HOW TO SUCCESSFULLY TAKE PICTURES WITH A TODDLER

Okay, so, the title of this blog post was clearly click bait, lol, figured I might as well confess and keep it honest from the jump. Let’s be real, there is no right way to take a pic with a toddler and there is no successful way to take pics with a toddler. For toddlers, it’s a whole new world for them. For Charlee, she just started walking on her birthday and she’s been on the move ever since. She wants to see the world, touch things, taste things, look at everything and do it all over again the next day. She’s curious, she’s energetic, and persistent; I’m sure some of these adjectives fall in line with many toddlers out there.

Look, I have no magical secrets to getting content with my little one, but here are 6 tips for getting what I would consider to be decent, instagramable shots. I’ll be the first to say, I’m no expert, I’m learning as I go, but so far I think things are working and though I’d do a dedicated post sharing some tips and tricks to make pics with your little just a bit easier .

KEEP SNACKS ON HAND

Kiddos, are still growing, which means when they are hungry, they need to eat right away. In Charlee’s case, she eats every few hours. What this means is that when they are hungry your photoshoot is not important, period. I like to make sure Charlee is fed prior to a shoot or has had a hardy meal an hour or so before a shoot and I always keep snacks on deck just in case. In fact, for this shoot, she scarfed down a half a PB&J right before and was happy as a clam and ready to party afterwards.

NAPS ARE ESSENTIAL

Plan your content days with the little one around their nap time. When they are fully rested, you’re more than likely to get better pictures and a kiddo who is more cooperative, full of energy and ready to take some pics. This can be hard sometimes with all of life’s other demands, but a full rested kid will make for a much easier shoot day.

IT’S ALL ABOUT LOCATION

Some little one’s don’t like to be in the car seat a long period of time, so try to plan shoot locations well in advance or shoot closer to where you live. Additionally, pick locations that couple as a fun place for kids to explore and entertain themselves. Those candid shots of them taking in this big new world make for perfect content and it’s even better when it’s a location that is specifically for kids.

KEEP IT CANDID

Sometimes, the best shots are the ones you catch off guard. This polka dot shoot was mostly a liter of candid shots, because Charlee just started walking, she looks down at her feet most of the time. I just embrace that and try to capture pictures of her enjoying this new found skill of hers. Most of the time, Charlee has no clue what’s going on when we are shooting, she just wants to explore the new location and the shots we often capture of her enjoying the new space are always the most enjoyable for me to edit and share with family and friends.

DON’T FORCE IT

Kids are more intuitive than we think. If they see you stressing, they’ll stress too. Just be natural, smile, laugh, play with your kiddo, enjoy the space and help them and join in on exploring the location with them. They want to be free to wander, but they also want you to share in the adventure too. Most of the photoshoots I have with Charlee involve me helping her discover all our shoot locations have to offer. When it’s natural and you’re just spending time with your kiddo, you’ll forget the camera is there and that’s when the real magic happens and you truly get authentic shots I think your audience will enjoy. When you force it, it really will show in the pictures. Have patience with your little one and remember that not every shot will be perfect, but when you’re being yourself and letting your kiddo be themselves, every shot will always be you!

PLAN OUTFITS AHEAD OF TIME

Getting a toddler ready takes a bit of time, getting a toddler ready for a content day takes even more time. I like to get my outfit(s) and Charlee’s outfit(s) out a day or so before the scheduled shoot and I always bring an extra outfit or pieces that can mix and match with what she is wearing just in case she spills food or has an accident. There is nothing worse than having a cute outfit for your little one and then it gets ruined right before it’s time to shoot so with a backup, you’ll always be prepared.

So there is no right answer for how to take perfect pics with your toddler, but I hope my tips are a great way to at least avoid a complete photoshoot disaster. Just remember, no shoot with a little one will be perfect, in fact, it might flop, I’ve had a few of those if I’m being honest, but just know, your kid is learning, growing and exploring and what better way to reimagine the world by learning and growing with them. I always look at content days as an adventure, it’s so rewarding to see Charlee grow and smile and learn about all the new things around her. Shoots are different these days because of it and it only makes motherhood that much more enjoyable. 😃

P.S. big shoutout to Chris Dalton the lovely muralist responsible for this lovely colorful polka dotted walk located in downtown Sanford, NC. Thanks for making Sanford so colorful! 🙂

Till next time.

