My Favorite Cameras for Photographing Daily Life | Photography Tips for Parents

Photography Tips

Photography is my career, but it’s also a little window into my own life that allows me to really value and cherish the now – what’s in front of me. It truly helps me appreciate little little moments, the big, exciting things, and this season of parenting 3 curious and full-of-life children. After a childhood with a mom who loved taking photos of our lives, to experience the power of a camera in my own hand photographing my own babies, it just makes me all emotional.

When I asked on Instagram how you all take photos of your day-to-day lives, a lot of you asked for recommendations for cameras. First of all, any camera you have will do! You don’t need a “fancy” camera to make beautiful images. It’s what you do with the camera that makes the difference. So whether you want to invest in a camera for your family or you want to use the simple phone camera you have, it’s all about what works for you and your family and what feels good to you. We have a variety of cameras but, that’s because we do this for a living and photography is our passion. I love having a mix of style and type of camera to use for our lives here at home, but again that’s just something I love, not something needed.

Here are my favorite cameras for photographing our daily lives:

  1. DSLR – we currently have a Canon 5D Mark III, Canon 5D Mark IV, and a mirrorless Canon, the R6. A great place to start if you’re wanting a DSLR, is the Canon Rebel line! I started with a Rebel in 2011. They’re pretty affordable and when paired with a 50mm 1.8 (super affordable lens!), you’ll be SET! We don’t use all of these to photograph our family, but we can. We use the R6 mostly these days. The other two are used on wedding days.
  2. 35mm Film Camera – we’ve had the Canon EOS 1V for quite a few years now, since before having kids. We love the nostalgic feel of film. It’s just so timeless and a great lesson in slowing down for me. You can’t click the shutter 10 times for one photo like you do with a digital camera because each shot costs $! Film teaches me to really compose the image the way I want and focus before clicking the shutter. Plus, I love that I don’t get the immediate gratification from seeing the photo on the back of the screen. Receiving film scans in my inbox is always feels like Christmas morning as a kid.
  3. Instant Camera – Another camera I’ve had since well before having kids. The instax! It’s so much fun. The kids love them, too. We have photos in little magnet frames on our fridge and keep others in small bowls throughout the house to flip through.
  4. Disposable Cameras – Who doesn’t remember the days of disposable cameras? I’ve recently used a few of these and man does it take you back to childhood! It’s so, so easy – you can’t control all the settings like you do on a film camera or DSLR. You literally just click the shutter. They’re easy to have on hand, too. Just a fun little way to capture the everyday.
  5. iPhone – obviously! I use my phone camera a lot, but I’m honestly working towards using it a lot less. Not because the photos aren’t good. They are! But because I find myself taking 20 photos just to get one I love and the biggest thing I don’t like about it? I’ll take a photo of a sweet moment and then spend a few minutes mindlessly scrolling on my phone. Checking email, scrolling on instagram or Facebook, etc. Something I just want to be doing a lot less of in general. But, iPhone cameras are amazing and I can give you lots of tips on how to get the best results with it!

Always remember that there isn’t a “right” way to take a photo. It’s all about what you see and how you see it. We all see things differently, which is what makes the art of photography so beautiful. The most important thing I’ve discovered is using photography as a tool to live more in the moment. I hope you can find that, too.

Have questions? Happy to answer anything you are wondering about! Reach out at hello@ivanandlouise.com

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