Helpful Tips when Preparing for Family Photos
So....you're looking at your walls and realize you haven't had family photos in so long! Now you're ready to book some much needed new family photos...what do you do? You have so many questions that you may not know where to start. I'm here to alleviate any stresses you may have and make it a fun experience that you will want to do every year! Below are some tried and true tips that will make your session a great one!
Choosing a Photographer...
This can be a tough one! There are SO MANY great photographers out there...how do you choose? Personal referrals are a fantastic way to hire someone that you KNOW your friends have liked (and personal referrals mean the WORLD to us as photographers!). If you don't know anyone that can recommend someone, try a local Facebook group. There are certainly moms in there that will be happy to comment!
When you do choose a photographer, make sure that he/she is suited to photograph families. Check their website and make sure you like their style of photos. There are so many "styles" to choose from such as "light and airy", "moody", or "bright and colorful." Some have special niches or specialties (wedding, product, food, real estate, maternity) and may not quite suit the needs of your family.
Ask Yourself a Few Questions...
- What time of year do you want photos?
- Do you want a full session (usually one hour) or a mini session (usually 15 minutes)
- Are you looking for indoor studio sessions or outdoor ones?
- Would you like a specific theme (Spring, Fall, Holiday, Sunflower)?
- What should I wear?
- What do I plan to do with the gallery?
Your photographer will most likely reach out to you beforehand and should be able to help you decide how to answer the above questions to suit your needs. He/she will be able to help with tips on styling, location advice, session time advice, and what they offer in gallery delivery services. For example, some charge a sitting fee and you pay a la carte for the digitals, some photographers have a package with some or all digitals included in the package. Other photographers may offer digitals as well as print services like wall art and albums for families either included or at an additional cost to the digitals. There are so many things to choose from and it really depends on your budget and what you would like included.
As for location and timing, early morning or two hours before the sun sets are ideal times to get the best lighting. Experienced photographers should be able to shoot any time of day but harsh lighting during peak sun hours can definitely affect the tone of the photos and cooperation from little ones.
Styling tips is one of the questions that I get asked about the most. In a nutshell, I always recommend solid colors and to avoid big, bold patterns or stripes. I encourage families to "coordinate" but not be completely matched if that makes sense. Two things I am SO EXCITED to add to my booked clients this year are a "Client Experience Guide" that outlines EVERYTHING you will need to know prior to a session with me and a questionnaire so that if you are new to me, I can get to know you before our session together!
Some Final Tips...
- Show up a few minutes early for your session so that you can get settled and the kids can warm up to the photographer (especially if they have fallen asleep in the car).
- Bring bribes for the kids. Gummies work great and they don't make a mess! Or plan to do something special like ice cream after the session so they have something to look forward to for listening well during the session.
- Have FUN!!! Don't worry about how the session will go. I know this sounds easier said that done but speaking from experience, take a big deep breath and trust that your photographer has got you covered!! He/she will do their VERY best to get all the amazing shots of your family and make sure you have the best time while doing so!
I hope this little guide has given you some great info on booking family photos. If you have any questions, please don't hesitate to reach out to me! Have a wonderful day!