How To Take a Great Family Photo

I've been working at a portrait studio for a little while now and I've picked up some easy tips for making your session less stressful.

Know Your Expectations
If you're looking for a wall portrait to hang above your fireplace, let the photographer know. He or she can change the camera setting to make sure your image looks good when it is emlarged. You'll get a better quality picture.

Come With Ideas
Do you have an idea for a pose or a background? Have you seen something in a magazine that you'd like to try? Don't be afraid to communicate with the photographer. I was flipping through a magazine the other day and saw an ad for baby lotion where the mom was cradling the baby's head in her hands and it was an over-the-shoulder shot. I can't wait to try it with my own baby.

Take a Step Back
It might be difficult, but you'll get a better picture. If you're somewhere off to the side, trying desperately to make your toddler smile, they'll be looking at you and not the camera. Let the photographer do their job. If they need help, they'll let you know. If you're asked to play peek-a-boo or make a silly face, do so as close to the camera as possible so that even if they're looking at you, it'll seem as though their eyes are focused on the photographer.

Try to Relax
Don't stress about getting the perfect photo. If you're child is not smiling or they're acting goofy, just go with it. Some of the best portraits are those that showcase your child's personality. I love pictures of moments. I just took my girls to get pictures of them in their Halloween costumes and my favorite is one of them looking at each other. Big J is smiling at Little J and it's so sweet and innocent. You want your pictures to have personality so if your photographer wants to take shots of your child's feet or you holding your newborn, let them. If you don't like the picture, you don't have to buy it.

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