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10 Practical Cake Smash Photography Tips

Cake Smash shoots are still proving to be rather popular with parents so here are 10 top tips to help you set a cake smash shoot up.

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10 Practical Cake Smash Photography Tips:

Image from Katebackdrop


What is cake smash photography?

Cake smash photography features babies or toddlers making a mess of their birthday cake and is a fun way for parents to celebrate their child's birthday. In most cases, cake smash photoshoots are taken to mark a child's first birthday. Many parents organize cake smash photoshoots in order to receive cute photos, which they can use on the front of their invitations to their child's first birthday party.


What equipment do you need to prepare?

  • A cute backdrop for children: As an example, pastel backdrops work really well and suit the aesthetic of a cake smash photoshoot. However, if you're interested in a specific theme, you won't have any trouble finding a fun, themed backdrop instead.  
  • LED lighting: You'll need 2 portable LED lights to adequately light your set.
  • An adjustable tripod: An adjustable tripod is a must if you want to take steady shots from a wide variety of angles.
  • A multi-tiered cake: Opt for a cake that boasts 2-3 tiered layers which are covered in soft buttercream.
  • Additional decorations and props: For example, you may want to hang bunting which features the child's name on the backdrop behind them or to use balloons or flowers to decorate your set.
  • Clean up equipment: Such as baby soaps and towels.  


10 Practical Techniques and Tips

  1. Select a fast shutter speed: As babies and toddlers can move at the speed of lightning, ensure that your shutter speed is set to 1/200 or higher. In order to minimize motion blur and to keep your images sharp. If a toddler starts running around set your shutter speed to 1/500.
  2. Use two constant light sources: It's a wise idea to place two LED lights on either side of your subject, in order to ensure that their facial expressions are well lit.
  3. Position your subject 2-3 meters in front of your backdrop: When it comes to setting up your shot, carefully position your baby or toddler 2-3 meters in front of your photo backdrop.
  4. Keep your whole frame in focus: If you have selected a fancy backdrop and have gone to the effort to decorate your set, it's a worthwhile idea to keep your whole frame in focus.
  5. Take a few photos before the baby or toddler smashes their cake: It's a nice idea to take a couple of photos of the baby or toddler in front of your backdrop in their special outfit while they're still clean.
  6. Consider selecting a simple vanilla sponge cake: The easiest type of cake to smash is a simple vanilla sponge cake.
  7. Opt for a small six-inch cake: A cake that is six inches in diameter will comfortably fit between your child's legs.
  8. Keep your cake at room temperature: Take your cake out of your fridge a few hours before your photo shoot, so that the icing is soft for your child to smash.
  9. Ensure that your choice of cake doesn't present any hazards: For example, ensure that your cake doesn't feature any toothpicks or ingredients that the baby or toddler could be allergic to.
  10. Avoid using a cake stand: As the last thing that you want is for your cake stand to fall and injure the baby or toddler, it's a better idea to place the cake on a flat base, on the floor. Ideally, the cardboard base which can be decorated should be one inch larger than your cake.
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