Week 6 is here you all, and this tip is a funny one, or at least I hope it makes you laugh especially if you have a favorite memory about the weirdest bribe you have ever had to use as a hook to get your child’s attention! Before you dive in, don’t forget to catch up on weeks 1-5 below!
You all, I am NOT above a bribe, especially when it comes to photographing young children. I cannot tell you the number of times I have heard the sentence “If you take this one photo for us, we promise you can do ___(insert special activity)__.” (You just fill in the blank that’s specific to you and your family). That’s actually one of my favorite things to hear from each family session – what families use to bribe their kids makes me laugh so hard! I have heard the funniest promises from bean burritos at Taco Bell, to getting to go to a fancy coffee shop, to simply having 5 extra minutes of screen time. I never judge these bribes, because let’s be honest, I’m totally going to bribe my son when it comes to taking family photos.
The only reason I bring up this point is because I’ve also heard many families bribe their kids with unrealistic incentives like “If you take this one photo for me, I’ll take you to Disney World after this!” or, “If you smile, I’ll let you eat 15 scoops of ice cream!” Obviously, those are extreme examples, but you get the point. If you know for sure you are not going to give your kids those prizes immediately after the session, don’t make an empty promise. It’s not fair to do that to kids. So when you are reaching the point of desperation, and you just want little Margie to smile for one more photo, it’s okay to be bribe with something realistic. But please, I beg of you, don’t make empty promises you know you aren’t going to keep.
In short, just know that no matter how old your kids are, especially if they are under the age of 6 or 7, you are going to have to have some basic incentives to get them super pumped to take photos! I have learned not to take it personally whenever kids don’t want to smile for their photography sessions, so mom, and or dad, don’t take it personally either! Your kid is totally normal if they don’t want to smile for photos, and bribing them with some sort of incentive is not a bad thing. Honestly 10 years ago when I started taking photos I thought there was something wrong with ME because kids were not excited to smile for the camera. NOPE! That’s not it at all! They just need some encouragement, lot’s of patience and maybe a bribe or two from mom and dad! Just remember to keep the incentives pretty basic, and please remember to stay true to your word when you promise whatever incentive it is to get a smile! I promise, staying true to your word goes a long way in your kid’s heart!
So, here’s my question for you, what are some things you have to bribe your kid’s with in order for them to participate in family photos? I want to hear about all your bribery tales in the comments below! I love funny bribes and I am curious to find out how I am going to bribe my son one day!
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As always, thank you so much for keeping up with my family & photography adventures! I love serving you all through photography and I love sharing my stories with you! Have a wonderful week! Tune in next week for tip #7 on how to work with children for a family photography session!
DOLLY DELONG IS A WIFE TO A SUPER CUTE COMPUTER NERD, MAMA TO A LITTLE DROOL MACHINE, AND A DESTINATION WEDDING AND FAMILY PHOTOGRAPHER BASED OUT OF NASHVILLE, TENNESSEE. EVEN THOUGH SHE LOVES ALL THINGS SOCIAL MEDIA, DOLLY WAS BORN IN THE MID-80S, SO SHE LIKES TO STRESS TO PEOPLE SHE IS NOT A COOL MILLENNIAL, AND SHE REMEMBERS DIAL-UP INTERNET FROM WHEN SHE WAS IN HIGH SCHOOL. WHENEVER SHE HAS A SPARE MOMENT, SHE ENJOYS WATCHING TV (I.E. SURVIVOR), SHE EATS WAY TOO MANY SWEETS AND LISTENS TO PODCASTS WHILE RUNNING OR WALKING. TO WORK WITH DOLLY DELONG PHOTOGRAPHY LLC, PLEASE EMAIL HER AT THEDOLLYDELONG@GMAIL.COM OR FILL OUT HER CONTACT FORM HERE.