I left this family session feeling great about their gallery. I knew I captured so many beautiful shots. The light was amazing, the kids were fun and full of personality, and mom and dad were relaxed and present with their kids.
It got me thinking though, how do you think mom and dad felt after their session?
If this was their first session with me, they probably would have left feeling a little bit disappointed. They may have figured we didn’t get a single photo worth anything. Seriously, one toddler may have sat in the river, boys wanting to run in different directions, a daughter wanting to explore on her own. Yet it was all my favorite kind of chaos.
But it was not their first session with me. So they knew everything was okay. Mom and dad didn’t bat an eye and their gallery shows it. So what did they do well? Why is their gallery extra amazing? They followed these three tips.
Book early and plan ahead.
Planning ahead for your family photo session is 100% worth it. I have been that person who needed family photos for the year still, so I drug my family out in the FREEZING cold in November. (Of course it turned out, but it was way more stressful than it needed to be. Read all about my Mistakes for My Own Family Photos).
Think ahead for when you may want family photos and book now. You don’t want to be trying to squeeze in last minute for the year, or worse miss out because your favorite photographer is booked for the year.
Then start planning what everyone will wear. Waiting until the day before your session could mean not finding something you love, or finding out something is too small/big for one of your kids.
By planning ahead you can rest easy knowing you’re ready and not stressed trying to figure out last minute details.
Come to your family photo session ready to play with your kids.
I’m going to guide you with prompts and places to stand. I will pose you in ways that will be most flattering and in the best natural light.
Your job is to love on your kids no matter what. Play with them. Be ready to twirl, dance, sing, move, throw rocks. You being fully committed will not only make things feel less like something you “”have to do” and more like something “fun to do” (which equals more cooperative kids, and even better photos).
The last thing you want to do is your kids laughing and smiling and you grimacing in the background!
Embrace the chaos.
Kids have minds of their own. They want to move. They may not want to snuggle right away. Or they may only want to snuggle in the beginning.
Embrace it. Again, come ready to play, love on your kids, and give them what they need.
If they need to warm up to the process, hold onto them tightly, snuggle them in. One day they may not want to snuggle as much. I promise we are getting beautiful photos in your arms.
If they need to run, wiggle, jump, or don’t want to do the family hug. That’s okay too. We will get a family shot. They will come in, and if you’re embracing the chaos, you’ll be ready when they do (and you’ll have plenty of photos with their personality before then).
That’s it. 3 simple things to make the most of your family photo session with young kids and help you get the most beautiful photos possible. Plan ahead, come ready to play and embrace the chaos. The mom and dad featured here did just that, and their gallery was amazing.
Okay, one last little (but BIG) tip. Feed the kids ahead of time. Fed kids are happy kids. So either feed them an early dinner or a nice snack before our session. (It never hurts to bring a pack of fruit snacks for a mid session pick me up either!).
Don’t these things seem so simple for getting beautiful photos with young children? Ready to take that first step by planning ahead? Contact me and we will get you on the calendar and I will help you start planning for your family photo session this year!