I have a set of skills...

Didn't Liam Neeson say it best in "Taken"?

I don't know who you are (yet). I don't know what you want (memories?).

If you are looking for portraits of your toddler I can tell you I don't have chocolate money, but what I do have are a very particular set of skills.

Skills I have acquired over a very long career. Skills that make me a dream for people like you. If you let my creativity go now that'll be the start of it. I will look at your families vibe, I will focus on your toddler, I will find your smiles and I will shoot you."

I think that's how it went? No?

The actual point of this post is to dispel fears that your toddler is going to HATE having a photography session. I hear this so much! They won't stay still, they won't take instruction, they death stare strangers, they cling to your leg, they fear the photographer.

Why do children from the age of 2 to say, 6, freak out at the thought of photographs? It's not from past experience, as often they haven't been photographed professionally since they were newborn. It's not because they are self conscious of afraid of looking silly- children this age have the wonderful freedom of not yet being self aware and self critical. So what is it?

I have a theory...

"You're going to have you photograph taken"

"I'll take your photograph"

"The photographer will take your picture"

When teaching children this age discipline it's a common approach to warn them of consequence of their undesirable behaviour.

"Ichabod! Please stop eating all the humbugs or I'll take them away!"

"Mavis, if you don't stop bashing your bone china teapot about I'll take it off you!"

"Athena! If you point your bow and arrow at Ares one more time it'll be taken away from you!"

Can you see the link?




I genuinely believe that young children associate the word "take" with punishment, loss, and missing out. It's really that simple. They don't see the context. They just see the threat.

So that's why we need to rebrand how we present the prospect of professional photography to young children (and sometimes husbands too, you know who you are Mr non smiling I don't want to be here serious chops!).

Portraits are a two way street. As much as it's down to me to draw out the best in you and your children, I need your involvement too. I need you, and your children, to be on board.

We are creating.

We are exploring.

We are making.

So next time you want to get your littles feeling enthusiastic about a professional photoshoot, use the magic phrase with the golden words of inclusivity and positivity.

We are going to make a photograph today.

Let's make a photograph together.

You are going to have your photograph maken...

What's that Susie Dent? The last one doesn't work? But could it? Please? No. Ok then, I won't take up lexicography just yet. I'll stick to making portraits instead :)

Becca x