OUTFITS AND MORE
- Wear solid colored clothing. Stripes, flowers or other bold print stands out and distracts from your face.
- Choose muted tones that are a bit subdued so that you are the main subject not your clothes and you don’t stand out from the group. Brighter colors stand out (especially reds, oranges, and yellows), which also makes you look larger.
- Choose similar tones for your top and bottom (both dark or both light) so that one doesn’t look bigger than the other. White top, dark pants will make your top look bigger. White pants, dark top will make your bottom look bigger. I love the dresses on the ladies, as long as the dress is not too short.
- Choose 1-3 colors for your group portrait, ones with similar tones that go nicely together and have everyone work within that color palette. For example: dark green, navy, and burgundy – all dark jewel tones. OR tan, a lighter olive green, and denims – all lighter, softer tones. So that we see the people first and your portrait looks stunning. Wedding group photos look so good because they’re all wearing the same colors and the people's faces are the one that demand attention!
- Choose a top with sleeves at least to the elbow, because your arms take up more skin area than your face and will draw attention and it may also make your arms look larger
- Choose long pants for men/ladies or a skirt below the knee for ladies so that your legs don’t take attention from your faces, and you will be able to sit and bend without showing too much leg
- Choose dark socks and footwear (unless it’s a barefoot photo on the beach), because white just sticks out like a sore thumb and that’s all you’ll notice in your portrait
- Keep jewelry simple and minimalistic because too much draws attention from your face
- If getting a haircut or new hairdo, make your appointment at least 2 weeks prior to your portrait session – again this seems like a no brainer but you’d be surprised! Fresh haircuts rarely look their best the same or next day. Ladies need time to practice working it, men need it to grow out just a little. Allow some time to live with your new look before your portrait session.
- Chapped lips do not look good, and they are very noticeable in close ups. Please apply a healing balm to yours and your kids lips for a few days before the photo session if needed.
- If you have a tendency to have red eyes, please consider using moisturizing/ calming eye drops before the shoot. Bright eyes and happy smile are the main attributes of a great photograph!
- Good make up, manicure and hairstyle enhance your overall look in the pictures, so treat yourself to a visit to a salon, you will look and feel beautiful.
Here are a few visuals to help you get inspired :o)
Be certain not to schedule your photo session around your child’s nap or bedtime. The best time for lighting is the two hours before sunset and after sunrise. If this is a bad time for your children, please let me know. I can shoot at any time of the day by utilizing areas of open shade that will give your skin a beautiful hue and put a sparkle in your eyes.
Don’t show up to a photo shoot on an empty stomach. I meet many families who come to a photo session with dinner scheduled at the end. If this is your plan, be sure to give everyone a healthy snack before the photo shoot.
Please, parents… leave the “cheese” at home. Cheese is for crackers. So many times the parents would stand behind me and scream, “Say cheese to the lady kids!” Yelling and demanding young children to look at the camera to smile will only stress your children out (not to mention the photographer) and will result in strained, unnatural and often unflattering photographs. Step back, and allow me to naturally interact with your children. This will result in natural, gorgeous smiles.
My most successful family sessions have incorporated an activity that the family loves to do together. This gives you something to do with your hands and feet, engages the little ones, and brings an authentic smile to your face. Do you love to read together? Bring some books. Is your favorite dessert ice cream? Bring some ice cream bars or drumsticks to your session or better yet… hire an ice cream truck to come to your session. Love to play board games or cards? Plan to play a round of UNO or Monopoly during your family photo session. Other ideas include: bubbles, football, piggy back rides, races, bike riding, hiking, singing, picnics, the ideas are endless. When families are engaged in doing something that they love together, it's a great opportunity to take some beautiful and authentic photographs.
I hope this information helps you to prepare for your photo session and look and feel your best on a picture day.