Spend some quality time with the kids get them out of the house and out into exploring the world through photography. If you already have the gadgets, taking your kids out on a photo walk is also very cost effective along with many other benefits. You may also be very surprised with the results.
I am really surprised a lot of parents feel they need to spend a lot of money on their kids to keep them happy or to spend time with them. They really feel that it is necessary to go to the movies or blow a bunch of money shopping for more junk that they do not already need. Kids are very easy to make happy and really all they want is time doing whatever it is that you are doing. Taking a kid to the park is a fantastic way to do that, even if they just play on the playground or go on a mini hike.
The only requirement to taking pictures is simply to have a digital camera. Kids are not a fan of waiting to see results, so being able to see the picture on the LCD screen then organized on the computer when you get home is necessary. You may already have a digital camera, they are pretty inexpensive these days. It really doesn’t matter how fancy the camera is, even a pro photographer can take fantastic pictures with a low end point and shoot. Megapixel ratings are just out there to sell cameras. Something in the 2.1 megapixel range is more than enough to start off with for anybody that wants to capture and save memories.
Last weekend, my daughter went with me on an afternoon photo shoot out at Crane’s Roost. This is something she wanted to do with me and she already had her agenda set on what she was looking for before she went out there. Which surprised me because when I go out on these walks I draw inspiration as I see it. We ended up going out there for about an hour and half, walked a great amount of distance picking up some shots and she came through like a champ. She went out with my son’s HP point and shoot and did not realize until after transferring to the computer that he had it set for the lowest resolution. The camera was set to hold 4500 images on a 1 gigabyte card! I was able to give her some tips on light and when to use the zoom, but she took the ball and ran with it.
Once we got home we performed our post processing on the images. For her first time out I was truly excited to see what she came up with. She just turned 8 this past weekend, so I had no set expectations other than hoping she had a great time. I provided her with enough instruction to use the camera and let her creative spirit take care of the rest. The images came back straight and pretty well framed for what the camera was capable of. She picked out the ones she liked the most, and we printed them out for her. We managed to pick up a box of ten various sized frames for $0.99 on clearance so we filled them with the images for her to start a collection on her wall with.
Now my daughter has something to look back on for her memories and efforts her first time out with creative photography. For this frugal family, it pretty much only set us back on the cost of gas, toner and a box of $.99 frames. All the while, we managed to get in some great exercise, explore a new place, hone our photography skills and enjoy the world the around us.
About the photos:
All of the pictures in this post that have a time stamp are the pictures my daughter took that afternoon.