BUSY CHILD ASSIGNMENT

In this assignment, we’ll be practicing the process of assessing your exposure and trying out different angles.

1 - CHOOSE AN ACTIVITY

Find an area where you can keep your child occupied and sitting still for awhile but don't put the child there yet!
Examples include breakfast table, highchair, sofa watching television, jumperoo, child's table (doing a jigsaw or something), or buggy.
Make sure that the area is out of direct sun - you don't want sun falling directly on the child's face.

2 - TEST SHOT

Here's how to go about taking a test shot..

  • LONG LENS - Choose your long lens or the maximum zoom your lens can do. 

  • ISO - Choose a suitable ISO - check the ISO cheat sheet diagram on this page.

  • LARGE APERTURE - Choose your largest aperture - check my lingo page as a reminder.

  • ASSESS SHUTTER - Assess your shutter speed. Aim for 1/250 or faster. 

  • SHUTTER SPEED TOO LOW? - Raise your ISO. Test shutter speed again until you're happy.

  • CHIMP - Does your photo look underexposed or overexposed? Adjust exposure compensation if necessary.

  • NOTE DOWN SETTINGS -  Write down your settings AND keep the camera on those settings ready for your shoot.

ISO 2500 f2.2 1/250 second
busychild-4321.jpg

3 - ADD IN CHILD

This one may not go to plan! Try to get your child to do what you planned. Often you will fail, because, well, they have their own opinions about this just try another day. If you succeed, hooray! Grab your camera quick.

If you child is cooperative, get them occupied and go back to your test shot position. Press your shutter halfway to test the exposure. Check your shutter speed is still 1/250 or above. Adjust ISO if not. The lighting may have changed so be prepared that the settings might not look quite the same.

Take your TEST SHOT and CHIMP. Adjust settings if necessary.

4 - TRY DIFFERENT ANGLES

Now try out lots of different angles. Without moving your child at all - they are hopefully busy - see how many different types of shots you can get. Just move around quickly whilst your child is occupied.

Try : 

  • Different angles (side on / front on)

  • Close up & far away

  • High and low (stand on a chair / kneel down)

  • REMEMBER to take a pullback shot too!

 

EXAMPLE ASSIGNMENT - EVA DRAWING

 

TEST SHOTS

In this case it was a really dark grey day, so very poor light. I had to put my ISO up to 2500. With a younger & more wriggle child I probably would have pushed up to ISO 4000 or something to get a faster shutter speed!

My settings were ISO 2500 , Aperture f2.2, Shutter Speed  1/250 second

START SNAPPING

After deciding on settings, I started moving positions.

I stood on a chair, then stood on the table. Loomed over her, close-up. Then put the camera down on the table for a low view. And finally moved to the side for profile view.

PULLBACK SHOT

This pullback shot, shows the large windows to her left, behind and in front of her (where I was standing for the test shot).

busychild-4352.jpg

BONUS SHOTS

As my subject was creating some lovely artwork, I made sure to photograph that too for posterity!