A mother nurses her baby on the lake shore.

5 Tips For A Great Family Photoshoot

As I’m writing this post, fall has arrived here in Oklahoma City (well on the calendar at least not so sure the weather has decided it’s fall yet. :)) And with the turn of the season means most people start thinking about getting their fall family photo session scheduled. If you already have yours planned then I know you still want it to be the best possible and be well prepped for the evening.

I’ve been an OKC newborn and family photographer for around 5 years but I’m always learning and adding more ideas to “learning chest” so that I can serve families better and make the photo sessions be a relaxed and enjoyable environment for all! From brining little toys along to keeping the kids moving these are all a part of my sessions.

Family during photo session in Edmond, OK.

5 tips for a great family photoshoot

Tip #1 – plan clothes ahead of time

Planning clothes a few months to weeks in advance helps you to be able to relax a bit more the week and day of the session. My clients get lots of tips and access to an online styling service as well as help from me for outfit planning to make this process easier. And when thinking through clothes also think about hair. If it’s a season where it’s super windy and you’ll be outside try to plan hairstyle where for especially children their hair can be pinned back out of their face.

Always plan for the weather too! If the session is at a time of year when you don’t know if it will be warm or cold then choose clothing that you can add sweaters or tights too. That way you can make yourselves comfortable if it’s chilly but if it’s hot you can be comfortable too.

a little girl looks at camera during photo session.

Tip #2 – Try on clothes ahead of time

I know, I just said plan clothes ahead of time but sometimes we get new clothes for the session and forget to do a fit check. When I say try clothes on ahead of time I mean by a week at least. Make sure they fit – nothing bothers a child more than clothes that are too tight or or way too big. Don’t forget to check their shoes too!

Tip #3 – Don’t be running last minute to the session

If at all possible make sure you can have some downtime and rest time before the session. Especially if you have little children if they come straight to a session from doing 2 or 3 other activities right on top of each other they will not be their best selves. I know it doesn’t always work but the more you can help your family to relax before hand the better off everyone is at the session. Grumpy, overtired kids just won’t get in the mood (and neither will grumpy overtired parents. :)) Arriving a little early at the location can also allow your littles to get warmed up to the location and comfortable.

Try to make sure the few hours before the session your littles can rest, eat. You have some relaxed time to get ready and make it a fun adventure for everyone

Mother and daughter sit together at Lake Arcadia.

Tip #4 – Bring Snacks & Water

Sometimes all a little child needs is some extra food motivation. Don’t hold out on food till after the session as hungry kids are not usually very cooperative (at least mine aren’t!) For snacks do things like plan cheerios, white cheese sticks, little marshmallows, white yogurt puffs, etc. Avoid anything with dyes, chocolate or super moist as this can add more stains

Brother and sister during family photos session.

Tip #5 – Dress kids at location

About anything can happen in the car so especially for kids under 4 a great idea is to wait to put them in their session clothes until you arrive at the photoshoot location. Allow yourself 10 extra minutes so you can dress your littles, brush their hair and get them looking great for the session. If you have a child that is exceptionally adventurous or prone to accidents or messes consider throwing in an extra outfit just in case you might need it at some point during the evening!

I hope these 5 tips for a great family photoshoot help you as your plan your family’s upcoming photos. If you haven’t gotten your family session scheduled or are looking for something a little different and unique – hello in home family photoshoots! – then send me a message and let’s chat about how I can serve you!

And if you’re still look for some more tips for your family photos check out this great blog post by Ashlie on styling for your fall family portraits with the best colors for family photos outside!

Charis of Charis Elisabeth Photography is a professional family and newborn photographer serving the metro OKC area. In home and golden hour photoshoots are her speciality and she delights in giving families sessions that are relaxed, enjoyable and tell their family’s special story. Check out what a lifestyle session is here.

A mother nurses her baby.

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