WASHINGTON (DC News Now) — There may be no better way to commemorate the beginning of a new school year than by taking a picture of your child as they head out for their first day.
We gathered some pointers and trends from across the Internet to help you get that perfect shot.
Use props in your photos.
Popular props include books, backpacks and chalkboards.
You can write the year or what grade your kid is starting on the chalkboard or on the books. If you use the books, you can do it either on the fronts or the spines if they have paper covers. An article from the website Love to Know suggested making a colorful sign to add to the vibrance of the picture.
If you’re interested in going down the DIY path, you also can make a back-to-school frame for your kid to pose with, the website tinybeans said.
Have your kid show off their newest school supplies, too, whether that’s a backpack, pencils, books or anything else they’re excited about.
Get a vibrant background.
Spice up your pictures with a nice background! You could head outside for greenery in the background or get some flowers going.
The blog the Click Community also recommends taking a picture in your doorway. It said that this is a “tried and true setup for beautiful, even lighting that will give your photo pro-quality results.”
Use school buses as well, as tinybeans recommends. The yellow is sure to make your picture pop. Whether you’re asking your kid to pose in front of it or grabbing a candid photo of your student boarding the school bus, this is sure to bring storytelling, background and color all together for a scene you likely will remember.
Follow the rule of thirds.
The rule of thirds is a guideline that can help you with photo composition. It tells you to have your subject in the left or right third of the picture.
In the above example, you would want your kid’s face in the top right or left intersection and position your child so that they’re looking “into” the rest of the picture.
Adobe said that this guideline “generally leads to compelling and well-composed shots.”
Here’s how you can turn on grid guidelines on your iPhone or Android:
- On an iPhone, open your Settings app, scroll down to where it says Camera and make sure the button next to “Grid” is on.
- On a Samsung phone, open your Camera app, tap on the gear icon for settings there and make sure the toggle next to “Grid lines” is on.
After the grid is on, turn your phone or camera to take horizontal pictures and get snapping!
Get up-close and document changes.
An article from the Click Community said that close-ups of your kid’s face can help document how much their face changes from year to year and is a bit of a change from typical back-to-school pictures.
The article said that you can also use a different angle — like taking a picture from overhead — to emphasize your child’s “littleness” and “bring light into the eyes that makes them sparkle.”
Get in the picture with your kid.
The site Love to Know recommended capturing the goodbye hug as you send your kid off to their first day. You also can get into a matching outfit for some pictures, as tinybeans recommends. Either set up a timer or have someone else help you take the picture.
Regardless of how you pose, this can help your kid relax and capture a moment you may not have thought of otherwise.
Take a picture before the first day arrives.
On top of getting up, getting ready and getting to school, getting a picture can add to the stress of the first day. Instead, you can grab some pictures before the big day. A blog post on Rent-A-Center recommends snapping a picture while back-to-school shopping or at any events the school may host before kicking off the school year.
You can also get some pictures of your kid getting ready the night before by picking out an outfit or packing their bag.
Not feeling the picture? Go for a video instead.
The website tinybeans said that hitting “record” instead of snapping a picture could give you a more widespread memory to look back on. “Press record and ask the questions you’d usually save for the sign—grade level, favorite things and the most timeless of inquiries: what they want to be when they grow up,” the post recommends.
The post said that this helps you capture “the voice, the gestures, the giddy charm,” that your kid has each year.