Now that the busy season is upon us, I’ve been hearing more and more from parents of little ones saying “taking family photos is so stressful!” but you know what… it doesn’t have to be! Here are a few of my favorite tips to give parents ahead of time to prepare for their sessions. It’s part of my job to make sure the session goes smoothly and I promise, if you follow these 6 simple tips, it will!
1. COME READY TO HAVE FUN!
I will make sure to capture your little one(s) as who they are in this moment, but never forcing them to take a photo that they don’t want to. We will keep your session fun and relaxed and just follow your child’s lead!
2. GET THEM EXCITED ABOUT THE SESSION IN ADVANCE.
Kids and adults alike want to know what is coming. An idea could be to plan a surprise, such as a trip to the ice cream shop or a night out at a favorite restaurant.
3. FEED THEM.
Full tummies (or at least not hungry tummies) make for happy kids. If you are planning a family dinner out afterwards, give your children a snack before dressing or pack some (non-messy) snacks for the road. Children are more likely to be restless and easily upset when they are hungry.
4. BRING ALONG THEIR FAVORITE TOY OR COMFORT.
If your child needs a break from pictures to snuggle up, it’s nice to have that comfort on hand. In fact, including that “snuggy” in some pictures speaks to what your family life is truly like at this time and someday you may look back on those pictures warmly remembering when your little one just couldn’t bear to be without that object.
5. PRACTICE MAKES PERFECT.
Try a mock shoot prior to your session or have your family practice posing and smiling or saying “cheese”. This can help get them ready to be in front of the camera (if they’re not already).
6. GO WITH THE FLOW.
From crying hungry babies to impatient toddlers it is easy to get frustrated or apologetic. Don’t! I (and most other family photographers) know all too well that these sessions are dictated by the kiddos. This is okay. Remember to breathe and try to laugh and remind your family to do the same.