I hear it all the time, “my kids won’t sit still”, “my husband hates pictures”, “I don’t know what to do or what to wear!”
I know, getting photos done can be stressful, especially if you’ve had a negative experience in the past. Maybe your kids were uncooperative for the photographer or your husband just WAS NOT into it. This is why I am here to tell you how to find a photographer you will LOVE, how to prepare for a great family photo session, and what to do during your session to make sure it’s an enjoyable experience for EVERYONE involved!
Tip #1 – Picking the Right Photographer for you and your family
This may seem simple, just find someone that has a camera and ask them to snap a few photos right? nope, there are so many variables. What style are you looking for? Do you like posed or natural? Indoor or outdoor? Traditional or BoHo styling?
You certainly don’t want to waste your time and energy getting everyone outfits, arranging schedules, spending time at the session wrangling kids and trying to look cute all to find out that the photos are no good. Experience is a HUGE part of why photographers have such varying investments and availability.
A good photographer should be preparing you from day one. What to wear, how to prepare the kids, what to expect from the experience all the way down to what time of day is best. When “client friends” hop on my schedule they receive a complete planning package with tips on what to wear, how to prepare, and what to expect all covered in detail.
During the shoot you should feel at ease. Good photographers give direction and ideas of what to do so you never feel awkward or unsure of what to do next. They will also get down to your child’s level to make sure they are having fun, laughing and joking all the way through. This keep everyone happy! Family photo sessions should feel more like family play time than a forced and unnatural experience.
My sessions are ALWAYS held during ideal times of day, and ALWAYS involve lots of laughter and play!
Tip #2 Preparing yourself , your partner, and your kids.
NO ONE likes to be told to sit and smile at the camera! NO. ONE. It’s awkward and so against everything that kids love and live for! So to get your kids on board definitely tell them that you all are going out for a fun night at the park where you will play games and sing songs and have fun with the photographer.
Definitely tell your partner the same! Prepare him or her for some family play and snuggle time! I’ve never met a dad who doesn’t like to toss the littles in the air or do a fun piggy back ride!
Wardrobe is a huge part in how your images will turn out! Spend some time thinking about where you will hang your images, what the color scheme of your home is, and the location you will be photographed at. This is where a tool like StyleandSelect.com comes in so handy! You can style everyone beautifully and with ease. This is a service I offer all of my clients complimentary!
Tip #3 Get Pampered
Yes, for all of my mamas, I recommend pampering yourself! Have a friend come over and do your hair and makeup or go out to your favorite salon for a treatment. You will feel and look like a million bucks and when that happen you will be so much happier and confident during your session time and after when you get the photos back!
Tip #4 Full Tummies = Happy kids
I know it can be tricky to have everyone fed before a dinner time shoot. But it is so important that the kids and dads aren’t hungry! Even if it’s just a clean snack in the car on the way over that won’t make a mess of clothes it’s a good idea to have everyone fed.
If you’re worried they will make a mess, have them not all the way dressed in their photo clothes. There’s always time to get dressed when you arrive at the shoot location.
Tip #5 Relax, Let Loose, Have Fun and Snuggle
One thing that is guaranteed for every session is that it will not go exactly to plan. What’s that saying about best laid plans?… kids might be shy when they’re usually not, wild and crazy, or have a tantrum or cry over who knows what. It’s all Okay, promise. The best thing you can do is to comfort a shy or upset kiddo to make the BEST snuggly and sweet moment photos. If you kiddo RUNS LIKE THE WIND by all means get out there and run with them! Make it a fun game, interact, have fun, laugh and giggle and play and snuggle and ALL of the things. if you have a good photographer they will be laughing and giggling right along with you as they direct and interact and photograph you in fits of laughter!
Grab the free guide to take the stress out of planning your perfect day.