Iwona Podlasinska is a Polish photographer whose pictures capture the magical world of her two boys and two nieces. Although she’s been taking photos for a long time, the birth of her first son inspired her to start taking photography more seriously. She bought a nice camera, but still had no idea how to create amazing photos.
Then, when her second son was born, she found a Facebook album of children’s portraits. “I thought those photos were fantastic, and if I tried harder, I could be really good and take photos like that,” she says. “So, the next day, I read all the books and watched hundreds of online tutorials and started taking photos every day.” She photographed everything at first, but after a while, she realized that she was most passionate about photographing kids.
About light and shadows
Photography has helped Iwona notice the hidden beauty around her, like the beauty of light. It’s also been a great way to spend quality time with her sons and nieces. She’s drawn into their world and adventures, reminding her of her own childhood.
The summer is an especially fun time to spend with her sons. Although she works full-time as an architect, she takes them out for walks or bike rides when she gets home at 4pm. Then, on the weekend, they visit the village where her parents live. They have wonderful neighbors, who let her kids play with their dogs and farm animals.
Their summer vacations have many photo-worthy moments, too. They often go to the lake or seaside, natural environments which inspire Iwona.
he came with the light
Natural light is important to Iwona’s photography, as well as good composition. She usually shoots with shallow DOF, though she sometimes sets it to f/8-f/11. As for post-processing, she either does a little editing, or a lot.
“Sometimes I go crazy with editing. Then, I like to think about the photo as canvas,” she says. “I think all those photos are something between dream and reality. Like the world of a child–there is a lot of imagination mixing with reality.”
Creating photos like Iwona’s takes more than post-processing, though. If you’re photographing children, you need to fit yourself into their world rather than forcing them to follow your instructions. Iwona has 4 tips for parents, in particular, to keep in mind when photographing their kids —
How to Photograph Your Children
1. Don’t make your child smile for the photos. Take the pictures quietly and try to capture real poses and emotions.
2. Know your equipment. You don’t need the greatest gear in the world, but you should know how it works.
3. Don’t push your kids to pose. That ends up with frustrated parents and angry, unhappy kids. Just wait for the right pose and take a lot of photos. If you have a digital camera, you can always delete extra photos.
4. Have fun with it!
enjoy the sunrise
after the rain
when I grow up
spot the cat!
picking pine cones
early morning by the lake