Say Cheese! That is what I’ve heard all my life. Somehow its become a universal understanding that the only way to smile properly for a photo is when one says CHEESE! I searched everywhere to find its origin, and can you believe that photographers tried to make their subject smile so they would say “cut the cheese”! Along the way it was condensed to just cheese, and still today we are CHEESING! I must admit that I too am a culprit of the cheese enforcer, but I am a now a wiser person, and none of my clients will be cutting the CHEESE!
So what do you say? In order to get that natural smile I have made my child subject sing! Yep sing! ABC’s, Itsy bitsy spider or whatever they know. Kids love to sing, and while they are singing they will make beautiful expressions that you will pick up nicely. If they are too shy then I suggest asking them to say the word Thursday. Go ahead try it…you can’t help but have an upward smile because the Day part of Thursday or Monday or whatever day makes your lips turn up. And if all else fails then just wait. As you’re talking to your client and making them feel comfortable you will be able to see them relax, and in those moments you will be ready and magic will happen. So whatever you do just please don’t pass the CHEESE! Here are two examples of a forced cheese smile, and a natural smile after singing.