One of the first lessons I learned as an Akron family photographer was to not spend too much time persuading kids to sit pretty and smile. Sure, they’ll cooperate for a few seconds here and a few seconds there, and you better snap away when those glorious moments spring to life. More often than not, though, no amount of coaxing, prodding, encouraging, bribing, pleading and begging will convince a three year old to sit still for longer than a fleeting nanosecond.
Shortly after learning that lesson, I also learned that it’s better this way. We don’t want kids to sit pretty and smile for a bunch of snapshots. Kids are adventurous, curious, spontaneous, silly, whimsical and dozens of other adjectives that all equal photographic gold. It’s so much more rewarding to follow one of these little explorers around as they give you a glimpse into their unique world, a world we all once resided in and a world that a part of us will always miss. So last month, with Christmas a couple weeks away, I met this adorable adventurer and let her lead me (along with her mom, dad and sister) around her house on an unseasonably warm winter day. You don’t get authentic smiles and memorable faces like this when you ask kids to sit pretty and smile.