3. Tell them they are allowed to act like themselves
Once they know I'm coming over to photograph them, kids sometimes will get instantly shy. They don't want to talk or play normally because frankly, I am a stranger. The important thing for you to tell them is that we won't be doing anything out of the ordinary and if we have scheduled something fun and interactive then try to get them excited about that instead of dwelling on my presence.
4. Give them a reward
I am not really talking about bribery here but I guess- well, I am! Tell the kids if they behave you will get them something. Even a trip to the Dollar Store makes kids happy and doesn't cost you that much money. Stickers, a meal out, a new toy, whatever. It all works in their mind!
5. Tell them how important it is to you
Kids understand more than we know. Tell them that the portrait session is important for documenting your life together as a family and that it's important to you. Tell them why you need these photos in your life and why. It's not about guilt- it's about love. It's about self-esteem and if you understand that- they will too.
So, the moral of the story?? Stop worrying so much about it and call me today to iron out the details. It will be magical no matter what we do. Trust me. I have been doing this awhile. ;)