Updated: Nov 3, 2019
Recently, I wrote a blog post, trying to bust some of the most common excuses I hear (and use myself) as to why you may be reluctant to book your family photo shoot.
Today, I wanted to discuss something a little bit more uplifting, specifically, how to enjoy your session, now that you’ve been converted and booked it ;)
...and, if you still need encouragement (come on!), I invite you read this brilliant blog by Tori, a St. Albans family photographer, on why you should not wait to book your family shoot.
So here are my top tips (as a photographer and also as a person that’s been photographed with my family) on how to prepare for your family photo shoot and - most importantly - enjoy it!
Not anybody will do
If you are serious about your family photos, don’t book just anybody.
Recommendations are brilliant, but make sure you browse through this photographer’s work, look through their website to get a feel for them as a person - and determine: does their style match your family? Are their images in line with what you would like?
Don’t book a photographer with just ‘action shots’ on their website and expect posed portraits that grandmas love. Not to say that they couldn’t deliver these, but if it’s not their style, you’re maybe better off with someone else?
I have a separate blog about how to choose your family photographer, so won’t go into too much detail, but this is important!
Book professional hair and make up
It may come across as a little bit ‘extra’ with the amount of effort, but at the end of the day, these images will be displayed around your home for years to come and keep a prized place in a family album, so why not treat yourself to some extra glam? My sessions are outdoorsy, so I’m not necessarily meaning a half up/half down wedding hairstyle (though, if that’s what you want, you go girl!), but I know myself that a blow dry or a neat pleat do wonders for my confidence and - most importantly - takes the pressure off me trying to get ready for the shoot! Bonus chill points - escaping the house for a bit to get a cup of coffee and read a magazine in peace!
Need some tips of whom to call? Ask me, I know some brilliant people that I can recommend!
Plan your outfits
Don’t leave this to chance. You don’t want to dress like a family that you’re not, but you may also want to make sure your outfits coordinate more than they normally do. When we go to a play park, I take about 2.5 seconds to dress myself and the boys wear whatever is the easiest to put on/cleanest/top of the clothes mountain... so when planning for sessions where my family are being photographed, I set aside time to make sure that all the clothes exist (and not just in my imagination), not too small, still in one piece and that they actually all go together.
Believe it or not, but laying out all the outfits on the bed is a great trick for visualising how everyone will look without having to put the clothes on and do a costume rehearsal ahead of the shot.
Also, don’t stress about spending money on new wardrobes for everyone. Chances are, if you plan well ahead, you’ve got most, if not all, the things you need already.
One other tip is to be realistic - if we’re going to muddy woods, maybe best to avoid white jeans, if we’re shooting on a beach, rethink those heels...
Eat, Drink & Pack
I don’t know about you, but hanger is a real thing for me 😂making sure everyone is fed and watered before leaving the house is paramount.
Your photographer may have treats, snacks and accessories to aid the session, but consider anything you can take along that would help draw attention or uplift moods. Bring it in a small backpack that you don’t mind setting on the ground while you’re posing up a storm.
Also... a spare pair of trousers/skirts/tights/dress for the little ones (just trust me on this one).
My goal is for the photo session to not just give you beautiful keepsake images, but for everyone to enjoy themselves too. Hopefully you will find the experience akin to a family day out where I join you and just happen to have my camera with me! I’m not out to get you, I’m not out to judge you, we’re all there to have a wonderful time.
Ahead of the sessions I send out a Notes pack, which will include tips on how to prepare for your shoot. This should hopefully give some guidance on what to consider and what to expect. Anything else, just give me a shout at any point!
I hope there were some helpful tips for you here and you’re feeling excited for your upcoming session - or inspired to book one!
I am currently booking dates in autumn and must admit... though summer is beautiful, fresh, warm and full of color, I am sooooo impartial to the golden shades of fall!
If you’d like to book your family photo session, please enquire today.
Chtefan. Photography is a family lifestyle portrait and commercial business photographer based in Laurencekirk, Aberdeen - Scotland.
I specialise in beautiful, natural photography of children and families and professional and environmental portraits and headshots.
Chtefan. Photography covers the following areas: Montrose, Inverbervie, Arbroath, Ellon, Westhill, Banchory, greater Aberdeenshire and Angus region and would be delighted to travel on both national and international assignments.