Do you teach your children to pose nicely and smile whenever someone whips out their camera? This little boy, who was a guest at a wedding at Maunsel House in Somerset, certainly had been… probably so that his mum could get lots of lovely pictures of him as he grew up. However, this caused quite a few challenges for me as I was trying to capture lots of lovely natural documentary images of the guests at this Somerset wedding – as whenever he saw me coming, I’d get the full-on ‘cheeeeeese!’

Children are always my favourite subjects to photograph at weddings, but apart from the group shots, this is ONE time that I don’t want them to give me their camera face! With this little boy, who was a pageboy at this Maunsel House wedding, I had to employ slightly different tactics. We had a little chat, and I showed him my cameras. Then I said to him, ‘Can you help me? Today, I need to pretend to be a spy. If you pretend that you can’t see me, then I’ll be able to be a really GOOD spy!’

Do you know what – it worked. And I was able to get some wonderful natural images of this little boy at the wedding, such as this particular one where he’s not entirely sure about being cuddled!

So if you ‘train’ your child to sit nicely every time they see a camera, that’s wonderful… but don’t forget to teach them about natural photos, too. Only these will show off your child’s personality as they really are… and help you capture amazing memories as they grow up.