“Play is not frivolous. It is not a luxury. It is not something to fit in after completing all the important stuff. Play is the important stuff.”
- (Let Them Play by Jeff A Johnson and Denita Dinger)
I am passionate about play-based learning in a child’s development. Play is how children learn best – it is the important business of childhood.
Of course, that is slightly off-topic for a photography blog! But play is also when children look their best. Nothing brings out a child’s real personality quite like play.
By the time they get to three or four years old, most children start to get self-conscious in front of a camera. They develop their trademark “photo smile”. If you have a child around that age, I’m sure you know the one I mean! For some, it’s a goofy, cheesy grin. For others, it looks more like a grimace. The one consistency is that it looks nothing like their usual, happy self!
I use lots of games in all of my photo shoots with young children, to get past the dreaded "photo smile" and bring out their real personality. Even more fun, though, is to make playtime the feature of the photography session and capture the child totally in their element.
I love the mix of laughter, concentration and pure joy in the photographs from this beach playtime photo shoot. You can almost hear those laughs, and feel the playfulness and happiness.
And on a slightly different note, those blue, blue eyes and lush eyelashes, and oh those dimples! Melt!! I know I'm a bit biased about this session because this adorable little boy is my nephew, but seriously, could you get any more gorgeous?!