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Patience

This next couple of months will hopefully get you thinking ahead about opportunities for taking a day out, making some beautiful images and spending time together with family. To do that you're going to need to plan, and I'll be sharing some tips I use for planning props, locations, and all sorts of things.

But I thought I'd just start with a principle. Being patient.

You had a wonderful plan for the weekend. You'd been thinking about it all week. You set off for the day trip and suddenly it starts raining. Or a child gets car sick. Or the museum is closed for refurbishment. Or you forgot the buckets and spades. Or someone sent you something nice for your blog and you'd love to have a picture of your child with it on the beach, but they dropped it in a puddle. A million things can go wrong!

Going with a new plan

I'd like you to remember throughout the whole of this course that the important thing is that you're spending some time together. Yes, you're hoping to make some lovely images for your memory wall or an album, but you can easily fall into a trap of forcing the day to revolve around the camera. It's a tricky thing to balance, and I often feel sad when I see a family out and about taking images after something has gone wrong, but the parents are still trying to push the children to smile in a photo.

If something goes wrong, take a deep breath, and try to adapt to a new plan. When you look at images where you've not done that, you can almost see it in the images, but you can also feel it in yourself and the way you remember the day.

No doubt you're planning a photo trip after making your wall, so I'd like to challenge you to this. Try to be aware of moments where your patience is being tried, and make a note. Maybe on your phone, or in a notebook, wherever works. Have you adapted or adjusted the plan? That's a good thing! Relaxed people look better than stressed people in photos, so make a note, realise you're having to give up what you'd hoped to achieve, but pay a little attention to how you can improvise and what happened next. Did you manage to have fun anyway? Did you get some great images with the next location or activity? I bet you will, and if you can feel relaxed when things are going wrong, that'll spread to those who are with you, making them more relaxed and natural when you want to take their photo. More on that in another lesson!

Please share your patience stories on Facebook, especially if you have one for the coming weekend!

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