Photography captures so many of life’s precious moments, from a child’s first steps to a bride walking down the wedding aisle. Given how quickly kids grow up, it can be highly meaningful to photograph their various ages and stages!
Here are 20 kids’ photoshoot ideas so you can create images that will last many lifetimes.
If you are looking for ways kids can take their own photos, read our kids photography lessons.
Kids’ Photoshoot Ideas
Looking for some newborn photography ideas? We share a handful of our favorites:
1. Holding the Baby
Newborns don’t stay small forever, and remembering their tiny size is important for parents. Photograph hands holding the newest little life. These images remind parents just how small their child once was, while also symbolizing the eternal warmth of loving hands.
2. The Small Details
Expanding on the previous kids’ photography idea: Capture close-ups of those tiny hands, little feet, and everything in between!
3. Organic Textures
There is a lot of symbolism in photography, and it’s determined partly by the setting and the props you include. Look to photograph newborns alongside natural and organic textures, as this complements the baby and symbolizes Mother Nature. Photographing with a shallow depth of field can help the textures be present without distracting from the primary subject.
4. Sleeping with a Parent
The candid moments of a baby sleeping with a parent can make for a beautiful image – one showing a maternal and paternal bond that can never be broken. These quiet and simple moments encompass all that life is about and place everything into perspective. Try to shoot from the baby’s eye level, which will give you a highly empathetic image.
5. Everyday Moments from Above
Babies sleep in such precious ways, and they look up at their parents with wonder and awe. Capturing these little moments from above can make for really stunning and sentimental images. Don’t be afraid to step on a stool to get the right vantage point. Alternatively, you can use a camera with a fully articulating LCD screen to help you capture the appropriate perspective.
Need more newborn photography inspiration? Then have a look at our 30 newborn photoshoot ideas.
Toddlers are lots of fun! Here are a few ideas for your next toddler photoshoot:
6. Exploring the World
The world is a big place – especially for a toddler! One of the most fascinating aspects of having children is seeing the wonder in their eyes because everything around them is brand new. It helps you appreciate the wonder and awe of exploration. So take the little one out to the park and photograph their various escapades as they enjoy a brand-new land.
7. Smell the Flowers
You can teach a toddler to stop and smell the roses (or other flowers). Show them how to appreciate the little beauties we have all around. It can make for a great image, but be sure to teach the toddler to be gentle with the flowers and to have an appreciation for the natural world.
8. Playing with Paint
Playing with paint is tons of fun. Get messy and bring out that camera. It’ll make for an afternoon well spent and plenty of funny photos!
9. In the Crib
No need to set up a studio or dress a child in a fancy outfit when you can capture life’s most precious moments right at home. Photograph your toddler in their crib, where they are comfortable and expressive. Focus on capturing funny facial expressions!
10. Cake Smash
Who doesn’t love a good cake smash? Cake smashes can be tons of fun (and they’re a popular way to celebrate a child’s first birthday). Just make sure to have everything ready before giving your toddler a cake to destroy. You’ll only get one shot.
Elementary-aged kids can still have plenty of photoshoot fun:
11. Best Friends
What’s the best part of elementary school? The best friends you make in the process! With sleepovers and fun outings galore, why not do a friends’ photoshoot? This can be a fun activity for everyone involved, and the children will undoubtedly appreciate the results as they get older.
12. Lying in Fall Leaves
If you’re lucky enough to live in a place that experiences actual seasons, take advantage of the falling leaves and lie in them! Autumn is beautifully encapsulated in shots like these, and kids love to do them. You might even make this the first shot in a family calendar (representing September or October).
Before you head out, make sure to check our autumn photography ideas and tips.
13. Playing with Parents
The relationships we hold dear are worth immortalizing forever in a photo. Whip out your camera and capture some candid moments of kids playing with their parents (and do it before they become teenagers and are too old to enjoy it).
14. Sunset by the Water
Summer break is expressed in the beautiful sunsets and warmth of the outdoor world. Traveling to the beach, the river, the lake, or another body of water is a popular summer activity and can make for some gorgeous images. Just remember that sunsets are short-lived, so be ready with the right settings for sunset portraits.
15. Dapper Day
My, what a handsome gentleman we see! Dapper Day is a fun opportunity for everyone to dress up in fancy, classic styles. You can capture some vintage images in the modern-day! Focus on taking black and white portraits that really sell the time period.
Middle-School and High-School Ages
If you’re planning a portrait session for teenagers, check out a few of these ideas:
16. Lying in Plants
Springtime brings forth many beautiful flowers, and lying in plants can make for gorgeous, elegant, and emotive images – which are great for teenagers who need senior portraits! Focus on using wide-angle lenses so you can really capture the vastness of the outdoor world (but don’t go too wide; you want to avoid distortion).
17. A Favorite Food
Part of growing up is having those crazy food cravings and being able to eat whatever you want without consequence! Why not use this to your advantage and create an entire photoshoot around food.
18. A Favorite Activity
Teenagers pick up so many fun pastimes, hobbies, and activities. They become a big part of the teenager’s identity (mine turned into a career!). Use this as a photoshoot concept; have fun photographing as your subject paints, skateboards, plays chess, reads, dances, plays music, and more!
19. In an Urban Environment
Teenagers love the edgier things in life, so heading out to explore the urban parts of a city can make for a fantastic photoshoot experience. Focus on making your shots spontaneous and exciting. Learn more about urban photography and capture the journey as it happens!
20. Laughing in the Sun
Summer break is as important to teens as it is to younger kids. It’s a time to lie out in the sun and do road trips with friends! Capture all that summer teen spirit by photographing teens laughing in the sunlight.
Enjoy Your Kids’ Photoshoot!
We hope that this collection of ideas has inspired you to photograph your own kids (or the kids of your clients) in various fun ways. Happy shooting!