Chapter 8: Ages, Stages, and Groups
Tweens and Teens
Although it can be helpful to speak of children in terms of ages and stages, it is vital to keep in mind that every child is unique and individual. Your intuition is your best guide as to how to handle different ages and stages. Paying attention to the child’s unique presence teaches you a great deal about how you might react and connect with him, in order to capture more of his true personality in a photograph.
If you are a parent, you will likely want to document your child’s life to preserve your own memories of his or her birth and childhood. By capturing these photos you are literally illustrating a life story. How many times has a son or daughter asked, “What was I like when I was little?” Posed portraits from a photo studio or a school yearbook never tell the whole story. It’s the pictures of children laughing or sleeping as babies, skiing down a hill for the first time, running in circles, reading quietly as a teenager, or a million other images that record a history of childhood that tell the real story. This chapter is a guide to each developmental stage of a child’s life, addressing the challenges and rewards of photographing each stage with tips to help you along the way. The ideas covered in this chapter are meant to serve ...