It sure isn't commercial photography, but you’d want to capture the MOST PRECIOUS moments of your life with the MOST IMPORTANT people you know. Don't be cheap. Buy the best camera you can afford.
Don't fight technology. Let it work for you. The kids scene mode or sports mode in many cameras actually works.
If you prefer to go the manual photography route, the first thing you'll want to do is crank up the ISO, or light sensitivity, of your camera. And with a higher ISO, you'll also be able to…
Shoot those kids bouncing off the walls as if you were freezing moments in time. That's what fast shutter speeds will allow you to do. Slow down your shutter speed if you want motion blur.
Remember, you are painting with light, not creating a computer program. Try to get lots of light in your photos. This will ensure that your shots with fast shutter speeds won't be mired in darkness. Use a flash if you must. But if the kids are young...
Younger kids, and especially babies, are more sensitive to flash photography, so avoid it when possible. Strategically place your subject near a window or under lights instead.
Talk to the kids, be their buddy, and they may smile at you. Don't be the creepy guy with the giant camera who's following them around.
When kids are not difficult, they're outright impossible. Take lots of photos. Most of them will be horrible. Some of them are bound to be good.
Real smiles are fleeting. Enable burst mode to capture multiple frames within a single second.
A photographer once said, "If your photos aren't good, you're not close enough." This is true when shooting kids too.
Don't rely on your camera's zoom lens. Use your legs to get close, or to find new and different angles. Get on the floor if you must.
Kids do the darnedest things, and they don't wait for the photographer to be ready. Be vigilant. Keep an eye out for those Kodak moments.
Vince Sales is the blogger behind Third World Nerd, a website that talks about gadgets, games, and technology. He is married to Frances Amper Sales of www.mommytopaz.com. Photos taken by Vince and his family.