Today on the blog, I am sharing the beautiful Johnson family and sharing 5 tips for your family session so that it’s one for the books! I am also sharing my FREE guide, Family Sessions: What to Wear. Be sure to snag your copy after you’re done enjoying and being inspired by this gorgeous family shoot!
Family portrait sessions are made of a multitude of factors: screaming children, spotting stains on shirts after all the time you spent putting the outfits together before the shoot, torrential downpours midway through the shoot, you name it. The purpose of a family portrait session is to capture happy memorable, moments, but the shoot itself can feel like a complete disaster. Hence, when you get your pictures back and spot a beautiful image, it feels like a little miracle!
As a mom of three myself, I am here to tell you that family portrait sessions are WORTH THE EFFORT- I promise! If you want me to explain why that is, be sure to check out my post on 5 Reasons to Do a Family Session. In this specific post, however, we are going to focus on tips you can implement to help achieve the type of session you are going for! At the end of the day, the most important thing you can do for yourself is, embrace the “mess”. Chaotic or not, your family is just that- yours. This is a beautiful gift in and of itself! And believe me when I say photographers have seen it all. Nothing will surprise them, so just do your best to focus on savoring these moments with your family- even if a torrential downpour or two is involved!
1. Prep the Kiddos. Spend time leading up to your family session getting the kids excited. Try and build it up to a fun event they will actually look forward to, followed by a treat (did someone say ice cream?) . The same goes for the day of- be excited! Talk about your family photo session and photographer! Make sure everyone has napped and eaten before the shoot, and has exactly what they need for it as well (perhaps a backup shirt or a jacket). Also be sure that your kiddos brush their teeth before they put their nice clothes on! Finally, if you have a child under the age of 3, I would recommend getting them dressed once you get to the location spot.
2. Be Intentional About Location & Time. One of my absolute favorite times to shoot is during the golden hour. This is because you are not directly in the sun and the natural lighting is just incredible! It really sets the tone for gorgeous pictures. I also recommend shooting somewhere that is familiar to the kids. In my opinion, familiarity is always a comfort- no matter how old you are!
3. Keep Things Active. Regardless of where you decide to shoot, make sure you are moving around to different spaces rather than standing still the whole time. Your photographer should already be aware and have plans for this, but definitely speak up if you need to.
4. Be Generous with Time. For example, pack a bag of everything you think you’ll need (diapers, snacks, lipstick, extra clothes, etc.) a day or two BEFORE the shoot. On the day of, shoot to leave so that you are 10-15 minutes late. If you are 10-15 minutes late to a golden hour shoot, you’ve already lost a lot of time, which is no bueno!
5. Trust Your Photographer. I know that telling you to relax and have fun is easier said than done, but I am going to challenge you to try your best! If you’re stressed during the shoot, you will be able to tell in the photos. Remember that you hired a pro and your photographer will get you those gorgeous family photos- no matter what. Trust me on this one!
Family photos are a ton of fun, but they can be hard to coordinate- especially when you have lots of kiddos! This is why I created my Family Sessions: What to Wear Guide. It’s totally FREE and meant to help ease the stress of all the planning, so be sure to grab your copy and let me know what you think!
If you have any other questions regarding family photos, be sure to get in touch! I am happy to help you however I can!
I am happy to consult on clothing for all of my clients, so if you have been putting off family photos because it’s just too stressful to think about, stress no more!
Contact me here to get your family photos scheduled before you talk yourself out of it again!