In the early stages of "learning" photography second only to nutso crazy post processing is the urge to go prop happy! And while props can be fun for sure, most times they end up just looking silly OR worse steal the glory from the star of the show!So a word of caution, before you go out and invest little joey or jill's college savings on that chair, couch, background paper, miniature castle, crystal tiara, chickens, rabbits, birds or the like, DON'T! :) You will end up using them much less then you think or wish you had!
BUT, if you insist on using props, please take note of a few suggestions we hope will help offer a more rewarding experience!
1. Before hanging up that gorgeous new sheet or swatch of cool fabric as your very first background, grab an iron or a steamer and get rid of the wrinkles. Yes we know it seems obvious but, in all your excitement, we promise it's easy to forget or just not "see" the wrinkle s. We can't tell you how hard it is to get rid of the wrinkles later, so save yourself some heartache and either skip the fabric or grab the iron!
2. Resist the urge to use props that have more "wow factor" than your subject! The last thing you want to do is have a sofa or baby chic upstaging your cutie patootie! Props should be subtle aids to help tell a bigger story, they shouldn't BE the story!
3. Don't underestimate the "novelty factor"! Some of the best moments happen when your little one sees something for the first time, so don't spoil that by letting them play with the prop ahead of time. The element of surprise is one of your best tools as a momtographer!
4. Before spending countless hours and dollars setting the scene ask yourself one question, "will I still think this was a good idea in 6 months?" If the answer is yes then by all means keep truckin'! But if the answer is "hmmm I'm not sure" then drop the glue gun and run!
(What is it about holidays that wrecks our judgement?!?!?)
Finally, PLEASE always keep safety in mind! Sometimes we get caught up in the cute factor and overlook things that have potential to be hazardous. We KNOW no one would ever intentionally put their precious little munchkins in harm's way, it's just so easy to do without realizing!
If you made it this far then feel free to be on your prop happy way! Snap to it!