Career Day was an option for my 2nd grader and after she gave me her blessing, I said "Yes! Let's Do It!". It's no secret that I also have a full-time job as a Marketing Professional. So why did I choose Photography instead?
Passion! And also the fact that my daughter absolutely loves to go to sessions with me (very limited, we're working on it!) or be involved with photography.
Photography is such a generally rewarding experience. Being there for your milestones, learning your family, watching you grow... Sharing my passion with this little audience just added to that!
As a photographer and business owner, it was really special to talk about what I do. Who knows - maybe I'll inspire a new generation of photographers as well!
I have to be honest, though. I struggled with this. I was excited and then had a moment of "Well, what do I even talk about? What do I present? These are just 8-year-olds, how do I explain this career? HELP?!"
I hit Google. Apparently, not a whole lot of support for "Career Day for Photographers."
So, I asked my audience: my own children!
My son begged me to not be embarrassing. He specifically noted that I should not share any funny pictures of them and then said "maybe include some memes!".
I was confused. How am I supposed to talk about owning my own business and being a photographer with age-appropriate memes?? But ok, off to work! Let's give this a try. I started throwing a bunch of memes, pictures, and eventually FACTS together and I can proudly say I put on a hell of a PowerPoint presentation. I used visuals, colors and just a lot of randomness!
But... I needed to get the official seal of approval from my little ones. I sat at the dinner table with my laptop and walked them through my presentation. And boom, they loved it!
So - if you are participating in Career Day as a photographer, I hope you find this helpful!
Here are some tips following my experience:
Keep it simple: When presenting to children, it's important to keep things simple and easy to understand. I made sure to use simple language and avoid technical jargon. I also kept my presentation short and sweet, focusing on the most interesting and engaging aspects of photography.
Use visuals: Children are visual learners, so I made sure to include plenty of pictures in my presentation. I included memes, a mixture of funny images from sessions, as well as some interesting photos to keep their attention and to focus on the types of photography I create.
Be interactive: Children love to participate, so I included some interactive elements in my presentation. For example, I asked them questions (when was the first photograph taken? - 1826!). I asked them to guess what certain things were in old photos as well.
Bring props: I also brought along some of my photography equipment, such as a camera, lens, and a speedlight, to show the kids what I use and how they work. I made sure to remind them thaty these were very expensive pieces of equipment and how I used them. Super fun was explaining to them how a lens worked (like an eyeball, kinda...) and how cool a speedlight was! I let each of them actually hold the flash and hit the test button (toward the ceiling! Don't blind them!) so they could see the flashing light. They loved this!
Make it fun: Finally, I made sure to inject some humor into the presentation to
keep the kids engaged and entertained. I showed them some of my funny photos, such as a funny cat picture I took, silly faces, and even a couple kissing (ewwwwwww). The interaction I noted was also super fun for them. We were all excited and laughing by the end.
And of course, it isn't extra fun if they don't get anything out of it! I created small goodie bags the night before and filled them with cheap and fun items! You can find them all noted below! I had a toy camera, fidgets, candy, and... well, my business card!
Overall, presenting to second graders was a fun and rewarding experience. It was wonderful to see the children's excitement and curiosity about photography, and I hope that I was able to inspire some future photographers in the group.