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  • Kate Buckles

Surviving a Family Photoshoot

Fall is coming and with it so many family sessions!! I am so passionate about helping your next family photo session a stress-free one!! Family photos should always be fun, and something you look back on fondly!!

Family photos are truly timeless and such a great keepsake for future generations. Getting the family together to take those perfect portraits can turn into chaos if not approached correctly. There is usually a lot more to consider when it comes to a family photoshoot since there are members of all ages, which means that there is some extra coordination involved.

Below are some family photoshoot ideas and tips to keep you and your loved ones calm and smiling the whole way through.

1. Timing is everything. If you have younger children involved in the shoot, try and arrange the photoshoot at a time when they would be well-rested. A rested child makes for happy photos. On that note, make sure that all family members have gotten enough sleep the night before as this helps with the fun and relaxation aspects of the session. I always suggest we shoot about an hour before sunset for the best golden hour light! However, we sometimes will choose an early morning time, or just earlier in the evening if we are getting close to bedtime!! When we schedule, I will make sure we are chatting about the right time not only for light but for all involved!

2. Dos and don’ts of bribery. Get your family excited about the photoshoot instead of offering a reward in return for their cooperation! This tends to lead to forced smiles and an irritated bunch of people. If you do have small children coming along it’s not a bad idea to give the photographer some bribery options in the form of toys or small food items to make those difficult moments a little easier! I often suggest gummy bears or something similar that does not stain their mouth! I also think it is super fun to tell your kids that after the session, you are going to celebrate the fun time together by getting a favorite treat, maybe ice cream? Make it about celebrating the fun session, and less about a bribe!

3. Relinquish control. As much as you’ll want to direct your children on where to stand and how to pose, it’s best to leave that to me as they know what works best! Not having this pressure will also make you feel more relaxed!! I always welcome input though and will ask for it frequently!! I want these photos to be "you!"

4. It’s not just about the posing. The best photos happen when you’re having fun so joke and play with your children, hold your partner’s hand and just let the moments happen!! I will often direct you to these moments as well!! I love

5. Plan ahead. Discuss all of your requirements with me beforehand so that the family photo session can just flow. Let me know if you want specific pictures taken!

6. Keep those sugar levels up. If everyone is well fed, the photoshoot will also run a lot smoother. It’s also not a bad idea to take a few snacks and some water along for those who might need it!!

7. Look at ME! Mom and Dad, don't stop looking at ME! So often the adults are so focused on getting the kids to look and smile, they don't look! You just glue your eyes on me, and I will get the kids to look!! I am not afraid to be a total monkey to get some laughs and smiles!!

Have I mentioned, have fun? I promise to have fun with you all, and in literally hundreds of photo sessions, have always gotten amazing photos you will cherish forever!!



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