Family is kind of my jam. I love meeting and working with small families, big families, and even extended families. I get asked a lot about what my clients should do to prepare for their family photo session. Beyond the most popular question of what to wear, there are a few other tips I have that will help insure a fun and successful family photo shoot.
This is my number one question when I ask clients if they have any questions. I even wrote a blog post about it here. I think if there is one tip from there that is my favorite, it's to be yourselves and to be comfortable!
One thing I didn't mention in that post, is that you should leave plenty of time for getting ready, this way you don't feel rushed and disorganized getting to your session, this can set the tone for the session. I suggest my moms make a day of it, get your hair and makeup professionally done. First of all, you'll feel your best, and it's one less thing you have to do!
I LOVE to go out and shoot in the evenings right before sunset. I also have a toddler who's bedtime for half of the year is at sunset, that hour before the sun sets is called "The Witching Hour" in our house. So I wouldn't dare take him out for pictures at that time! Luckily, I can shoot at other times of the day, like right after sunrise, or we can find some open shade in the late afternoon. Be sure to tell your photographer what works best for your families schedule, no one knows your kids like you do and we all want them to be their happiest at your session.
Be advised that if you do want those beautiful golden rays of light filling your photos, the hour before sunset is the best time, it's not called Magic Hour for nothing! I have found that some well timed naps, a good meal, and plenty of their favorite snacks can go a long way! That being said, whatever time of day your session is, please be sure to come well rested and well fed!
3. Try to have fun!
Hug your kids, kiss your wife, snuggle, laugh, joke, giggle, play, and love!! Let me capture who your family really is. I know that having a camera pointed in your face can be intimidating, but the more you interact with each other, and less with me, the more natural and emotive images you are going to get. The kind of images that truly show off who you are. The best images are the ones where you are looking at each other, these are usually where I capture the most natural smiles and connections.
Leave the cheese at home. While I love a good shot of everyone looking at the camera, and I always try to get a few, constantly having everyone look at the camera and say cheese will result in a lot of unnatural photos. Plus I find kids don't respond well to it, and it can get stressful for them. Which can put a halt to a session pretty quickly!
As with any good relationship, communication is key. I always try to make my sessions an enjoyable experience for all, I will ask lots of questions in our pre-session consultations to help me get to know your family. I also encourage you to communicate all of your concerns with me before your session. If conditions (schedule changes, illness, etc.) are less than ideal we can always find a better time.
What are some things that you worry about before your family photo sessions? Is there something that holds you back from booking more family photo sessions? Please leave a comment, or send me a message!!