I've been photographing Hayden since he was just a toddler. He was one of the first little ones I photographed in my first studio. Now he's growing up into one of the kindest, intelligent, deep thinking children I know. When planning this session his mom told him he'll get to build Legos during the photos. From what I was told, he was incredibly excited about this - building LEGOS during photos - that's pretty cool! We also added a bookworm theme; another thing he loves to do. If we can come up with way to make sitting for portraits fun for kids, why not run with it?
During his session he asked about how the studio lights work, what the photos will look like, and what will I use them for. I loved being able to share my knowledge and explain how the studio works, what the lights and posing help me create. I showed him a couple of shots on the back of the camera of what I was creating which he thought looked like a painting. I told him that I use the portraits to inspire others - other families to get portraits made for their children and other photographers to become better artists, which made him smile.
Hayden was excited to learn about the process he was being asked to participate in. When I would ask him to turn his face towards the light, or be expressive for a shot, even while I was staging certain props he would ask "why?". He wasn't being rude, he just wanted to understand the process and the vision in my head. I was asking him to things that he naturally wouldn't think about doing.
The type writer in this comic book series really made him question my sanity LOL - why would I put a type writer in a comic book shot? It's Captain America: the character was developed in the 40s, the typewriter is from the 40s, the chair is from the 40s, and Hayden is dressed perfectly to go with the modern-40s look in my head - it all comes together for a vision.
Professional photographers, in general, who understand how to pose and sculpt a body with light to make it look it's best or to create a "feel" in a portrait, ask people to do some strange things. In nearly every session I explain why I'm asking someone to stand a certain way, tilt their face and head, turn their hands. It's my job to make my client look their absolute best. I think a lot of photographers discount the people's interest in front of the camera when it comes to teaching them about why we do what we do. Over the last 10 years I've learned the more I can share my education with my clients the more their confidence shines throughout the session, the better they look, and deeper they fall in love with their final art pieces.