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photographing the second child: don't ignore #2 (and #3 and #4...)

In news that will come as a surprise to, well, no one, second children are photographed less than first-borns. (And don't even get us started on those poor third and fourths.) The reasons make total sense: we're exhausted. Stretched too thin, both in terms of time and money. And when second (and subsequent) children DO make an appearance in the family album, they're often smiling right beside their brothers and sisters, and rarely in a portrait of their own. This is not a revelation. Ask any parent. Or any sibling.

The question for us, as photographers, is what can we do with this information. The answer for us, as photographers, is that we have the opportunity to change this phenomenon. When talking to parents, mention that as a photographer, you bear witness to the swift physical process of growing up. Work this survey into the conversation.

While you certainly don't want to play on parental guilt, the fact that 92% of parents regret not taking more photographs of their second-borns is a hard number to ignore. Consider running a special event, just for second (and subsequent) children, a catch up session of sorts, for them to have their own experience in front of the camera without their siblings around. Make a point to capture individual portraits of each child in each photo session. Line all these up, perhaps as a storyboard or wall gallery, to suggest to your client a display that honors each child. (Hang that great portrait of all the children right in the middle!) Create canvas collages for each child's room, decorated with multiple images of them, and them alone. Above all, celebrate the individuality of each child. Prioritize this for your parent clients, and maybe they'll prioritize it for themselves. Make it a tenet of your business that second children--and third, and fourth--are just as worthy of photography as the first.

(Image courtesy of zoe d. photography)




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