I have a new photo buddy, and he’s only five years old. My grandson, Julien is a natural with a camera and we had so much fun shooting together on the weekend. Wow, such a thrill for me to see him showing interest in this. And what a great way for us to explore the natural world together. Looking forward to many more photography sessions with my little buddy.

After a little practice with the camera, we headed out to see what we could find. Our first subject was a guy on a mini motorcycle.Got him! Oh, the joy of seeing a photo that turns out well.

At the park nearby, the Fawn Lilies were waiting for us. Julien got right into it, just like a real photographer.

Back at the house, a little play time.

The joy of creativity!

Of interest to photographers

This collection of photos illustrates an important point about photographing children: give them something to do. Rather than looking at the camera with ‘cheese’ on their lips, you can get much more authentic photos when the kids are engaged. The key things to keep in mind when photographing children in this way is to use a shallow depth of field to soften the background, get down at their level and make it fun. Keep the conversation going and when you sense they are getting tired, do something different.

Photography with children, when the kids begin to take pictures, can begin at a pretty early age and really is just point and shoot. But there is a lot of learning going on here about observing their surroundings and then evaluating the pictures taken. Julien and I downloaded the pictures and he selected his favourites. He was quick to delete several and also had strong preferences about other ones. A fun way to follow up is to make prints of his favourites and put them in an inexpensive photo album, his very first book of photos.

The camera that we use is a real adult’s camera (a Canon G10). It’s a durable camera and has survived a few hard knocks. The monitor is large enough for him to easily see his work and the controls are easy for him to quickly learn. We’ve tried a few children’s cameras and believe they are a waste of time and money. This way we have a camera that we use but are comfortable sharing with him and that he can have success with. A cheap kids’ camera is just frustrating for parent and child.