Sincerely,


Deidra Marie


COLOR ME CHARLEE

There were a lot of first happening this past weekend. Our sweet Charlee turned 1 on Saturday and she started walking! Can you believe it because I’m still in shock that I’ve been momming for 1 year and to put the icing on the cake Charlee is officially walking now! She’s been taking small steps here and there for the past month, but started full blown walking at her birthday celebration. These milestones never get old. My little mom heart is completely full at this point. I don’t think I have room for anymore, LOL 😂.

We threw a big colorful Color Me Charlee birthday bash for her first birthday on Saturday as well, Keep scrolling for a few pics, I’m lying, keep scrolling for 5,000 pics of the big day.

Big shoutout to Kelly Jean Photography for the lovely images. You can find her and all her lovely work on Instagram: @kellyjeanphotographyllc or check her website out at: kellyjeanphotographyllc.com

Stay tuned for some fun upcoming blogpost! Talking about some of my fave Vera Bradley finds and summer to fall transition style tips this September. 😊

Till next time.

Sincerely,

Deidra Marie

Charlee with her strawberry whipped cream churro cake. Yummy 🤤

DEAR BRANDS…

Last week was a trying week in the influencer bloggerverse for me. I’ve received email after email from brands who say they can’t compensate me for my work or brands who don’t email back after I’ve requested compensation for my work. I’ve been very successful in turning some of this around, negotiating deals that are beneficial for both parties and working towards helping brands better understand why even nano-influencers like myself deserve to be paid. Keep reading for 7 don’ts I have for brands. Brands and partners, if you’re reading this, I hope this helps you better understand why we ALL deserve to be compensated, treated fairly and valued for the work we do.

Dear Brands,

Don’t unfollow me because I asked for compensation for my content. We can still support each other as you work towards gaining the funds to compensate influencers such as myself. My work has value to, clearly you saw that when you checked my page out and started following me. Keep that same energy even after I ask for a fair wage.

Don’t ask for my media kit with rates if you never intended on paying me or even negotiating terms with me in the first place. My media kit is reserved for brands and partners that value me and my work and want to invest in that work and understand it’s important that partnerships they reach out about should be mutually beneficial for both parties so stop asking for my media kit unless you’re really interested in doing business with me.

Don’t assume that if I’m asking to be compensated for my work that I’m not willing to negotiate terms. If you give me the time of day, we can work out something that’s mutually beneficial for both parties. That may or may not include payment.

Don’t ghost me when I ask to be compensated for my quality content. It’s unprofessional and quite frankly, disrespectful. Send a quick email back letting me know you’re unable to provide payment for my services at this time. It takes you no time to do that and when you don’t, you wasted my time and make very clear that professionalism isn’t something your brand actually values!

Don’t wonder or ask why I’m requesting compensation. The resources used to create the content your requesting isn’t free, so why should my content be?

Don’t one-off me, and if this is a one time deal, be upfront! While compensation is important to me, so is building strong relationships with brands that genuinely care about my content and what I have to say, so if this is a one- off partnership, just say so. Making your expectations clear from the beginning really sets the stage for how you truly run your business and leaves no room for questioning brand intentions.

Don’t ask for 5,000 deliverables, but offer an unfair wage for it. The content you’re requesting takes time, money, and effort to make and when you offer an unfair wage, it really speaks to how much or how little you value the process and all it takes to create said content.

I had to get this off my chest because we’re all trying to build a brand here and at some junction you have to know that in order to make money you have to spend money. We’re all trying here and you have to really weigh your investments, but I refuse to continue providing quality work for no pay or unfair pay or providing quality work to brands without something (paid or unpaid) that shows they care. Sometimes, free products and exposure isn’t enough. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t mind a free partnership, but if that’s what a brand wants, I really need it to be beneficial to my brand as well. Let’s be fair, let’s be equal and let’s build relationships on the foundation of that fair and equal mindset. Influencers, we have to take time to understand our worth and work with brands that do too! It’s not all about the money. What I care most about is that my work is valued and my voice is heard and I shouldn’t have to yell to the rooftops for brands to understand that I’m worthy too.

Till next time.

Sincerely,

Deidra Marie