Lifestyle family photography is a mix between documentary and traditional posed photography. As a Seattle photographer, I use prompts and poses that guide you to positions that photograph beautifully. Your gallery of photographs will feel candid, playful, and joyful, all while feeling like YOU.
Families often walk away from our session unsure if I actually captured any family photos. The beauty of lifestyle family photography is that a session feels fluid and full of movement and play. So while you’re having a good time, I’m capturing you.
However, there are a few things that you as parents can do to help get the most genuine smiles during your photo session.
Ready? Let’s dive in, starting with the most surprising tip first.
Your kids are in charge during your lifestyle family photography session.
Did that make you pause? Did you think, “Oh, my children are way too busy/crazy/shy/fill-in-the-blank to be in charge of photos!”?
What I mean here is that you’re going to not worry about your kids behaving a certain way. I will offer prompts and suggestions and see how they respond. Trust me, I’ve been in business for over a decade and I have 6 kids (yup, you read that correctly, I have 6 kids!), I have seen it all. I have lots of ideas for kids of all ages. They will be okay.
Your job as a parent is to go along with it. Embrace being off the hook and trust me and your kids. Smile lovingly, play along, have fun. It will wear off and you’ll love the resulting photos.
Plus, the last thing you want is your kids with great big, genuine smiles and you’re scowling in the background of your family photos!
Next, let them get dirty.
A lifestyle family photography session isn’t the time to stress about the small things. We are doing outdoor family photos, they won’t stay spotless.
Let them throw those rocks into the river, pick flowers, and stomp in puddles. Don’t worry, I’ll snap that photo of everyone smiling and looking at the camera at the very beginning. Then it’s all about fun, and I bet you’ll love those photos even more.
Even more, lean into the magic of childhood during your lifestyle family photography session.
Our children remind us about the magic of living. They inspire us to look at things through a different lens, to explore the world, and to embrace adventure. At home you likely, laugh about the silliest things together. Have tickle fights until you’re blue in the face. Dream together.
You can do all of this during your lifestyle family photography session. Let go, let them run and chase them across the field. Blow wish flowers, hoping for that unicorn to appear. Twirl, dance, play.
When you, yourself lean into the magic of childhood, you, yourself, will have the most genuine smile. You will forget you’re having photos taken. You will feel that joy with your children. The result? Photographs that truly show who you are as a family. Photographs that show your family’s love and joy and personality.
And isn’t that why you hired me as for lifestyle family photography anyways?
So what’s the secret to genuine smiles?
YOU. You are the secret. Be relaxed, let go, and actually feel joyful.
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Learn more about sessions, get inspired, and learn more tips for the best family photo sessions below.