• Shea Goff

    Just tell Leta the internet said, “Beautiful.”

  • Kelly B

    That last photo really nails the rule of thirds as well. She’s a natural.

    My tips gleaned from my uncle (who used to work in a camera shop and was my chief baby photographer when I was little) and my minor in photography.

    * Get on the level of your subject. Try taking those dog and toddler pictures from their level. She probably has an idea about this from watching you. Or, as fp says, it’s all about viewpoint. Sometimes looming above the subject or cowering below it gives you a cooler image.

    * Shadows are cool. You can start by trying angles where you will also be taking the picture of the shadow of the object OR even by taking shadow self portraits. My tumblr avatar is a shadow self-portrait on the sand of the beach at Crystal Cove State Park from my Orange County area vacation a few years back.

    * Do you like that photo better if you crop it? Play with the same image with different crops so that your subject lies on different points of the frame. You can also play with cutting it down to an extreme closeup. This works better if you have good light on the subject and high DPI with a digital camera original.

    As she gets older — if she’s still into it — see if there is an art studio that teaches preteens or teenagers old school black and white photography and printing. (Usually there isn’t a good workshop for kids on this subject, probably because of the chems). A now really cheep film slr student model camera, a few rolls of bw film, a light meter app (or old school handheld light meter), and the supply fee for chems and paper will give one a great education on old school photography and light. Also grain and what those pesky iso and f-stop things mean. Heck, you may even do it as a Mother/Daughter thing if you are still on speaking terms then.

  • Lauren

    These are fantastic!! As a 31-year-old amateur photographer I think you did a great job explaining the basics to her. It actually helped me some as well. You’re a great Mom, Heather!

  • Amelina

    As an Apple employee, I feel obligated to point out It’s an iPod touch, there is no thing as an iTouch. I realize no one cares.
    The pictures are great though!

  • Amber Marlow, theAmberShow

    It looks like she’s got the rule of thirds down pat inherently! This post makes me so excited for her.

  • HeatherArmstrong

    My bad! This explains why she never asks me to troubleshoot anything.

  • http://twitter.com/jenwilsonca Jen Wilson

    Did we grow up in the same house? My mom also played ABBA and the Bee Gees non-stop. With a bit of Beach Boys and John Denver thrown in for kicks.

    Leta’s photos are absolutely beautiful.

  • Sara

    Heather, when I discovered your website many years ago, reading what you wrote about the camera you were using, and examining your photos and your style really influenced me to lay down money for good DSLR and some good lenses. My photography has come a long way since then and I’m now being asked some of the same questions by my niece. You’ve done a great job of taking what can be a complicated process and boiling it down to something that really allows for one’s own creativity and interpretation. Leta can learn the mechanics later if and when she’s ready, but it looks like she already has a great eye!

  • Sharon

    I am SO going to try this!

  • Karen

    So wonderful that she is smart and artistic. Brava Leta!

  • http://www.facebook.com/mely.vidalon Mely Vidalon

    I believe Leta takes her good eye from you and her dad. As her pictures were really good for a 9 yo. My husband is 39 yo and no even with an iPhone can take a good picture.