Family sessions are meant to capture loving and happy moments. However, how do you make this happen? Maybe you’re worried your kids won’t cooperate or that no one will know how to pose. Worry not. Making a family photoshoot an enjoyable event is rather easy, you only need to keep these 10 things in mind:
#1 Be comfortable
Being physically comfortable is more important during a family photoshoot than you think. No matter how much you love a certain outfit, if you’ll be thinking about how itchy it is, don’t wear it. It will distract you from posing our it will tire you out during the session.
This is especially true for kids. It doesn’t matter how lovely a tie, bow, or dress is on someone, you’ll have them crying in from of the camera if their outfits overwhelm them. It is better to stick to something they like and that allows movement. Try some cute comfortable outfits.
Pick your outfits bearing these things in mind:
- It doesn’t have to be a uniform
- It can be casual
- It can be fun
#2 Get familiar with the camera
Posing isn’t natural to everyone. Most people aren’t comfortable around cameras, it is normal. You’d have to be a professional model or actor to be familiar with how it feels to be directed. However, it is crucial to get comfortable in front of the camera to get good-looking pictures.
When a person gets intimidated by the camera they look stiff. It takes away personality and rather than portraying something beautiful you end up with something that doesn’t feel authentic. So, how do you get comfortable with the camera?
There are tricks for that:
- You could remember a funny joke before smiling so you look more natural.
- You could shake and take a deep breath before posing.
- Maybe you could start with a pose that requires looking at your family rather than at the camera, so you can forget about it for a bit.
There are more ideas for posing and prompts that will help you look natural coming up.
#3 Play games
A very easy way to get natural poses from your family is to play in front of the camera. This is especially true when you have younger kids. Posing implies staying still and most kids rather jump around and have fun. If you let them do it, it will be a fun experience for them and you will get them smiling in most pictures.
Be a part of their games so you can have a full family picture where everyone looks natural. These kinds of pictures are great because they truly capture a family’s essence.
Here are some games you can play:
- Peek a boo
- Jump around
- Spin around
- Make funny faces to one another
#4 Show love in your family photoshoot
Apart from playing you can also stage poses that are simply tender. When it comes to family pictures you want to capture what binds you together: love.
How does your family usually show love? Are you huggers? kissers? is there any secret handshake among siblings? Maybe you enjoy rubbing your nose against your baby’s… Whatever it is, do it and forget that the camera is there, it will make for the most beautiful photos.
#5 Interact with your surroundings
For photoshoots, you want to pick a beautiful spot to take the pictures. What can you do in that specific place? Getting involved with and activity in your surroundings is a great way to get more natural photos.
If you’re in a forest you could pick flowers, throw leaves up in the air, maybe climb a tree, explore a hill or lake… Whatever comes to mind that gets everyone involved and less worried about the camera.
Shooting in the city does not impede doing the same. You could go inside a museum and look at paintings, you could point at remarkable things as if you were tourists, you could even go to an ice-cream parlor and get everyone eating their favorite desserts.
Think of things you would normally want to do with your family in the location you’re in and try to do them.
#6 Keep your arms showing
A quick posing tip that will help you: don’t put both arms around the people next to you. Although you want to hold them, try to keep one arm showing.
This tip will help your posing look better. When people put both arms back it ends up looking a bit awkward, especially when it is a man wearing a suit because the blazer will bunch up weirdly. So instead, you could hold hands, or put one in your pocket. It should still feel natural, however, it will look better.
#7 Be open to different poses
Sometimes we have preconceived ideas of how we want things to look, leave them behind. Each photo shoot is a unique experience and you must understand that sometimes things take a different turn.
Maybe you saw others’ family pictures and you really want them to be just like theirs, this is impossible. Your family is unique and what worked for someone else doesn’t have to work for you too.
Also, your photographer knows what he is doing. If he suggests a pose of a prompt, at least try. Trust is key.
#8 Communicate with your photographer
This brings me to my next point: be open about what you want, what is working, and what’s not with your photographer. Although they’re experienced, they can’t read your mind, so please communicate your wants and needs.
Your session will go much better if you’re able to verbalize what you want how you feel. most photographers will find a way to adapt and will love to hear you’re enthusiastic about the session and have some ideas, to begin with.
#9 Enjoy yourself
This one is similar to #2 but not quite. You can be at ease around the camera and still be too anxious about the outcome to be in the moment. A family photoshoot is an event in itself, make it memorable.
Making the photoshoot a fun experience will help the family to look forward to future sessions rather than making it a tedious chore. So, when you’re posing, playing, or interacting in any way, try to make it for your family and not just for the camera.
This is the most important piece of advice. Kids can be difficult or temperamental even, but there’s also a sweetness to them and that’s what you want to show in pictures. Don’t force them to do things they’re not comfortable with. Try to keep them engaged with games and things that are making them curious.
When kids can be themselves is when they show their best smiles.
Conclusion about having a great family photoshoot
To have the best family photo session ever you need to be comfortable, in your clothes but also ding whatever you’re doing in front of the camera. Keeping good communication with your photographer will help you get the pictures you want, trust their experience and be clear about your expectations. Finally, go easy on the kids, let them play, and explore to truly capture what makes them so great.
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