosing a focus point that sits on your subject, you ensure sharp focus exactly where you want it.
The following article explains exactly how to do it.
Related: Master your Focus
So assuming you read the article above… now you know how to toggle through your focus points to control where focus lands. Go you! It’s a total game changer isn’t it?!
But what about this scenario… you frame the shot, choose your focus point, lock focus… then your little one moves! Maybe they’re just a wriggler, or maybe they’re a runner… but either way, your subject has put him or herself on a different focal plane to where you focused, and now they’re blurry!
In those situations you need to use a focus drive mode that will track your subject and adjust itself when they move. I won’t lie… it’s a tricky technique to master and it does have a higher fail rate (so it’s not you!)… but just pop your camera into burst mode and take a LOT of shots to give you more chance of getting a handful of sharp shots among them.
Read this article to learn how to use continuous focus drive mode… scroll down to the last section ‘how to focus on a moving subject’.
Related: How to Focus on a Moving Subject
Let’s face it, toddlers and preschoolers are professional wrigglers! If you’re not confident using continuous focus mode (or you’re just over it and want some photos where they’re firmly in place for more than 2 seconds!)… you have a couple of options.
In the photo below, his mama gave him a camera, and what a gorgeous shot it makes! In the next shot, he’s happily playing and his mama took advantage of his quiet busyness to grab some lifestyle photos.
If you want some ideas for how to engage them with you to keep them in place and get some natural smiles, check out these articles.
Ok so this gorgeous photo isn’t confetti as we know it, but the technique is the same. Check out our tutorial for a super easy step-by-step guide to take your own confetti (or dandelion!) photos!
Related: How to Take Confetti Photos