You’ve all been scrolling Facebook or Instagram and stopped on that jaw-dropping set of perfect family photos that your friend posted. You may think to yourself: my family could never achieve that! Her kids must not act like mine do in a family photoshoot. Well, I am here to let you in on a secret: everyone can have photos like this. No one has to be a model and no one’s kids are perfect, trust me. Follow these five steps and you will have the best photos ever….promise!
I know, I know, it’s hard to pick clothing for a family! I can’t tell you how much your clothing choices affect the look of your family photos. Luckily, I am here to help! Weeks before every family photoshoot, I send a questionnaire to help with the planning process. Many of my clients say that they DON’T need help with clothing. My suggestion is to always tell your photographer what you’re thinking. Photographers can make recommendations for what looks great on camera…which is not always the same as “normal life”. You may notice that most of the families on my website have mama in a dress. This is for a reason!
Draping, flowy fabric looks GREAT on camera…and great on all bodies. Loose flowing dresses and skirts not only make for stunning photos, they also don’t restrict your movement. Nothing kills the flow (pun intended) of a family session like a parent who is having trouble running, bending, or sitting because of clothing choices!
Huh? Yup, that’s right, I want you to be touching someone at all times. This means you need to be holding someone’s hand, stroking someone’s hair, snuggling someone all the time. The key to dreamy, connected family photos is….connection! No one wants those stiff, 1995-era family photos with everyone sitting up with perfect posture staring at the camera. Or if you do….you’ve come to the wrong photographer!
Every lifestyle family image is elevated by some connection. I want you to snuggle up to your spouse’s shoulder, hold your kiddos hand, or kiss that baby….constantly, for one hour. If you’re touching someone, you’re doing it right!
But Lyndsay, family photos are stressful! Yes, family sessions can feel like a lot of pressure but this secret can make or break your photos. In fact, I probably should’ve put it as the FIRST secret because it’s the most important of all. While you’re on your way to our session, I want you to take some deep breaths. I want you to forget that your 5 year old fought putting on his new shoes. I want you to forget that your spouse was not as helpful as they could’ve been in the prep work. Instead, think about all the reasons why you love your family and love this stage that you’re in.
When you get out of the car, I want you to be the happiest version of yourself no matter what your kids do. A couple weeks ago, I shared on Instagram stories that 99% of the time, it is the parents that ruin a good photo. This is the truth. Kids look cute pretty much all the time. Parents with angry faces are not cute! Ever. The best kept secret to good photos: look at your kids and smile and laugh no matter what they are doing! I don’t care if they are running, jumping, wiggling, or yelling “poop” over and over. Pretend that whatever they are doing is adorable and you love it. Because chances are, if you didn’t feel the pressure of family photo day, you WOULD think it was cute/funny!
Family photographers have lots of “standard” tricks up our sleeves for playful movement during your session. Shoulder rides, piggy backs, throwing kids in air…we suggest it all. But not everything works for every child. If you’re aiming to capture those genuine belly laughs please suggest what makes YOUR child laugh. I want to hear about that silly dance you do, that game you play, and that funny noise dad makes. Don’t worry, I’ll be there directing you as to where to stand for best light! Then, I want you to be YOU and trust me to capture it in a gorgeous way!
Even if you do ALL the other secrets right, if your kids aren’t their best selves…we will struggle. So here’s what needs to be thought about BEFORE booking: are my kids early risers or night owls? If you’re booking any dates from April-August, sunset is really late and sunrise is really early! I am not flexible on the time I shoot because I can only achieve the look I do by shooting during beautiful light. This means either sunrise or sunset! If your child gets up at 6:30am every day and is passed out by 7:00pm, sunset in the Spring or Summer is probably not a good choice. Will your child happily stay up past bedtime with a late nap? Perfect!
You’ve chosen the perfect time of year for your child…now the day of your family photos has arrived! The timeline for your day is still of the utmost importance. I live with three little kids and I know life is busy! There are playdates to schedule, school events to attend, and birthday parties to party at. Don’t schedule any of these things for family photo day. Overtired, over-scheduled kids who are off their routine rarely do well by the evening. Keep it low-key and “normal” before your session.
Truly, the above five secrets are what’s behind achieving the perfect family photos. That and a good photographer ;). Now lets get out there and capture some magic together!
"To say that I love each one would be cliche and a total understatement, but seriously... She nailed it. Being a photographer myself, I am very picky and searched dozens of photographers before coming back to lyndsay and booking her and I am so glad I did. I can't even remember the last time I hired a photographer and was this in love with the images and unable to pick just a few favorites. Thank you, lyndsay, for making the photo session easy (with 3 kids), fun and providing this mama memories for a lifetime.”
"Our images are so special and really captured our joy and the sweet personality of our little girl. Lyndsay did a great job going beyond the typical posed shots and making our photos feel authentic. We will treasure them forever."
- amanda, northborough
"We have done multiple sessions (family and newborn) and we’re so happy with the results. Lyndsay makes you feel comfortable and is able to truly capture the moment. We will have her prints hung in our house for years to come."
- beth - framingham
"We've done it all - newborn, maternity, cake smash, family photos - and every single time we are amazed by the quality of the end product. Lyndsay captures beautiful moments that we will treasure forever!"
- nicole - framingham
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