Preserving Precious Moments: Tips for a Successful Family/Maternity Photoshoot

May 2, 2023

Tips for a Successful Family/Maternity Photoshoot: How to Prepare for Your Family Photoshoot

Many people tend to feel a little awkward in front of a camera (one of the many reasons why I choose to stay behind mine) but having memories with your family (especially your little ones) to look back on in five, ten, or even fifty years’ will make all the awkward, silly moments worth it. Rest assured, this is my passion. I do this all the time, so I have lots of little tricks to make sure you and the kiddos are feeling at ease, comfortable, and natural during our shoot here are some of my best tips for family and maternity photoshoots.

What to Wear Ideas

Wear something that’ll keep you cool in summer or warm in winter, and that’ll make you feel like the absolute best version of yourself. Have the kids try on their outfits prior to the session to get them excited for whats to come! Bring a couple of outfits so that you can play with different options and combinations, or if you get a little sandy/wet/muddy. With kids, messes can happen so it’s best to have backup options!

  • If you have any pieces in your wardrobe that are textured, sheer, or billowy, fabrics that flow, those capture snapshots of movement and photograph beautiful. Try to avoid stiff garments that can get wrinkled in weird spots or need lots of adjusting.
  • Be careful with loud prints, large logos, and bright colors. These can sometimes distract from the subject of the photo – you!
  • Avoid matching outfits that blend together, instead opt for complementary outfits with a controlled variety of textures and neutral colors so you can look good together without looking like you’re twinning.
  • Depending on locations, try to pick color palettes that will help you stand out against your environment and will be complimented by your background.

Hair, Makeup, Props

I HIGHLY recommend getting your nails done before the session, and you plan to have open-toe shoes or be barefoot, your toes too. If you feel like getting a little glammed up and want to do a full-face + hair… there’s absolutely no reason not to get your hair and makeup done! If you want to accessorize and the location calls for it, bring a jackets or hat or other potential props that reflect this time in your life. But remember to keep it real. Authenticity is in the details. Try to avoid letting the kids have a blue lollipop or popsicle the day before/day of the session.

Example props:

  • Your child’s favorite toy
  • Ultrasound
  • Your child’s baby blanket
  • Mirror
  • Pets (make sure you have someone to hold the pet for shots of just the family)

What to Bring

Bring things that will help you and the kids be most comfortable during the session. I always suggest a change of comfy clothes for after the session! Pack snacks in case you or the kids get hungry, water because the heat can sneak up on you, a treat you can bribe the kids with, a portable speaker for your Family Session Playlist… basically anything you want to make the session the most fun and enjoyable for you and your family. Don’t forget to pack your props, outfits, and good vibes!

Getting in the Right Headspace

This is THE most important thing for you to remember before your family photoshoot: set aside some time to do an activity that you all love to do before the session and get the kids super excited so that you arrive feeling relaxed, happy, and ready for your session. Be mindful of your time around the day so that you aren’t rushing from one thing to another. When a family shows up to a shoot having had to run seven red lights to get there, it sets the tone for a rushed and disorganized session. Give yourself the gift of a relaxed session and allow plenty of time for showers, grooming, and forgetting things.

If you’ve read all of this and you feel like you want a little bit more info, I’ve got a fully comprehensive guide for all clients on this subject that covers it all!

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