You’ve looked forward to your upcoming family photo session. You booked the best photographer, found a great location, and know exactly where you’re going to hang your new photos in your home! 

The day arrives, and the entire session teeters on disaster. Your kids are starving and cranky during the session. You were running behind so you put your makeup on in the car only to realize later your eyeliner is smudged. The photographer manages to snap a few good photos, but you’re disappointed with the experience. 

Okay, this might be a bit of an exaggeration but photo sessions don’t have to be stressful for you and your family. We want to make sure that everyone enjoys the family photo session with the least amount of drama. 

Follow these 6 tips for a stress-free family photo session and you’ll ensure you have a fun and memorable experience together. Your images will reflect how well you prepared because you will be relaxed and happy! Once you show up at the location it’s your photographer’s turn to take over. Trust that they will capture the love your family has for one another because you hired the best, right?

Your Stress-Free Family Photo Session

These are my 6 best tips to help you and your entire family feel ready and confident for a memorable family photo session. 

  1. Book the Best Time of Day for Your Family

Book a time for portraits when everyone in your family is happiest. Plan around nap schedules and mealtimes. The best light of the day is an hour before sunset, but happy children trump good light every time. Be sure to hire a photographer who can make beautiful images at any time of the day.

Five year old boy kissing three year old sister in Pewaukee family portrait session

  1. Select Everyone’s Outfits in Advance 

Lay out everyone’s outfits the week or so prior to the photoshoot. Do not forget shoes and accessories. If you’re not sure what to wear or if the outfit you chose will work, reach out to your photographer. Let them help you decide what would look and photograph best.

  1. Eat Before the Session

It’s pretty simple! Hungry people are cranky people. Even if you plan on eating dinner afterward, at least have a good-sized snack before you leave to stave off hunger. Bring a snack for your kiddos if there is an emergency, but don’t plan on snacking during the session. The fewer distractions…and crumbs, the better! 

Oconomowoc Family Photographer

  1. Block Extra Time to Get Ready

Think it will take an hour to get you and your family ready? Block off two hours! Give yourself plenty of extra time to get ready. You may even want to consider booking an appointment for professional hair and makeup application for yourself and your family. Not only does this allow you an opportunity to indulge in much-deserved self-care; you will feel pretty and confident which will show in the images.

Delafield Family Photographer

  1. Scout Out Any Unfamiliar Locations

If you are unfamiliar with the area where you are having portraits taken, feel free to scout it out ahead of time so you feel comfortable and know where you are going. The day of your shoot, plan to arrive at least five minutes early. If you have small children, do not get out of the car until your photographer has arrived. Some children become bored with new locations quickly and you want your photographer to be able to capture their excitement at being someplace new before it wanes. Those candid playful shots are some of the best!

Family of four in tickle fight on their Pewaukee front porch during a Pewaukee photo session

  1. Relax and Have Fun

You got your family looking their best and to the location on time. Let your photographer take the wheel. It is their job to get your children’s attention and to smile naturally. Your job is done. Now it is time to enjoy each other and make some memories!

Follow these tips for the best family photography session ever. These will help you feel prepared and ready. Let’s make some magic happen!

Contact me to schedule your consultation.


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