Spring is right around the corner when all of Chicagoland comes out from hibernation. It's also a great time to schedule a family session to update your photos around your home! So today I want to talk about the Top 10 Tips I can give you for your session as well as what to expect and how to prepare.
Top 10 Tips for Your Session:
1. Book ahead of time! It is always best to get in your photographer's schedule in advance for a few reasons. You'll most likely get the date you want and you'll have time to get your outfits and session location figured out in advance as well.
2. Outfits! Growing up, my mom matched my sister, brother and me in the same colors and patterns. You can still do this, but the trend these days that I'm so in love with is to pick a color scheme. For example, natural colors such as cream and tan with a pop of color such as blues, greens or purples. It can be anything from accent pieces of jewelry, shoes, ties/bowties for the guys or even a hair bow for the girls. Try to stray from using patterns unless it's something small and limited to one person. Never wear clothing with logos or phrases (unless it's for a milestone session and it says "I'm One!" or another birth year). Feel free to check out my Polyvore site for some inspiration! There are even links to purchase those specific items underneath- so cool!
3. Location. As a photographer, I always love going to a new location, especially if there are young children in the photos. Places they're familiar with usually help ease them into the session and I always like to ask them for help showing me around and where their favorite spot is. You can always go to a new location as well! I have a long list of places I like to photograph and know pretty well if there's a certain look you're going for. It's always best to discuss what you want with your photographer at the time of booking.
4. Payment. I always require payment at the time of your booking for two reasons. First, it holds your date on my schedule. Second because after your session, the last thing you want to do is pull out your checkbook while your kids are wanting to either go eat or go take a nap. The system I use for payment is super easy and quick and accepts a wide variety of forms of payment.
5. Snacks. Let's face it. When it comes time for your kids to sit for a photo or there's someone watching (especially with a big camera) they find everything under the sun to either ask for or do. A little baggie of some crackers or fruit snacks are theeeee best form of bribery! I usually keep a few packs of Annie's fruit snacks in my camera bag but know each family is different. So by bringing their favorite snack and a water bottle will keep kiddos happy.
6. Bugs. They're everywhere. It seems like our mosquitos could survive anything these days. I always keep a bottle of my essential oil mix with citronella, rubbing alcohol and water in my camera bag. I douse myself with it before each session and ask if anyone wants any. Coming from a family with skin sensitivities and allergies though, I always suggest bringing what you're comfortable with.
7. Props. They aren't needed. Unless it's for something specific such as a birthday, the main focus in your photos should be you and your family.
8. Hair/Makeup. For the guys, it's pretty easy. Make sure hair is combed. For the kiddos, same thing, hair is photo ready and nails are trimmed and clean. We can dig in the dirt after but we want some nice, clean ones first ;). Moms! Keep your makeup light and natural. The worst feeling is getting warm during our session and having your makeup run down your face. Stick with waterproof mascara and a thin application of foundation and you will be great! If you'd like to make it a fun experience, I have recommendations for hair and makeup artists so just let me know and we can get you booked right before your session!
9. Pets. If you have a fur baby that you'd like included in your session, I'm all for it! They're family too, after all! Just give me a head's up so we can make sure to be in a location that allows dogs. Also, it would be helpful to have someone who won't be in the photos on hand at your session to take your pup when we want to do a few without. Don't forget the leash and treats!
10. Fun for the WHOLE Family! Did you know I also do sessions for more than just your immediate family? Grandparents, brothers, sisters, parents in from out of town... if you know you will have everyone together plan a session! All of the above tips will still apply. These are always so much fun and everyone loves getting together for fun photos!
Hopefully these tips will help plan for your next session with me! My calendar for 2017 is already starting to fill up so be sure to follow Tip #1 and get on my calendar!