Family photography session guide

family with a spaniel in the forest

I am so excited to capture you and your family! My goal is not to get a stiff and posed shot with everyone looking at the camera, but to capture the true essence of your family. I take a documentary approach to photography and use my understanding of my equipment and natural light to create images that will become works of art that you can hang in your home and pass down for generations. Here are a few tips to help you prepare for your session with me.

Length Of Session: The good news is, I am fast! My family portrait sessions rarely last more than an hour. Extended family sessions might run up to 90 minutes if your group is large.

What To Wear: Wardrobe should be comfortable and reflect who you are.  See my PINTEREST board for some what to wear inspiration. I am happy to consult you directly on wardrobe. You, Dear Mama, should start with your own outfit and then gather pieces for the rest of your family. I do not recommend matching, but rather coordinating. It’s a good idea to avoid very thin stripe pattern, as the camera struggles with it. Big logos take the attention away from your faces, so stay away from them too.

If it’s a cold day, it is better to wear thinner layers then one bulky item.

Keep your make up matte. Avoid pearly or metallic products as they don’t photograph well in natural light. Matt products will help you look fresh and polished.

Props: I do not use props during my sessions, however if you have something in mind please let me know.

Your Children: Remember that children are not usually fond of being told to pose or smile. It is best if we just give the children time to relax and try to capture their natural self. Don’t worry if your child is running about and active, most of the images you see of young children on my site were captured while the child or toddler was busy playing and exploring.

To get the family shots, I usually direct the adults to simply “be” with the child, or hold the child and we go from there.

To get the most out of your session, make sure that your little one has rested and has had adequate snacks and water. We can take breaks for snacks and play, however I will probably still shoot during the breaks. Bring dry, non messy snacks so their little faces stay clean during the session.

Prepare the child for the session by letting them know that a friend will be taking some photos of them, it’s best not to surprise them.

I encourage you to make this a fun family experience. Instead of bribing your children with a treat, make this a feel good day. Make plans to go out for dinner or treat before or after the session as a family. Not as a reward, but as part of the overall experience.

Please arrive on time or be ready to start on time: Remember, your session is scheduled according to light. It is important that we start on time. Please plan for traffic or parking constraints.

I can’t wait to capture your family! Do not hesitate to ask me any questions you have. See you soon!

family of 4 sitting on a blanket ion a grassfamily of 4 parents giving back rides to kids