The Unknowns of Scheduling a Photo Session
Sometimes the details of a photo session are a complete unknown. We know we want to schedule a session and want to get photos of our family before our kids grow much more. We know that if we don't schedule the session now, another year will slip by. What we don't quite know is what we're in for when we contact the photographer. I've been on that side of the session, uncertain as to how the time will go or what to dress my family in. I've climbed out of the car, hoping I'd done a decent job with coordinating outfits, feeling a bit jittery, a combo of nerves for the anticipation and not knowing what to expect and the realization that our family at this moment in time would be successfully documented in photos. I could check that off of my list and let that one worry go from my mind.
What to expect with SKRS Photography
A session with SKRS Photography is relaxed and fun. I will be the first to admit that I'm a little bit silly and I like to talk. Before we even meet, I like to know a bit about my clients- names of course, but particularly when working with kids, I like to know their interests. It makes those first moments so much more engaging and enables me to quickly connect with because I know something about them already! The first thing I tell my clients is that I have definite ideas about places, poses and moments I'm aiming to photograph, but I absolutely want to know if a particular spot catches their eye or there's a particular pose or moment they'd like to capture! A small warning- I will likely back into a tree or trip and land flat on the ground at least once during the session. I become so involved in my sessions that, yes, I can lose my balance or track of exactly where I'm standing from time to time.
What to wear
The truth is that a photography session presents a special occasion of sorts. So, families and couples try to dress their best and understandably so. When a client asks what they should wear though, I always respond that they should wear something that represents who they are. Wearing a strappy sundress when you've never worn one before in your life may be visually pleasing in the photo, but is it really you? Putting on a blazer (that you've rescued from the depths of your closet) when you typically wear a polo may look strapping, but is it really you? I encourage clients to be comfortable and choose clothing that represents them. I always advise my clients to avoid patterns, especially that very fine gingham type print (particularly popular in men's button down shirts) as that print creates some pretty funky patterns through the camera lens- strange, I know! I also advise that particularly bright colors, like red, pink or fluorescent colors be avoided as they can cast the color onto the skin and create unappealing and unrealistic skin tones. Complimentary colors are best. Choosing a color scheme (maybe navys, greys and lavenders) and having the everyone coordinated within that color scheme is simple and works well. Wear something that flatters you! Need more direction? Contact me to talk through any questions or to ask me to set up a Pinterest board! Another idea, a visit to Pinterest or a Google search will turn up lots of options prior to your session! Follow this link straight to the Google search- https://www.google.com/#q=outfits+for+family+photoshoot
What's the time commitment?
Most family sessions are an hour though I understand that sometimes, a bit more is needed. I stay tuned into my clients and gauge whether I have a bit more time or it's time to call it a day. I like to capture those images my clients are looking for in the first place we stop and usually in the first 15 or 30 minutes. That ensures I have what I need, and then it's time to just have fun and see what comes of it! My couples sessions are a bit shorter. Of course it goes without saying that working with two adults is quite a bit easier than working with kids, thus my couples sessions are typically 30-45 minutes.
How do I keep the kids engaged?
I recently had a mom ask how I keep the "kid craziness" in check. I'm a mom of three boy sand haven't a clue how to keep it in check in our world! But once I'm behind that camera, my tried and true method is simple- let kids be kids. I try posing some shots and suggesting others, but ultimately I follow the lead of my youngest clients for a good part of the session. In the first 15 minutes, kids warm up to the experience which oftentimes works to my advantage in capturing that beautiful family, sibling or cousin photograph. I do bring a couple of noisemakers for the youngest kids to grab their attention, sometimes a puppet that acts silly and sometimes I just act ridiculously silly. I can even get mom and dad in on it, encouraging silliness and nonsense behind my back. I've been know to bribe kids with a prize (like Smarties or lollipops- I ask for parent approval first of course!) I embrace the "kid craziness" because oftentimes that results in capturing those real moments and that genuine personality!
Very important tidbits of information well worth reading!
Feed the kids beforehand and bring a drink and snack (that applies to the adults too!). Nothing too messy, but something like Cheerios or goldfish and water or a light colored juice. If your young child has a favorite lovey or blankie, bring it along! Having a comfort item goes a long way (and I personally love capturing those moments too!) I spend a good amount of time on the ground capturing the images I'm after and yes, I will ask my families and couples to have a seat in the grass, on an old stone wall, on the root of a tree. If white pants are your absolute favorite and most flattering pair, go for it! But if I can convince you to wear something a bit less likely to show dirt, I'm happy to! Same goes for shoes- stiletto heels are quite an obstacle in a session with me! We will walk and not always on paved earth. Beautiful but slightly practical shoes are ideal.