Advice for a Great Family Photoshoot

Family photos in front of a graffitti wall in inglewood

We asked a group of photographers “what is the best advice you can give to a family prior to their family photo session?” and here is what they answered:

Alesha Howell  – Las Vegas Family & Maternity Lifestyle Photographer

         My #1 rule for family photos: Kids can’t get in trouble. Hear me out: it’s one of the very few times they can be fully themselves. My goal is to capture silly smiles, curious eyes, and belly laughs. It’s ok for them to interpret prompts their own way, I promise! On the flip side, little ones maybe shy and need to warm up a bit. After all, there’s no better place than in mom’s arms. Best believe I’ll capture all the cuddles. Documenting the personality of your family as a whole makes my heart SING. Nothing compares to authenticity.

Alesha Howell Photography

Giselle Salazar Photography – Family Photographer, Austin and Central Texas

         “Take that as an opportunity to bond with the family and make it fun. My recommendations will vary depending on the style of your family session. For studio sessions: Usually clients that book us for studio sessions are looking for a more structured and posed photography session experience. We offer a style consultation for each session and give our clients ideas on what to wear and plan colors, backgrounds and props depending on their color and style preferences. For families with young kids, we usually book their session around their nap schedules and pick hours where kids are happier, that way then can be more cooperative for their session. For older kids, bribery usually does the trick! Promising the kids a toy or ice cream after their session is a great motivator and kids look forward to it. For Outdoor sessions: Outdoor sessions are usually around sunset, so scheduling according to baby’s nap schedule can be challenging. Our recommendation is to play around with the kids’ schedule where they can take a nap before the photo shoot or take advantage of the kids being tired and take some beautiful candid photos of the kids snuggling with mom and dad.”

Giselle Salazar Photography

Ben Martinez – Family Photographer, Austin, TX

        “Get out of your head and enjoy the photo shoot! Yes, a photo shoot can feel awkward and strange, especially if you don’t normally feel comfortable in front of a camera. But remember that you have hired a professional and you are doing this photo shoot to commemorate a special time in your life. Take a deep breath and don’t get too nervous about the process. Your photographer will help guide you and capture you in the best light possible. Enjoy the photo shoot!”

Ben Martinez Photography

Tammy Schell – Family, Newborn & Maternity Photographer, Woodstock, ON

        “In order to have a successful family photoshoot, prepare your family to have fun! Lower your stress by encouraging everyone to be themselves and ask for suggestions on what they want to do. By allowing them to choose how things are run, they’re more likely to enjoy themselves, be happy, and want to do the shoot!”

Heartwink Photography

Joanna Jensen – Family, Newborn & Maternity Photographer, Calgary, AB

         “If there’s any advice I can’t give is to prepare clothing as much in advance as possible-communicate with your family as to what you’d like them to wear prior to the session as well.  Family members may have a different point of view on clothing options so it’s great to have plenty of time to get a different outfit if needed for a wonderful photoshoot.  That being said, I love getting ideas off pinterest for colours and the latest styles.  Stores like Zara and H&M are the usual go-tos for nice trendy outfits but every now and then I find real gems at Marshalls and boutique stores”

Joanna Jensen Photography

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