In honor of Father’s Day this year, I want to chat about my favorite dad images. Here’s the thing…photographers know that MOST Dad’s are not thrilled about family picture day. They imagine being in a stuffy outfit, being made to awkwardly smile, and the exhaustion of trying to make their kids “behave”. Here’s where I am going to let you in on a little secret. NONE of the best dad images that I am going to share below involve any of these scenarios. The “lifestyle family photography” genre is all about dads being authentic dads. Play with your kids! Be goofy! Snuggle them! Show us that weird voice that you do at home that always elicits a smile from your toddler. Be yourself!
Soooo….Dads! Here are a few tips before your next family photography session.
Tip 1: If you’re not a button down/ formal shoe wearing guy, don’t wear them.
Yup, I said it. Here is written permission to tell your partner that I said you don’t need to wear formal clothes if you’re not a formal guy. In fact, I am going to ask you to run, swing, throw, chase your kids. If you are wearing clothes that you don’t want to do that in….definitely rethink your outfit choice! Family pictures don’t need to mean a button down shirt. Some of my favorite images ever have dad’s wearing a simple t-shirt. Just stay away from the graphic tees and stick to solids!
TIP #2: PLEASE DON’T TONE DOWN YOUR SILLY/GOOFY SELF WITH YOUR KIDS. THE BEST DAD IMAGES ARE USUALLY WHEN SOMETHING SILLY IS HAPPENING!
This is probably the most important tip of all. Photographers truly want you to be that Saturday morning silly dad that you are with your kids. Whether that means chasing them, shoulder rides, wrestling, or peek-a-boo with some ridiculous voices. Nothing elicits better smiles from kids than their parents being silly and dad’s are USUALLY really good at being silly with their kids. Whatever it is that is YOUR trick, do it!
TIP #3: DON’T LOOK AT ME!
I know your first instinct is to give that sort of automatic smile at the camera. That’s not the kind of image I am after! I want you to look at your family, smile at your kids, laugh with your partner. The genuine photos come from families interacting with each other, not with me! So when I say “look at each other” many times over the course of our hour together, I really mean it!
TIP #4: TO GET THE BEST DAD IMAGES….JUST KIDDING, THERE IS NO TIP #4.
Seriously, there is no fourth tip. All you need to do to have a successful and pain-free family photo session is:
- Dress like you
- Act like you
- Look at your family
Seems easy enough right?? Thanks for taking a look at some of my favorite dad images!
Linda Sobolewski is an on-location, natural-light, professional photographer specializing in high school seniors, baby, family & children photography.
Linda Sobolewski Photography is based out of Old Saybrook, CT and serves the Connecticut shoreline and surrounding areas.