There can be lot of planning that goes into a family photo session. You need to choose your photographer, select a location, and plan coordinating outfits for everyone. When the day finally arrives, parents are often worried their children won’t behave well at the photo session. Preparing your children for your photo shoot can go a long way in ensuring a successful and stress-free photo shoot.
Here are my 5 tips for preparing your children for your family photoshoot:
Kids are natural planners, because they like to know what is happening. It makes them feel more secure and confident going into a new situation. Prepare your child for the photoshoot by telling them a “friend” will be taking some photos of them. Let them know your expectations of their behavior, but more importantly talk it up to make it sound like a fun and special occasion for the family – because it is! Be sure to have them well rested and fed too!
2. Dress for the weather, not Pinterest:
Pinterest has some great ideas and outfit inspiration. But please, dress for the weather, as well as for comfort. You want to make sure children are dressed cute, of course, but it is more important that they aren’t too cold or too hot, and that, above all, they are comfortable. If your child hates what they are wearing it’s going to show in the photos. That may mean not using that adorable hair bow or the tiny little bow tie that just makes the outfit perfect, but happy kids make better photos than accessories. Have all of your outfits picked out before the day of your photo shoot, so you are not adding any more stress to your day
3. Engage and Play:
A family session is directed playtime between parents and children. Let your child know that’s what we’ll be doing: I’ll be taking photos of you and them while you play. This will get them excited because what child doesn’t love undivided attention from mom and dad? Be present and engage with your children during your session. I give lots of direction during a shoot but it’s more important for you to be completely engaged with your children – ruffle their hair, grab their shoulder or scratch their back. You’re naturally inclined to want to connect with your child. During a shoot, do this same thing.
I know bribery in general, is something that usually isn’t a good idea. However, sometimes it can come in handy, (as in – how about ice cream after the session?) It’s always a great idea for the ones who need a little extra encouragement. However, please don’t bring sweets for bribing during the shoot. They tend to end up being a distraction.
5. Imperfection is Perfection:
Photographing children is a huge joy for me. I can tell you right now, that to me, your child is already perfect. That’s right – PERFECT, no matter what they do. My goal isn’t to get a picture of your child “being good” or just smiling, but having fun and interacting. That’s where the magic lies, and those are the photos you will love. Enjoy the shoot as a time to fully embrace how crazy, fun, and wonderful family life can be
Have more questions about preparing your children for your photo session? Once you book your shoot, I will send you a Welcome Guide with even more information right at your fingertips.
Linda Sobolewski is an on-location, natural-light, professional photographer specializing in seniors, baby, family & children photography.
Linda Sobolewski Photography is based out of Old Saybrook, CT and serves the Connecticut shoreline and surrounding areas.