It is one of my favorite traditions. Handing a newly turned 1-year-old a whole cake and letting them go for it. It is also one of my favorite traditions to photograph. Whether they daintily tear off pieces of cake or rip right into it, birthday cake pictures really capture the first birthday well.
For these pictures, I always suggest to the parents that they make sure their child is wearing something that they won’t be devastated if it gets ruined, some parents even prefer to do this pictures in just a diaper. I have mom bring a little cake she has made. I prefer the cake to be about the size of a cupcake or a little larger, even a cake that small makes a plenty big mess.
I always shoot these photographs on a sheet, or tablecloth that is easily washable. It keeps the mess contained and you can just pick up all the crumbles on the sheet and throw it straight in the washing machine. Start these photographs with mom handing the baby the cake and then just let them go from there. I usually spend about 10 or so minutes just letting them eat the cake and taking photos, until they get bored of the cake or I feel like we have the messy smiley photos we are looking for.
I have also done these pictures with kids slightly older, but they scream 1-year-old to me. They are a fun memory, one I still have on my wall of my little one.
You can check out my photography Facebook page here.