1. PLAN AHEAD
Get your outfits organized a couple weeks before your session so you aren’t running around right before. To minimize stress on family picture day, do as much as you can beforehand to ensure a relaxed session. Let your spouse know well in advance and prep your kids by having them try on the clothes you’ve picked out so you know if something is uncomfortable or ill fitting before the day of the shoot. Avoid large brand logos and excessive bold prints.
2. HAPPY FAMILIES MAKE FOR GREAT PICTURES
Be sure to keep your usual schedule and make time for a little extra rest and fun before your session (parents included!). There is no surer way to nightmarish family portraits than an unfed, tired, and therefore grumpy family . If you come in good spirits, that will be reflected in your session. Planning to reward yourselves after the shoot with a dinner out, a stop for ice cream, or another fun family activity can help provide motivation to successfully get through the shoot.
3. HAVE FUN
Interact as you normally would. Let your session be a real story of the people you love. Relax and allow your photographer to worry about getting your children to look at, and interact with, the camera. Your photographer will make sure to get everyone's attention so parents don’t have to be nagging.
4. DON'T WAIT
It’s easy to come up with excuses not to do a family portrait. ("I need to lose weight," "We’re too busy!" and "I don’t have anything to wear" are common excuses.) Your children and significant other love you NOW, not some “improved” version of you that might (or might not) appear next year. Documenting your family, relationships, interactions, and stages is an investment that will only appreciate over time.
5. PRINT THOSE PICTURES!
If you’re sitting at home with a hard drive full of photos, go print your family photos! And to ensure best results, make sure to use a professional print service. Call your photographer to order your album and prints. Photographs are tangible memories that you and those you love will cherish now and forever, so make sure after all the effort and resources you’ve put into them you have them somewhere you will see often!