If you are anything like me, Shutterfly and Tinyprints ads are piling up in your inbox. But, before you can even get to the ordering process, you have to book and plan your photo shoot. I know this time of year can be very overwhelming with the holiday hustle, so here are my top tips to alleviate stress and make preparing for your photo shoots fun!
5 Ways To Prepare For & Survive Your Family Photo Shoot
+PICKING YOUR PHOTOGRAPHER – I recommend finding a photographer that fits your personality, style and price range. Select someone whose skill-set is exactly what you are looking for; clean & crisp, portrait style, candid & outdoorsy, indoor studio, etc. Select a photographer who is known to be easy to work with and will make you and your family comfortable on the day of the shoot, as well as provide you with the photo media you need to make your cards, gifts, etc. A great photographer is the key to wonderful photos! **If there is a specific photographer that you know you want to work with, plan ahead and schedule them early, the holiday season is usually the busiest time for all photographers.**
+PLANNING YOUR PHOTO ATTIRE – Keep in mind this is a family photo shoot. Ladies, it is very important that you wear clothing that allows you to run after your little ones, or that you feel comfortable sitting in (mini-skirts are your photographer’s worst nightmare). It doesn’t need to be a “State Farm” commercial, you don’t need to be matchy-matchy in your khakis. 🙂 Having your outfits compliment one another is the key. Pick a color scheme that everyone can work with, and you’ll love the outcome. For example: Pick two or three colors that go well together and then add dimension with textures or patterns. Also, don’t be afraid to be creative, pick looks that best represent you and your family. A few years ago, we took a step on the wild-side and went with a black, red and an animal print look. Have fun with it!
+PERFECTION IS NOT REALISTIC – This might come as a shock to you, but our kids are not perfect. Crazy, I know! Please do not come to your photo shoot with perfection in mind, be ready to go with the flow and throw expectations out the window. Utilize your family photo time to interact and love on your little ones. Embrace their imperfect moments and have fun. Don’t be afraid to incorporate their joys and excitements into the photos. Silly faces, running, singing, tickling, playing a game, reading their favorite book, snuggling; bring the real them to life in your session. If they are having fun, it will show through in your images.
+PLAN AHEAD – You know your kiddos better than anyone. Bring items that will keep their attention or bring them joy during the session. Provide the photographer with their favorite squeaky toy (Sophie usually works great for us) to help them look towards the camera, or bring their favorite songs/cartoon on your iPhone. If your little ones love trucks, balls, stuffed animals, etc… bring them. Sometimes the behind the scenes moments make the best unexpected photos.
+PREPARE SNACKS – Don’t forget to pack non-messy snacks that you can sneak to your little ones in-between shots. We usually have goldfish, fruit snacks, cheerios and water bottles on hand. Snacks can literally save your photo shoot!
++Since photo shoots do not happen on a regular basis, a little bribery is okay. My three year old has a sweet tooth, just like her mommy, so I always offer her a lollypop at the end of the shoot as a sweet reward. Let’s face it, a little bribery can go a long way! 🙂 ++
I hope you enjoyed this photography “prep-talk” with me. All of these very special family photos were taken by Chris Hsieh with La Brisa Photography. We have been incredibly blessed by his work, and even more blessed by his friendship!
CLICK HERE to be amazed by his photography skills – Chris is simply the best!
I hope these tips will assist you and your family this holiday photo season. Let’s look back at our photos and Christmas cards and remember the fun experience and the magical memories made behind the images!
Question : What tips/tricks/ideas do you bring to your family photo shoots to help make them a success?
Happy Photo Session!
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