It’s official, back-to-school season is here! Most of us will have our camera or smartphone ready to caputure the day. This school year try adding a little variety to your First Day Of School pictures with these super easy tips.
Tip #1: Using a sign as a prop in your child’s picture makes it very easy to remember important details from the school year – like child’s age, grade and teacher. You can keep it very simple by printing the sign with any information that you would like to recall about the school year on your home computer and having your child hold the paper in the picture.
In the pictures below my daughter is holding a homemade speech bubble - the perfect sign to hold up in pictures and it's very simple to make. First, you will need a piece of cardboard, chalkboard paint (available at craft stores for about $6), a paint brush, scissors and chalk. Trace your speech bubble onto a piece of cardboard and then cut it out. Next, paint one side of the cardboard with the chalkboard paint, using 2 coats (make sure to protect your surface). Once the cardboard is dry (in about an hour), use your chalk to write your child's grade and school year. You can be really creative - try making a large sign and adding your child's school name, teacher's name, a few of his/her favorite things, etc. Take a few pictures using the sign - they make a really adorable picture collage. Make your speech bubble before the 1st day of school.
Tip #2: Using cutouts as a prop is super easy too! In these examples my two daughters are holding up cut outs of the grade that they are entering that year. Super cute! We made the cut outs from cardboard paper the night before to save time that morning. Any kind of sturdy paper works well, like construction paper, or even felt. You can be really creative here! At most craft stores you can buy numbers made from cardboard in the wood making section that you can then have your child paint for a personal touch to use in his/her pictures.
Tip #3: Take a group shoot. If you have multiple children take a group picture of them. You may have to allow for some extra time in the morning to take this picture, since taking a good group shot can be a monumental task for many of us. It’s a great way to see comparative growth between the kids too!
Tip #4: Walk away. I love taking the classic “walking off to school” picture – of the child's back to the camera. It's one of the easiest pictures to take of my kids, since it doesn't matter if they are smiling or not!
Tip #5: Name their favorite things. Take a single picture of your child and add details to the pictures of their current favorite things, like food, drink, TV show, movie or book. These little bits of information are great for very forgetful moms like me! I enjoy journaling, so I made a scrapbook page for my daughter about her "big day." It's also fun too to take a picture on the last day of school with the same concept to see how they have changed during the school year.
Tip #6: Be candid & relax!
Some of my favorite pictures from the 1st day of school are those that aren't posed. Maybe you can even snap away a few pictures BEFORE school starts - when the kids are shopping for back to school supplies and clothes. This may be the best tip for those with teens - they may not be up to capturing every "big" moment in their life as much as we would like too :) It's always ok to take a few pictures AFTER the big day. Some kids may just not want to take pictures on the 1st day and you may have too many other things to worry about, like being on time and packing a lunch!