It’s important to prepare for your session to make the most of your investment when you choose to book family portraits. These are photos that will take a deep place in your life and your home as the years pass. The portraits you take will be what tell your story in the future, so I’m here to encourage you to make the most of your investment when you book family portraits. These memories should be timeless and truly capture who you are as a family. As a Pittsburgh Family photographer, here are my best tips for preparing yourself and family to make the most of your family photo investment.
1 | Pick the best photographer for your family.
The first step in investing in family photos is picking the right family photographer. Photographers vary in style, approach, editing and more. You want to invest in one that will give you the best photos for your family and one that you can rely on year after year.
When you begin to review photographers, pay attention to a few things. First, is their portfolio showing the kind of work you want done? Find a photographer that specializes in families, newborns or milestone sessions (as it applies to what you’re booking). Ensure that their portfolio is consistent and showcases the style you like. Think about whether you want a lighter edit or moodier one. You should also consider what kind of posing you like – something more candid or not.
Aside from choosing a great photographer, trust their advice when it comes to the best time of day to shoot, your session location, posing, outfit advice and more. You are hiring a creative. Trust their advice to give you the best possible photos.
For more tips on picking the perfect photographer, check out this article!
2 | Splurge a bit on new outfits.
I’m giving you my unofficial blessing to go ahead and invest in some new outfits for your family photos. Your photos are an investment and we want both you and your family to look and feel their best. New clothing has that effect on everyone in the family!
If you don’t want to go buy a new look, that’s fine too! Many photographers will offer a styling service, complimentary style advice or even a client closet. Consult with your photographer to get the best advice before investing in new outfits for your session.
No matter how you choose your outfits, think timeless and quality. When you look back at your photos years from now, you want the moments to shine and the outfits to compliment the memories.
Some of my favorite places to shop are:
For more great places to shop, check out this post, too!
Looking for advice on what to wear? I’ve got two great posts HERE (family) and HERE (maternity) about that, too!
3 | Prepare yourself and family for the experience.
Whether you have little ones or your kiddos are full grown, you want to prepare yourself and family for the session. When everyone knows what to expect, they will be more comfortable which will give you more natural and authentic photos.
Prepare little ones by warming them up to the idea of having their photos taken. Share with them a picture of the photographer if they have a tendency to be shy. You can even “practice” and get them excited for the big day. Share the portfolio of images from your photographer with your husband or older children to give them an idea of what they can expect. This will help them feel more natural when it comes to the session.
4 | Pamper yourself where needed (speaking to you moms!)
If hair and makeup are not your specialty or you love the idea of having these professionally done, I say go for it! It’s not too often that us mommas get the opportunity to get dressed up for an occasion. Your family photos will adorn the walls of your home for years to come so it’s important that you look and feel your best for them. If your budget allows, schedule yourself for hair and makeup!
Check out some of these talented Pittsburgh Hair and Makeup Artists for your upcoming session:
5 | Get your images into your home!
One of the best parts of this whole process is getting your images off the computer and into your home to be enjoyed. Printing your photos means that you will actually get to enjoy them every day. You’ll have the chance to see them, touch them, and share them with your family. I’m all about living in the digital age, truly. But there’s something so powerful about actually PRINTING your images. Whether you fill your favorite frames, flip through an album, or create a wall of gorgeous heirloom prints, find what works best for your family and go for it.
Family portraits are truly about more than just showing up and smiling. They’re about an experience and creating memories that you will treasure for years to come. By taking the time to prepare for your session, you’ll truly maximize the investment you’re making by hiring a photographer in the first place!
Your photos are an investment. To get the most from your experience, make sure you are investing in creating the memories and preparing yourself for the best results. Choose the best photographer for your family, allow yourself to splurge a bit with clothes and pampering so you look and feel your best. Don’t forget to prepare yourself and family so they are the most comfortable and know what to expect. And last but not least, don’t forget to get your beautiful images off your computer and into your home to be enjoyed!
If you are looking for a new family photographer — I would love the opportunity to work with your family. Let’s connect if so and create some new memories for your family.
Life moves too fast. Although we can’t slow it down, we can record the moments that fill our hearts and tell our story through photos and films. I am a Pittsburgh family photographer and film maker that helps families record their stories and pause some of life’s greatest moments.
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