Birthday Photo Session | Tatum

When Tatum’s mama contacted me to set up a birthday photo session for her 2nd birthday, I was so excited! We were planning on doing a picnic-themed shoot in the Tuileries gardens, overlooking the Louvre. Well, the weather had different ideas but we made it work for us and now this is one of my favourite photo session to date! 

I know they call them the terrible twos, but you’d never know it if you met this bubbly little cutie! She was jumping, giggling, munching on macarons and singing a surprisingly baritone version of “Let It Go”. In just one hour I managed to capture her big personality a million different ways!

Oh, and by the way, her daddy is a pro basketball player, so of course Tatum had a blast being thrown up in the air!

Toddler birthday photo session

Since it had been raining all morning, we nixed the picnic idea and instead opted for colourful balloons that matched her outfit and the fun columns of the Palais Royal. Tatum wore an adorable pink polka-dotted outfit with very stylish rain boots (a must for toddlers when there are puddles around). 

Props for your photo shoot

I highly recommend bringing some props along for family sessions. Whether it’s a favourite stuffed animal, bubbles, balloons or sweets, it gives toddlers something to do. For children that are camera-shy, it allows them to focus on something else and helps them to relax. For outgoing models-in-the-making like Tatum, props are a fun way to get different expressions and poses during the photoshoot.

Rain or shine: what to wear

One of the most important aspects of a child’s birthday session is the outfit. Yes, it should look cute (I mean, look at how stylish this little lady is), but it should also be easy to move in and weather-appropriate. For our photoshoot, we were lucky that the rain had stopped and it was quite a warm day. Tatum’s mama was well prepared; brought extra layers and a raincoat just in case though.

For photo sessions when the weather gets cooler, it’s so important to bring many layers for your children to the shoot. Cold kids are cranky kids and nobody wants that during a family session. Don’t forget that mornings can be quite chilly, even in September, so bring more clothes, rather than less. 

Every child is different

After many years of photographing children and family sessions, I can tell you that children are all different when it comes to photoshoots. Some, like Tatum, have no problem getting right into the swing of things and giving big smiles and having fun. Others need some time to feel comfortable around a new person. If you’re travelling with your family, they may even be experiencing jet lag, new surroundings and lots of big feelings. 

I like to go with the rhythm of each child, which is why I encourage a lot of play and movement during family sessions. This gets them relaxed and having fun. It’s also a beautiful way to capture their personalities and interests. 

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