It’s an exciting time to be a photographer. Currently, 77% of Americans own a smartphone. That means 3 out of 4 people living in the United States have a powerful camera in their pocket or purse at pretty much every moment.
That means we have the potential to grab sharp, stylish photographs each and every day. This means an essentially endless stream of high-quality photography on platforms like Instagram or Pinterest inspiring us at all times.
Even with the proliferation of stunning photography from our daily lives, there are still special moments we hope to capture in a special way. Family photo shoots are still as essential as ever. They’ve just evolved a long way from the Sears-style portraits of yesteryear.
If you’re hoping to capture your family in your most appealing light, here are some family photo shoot tips for photographers of every skill level!
6 Family Photo Shoot Tips
From picking your style to choosing a location, these tips will help you capture your family’s essence for the world to see!
Decide On Your Wardrobe
We’ve come a long way from the days of matching sweaters and puffy paint sweatshirts. You can essentially wear whatever you want, depending on how you want your family to be seen.
The first question you should ask yourself is “Do I want to show my ideal family?” Or do you want to show your real-life selves? This will greatly color how you set up your photo shoot.
The next photo shoot tip you should consider is how you want your family to be perceived. Are you looking for an elegant, upscale photoshoot? Or do you want to showcase your idiosyncratic side?
These style considerations will mostly impact the color palette you choose. For a wilder photoshoot, go with vibrant colors like canary yellow or burning scarlet. For a more subdued, classy photo, try neutral earth tones.
Location Location Location!
Choosing the location for your family photo shoot is similar to choosing your outfits. How you hope for your family to be seen will greatly shape the location you settle upon for your photo shoot.
If you’re a bunch of outdoor enthusiasts, you might consider finding an inspiring natural setting for your family portrait. If you’re a bunch of foodies, maybe settle on a table setting you can gather around?
Either way, one of our main photo shoot tips is to find a setting with excellent natural lighting. There is no substitute to the creamy, dreaminess of sunlight. You get so many textures and details that are washed out with flash photography.
Of course, if you’d like to control every variable in the environment, you can always go with professional portrait photography.
Pick A Date
Picking a date for your family photo shoot will help you get ready ahead of time. It will also let you coordinate everybody’s schedule. This will help you determine a time if you hope to take advantage of the natural light.
Picking a date for your photo shoot a few weeks ahead of time should give everybody enough chance to prepare. You’ll be able to get your hair or nails done or shop for a new outfit if you wish.
Be Well Rested
Getting plenty of rest is one of the most important family portrait tips. Getting the right shot can take some time. It can require standing in the same place for lengthy periods of time.
This can make the best of us cranky at the best of times. If you’re not properly rested or fed, this becomes infinitely worse. This is particularly true of young children!
Make sure your kids get plenty of rest if you don’t want photographs of a bunch of screaming, crying children.
Work With The Boys
Guys aren’t as used to having their photograph taken as often as women tend to be. They often view it as a waste of time which could be spent doing more important things, like fishing or watching football.
Even if they’d never admit it, guys can be just as self-conscious as the ladies when having their photo taken. They might not like their chin or feel that certain camera angles are unflattering. Even worse, they won’t come out and tell you this, which leaves you guessing what’s going on.
You might consider doing a test run if your family portrait has any boys involved. Do an informal photo shoot with your smartphone and run the results past them. See if there are particular angles they like or what they consider their good side.
Decide On Props
Props can be a useful way to emphasize your family’s unique personality. They can elaborate upon the tone set by your outfits and location.
If you’re going for a sporty, natural vibe, maybe bring some fishing poles or sports accessories. If you’re a bunch of bibliophiles, bring your Harry Potter or Hunger Games novels along!
These tips will help capture your family the way you want to be seen. Photography is all about capturing someone’s natural essence. It reveals something of our innermost selves through the lens for the outside world to see.
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If you’re looking for more inspiration above and beyond our family photo shoot tips, browse the rest of our lifestyle and beauty articles!