It’s time to pack up the kids and wave goodbye to deadlines.
Go on an adventure that will leave you snap happy and the kids’ imaginations running wild.
By the end of the adventure, you’ll have a one-of-a-kind photo series to share – because we all need more content for Instagram
How do you create an adventurous photo series? It starts with picking an adventure and letting your imagination run wild.
Working as a maternity and newborn photographer in San Francisco, I was ready for a little photography fun that didn’t involved bellies and babies.
When I learned there were hidden fairy houses (yes, fairy houses) throughout the Bay Area I knew it would be the perfect adventure for my son. But more so, I knew it would make the perfect photography adventure for us both.
Plus, by having an adventure on the books, it meant I had activities planned for nearly a week. Gone were the days of trying to figure out what to do with a preschooler.
Here are a few things I learned along the way about how to plan for your adventure and how to get the most out of creating your photos series.
Research and plan.
Do the footwork ahead of time so you can focus your energy on the adventure itself and not the logistics of it. Admittedly, I spent hours researching the secret fairy houses. Then, I compiled a list of the fairy houses I wanted to find and the approximate locations.
I even found a Facebook group who’s mission was to make, discover and share fairy houses within’ a specific city. I joined the group to learn more.
Lastly, because my son is 3 years old, I enlisted his grandma to come on the adventure with us. First, because I knew it would make my son feel like it was an extra special adventure. Second, because I knew we’d be walking on the street and I wanted to ensure he was safe while I was setting up the shot.
Dress for the adventure.
Take your photo series to the next level by choosing clothing that coordinates with the adventure. Just as you would for a family photography session, this is no different. It gives the photos cohesion and brings the story to life.
You can go all out in costume attire or choose simple clothing that will look good at the scene. For example, after we found our first fairy house on a nature walk in San Francisco, I wished I had dressed my son for the part. However, by the last fairy hunt outing I was prepared and picked out an outfit that fit his needs and that of the adventure.
Ransack your local dollar or thrift store to find props that elevate the adventure fun. It will get the kids excited while making for a fun addition to have in the photos.
During our fairy house hunts I learned that fairies love receiving “pearls” (rocks, glass beads or marbles). I immediately dashed to the dollar store to stock up on pearls for my son to leave at each fairy house he found. While we were raiding the store for fairy gifts, we found a butterfly catcher – another great prop for photos.
All these props got him extra excited for the adventure and gave him an activity during the fairy hunt. In turn, having these small props made the photo series a little more whimsical.
Capture a variety of angles to tell the story.
Think about your shot list ahead of time and write it down. Taking a variety of angles will give you options when you cull your images to put together a photo series.
You might opt for all detail shots, all wide angle shots or perhaps more photos that tell a story and show a little of both. But by having options it’ll save you from re-shooting.
Keep it fun.
The point of the adventure is that everyone is having fun. If you show up to the location and the lighting is horrible, there’s a ton of people or it’s not as awesome as you expected then just roll with it.
On our last day of fairy hunting, we spent the entire morning walking around an island in the Bay Area looking for small fairy doors. The lighting was full sun, it was humid and hot and the locations weren’t making my heart flutter.
But you know what, after we got home and I culled the images, those were the photos that turned out to be my favorite.
Now that you’ve gone on your adventure(s) and you have a set of photos that fit into a series, what do you do? Here’s a few fun ideas.
- Print the photos and display in your child’s bedroom or playroom. You can switch out the photos every time you go on a new adventure. It’s a great way for your child to remember the fun they had and keep the whimsy of the adventure percolating in their imaginations.
- Post to Instagram and Facebook (duh).
- Reach out to a local publication that covers ‘what-to-do’ in your area and pitch your adventure. You’ll have to write the content but you’ll already have a beautiful set of images to go with it.
- If you feel your photo series is tipping towards fine art, have a gallery show and invite everyone you know.
- Get creative and write a fictional story inspired by your adventure and make a book for your child. You can easily do this using Blurb, Mpix and Artifact Uprising.
Are you inspired to take the kids on an adventure and create a photo series? Let me know what your first adventure photo series will be of in the comments below!