Letting Tweens Be Themselves Key to Natural Lifestyle Portraits

Franklinton, Louisiana tween portrait session with Louisiana tween photographer Chris Ginn

Telling a young person to sit still and smile often has the opposite effect.

Franklinton, Louisiana tween portrait session with Louisiana tween photographer Chris Ginn

"I'd rather not," Lainey told me over and over when I asked her to try different poses as we strolled downtown Franklinton.

Franklinton, Louisiana tween portrait session with Louisiana tween photographer Chris Ginn
Franklinton, Louisiana tween portrait session with Louisiana tween photographer Chris Ginn

It was Lainey's tween portrait session - not mine - so I followed her around and let her lead the way by allowing her to be herself.

Franklinton, Louisiana tween portrait session with Louisiana tween photographer Chris Ginn

I snapped the shutter when I could and offered suggestions when I dared, but I mainly fell in line with whatever looks she liked.

Franklinton, Louisiana tween portrait session with Louisiana tween photographer Chris Ginn
Franklinton, Louisiana tween portrait session with Louisiana tween photographer Chris Ginn
Franklinton, Louisiana tween portrait session with Louisiana tween photographer Chris Ginn

Was every shot a winner? Absolutely not.

Franklinton, Louisiana tween portrait session with Louisiana tween photographer Chris Ginn

But by allowing Lainey to be herself I was able to negotiate some looks that I knew she would love.

Franklinton, Louisiana tween portrait session with Louisiana tween photographer Chris Ginn

"Hey, Lainey, You want to listen to some music while we shoot?" 

"I'd rather not."

Franklinton, Louisiana tween portrait session with Louisiana tween photographer Chris Ginn

"Hey, Lainey. You want me to Cha Cha Slide in the street?"

"I'd rather you didn't."

Franklinton, Louisiana tween portrait session with Louisiana tween photographer Chris Ginn

Then she turned the tables on me.

"Hey Mr. Chris. You want to play chase in the street?"

"Heck Yeah! Tag - you're it."

Let them be brave enough to be themselves.

#feelslikefranklinton