This section is from the book "Complete Self-Instructing Library Of Practical Photography", by J. B. Schriever. Also available from Amazon: Complete Self-Instructing Library Of Practical Photography.
Posing The Child. The age of the child has much to do with the selection of position. Children ranging in . ages from two to five years make most excellent subjects. They are old enough to be cute and graceful, and not too old to be conscious of what they are doing, thus enabling the photographer to take advantage of every graceful move they may make and obtain a characteristic pose.
424. From the numerous illustrations of children's portraits reproduced in this volume, many suggestions of positions that may be employed successfully are offered. For children from one and a half to two years old, sitting positions are usually the best. A child sitting in a corner chair, or settee, with one foot crossed under the other, or one foot stretched out on the couch with the other hanging down, and the dress carelessly gathered up to expose a part of the little limbs; or the child in the act of gathering the dress in the one hand, the other falling over the arm of the chair, will render graceful curves and lines to the picture. Any of these, or similar positions, constitute perfectly natural attitudes which usually give pleasing results.
"THE YOUNG PROFESSOR" Study No. 22- See Page 579, Vol. VIII Mrs. W. W. Pearce.
Illustration No. 56. Child Portraiture.
See Paragraph No. 426.
425. Small chairs, suitable for children, may be employed to good advantage. For instance, a child sitting crosswise of a little chair with one foot through the arm, affords a mischievous pose, which assists in making the picture more interesting. Some children take to playing a toy piano, and very interesting expressions can many times be obtained, as the little one is quite as likely to play with one foot on the keys of the piano as to play with the hands. These seemingly mischievous pranks make a picture more valued by the parents. If a boy, he will be interested in a hobby-horse, drum, ship, or similar toys. All of these playthings that are interesting to the children should be kept in the skylight room for their benefit.
426. A small child, full of life, you will frequently find willing to play peek-a-boo around, or by a chair, and often it will peek through the rungs of the chair, or lay the little head on the seat of the chair, or perform similar pranks, all of which are careless and pleasing. A variety of positions of this sort generally results in a good order from a majority of the negatives. (See Illustration No. 56.)
427. In addition to mischievous positions, it is always advisable to make some negatives on the conventional order, as well, because you will have customers of various tastes to please, and what may please some will not please all With a variety of positions, a larger order is more sure than if only a few styles had been made.