When I am photographing children, namely little people that have never met me before, I try to maximize that initial interaction within the first few minutes of our meeting. Usually they are confused why a faceless body is coming at them with a big black thing within a few inches from their nose, you can see it in their faces.
Often there are times when I have to gently tell the parent I would rather have the child not say cheese and instead just let them be themselves. 9 times out of 10 I am able to capture a far better portrait rather than a forced grimacing toothy smile. Letting kids just be makes them more at ease and more apt to give you a smile that comes out of happiness and joy versus a swift parental command.
The photo above was taken within seconds meeting this little guy, it was about the 6th or 7th frame, he kept looking around not very interested in sitting still, after all he was only 2. I managed to get him to look right at the lens when I told him a little bird lived inside. Look, can you see him inside? Click. Done.
Eyes have been a favorite focal point in my portrait work. I love the contrast between the neutral canvas-like skin and the pop of color the eyes can bring. That is precisely what drew me in to the photo below by Rebecka Bjurmell. Not only do you have the vibrant red hair you have the complimentary green eyes that jump off the milky white canvas of her skin making for a beautiful face and photograph.
Lindsey of modchik-photography
olivia by rebecka bjurmell