Jessica Vogel

Jessica's Programs

Photographing Children…Get Into Their World


This program is very simple, practical and non-technical. We are going to look at what it really takes to successfully photograph children. Many of you may think it takes a great camera, great lighting, expensive backgrounds…but, let’s strip all of that away. Imagine you are in a room with no one and nothing but a child, and mom standing nearby. What are you going to do? How are you going to get that child to interact with you, trust you, smile at you, and cooperate with you?

Characteristics of Children…What do children like to do?

(play, be in control, investigate things…let the crowd come up with answers).

#1 Philosophy with Photographing Chidlren

-You must go into their world…do not expect them to come up to your adult world. So…how do we go into the world of a newborn? What do newborns like to do?

-Approach the session like a child. You must get into their mind…think like they do..act like they do…Remember our characteristics of children!

-Knowing what children like to do at each age and stage of life is the beginning to your success

Have a Plan

-Do not enter the camera room with no inkling of what you are going to do during the session

-Know what you will do with each session. Have appropriate props and activities tailored to the child’s age and mother’s desires for the final images.

-babies, two-year olds, each studio background, location sessions etc. Know what is going to occur before you begin.

Give Them Something To Do

-Children’s hands need to be doing something.

-Have several session activities and combine these with at least 3-4 camera distractions.

-Busy hands will enhance the believability of the portrait.

A Word About Two-Year Olds…

-At this stage of life, referred to the “terrible twos,” a child is trying to establish independence…Erik Erickson’s Psychosocial Stages of development. They must learn to do things by themselves…it is vital to their development. We can’t fight against it but can work WITH


-Never ask a two-year old to DO anything…the answer to every question is always “NO!” Instead use reverse psychology…”Don’t you go over there and sit in that chair…don’t you do it!!” Also, use distractions they cannot resist…candy treats etc.

-Keep mother from interfering. The worst thing that mom can do, is continue to ask the child to do things for you.


-This is the thread which weaves the entire session together.

– In this day and age, a phone consult is usually adequate if the client has seen your work

-It is vital in gaining control before your little client ever walks through the door.

-It lets you create your plan for each session so you will know exactly what to do.

Unending Patience

-Sounds like a cliché…right? Don’t ever let mom see you lose patience

-Remember, she has spent the day/and time before the session preparing for this session…

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