I pretty much always take a camera with me when we go out for walks as a family, even if it’s just the one on my phone.
I really love photographing the children and what they get up to when we’re out and about, as well as stopping to take pictures of any plants or flowers or other pretty things that catch my eye.
But I don’t think I’d ever intentionally gone out on what I would call a ‘photo walk’ until the other day.
The difference really is that the main purpose of a photo walk is to pay that bit more attention to your surroundings and find interesting things to photograph.
Nerys and I both did a photo walk like this on a recent family outing to the park and it made the trip out something really fun, and just that little bit more special.
Nerys started off using her kidizoom camera, but quite quickly got frustrated with it because she couldn’t see the screen properly in the bright sunlight. Luckily I’d popped our compact Nikon camera in my bag so let her switch and use that instead.
She’s used it a few times in the house so was up and running (figuratively, not literally!) with it really quickly.
You can let your child use whatever camera you have available, whether that’s their own child-friendly ‘first camera’, an old point and shoot, your dslr if you can trust them with it, or the phone on your camera.
There are so many ways you can enjoy a photo walk with your children, but here are my top suggestions:
Go rainbow spotting
This is a great way to make a walk more fun if you’re limited to walking around your neighbourhood rather than in an open green space.
Keep an eye out for all the rainbows you can see that people have made and stuck up in their windows.
This is something that Nerys and I did on our photo walk and we both really enjoyed it.
We tend to look out for these rainbows anyway when we’re out and about but it was so much fun to really make a point of spotting them and photographing them all.
Find things in each colour of the rainbow to make a photo collage at the end
Along with spotting the rainbows in people’s windows we also photographed things we found in each colour of the rainbow on our photo walk.
It really made us so much more mindful of everything around us, looking for all sorts of different things that were rainbow colours.
At this time of year it was easy to find green things in the local park, but orange things were a bit trickier and we had to get a bit more creative to find things to photograph in that colour.
What I love about this idea is that when you get home you can put all the photos together to make a rainbow photo collage. Here are the collages I made from the photos that Nerys and I took on our walk.
Take photos of different shapes
Depending on where you go on your walk it might be a bit tricky to find things in all the colours of the rainbow to photograph, so you could try doing different shapes instead.
It might seem hard at first, but once you really start looking you’ll end up finding shapes all over the place.
I used to play shape-spotting with Rhys when he was a toddler and you end up seeing all sorts of things that you don’t normally notice, right down to the different shaped drain covers on the floor!
Photograph each other in different locations
This idea is one that would work well for children of all ages.
Basically you’re looking out for different, fun, pretty, unique locations on your walk to take portraits of each other.
If you have little ones then you can get some really fun photos of them in different places that you wouldn’t normally think of taking photos.
And if you have older children you can get them to take a series of different photos of you with fun and interesting backdrops, and you can do the same for them to share with their friends or on social media if they’re old enough.
Find different perspectives
If you want to get a bit more technical and work on photography skills, then you can use a photo walk as a chance to explore different compositional skills and shooting from different perspectives with your child.
As you walk together make a point of looking up high, and down low to see what interesting pictures you can take.
Get right up under some trees and shoot up into the branches and leaves.
Steve took these behind the scenes photo of me and Nerys, and then here is the photo she took as a result of me showing her how to shoot straight up into the leaves.
You can also get up slightly higher than normal and shoot a bird’s eye view of the flowers on the ground.
Another idea is to encourage your child to get creative by challenging them to photograph the same object from a few different angles and perspectives. Get them to photograph it from really close up so it fills the frame, then back away a bit and use the rule of thirds to create a completely different image.
Once you get started with photo walks you’ll start noticing so many different things to take pictures of.
You can set a theme for each walk, or just see what captures your attention once you’re out. And when you do this with your children you’ll spark their creativity, teach them a great skill and have so much fun together along the way!
This post is linked up with KCACOLS.