The great thing about having a new daughter is that you've got a model to experiment on 24/7. Such is the case with my 14-month-old, Emilie. Like most bubs and toddlers, though, she is not a fan of standing still for long, making posed portraits like this pretty difficult. I realise my style is a little different to most, but here are some points if you're looking to take some portraits of your little one.
Firstly, make sure all your equipment and gear is ready to go, batteries are charged and cards free. Test your lighting first so that you can simply bring bubs in and shoot away. They won't stand around for 5min while you adjust your lights over and over. This particular shot was taken at f8, ISO 400, 1/160th with a portable octobox (single 580EXII on 1/2 power) to the side. If you don't have access to studio gear, diffused window lighting works just as well. You can use a reflector to even out tones. If you don't have a reflector, try a large white sheet of cardboard or foam.
Here, I just wanted the light to fall on Emilie's face, darkening out the background, which was an ugly sofa and windows. I thus gridded the octobox to make the light more direct.
Why the sofa? As she can't walk yet, I found I needed to have her standing or leaning against something. I had my wife try and keep her calm, which is a rather more difficult task than it seems! Here are a few more quick outtakes. Love you, Bubba.