Traveling with our children

by Claire H Posted on September 06, 2008

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My name is Claire Houlding and I am a hobby photographer and photo-booker on Shutterfly. Ever since I can remember I have enjoyed traveling and taking photos of everything. I have a husband and two young sons, so time has become limited, but where there is a will there is always a way.

Before children we traveled a lot, fearing that this would come to an end once our family started growing, but instead we just adapted our travels to include the kids. And, of course, kids make wonderful subjects for photos, for instance, my son feeding the ducks in the Boston Commons:

Traveling with children makes for many unplanned, spontaneous moments. I was about 8 months pregnant with our second child when we traveled to New York and came across a couple of NYPD police officers sitting on their motorbikes. Our son’s eyes were glued to them.  Not only did the officers smile for the camera, one of them even got off his motorbike and placed my son in the driver’s seat. A memory that would have been lost to us, had we traveled without children.

Children, in my opinion, can add so much innocence and unaffectedness to a shot – more so than adults. This is not to say that all photos need people in them, but here and there is great. This shot taken in the Redwood Forests in California is special because of the little wanderer with his leaf.

Your travel photography need not grind to a screeching halt because of children. Give them their own camera if they are old enough … and the unique perspectives you’ll see coming from them are sometimes amazingly creative.


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  1. Tammy M. Says:

    Claire thanks for the article, enjoyed reading your tips and getting to know you better. Thanks to Rachel for the idea. I love all of your tips and could not agree more. I find myself getting better with me camera, instead trying to get the perfect pic, snap and go with what you got. Of course, my kids aren’t little but they too get tired of posing. Also working with my younger nephew I feel a lot of times he will not smile but i love all of the little faces he makes because he is tired of his Aunt Tammy taking pics. Thanks again for inspiring us, I enjoyed viewing your books, they are great as always.
    Shutterfly Gallery Guru

  2. Joanna T Says:

    What a beautiful insightful article. You had so many great tips on photographing your children while on trips. I love the story about getting a photo of your 3 year old with a policeman with his motorcycle. It’s nice your husband shares your same passion for photography. I mainly photograph my nieces and nephews as nobody else cooperates, and sometimes the kids get irritable or tell me ‘enough pictures JoJo’., so I like your tip where you said sometimes its best to just pack it in and you may be surprised by the photos you did get. I haven’t had the chance to travel w/ nieces & nephews but its something I’d like to do – to take a big family trip!! I can see everyone’s reaction when I ask them to stop and pose at every landmark. We just have to do our best and go with the flow.
    Great article and thanks for sharing.
    Joanna T
    Shutterfly Gallery Guru

  3. Kim Houde Says:

    Hi Claire – what a great article – It’s so true that you should take pictures from your perspective because that is where some of your best memories come from. I really enjoy looking at other people’s books and photography – there can be 20 pictures of the same subject but they are all totally different. Thanks for the remiders!

  4. braydensmom Says:

    Claire – this was a great story! Your picture are so personal and so perfect. No wonder you want to share them, and thanks for doing so! Loved the picture of the police bike! Wonderful article to read!
    Shutterfly Gallery Guru

  5. AnnAbbott Says:

    My kids are my subjects and you are right they bring such freshness to a photo. Everything is an adventure to them and it shows in their eyes that can pop from a picture.
    My nine year old has her own camera and I love seeing thing thought her eyes by her photographs. Now my 6 year old wants a camera for Christmas.

more about Claire H

A picture paints a thousand words... photos inspire, teach, recreate memories, elicit emotions and allow us to daydream for just a moment... My husband and I love to take photos of life- great and small... and can think of no better way to preserve our memories than with Shutterfly's stunning photo books. We travel a lot through Africa, Europe and America and in between we have three beautiful sons that never fail to be wonderful photographic subjects. We are by no means professional photographers ... we just play around with photography (a lot!) and every now and again we get it right!

View all articles by Claire H »

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