Since I got my 50mm prime lens a couple of years ago, I've loved trying to get great portraits of the kids. But it's been more than a challenge. Here's a list of what I've learned and some tips.
Problem: Maybe one child will cooperate but the other/others won't.
Solution: Help the cooperative child do something really fun (like climb a tree) and then suddenly the uncooperative child wants to give it a try.
Problem: For unknown reasons, said little person will not smile. NO MATTER WHAT.
Solution: Pose them for some seriously beautiful, serious shots. Just go with the sad faces and keep shooting until you get what you want. Sometimes I love to see an ugly cry face in pictures, because that is real life!
Problem: Mr. or Miss Personality won't slow down enough for you to take a decent picture.
Solution: Save your money and buy a DSLR. Yes, they are huge, but you absolutely can't replicate the stop action shots you can achieve with a faster camera. Just use your phone for pics when you absolutely can't carry a big camera. It's amazing how I'm used to mine now that I've carried it around.
Problem: On most occasions, they really don't want their pictures taken or are too busy playing to feel the need to stop. Other times the light is just not right or the outfits not right or their hair is just too unkempt (for me).
Solution: Plan for mutiple photoshoot times. You can plan somewhat, but also have your camera for unexpected great shots. (Example below)
This beautiful weeping Cherry tree was blooming so I thought I'd take the kids pictures with it. Nice idea, but their really wasn't a way to show the pretty blooms up high and the cute children down low. I did like how some of these photos came out, but wasn't quite sure I'd hit the perfect three year old shot. A few days later, I took my camera on an impromptu trip to the park and snapped these pics. Tada! Exactly what I wanted.
Happy Picture Taking!