When it’s ok not to smile…

Is your child really good at the fake camera smile??

You know the one with either lots of cheese, or the tight lipped stretchy smile. What is just as frustrating is when they refuse to smile at all- either because they are too shy or are good at being bratty 😉  All kids go through this, and it can be a worry for you if you’re booked in with a professional photographer. Most kids (and adults) just need time to relax and focus on something else other than the camera. That is when you get the best photos, smiling or not.

I’m here to tell you – not smiling is just fine.

Some of my favourite images of my own children are void of smiles. Yes – smiling laughing happy portraits are fantastic and lovely.  But there is some kind of captivating essence in these soulful non-smilers that are priceless, not to mention timeless….did I mention breath-takingly beautiful??

For starters the viewers attention goes straight to the eyes…the classic windows of the soul. The viewer gives pause to absorb the image and connect with it in a deeper way, than you ever could with the smiley photo. I think this is because you just don’t know what the subject of the photo is thinking or feeling. This leaves the image open to interpretation, which is always going to be different for each person. Sorry to get all psychological about it, but when I decided to write this post – I looked at the image below and started trying to decipher exactly why it moves me so much. The answer was deeper than I had anticipated!

If your child isn’t smiling on photo session day – don’t worry about it, you are highly likely to get some stunning portraits regardless. Scroll down for some lovely examples….


My daughter Lucia. I can stare into her eyes, and be captivated by this image for the longest moments.



Our beautiful nieces, growing up too fast. This image of them somehow shows both their childhood, and then hints at what is to come in their teen years…


Alphie was shy and I couldn’t get too close. Suddenly he sat still and just peered over at me…this is one of my favourites from his session.


Mila, my youngest. I love how content she was this day, and glad to have captured her sucking her two favourite fingers. Her dreamy eyes melt my heart.

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