When I returned from the Sacramento Family Conference, my brother asked if I would be available to do a quick photoshoot of his family. Of course! With such adorable nieces and nephew, how could I turn that down?!

There were some specific things for which they wanted to use the pictures, so we spent a lot of time setting up. Once everything was set up, it took some more time to get the kids positioned and engaged and happy and smiling at the camera. The whole process takes time.

And when so much time is taken to get an initial shot, it’s difficult to remember to take even more time to do the slight rearranging that will make the shot the best it can be.

Here’s what I mean. This is an initial set up:

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It took a long time to get this arrangement set up. Everyone was ready to move on to something different. But after shooting it, I really didn’t like it. Plus, I really wasn’t positive if I had captured good expressions with all the kids. I had taken so many pictures, surely one of them would have all three kids looking happy! But I wasn’t positive. (And as it turns out as you can see, I hadn’t captured one.) So I decided to take even more time to do some slight rearranging. I’m glad I did!

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When working with families with small children, I just have to expect and plan for things to take a long time. And then more time on top of that. Yes, it was a quick photoshoot because I didn’t do any more than just two poses, but it wasn’t quick in the amount of time that was taken. If there’s anything I’ve learned from years in landscape photography, quality is better than quantity, regardless of the genre.

Here’s a second example. The only other pose I did that day of the whole family:

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See the difference?

I’m learning to take my time. To take time for set up. To take time for smiling kids. And to take time to rearrange. It can make all the difference in the world!

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