November 22, 2023

Session Planning Tips

My Top Tips for Preparing for Your Family Photo Session

Created by Ali Coşkunfrom the Noun Project

Hey there, families!

Are you gearing up for your upcoming family photo session and feeling a bit overwhelmed? Worry not! I’m here to share some insider tips to help you prepare for a fun, stress-free photo experience. Whether you’re planning for your annual family portrait or capturing a special milestone, these tips will ensure that your photo session is as enjoyable and seamless as possible.

So, let’s dive in!

Choosing the perfect outfits: “What should we wear for our session?” This is by far the number one question I get asked after booking a session. Picking outfits for your photo session can be a bit daunting, but it can also be fun! Here’s how to make it a breeze:

  • Comfort Meets Style: First and foremost, wear what makes you comfortable! This is essential, especially for kiddos. Be sure to choose outfits that reflect your ou and your family’s style, it’s important to be yourself. 
  • Coordinate: When choosing your outfits, start with a color palette that you love and fits with your family’s style. I suggest starting with one person’s outfit (usually mom’s) and coordinating the rest of the outfits around that one. You may also consider how you plan to display your photos. If you plan to hang them on your walls, think about the overall aesthetic of your home and how your outfits will fit with that.
  • Location & Season: Lastly, think about the location of your session and the time of year you’ll have your photos taken in. Layers are great in the cooler months and lighter fabrics will be better when it’s hotter out. 

Prepping the family: 

  • Talk to your family: It’s important to get your family involved in planning for your session. It can really make a difference in how smoothly the session goes. Be sure to chat with your kids (and your partner) about your upcoming session. Let them know what to expect in a fun and positive way. If your kids are old enough you can even let them be a part of picking out their outfits. Ask them if there are any poses they like. This can make them feel included and get them excited. 
  • Bring the essentials: Pack a bag with some snacks, drinks, a change of clothes for your little ones, and a favorite toy. These things can really be helpful to keep them engaged or to help cheer them up when needed. 
  • Prepare for the unexpected: As a parent, I probably don’t have to tell you how unpredictable kids are. They might get dirty, they might not want to cooperate, and that’s totally okay, we’ll work through it. As a photographer who loves capturing genuine moments, I’m all for letting kids be kids. Sometimes, the most memorable shots are those unplanned, candid moments.

Setting expectations:

Having the right mindset and expectations going into your session can make all the difference in having a smooth photo session.

First and foremost, it’s important to understand that perfection isn’t the goal; capturing the love your family has for one another is. If your kids are playing and laughing, let them. In fact, encourage this! On the flip side, if they’re a little shy at first, that’s okay too. The moments when your family is being themselves and having fun make for some of the best photos.

Try to think of your session as a fun family activity. The more relaxed you are, the better the photos will turn out. Don’t worry about forcing smiles or getting every hair in place. Instead, focus on enjoying the time with your family. Genuine smiles and laughter always translate beautifully on camera.

Don’t forget to trust your photographer. If you’ve hired the right photographer, they will guide you through the entire process. Make sure you talk to them about any concerns you have as you’re preparing for your session. Remember, the goal of the session is to capture the essence of your family as you are now, in this moment in time. Keep an open mind, and you’ll make some beautiful memories!

So, as you prepare for your session, try not to stress too much over the small stuff. Instead, focus on the excitement of capturing your family’s story as it is right now. I hope you have found these tips helpful and if you’re looking for a photographer to capture your special moments, hit me up at to inquire about a session with me!

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