How To Plan For Your Family Photo Session

Being in the business of family photography I get asked all the time how families need to plan for their session. Everything from what do we wear to what happens if a kiddo is cranky to what about rain?! And anything imaginable in between. My first piece of advice is to take a deep breath and let’s go after this one step at a time!

how to plan for your family photo session

What should we wear?

My best advice is to try to coordinate rather than being too “matchy matchy.” What I mean by that is: choose a base color; something neutral like white, navy, black, grey, etc. Then build upon that color with accessories such as scarves, jackets, and cardigans. This ensures that everyone matches to an extent without everyone wearing the exact same, cookie cutter outfit. Building outfits like this gives your images a more relaxed and natural feel!

Should we have our hair and/or makeup professionally done?

This is really a personal preference. My only advice is whatever you do choose, make sure that you are happy with the way you look! If you do choose to go the professional route for makeup, be sure that you tell your makeup artist why you are getting your makeup done! Most MUA know to steer clear from extreme dark colors or glitter when you are having professional photos done. Dark colors can sometimes muddle your features and glitter often makes one appear older than you are!

What if the kids are cranky?

I understand that this is a concern, BUT more often than not your kiddo is going to cooperate just fine. They’re usually not overly familiar with me so they want to be on their best behavior. I know that kiddos sometimes just have bad days and thanks OKAY! We all have those days when we’re just not feeling it! A child doesn’t always have the words to convey they have a bellyache or a headache.  I’m not a parent, so telling you how to do your job isn’t something that I’m too keen on. However, it has been my experience the more a child is scolded the worse the behavior gets. We’re only shooting for a short period and I understand that sometimes kiddos are frustrating, but it’s really okay. Don’t feel embarrassed because your child is running around like a maniac. I have

If worst comes to worst, we’ll reschedule for a different day. We’ve probably gotten some really sweet shots already anyways! But I am always happy to accomodate the tiny humans!

What if it rains?!

I do have a full studio, so we’ll definitely be able to get at least half of your session photographed! I am a huge fan of outdoor images and would never tell a family “sorry, it’s raining, this is all you get!” If we finish up the indoor portion and it is still pouring we will reschedule the outdoor portion. If the rain is tolerable, we’ll tough it out. I leave that call up to the family. I’ve photographed in all sorts of weather, nothing phases me. I’m gotten some pretty cool images in the rain!

How long is this going to take?

It’s mostly the menfolk who ask this question and my answer is always the same. If you cooperate, it won’t take long at all! I’ll have you in and out before you know, with minimal scrapes and bruises!

Other important tid bits.

Be prepared to snuggle and get really close! We’re going to laugh a lot and probably get a little silly. Those real smiles are the best smiles. My goal is to allow your family’s personality to really shine through in your images. 

Are there any questions I have left unanswered? If so, drop them in the comments and I’ll be sure to write a post just for you!