Photography, as a hobby, has a lot to offer to children. Read on to learn more about it.
are fascinated by cameras. But, while we always try to make them pose
for us, we are generally reluctant to trust them with a camera. The
fact is, photography is an excellent hobby for children that can open up a whole new world for them.
Like with most hobbies, taking up photography can actually benefit children in many ways.
It teaches them to be observant
It teaches them to be sensitive to their surroundings
It helps develop attentiveness to details
It encourages creativity and individuality
How to Introduce Your Child to Photography
The important thing to remember, while introducing photography
to your child, is that it is essentially supposed to be fun. Rather
than bombarding him with rules and theory, encourage him to start
exploring the world through the lenses.
Here are some tips:
Gift him an appropriate camera
A professional SLR camera with an assortment of lenses and accessories is obviously not a good
idea as your child's first camera—nor is one of those tacky disposable cameras that are sometimes advertised as 'ideal for children'. If you have an
old camera with automatic options, it will do, or you can buy a new
one. Later, if your child shows more promise, you could go in for a
better model that offers more features.
A first camera for your child should:
Be small, light, and easy for your child to carry around
Be able to withstand rough handling
Have automatic settings
Preferably allow a basic zoom option
Be relatively easy to use
The digital age has revolutionised photography, making it more accessible and user-friendly. If you are not sure yet about your child's interest, investing in a digital camera will no doubt be somewhat of a gamble. However, it offers many advantages:
Your child can afford to experiment, as you do not have to pay for buying or processing the film.
Your child immediately gets to see the result, and take more pictures till he is satisfied.
He does not have to wait for the roll to get developed and
processed by which time he has forgotten or lost interest in what he
With a digital camera, it is easy to retain good pictures and delete the rest.
Teach your child to use the camera
Mastering the art and science of photography
can involve learning a bewildering array of dos and don'ts. However, at
this stage, your child really does not need to know these.
Start by teaching your child the correct way to hold
the camera. This is not just important to enable your child to take
good pictures, but also for the safety of the camera.
Help your child master the art of framing the scene he plans
to click. Teach him to use the zoom function to its best advantage.
Also, teach your child how to focus to ensure sharp details. Gradually,
explain the role of light and how it affects the pictures he clicks.
Explain camera care
Make your child responsible for the camera he owns. Explain to your
child the need to keep the camera turned off when not in use. Teach him
not to touch the lenses and keep it covered when not in use. More
complicated procedures such as loading or removing film (or downloading
images if you are using digital) need not be taught until you are sure
of his ability to do so independently.
With time, most children
learn to take decent pictures. However, what is important is that you
encourage your child to explore and experiment with his hobby. Motivate
your child to look for interesting settings and situations. Allow him
to try out newer angles or perspectives. Encourage him to look for and
bring out the 'story' element in the pictures he clicks. Always applaud
his efforts at experimentation, but be objective in your feedback.
Help him cultivate his hobby
Plan regular photography outings where your child can have the opportunity to shoot newer subjects. Have joint photography sessions: select a theme, and later compare your efforts.
Introduce your child to the finer points of photography by taking him to visit art galleries or museums
where he can the view works of other photographers. Discuss the
individual styles of these photographers and point out what makes a
picture especially striking.
Your child may not necessarily grow up to become a great photographer.
But the lessons he has learnt will be sure to help him throughout his
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- The Indiaparenting Team