My Blog

10 Family Photo Session Tips & Advice

Yay-Family Photos!

Family photo shoots are so much fun, and create portraits that you and your children will treasure forever. People often have questions leading into the shoot, so I thought I'd put together 15 family photo session tips to help you prepare for your big day!

Remember-a family photo shoot is just another opportunity to spend time together as a family! HAVE FUN!

1.Before the Shoot:

Prepare the Kids!

Tell your family about the photo shoot you have coming up and get them excited!

Depending on their age, they may have some poses they are excited to try...brainstorming is part of the fun!

Don't be afraid to include an incentive for good behavior ( a pizza party perhaps??)

The shoot should be FUN so frame the experience in a positive and exciting light!

2. Make sure everyone is well fed and rested!

Feeling cheerful goes a long way in a photo shoot. Be sure that everyone is fed and rested before the shoot. And if needed spring some snacks!

Good Snacks:

Jelly Bean

Cheese Cubes

Goldfish crackers

Dried Fruit

Bad Snacks:


Lolipops (takes to long to eat, could stain face)

Ice Cream

Chocolate milk, green juice

Anything that takes a long time to eat

3. Plan Ahead

The most common piece of family photos shoot advice people ask about is wardrobe. I know it can feel overwhelming, and am happy to help! Plan your wardrobe before the day of your shoot, and make sure the necessary items are dry cleaned/ironed.

If you're stumped about what to wear, let me know. I'm happy to strategize!

Schedule time earlier in the day before the shoot to get everyone dressed and ready. If you are getting your hair or makeup done, leave ample time to do this. You don't want to arrive feeling rushed and flustered.

4. Back Up Clothes

Bring a second outfit or layers for everyone

Either because you want to do a second "look" or just a s a precaution in case clothing gets stained or wet during the shoot.

5. Activity

Is there an activity you love doing together? Bring it!

Blowing bubbles, kicking a soccer ball, playing patty-cake...all these make for some nice photos

This isn't required, but put people at ease.

6. The Family Dog

I love it when people want to include the family dog in the shoot.

If you include your dog, please consider having a friend/dog walker come and collect the dog part way through the shoot, or be on hand to keep the dog safe when he is not in the photos.

We need to keep your dog safe and happy, and not let him disrupt the shoot.

Consider your dog's temperament before bringing him/her to the shoot. If she/he is normally allowed to go crazy at the park, will she be able to pose for portraits?

Please bring dog treats/toy so that he cooperates.

7. Clothes you feel good in

There's nothing worse than feeling self-conscious in your outfit. We've all been there.

If you are worried about the fit of your clothing its going to show: you're going to be tugging at your hemlines, and looking preoccupied.

Make sure you are comfortable in your outfit.

Confidence comes through in your poses and expressions. If you feel relaxed you and happy, you'll look relaxed and happy.

So relax and have fun-the photos will be amazing!

8. You Don't Have to Look at the Camera

It's great to have photos of everyone looking at the camera but don't forget about the intimacy in images where no one is looking at the camera. These are some of the sweetest moments!

9. Let Each Child be a Star!

Let's take a few portraits of each child alone, so they have time to shine.

Do they like playing violin, dancing or have a big friendly smile?

Let's show it off!

10. Enjoy Your Time Together

Your family photo shoot is a great excuse to spend time together. Use it wisely and have some fun!