Ok.... Can you guess what I am going to do tomorrow? I have all of our clothes lined up, the bribes have been offered, the weather... well that will probably stink, but everything else is right on track.
We are FINALLY having our family photos taken. We have not done this for over 3 years! Can you believe that?! Here I am, taking photos almost every day, and yet we do not have any images of my own family. So now... now I know how YOU feel when you get ready for a family photo session. WOW... it can be a bit stressful. Now that I am going through the same things that you go through when you prepare for a photo shoot, I am going to give you some tips for preparing for photo sessions.
Tip One: Be prepared! Think about the details of the day. What do you what to come across in your photos? You can not change the eye of the photographer, but you can and should express to the photographer what you are wanting to portray in your photos. Think hard about a location. Drive around and look at your neighborhood in a new way. Look for color... look for fields.... look for architecture.... do not be afraid to go outside of your yard!
Tip Two: What to wear.... make sure you are comfortable in your clothes. Wear something you can move around in... something you can sit, stand, walk, and move freely in. Think about color. I like a lot of color, but not a lot of distracting patterns or labels that may distract from the person.
Tip Three: Add details.... add a flower to your daughter's hair, bring along a baseball and mitt, bring bubbles, or a favorite toy. You can even bring a chair or a couch. I know that may sound crazy, but it looks great and adds SO much to an image. Bring scarfs, hats, blankets, pillows... all of these things can add dimensions and details to an image. They do not have to be used in every shot, but they will add variety and spunk to your images.
Tip Four: The weather.... now this is something that you really can not control, and honestly around here you really need to have a plan for bad weather. Do not worry if the sun is not out and shining, because actually a glaring sun is not optimal for photography. Actually you should cross your fingers for an overcast day! As long as the rain is not pouring down, you can usually make it outside, and if not, try to have an option for the rain... a covered porch, a barn, a museum, etc.
Tip Five: If you have young children try to prepare them for the day. The night before, talk to them about how much fun the day will be. On the day of your session, start your morning with a smile.... wake up happy ( or at least appear that way to your kids :) ) Oh yeah, I almost forgot one of the most important things... DO NOT FORGET THE BRIBES! If you are spending your money and time on an investment of photography for your family, go all out! For my girls, we saved up Christmas money from Great Nana and we are going to head out to Build-A-Bear right after our session is over. Now, you do not have to use a bribe that big, you can do something simple like keep a sucker in your pocket for the end of the session or have Smarties (kids love them and they are not messy). You could even plan an indoor camping night with dinner inside a fort.... any exciting reward will keep them motivated!
Tip Six: Get a good night sleep the night before the session! Not only will this help your mood and stress level during the shoot, we all look better when we are well rested! (I am really hoping this helps with my dark circles tomorrow! LOL!)
Well... I suppose I should take my own advice and head off to bed! I am surely feeling awkward preparing to be on the other side of the camera! I will let you know how it goes! Wish me luck. Cross your fingers that the rain holds off... that Olivia changes her mind and starts to like her jacket again.... that Ava does not get muddy for the first 10 minutes at least... that Zach doesn't cut himself shaving, and that I do not get a horrible blemish tonight :) !