The family featured in today’s blog post has been with me since the very beginning. In fact, this mom and I go back to high school bffs! This mom is a woman who has encouraged me, helped me with business decisions, and been there though everything. She was one of my first client’s as I captured her family as they were expecting their first child 11 years ago. All this to say, they know what to expect from a session with me.
Well, let’s go over that first before I tell how this was the most hilarious (and maybe disgusting) session of all time. So what happens during your lifestyle family photo session?
We begin your session with the most expected part – “the grandparent photo.”
When you think of family photos, this is the part you probably think of most. Everyone standing (or sitting) nicely smiling at the camera. Sounds easy enough, but if you’ve ever tried taking photos of your kids you know it is easier said than done. This is likely the part of the session you’re dreading the most, or maybe your family is dreading. Again, if they expect the entire session to be about getting the “perfect” shot, they are probably dreading the entire session.
But rest assured. I get this shot first and move on to all the good stuff. At the start of each session people can’t help look at the camera (maybe because I’m so cute – hahaha! or maybe because that is what we think we are “supposed” to do). However, this is never their best smiles, nope, your authentic smiles come later in the session.
I will probably make a few really bad jokes.
After we capture that grandparent photo, I will probably make some horrible joke like, “welp, that’s it! Thanks!” You’ll laugh to appease my corniness, and then the real fun starts.
Note, that a few bad jokes will occur throughout the session. I try to keep things light and fun for everyone, which means being silly for kids, and saying random things to keep you relaxed and smiling!
I will guide you through poses and prompts that highlights your family and the environment.
You may notice me get super excited as we walk towards a patch of gorgeous light. As we chat, I’m scanning the area for the perfect backdrop for the next set of photos. I will then guide you into poses, meaning I will help with who should stand or sit where, how to hold the kids in the most flattering way. Then I will give a prompt to help you relax, love on your family, and forget about me with the camera. That is when the magic happens. You lean into the process, trust in me, and just love on your kids and husband, and I will photograph your beauty.
We will explore and play, making the most of the location.
I know that when there is something to do, kids (and adults) relax, have fun, and enjoy the experience. I strategically select locations for families that are more than a pretty backdrop. I want somewhere for you to explore the trails, or throw rocks into the river, dance in fields, or even splash in the lake.
This family enjoyed a little friendly competition as the youngest challenged his dad to who could throw the rock furthest and most accurate across the river.
There may be a few unexpected events during your session.
I have a typical flow for each family session. Of course, location and the feel of the family help dictate things too, like if kids need extra time to warm up to me, or extra time to stretch their legs before settling in for some snuggles with mom and dad. In my time as a photographer, I have come to expect the unexpected. The only thing I do expect is that there will be beautiful chaos that comes with doing anything with children who have little, independent minds of their own (which is oh so wonderful).
However, I NEVER could have expected what this family experienced during their family session. (It is a family photo session they will forever remember!). As we walked down towards the river on this beautiful fall evening, we chatted excitedly about upcoming fall activities, Halloween festivities, and even what a gorgeous evening it was. We basically had this river spot to ourselves, but then we came across the most likely of reasons why….the shore had dead fish scattered along it!
I never have been so grateful to be congested and unable to smell anything (because I was also 7 months pregnant and super sensitive to smells). The poor family were troopers though, we moved into clear spaces, and laughed a lot.
Of course, given their gallery of photos were amazing with fall colors, gorgeous setting sunlight, and so much love and connection, I’d say it was worth it. You may have to ask their 8 year old son what he thinks though!
Does this help you get a feel for what to expect for your session? What other questions can I answer for you? What is stopping you from having family photos done? Don’t let the fear of the experience keep you from having this time in your family’s lives documented.
Ready to book? Click the link below to select your session date. Then I will walk you through each step, from selecting the perfect location (fish free even!) and figuring out what to wear!
Just a couple more from this family photo session below.