Let’s face it; family photos are a huge investment! Not only is it expensive to pay a photographer, but there is a lot that goes into getting your family camera ready and out the door at sunset. Many families find family photos to be a source of stress, but as an Austin Family Photographer, what if I let you in on the secret to amazing family photos? Read on for my best tips!
Secret #1: Choosing the Right Photographer
The biggest mistake I see families make is assuming that because someone is a photographer, that this also means they’re great with photographing families. I had a friend who used her wedding photographer for her maternity session and wasn’t pleased with the results because the wedding photographer didn’t quite have as good of a grasp of posing bumps. I also had another friend use a boudoir photographer for her family photos and was disappointed with the experience. When choosing a photographer for your family, it’s best to find someone that specializes in families! Also consider if you like posed or lifestyle images? Studio style or outdoor? I cannot express enough how important it is to choose a photographer whose work you not only like, but also with who you connect with as a person. This is going to be someone you end up spending a lot of time and money with, you so you want to love them!
Secret #2: Wearing the Right Clothes
Notice how I say the “right” clothes, here, because I do that very purposely. The right clothes are going to be the ones that look good on camera, yes, but also the ones that make YOU feel GREAT and reflect your style and personality…just to an elevated degree. Are you a jeans and t shirt person? Opt for a session in a setting where you’ll feel great staying casual. You will want to chat with your photographer about colors and patterns that are best for camera, but when it comes to what to wear, feeling confident and comfortable is always the priority and makes amazing family photos.
Secret #3: The Right Time of Year
Did you know that Golden Hour is different at different times of the year? If we have a July session, we are shooting until almost 9PM! If we have a November session, however, we are only shooting until about 530PM. What a difference! There are pros and cons to sessions in every season, but if you have a child who just can’t hang past bedtime, you will want to consider what time of year you book photos. The secret to amazing family photos means happy kids, and some people’s kiddos aren’t happy past dinner time…and that’s ok!!!
Secret #4: Know Your Kids + What Makes Them Happy…Then Act On It!
You would be surprised how many people step in front of my camera and do not know how to play with their kids. When I ask them what they do at home for physical play or to get a laugh, I’m sometimes met with blank stares. The secret to amazing family photos is knowing how to connect with your kids and not being afraid to do so on camera! This means…chasing them, playing tag, snuggling, throwing them in the air, swinging them, tickles, spiderman drops, and anything else you can think of that brings out those smiles! Great family photos are all about PLAY!
Secret #5: Keeping Your Cool
This is perhaps the most important secret of all. Did you know that 70% of the photos I don’t keep when I’m editing a session are because of parent faces? Yes, it’s true! Your kids look adorable doing basically anything, but your scowl or annoyed face in the background does not. It’s so important to lower expectations and go into family photos just knowing you’re going to snuggle and play. Even if your kid is crying and I ask you to turn them around and snuggle them into your chest, smile like it’s the best day on earth! They can feel our tension, and the camera picks up on it, too. Don’t worry, though…I have a lot of tricks up my sleeve when it comes to happy kids.
Do you now know the secret to amazing family photos? Which one of these surprised you the most?