Planning a photo session can be exciting…and a little nerve wracking. For something that is supposed to be a good time, it suddenly feels like the stakes are a mile high and the pressure is on to look cute for the camera.
And trust me, I know! I’ve been on the other side of the camera myself and know how truly stressful it can be. Where do my hands go? What is my face doing? Why am I hyper-aware of how wide my eyes should be?
But I’m here to reassure you that anyone can have the photoshoot of their dreams — whether you’re by yourself or with ya boo, with a family of 3 or of 10. Using these four simple tips, you can turn any photo session into a stellar experience!
Location, location, location!
When your photographer asks where you’d like to go for your next family or couples photo session, don’t just say, “Wherever you think would be best!” Sure, photographers have a loooooong list of amazing locations for photos, but, while that can make for some pretty pictures, I promise there is a better way!
Instead of defaulting to your photographer’s favorite spots, choose one that is meaningful to you. Nothing turns a stiff, awkward photo session into something joyful and comfy faster than settling into a familiar location. Whether it is the farm where you grew up or your backyard with your puppers, your favorite coffee shop or your local pizza place, choosing a place you know and love totally changes the dynamic of a session. And if adventuring into the unknown feels as natural to you as your living room, let’s go find someplace new together!
Choose your clothing wisely
Because of how moody the weather can be, selecting the perfect outfit can be difficult. But have no fear! There are a few guidelines you can keep to that will help you look and feel your best on the day of your session. First, choose something that makes you feel confident AND comfortable. I know you want to look your best, but I promise you’ll be happier with photos taken in your favorite sweater than you will be with ones in which you’re wearing a dress in some style you’ve never worn before.
It’s also a wise move to go for neutral tones rather than bold colors or patterns. This ensures your photos will look just as amazing on your wall in December as they do in July. However, if you’re looking to make a statement with a royal blue dress or a bright red lip, girl…let’s rock it! The most important thing is to dress in a way that’s true to YOU.
Go for authentic interaction
When all else fails, pretend your photographer is not even there! There’s no need to make eye contact with the camera 100% of the time. By using a style that is more about prompts than posing, I’ll guide you into cute “candids” that feel natural and make you smile every time you see them.
Instead of worrying about where to put your hands or if your smile is cute, just interact with the ones you love the way you would if you were alone. How do you look at each other when no one is looking? How do you tease, joke, and encourage each other? How do you dance around your kitchen and run through your backyard with your dog? Be who you are when a camera isn’t around and you’ll be thrilled with the results!
Relax and have a blast!
More than anything, the key to an amazing photoshoot is to relax and just have a freakin’ awesome time! I know that can feel kind of impossible, especially if you aren’t comfortable in front of a camera, but chilling out goes a long way in delivering those perfect pictures.
Don’t be afraid to let your worst dad joke fly and be yourself. The more at ease you feel, the more genuine your photos will be.