Watch for runny noses, dirty faces & hands
Nothing ruins a cute photo faster than a glob of something gross! Bring wet wipes and facial tissues. Wiping noses before photos will help reduce the need to edit the dirt later.
Make it fast
Shoot quickly, and take lots of photos. Kids move fast and you will need to keep up.
Let the kids be silly between poses. Tell them to get the wiggles out by dancing, or see how loud they can shout "hooray!" Keep shooting while they are being silly, you never know when you'll get that genuine smile.
Making funny faces is another way to get the kids to loosen up, relax, and have a good time, and sometimes make for the perfect candid shot!
Be prepared to bribe the kids
Keep snacks, candy, or small toys on hand (with parental permission) to entice the kids to cooperate - but be very clear about how they earn the treat! "Five more photos and you get a sucker! Stand really still!"
Bring an assistant!
An assistant can make all the difference when photographing kids. An assistant can help with posing, watch for dirty faces or messy hair, or hold the reflector. Even more important, an assistant can make the kids laugh, blow bubbles to get their attention, or corral kids from running off.
Most of all, go with the flow.
The photo session may not go as planned, but have a good time and keep shooting! Remember that it can take dozens of photos to get one brilliant product shot when using children models. If you feel like you aren't capturing exactly what you want to after a few shoots, rather than get frustrated, don't be afraid to admit you may need help. Contact some local photographers & see if they work with makers to shoot product photos in exchange for goods or discounted prices on goods.
Do you have any tips for working with children models? Any funny experiences to share? Post them in the comments!