Client Care: Preparing for Your Portrait Session

August 04, 2015  •  Leave a Comment

I know, I know...I'm the photographer. Of course getting ready for the portrait session would be easy for me. I've been there and done that hundreds of times. 

Boy, oh, boy is that wrong! 

Getting ready for a portrait session with my family is one of THE MOST STRESSFUL TIMES FOR ME EVER! 

I agonize over what to wear. I shop, buy three different shirts for each kid to choose from (did I mention we have 5 kids!), go back and forth on the color scheme. Oh, and for me...in my mind I envision myself looking oh so stunning in a dress that I already have hanging in my closet, paired with some boots or cute flats (because let's face it - these feet just can't do heels anymore). 

Then the day comes. No one wants to have their pictures taken - especially the kids. And that dress just doesn't seem to look like I imagined it would in the perfect world in my mind. So panic sets in...

                        This the one and only cute dress that worked in my mind and in the pictures. Boots too! 

If you only knew how many times I've been through this scenario. And I'm the photographer. 

BUT...as each session has gone by, I've learned a thing or two to help keep my anxiety at bay, and to help keep everyone happy. 

I hope these tips will help you! 

1. Choose a photographer you feel comfortable with. It's like forming a friendship and your photographer should make you feel relaxed and at ease. 

2. Schedule your portrait session one to two months in advance (if possible). Many photographer's schedules fill up quickly. Scheduling your session in advance will give you the time you need to choose your location and your outfits. 

3. Select a location for your session that reflects your style and your family. Your photographer should be able to offer suggestions for a location based on your desires. I always work with my clients to choose a location that best suits them. For added convenience I also welcome clients to join me at my home for in-studio or natural light portraits on my property. I have hosted so many clients here and it's truly a joy! 

4. I suggest choosing your outfits to best work within the season you are having your portraits taken. If you don't want your portraits to seem tied to a specific season so you can display then year round in your home choose neutral colors or colors that don't look too seasonal (just think Christmas). I also encourage you to not do all solids or not do everyone in matching outfits. Choose a color and compliment that color in each of the outfits you all wear. See some of my favorite client examples below. 

5. Don't be afraid to ask your photographer for their help. I have had several clients send me pictures of what they are thinking of wearing or share with me the color ideas they're considering. I welcome all of my clients questions, and am happy to help them as they narrow down their selection. 

I know preparing for a portrait session can be fun for so many people and very stressful for others. I'm here for you! No matter where you are :) 


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