Things to Consider

What to wear
Click here to find a wonderful breakdown and great tips on how to select outfits for yourself and for your family. If you're looking for examples, click here for photos of family outfits arranged by color for inspiration. 

Engagement Session
Here's your chance to let your love show! It's an opportunity for you both to express yourselves, not only as individuals but as a couple. These photos are taken during a special time and despite all the stress and descions that go into wedding planning, your e-session is a time to relax and enjoy one another. So when you're deciding the details for your session, feel free to be creative because it should be personalized to suit you and your partner. For more information on things like dress, location, etc. please visit Wedding Portrait Tips for ideas.

Being pregnant is such a special time in your life and it's only a short 9 months. When considering a maternity session, don't be self-conscious. Being pregnant is so beautiful and no matter what size you are, embrace it! Dress comfortably and do what feels right to you... if you want to expose that belly, let it all hang out. But if you don't want to show any skin, you don't have to. Also, you may want to consider the possibility of props, such as a sonogram, teddy-bear, hand-made blanket or things you've craved during your pregnancy to add a personal touch to your photos. Your home is often a great setting as it's a place where you're at ease and are already familiar. And a nursery can make for a fantastic back-drop! Just kick back, have fun and relax so you (and baby) can enjoy the shoot in the moment and for years to come. For additional tips, please visit Ten Tips For Better Pregnancy Photos.

Capturing those first few days and weeks of life is priceless! Children grow and change so quickly that it's important to have those photos that you can look at for years and years that can take you back to that time of newness. Your home can be a great place for these photos. Both parents and baby are familiar with surroundings and are already relaxed. When preparing for your shoot, consider your surroundings and possible props to use that are meaningful to you or that can add sentiment to the photo, such as stuffed animals, hats, personalized shirts, etc. To ensure that your baby is cooperative and that you're able to get the shots you want, here are some things you may also want to consider:
  • Babies who are 5-10 days old are the sleepiest, which can help in positioning and repositioning to get a variety of poses and positions. Sleeping also means no crying. 
  • Feed, burp, and change your baby right before the session begins. A full belly and dry diaper can make all the difference in your child's demeanor. 
  • Babies can sense nervousness so it's important for both mom and dad to stay relaxed and calm.
  • When doing nude photos, babies need to stay warm so be sure to keep baby covered up between shots or increase the temperature in the room, if possible. Even 90 degrees isn't too warm for them!
  • You may also want to include a sound machine to mimick the sounds in the womb. This can help keep baby calm and relaxed.

3-12 Month Olds
This is such a quick time where your child grows and changes so much! Some people prefer to document their childs' development by having photos done at 4, 8 and 12 months while others may prefer to do them at 3, 6, 9 and 12 months. No matter which you choose, there are things to consider to help make each session a success. Here's a great website with great tips on things like how to select clothing, props, whether to allow your child to be naked or not, and also gives you ideas for possible portrait ideas.  

Children are remarkable at being themselves. They are so uninhibited and full of energy that they can give you those moments that you could never create with posing or planning. When choosing a location, select a place that your child(ren) is happy and can feel free. In photographing children, I first try to make them feel comfortable around me so that I am able to follow them and capture them doing what they naturally do, and I always encourage them to be themselves. This is what makes for the best photos, I've found. The face a child makes when laughing, or the body language demonstrated by siblings at play are things that could never be recreated. To help ensure this, dress them comfortably (possibly in layers), include toys, clothes, or things that are of importance to them, and always bring along snacks and drinks to keep those little bodies happy.

Family Portraits
When you get a family together, it's a beautiful thing. I enjoy seeing how members interact with one another and the flow that exists within a family unit. When parents and kids play off of one another, it makes for magical moments and you can often feel the love through the lens. To help foster such natural feelings, choose a place where you all can have fun and be yourselves. I encourage you and your family to bring your own unique style, but there are "rules" for dress that you may want to consider when selecting outfits for your session. First, I'd recommend each family member wearing similar colors so to accent one another. Second, solid colors or subtle prints (or a combination of both) look best. You'll also want to avoid flashy logos and busy prints as these can be distracting in a photo. But, since rules are meant to be broken, you may want to include vibrant color accents or funky additions to your outfit choices, such as a colorful scarf, cool boots, chunky jewelry, etc. This will add some flavor to your photos and can also add a personal touch. Whatever you decide, feel free to express yourself and just be you so that you can treasure the images for their authenticity and the memories.

Below are examples of coordinated clothing for family sessions:

GRADUATION! After years and years of homework and classrooms, you're moving up and onward. Time to celebrate! In taking your senior photos, just remember to be you! Dress the way you do everyday and be comfortable. You may want to bring along a change of clothes for options or consider dressing in layers so to have a variety of looks with few outfit changes. A coat, sweater, scarf, belt, jewelry, or a change of shoes can change the look and feel of an outfit. So be creative, have fun, and live it up!