One of the biggest concerns from parents is how their kids are going to act during their family photo session. From toddlers to teenagers, they can all be unpredictable. Here are a few of my go-to tips that can make or break your family photo day.
Happy Bellys = Happy Kids
Never come to a session hungry! I have a three year old and I can usually sum up his crabby mood to one of two things: he's tired (more on that later) or he's hungry. We all know how it feels when the hangry monster hits us, and with kids is can be ten times worse. Be sure to have a meal or heavy snack before you come to your session.
Bag of Tricks & Treats
I am not above bribery, while I try to limit it as much as I can with my own child, there are times when it just works. Family picture day is definitely one of them. I usually pack a few tricks in my bag, it's amazing what a 3 year old will do for an M&M, bringing along some small treat they love can come in handy. If you have older kids promising a trip to the ice cream shop, or an extra hour of screen time can be effective in turning that frown upside down.
I mentioned earlier about how I know my kid is crabby when he is tired. Most adults I know get a little crabby when they are tired, am I right!? If we have a late afternoon or evening session planned, try pushing for a later nap time. Try not to plan your session on a Saturday evening or Sunday morning after a full day of ball games, dance practice, and birthday parties. I've seen many a meltdown come from just being exhausted and overstimulated.
Let me Lead
Above all, let me direct and guide you. I will not spend the whole session asking you all to look at me and smile, so you don't need to ask your kids to do that either. While I will try to capture those shots, let me tell you when to do that. Let me wrangle the kids for the bit, spend your session celebrating your family, connecting with them, laughing, hugging and playing. These are the images you are going to cherish, the ones that will make you smile.
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