Family photo sessions can be stressful but they don’t have to be! Make your family photo session fun, easy and enjoyable with these pro tips.
If you are like myself and many others, you love your photos but dread photo day. There are often so many unknowns making it cringe worthy to think about. Will your kids cooperate? Will the hubby be a willing participant? Will you pick the perfect, timeless, Pinterest-worthy outfits?
There are so many elements that go into a executing a beautiful photo session but it doesn’t have to be stressful! The success of your family photo day comes down to 3 main things; preparation, expectations and attitude.
Make the most of your family photo session with these pro tips to make your session stress-free, easy and maybe even enjoyable!
Prepare In Advance for Success
1. Pick the Right Photographer – Photographers are just like anything else. Everyone has their own style, personality and approach to capturing family photos. Take the time to research more than just their portfolio and pricing.
- Are they a Lifestyle photographer or a Portrait photographer? Lifestyle sessions tend to be a little more candid and flexible for younger children.
- Read reviews on Google and Facebook. Are they known for being great with kids? Are they noted as being great at communication? These are the things that will contribute to a smooth and enjoyable session.
- Do you connect with them? Schedule a quick chat with them prior to booking to get a feel for their personality. Your photos are an investment and you should be comfortable with the person behind the lens.
2. Plan Your Outfits in Advance – One of the first questions after a family books is “what should we wear?”This can be a stressful part of the planning process and best to figure out in advance to save any last minute stress. There are many resources to help you coordinate the perfect family photos with ease. Check out this Style Guide for tips on picking the perfect outfits for family photos.
3. Prepare Your Family – Photos are an investment and in order for a smooth experience, it’s best to get everyone in the family on board in advance. Prepare young children by telling them you will get to play together while someone takes their photos. Sometimes you can tell them how they will get to be a “model” for the day or whatever would get them excited.
Prepare yourself and your spouse by reviewing the photographers portfolio. Having an idea on the type of photos that will be captured will make you more comfortable with what is expected from you on photo day.
4. Essentials for Photo Day – This goes without saying but it’s important to note nonetheless. Make sure everyone in the family is well rested, tummy’s full and make sure everyone is comfortable in their clothing and shoes.
5. Pack an Emergency Kit – Don’t forget a few must-have items for your photo session such as baby wipes for messes, mess-free and portable snacks, extra shoes for walking to a location and play clothes for after the session.
Be Realistic with Your Expectations
Learn to embrace imperfection!
For many, the stress of family photos comes from a combination of high expectations and concern that the kids won’t cooperate, or even that the adults won’t do it “right.” Trust me, there is no right or wrong way. The best thing parents can do is simply enjoy this dedicated family time and let the photographer do the work.
A good photographer will find a way to get great shots even if things don’t go as planned. It is likely they are capturing moments, glances and little smiles that you don’t see. Give yourself and your kids grace and flexibility.
Approach Photos with the Right Attitude
Once all the planning is done and photo day has arrived, it’s time to relax, enjoy your family and let your photographer do the work! With the right preparation and expectations, you should be able to relax and enjoy your family.
Make it a point to keep a positive attitude for your family. Typically mom or dad will set the tone for the whole family. If you are stressed, your children will be as well.
Photos have a way of recalling memories. If you were uncomfortable or stressed when the photo was taken, that photo will remind you of the stress of the moment. Keep yourself positive and relaxed for genuine and candid family photos.
Family photos can be stressful but they do not have to be with the right preparation, expectations and attitude. Remember that these photos will be a reflection of you and your family and will tell your unique story. Take the time to prepare yourself and your family in advance so you can enjoy your photo session and create beautiful photos.
I am a lifestyle Pittsburgh family photographer that enjoys working with families and newborns. My sessions are relaxed and casual with a focus on capturing candid moments and connections. I understand the stress that comes with family photos and work with my clients to make the whole experience enjoyable and as stress-free as possible. All my sessions come with a complimentary styling service and full planning resources to make your photo experience a great one. Interested in session? Let’s connect!
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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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