Whew chile, where do we even begin? I actually had to take a deep breath before writing this, because I KNOW just how stressful planning for picture day can be. *Cues all of the times I had to get ready for my own family’s picture day (or any picture day for that matter).
As with all families, it always seems like something’s bound to go wrong no matter how much you plan. Don’t get derailed and discouraged —HOPE is on the way!
Pedro and I have compiled ten of what we feel are the most important tips to help you and your family take the stress out of family picture day, and better prepare for your photo session.
Plan to arrive to your family session at least 10-15 minutes early.
Don’t forget to feed your child/children before the session (bonus if they’ve had a nap),
Make sure you have a backup outfit for each child just in case,
Don’t change your child/children into their session clothing until after they eat (seeing as though we have two littles of our own, we know how hard this can be),
Only give them clear liquids once they are in their session clothing,
Bring along their favorite toy or blanket, this will help them to feel comfortable during the session (it’s always smart to have a bribe in place such as fruit snacks, candy or a toy)
Have a heart to heart with your child/children about the session and explain what’s going to happen,
Talk to your significant other about the session, how the session will go and discuss what your expectations are,
Outfits: remember to coordinate instead of matching & ensure all outfits are wrinkle-free. We’re not saying you have to starch them, but you can at least throw them in the dryer for a spin,
A few days prior to your session, pack a bag filled with items you will possibly need on picture day: (snacks, props, wipes, hairbrush, emergency items, etc.)
3-for-1 combo BONUS TIP: Relax, have fun, and love on your family <3.
School’s out and if you’re anything like my family your gearing up for your family’s summer vacation. Depending on how familiar you are with photography and taking photos, I thought I’d share a few tips on how you can capture better memories with your phone or point-and-shoot this summer.
1. Start with golden hour. An hour after sunrise or before sunset is the perfect time to get those shots with the sun as your backdrop, especially at Galveston Island. Chances are the temperature will be a lot cooler than what it’d be mid-day, even if it’s only a 5 degree difference.
2. Do yourself a favor and keep out —the sun that is. You most likely won’t want to be out in direct sun in Texas heat anyway (lol) but it’s worth noting that photos or selfies taken with the sun directly on you is a sure way to create dark and unflattering shadows on your face and body. However, if you do happen to be out during the middle of the day, find an area with open shade to get nice even light.
3. Enjoy the moment! Every photo doesn’t have to be a posed image of you or your family looking directly at the camera. I’m a believer of living in the moment and taking advantage of the unplanned moments. Candid images are some of the most memorable photos I have of my clients. Enjoy this time of your life and capture both the perfect and imperfect memories — be able to find joy and happiness in every moment.
4. Tell a joke or two. Instead of saying the cliché, “cheese!” tell a joke or two. Photos are so much better when the smiles are authentic.
5. Print your photos! No one likes sorting through tens of thousands of photos on an old laptop. What’s even worse is if the hard drive happens to crash, and you don’t have a backup of Kate’s first trip to Disney. Besides, there’ll be a beautiful and special kind of nostalgia you get when sorting through an old box of prints or album twenty years from now. With the rate smartphones are released, I doubt you’ll have this summer’s memories stored in your new phone. Read more about Why Prints Matter here.
About the Author and Photographer
Niesha Fuentes is a photographer in The Woodlands, Conroe, Jasper and surrounding areas, specializing in senior, family, and wedding photography.
Melo and Me Photography services Conroe, The Woodlands, Montgomery County, New Caney, Humble, Atascocita and Greater North Houston areas. On-location senior sessions are also booked in the southeast Texas and Golden Triangle areas, including but not limited to: Jasper, Newton, Woodville, Brookeland, Pineland, Silsbee and Beaumont, Texas.
Take the time to get to know your photographer and I promise you will feel more relaxed and comfortable, than those who meet their photographer for the first time on session day. You can do this by scheduling a consultation, which is just a fancy way of saying we get to know a little bit about each other.
Bring yourself, as in BE YOURSELF 🙂
If you don’t remember anything else from this post, please remember this –be yourself. This includes being true to yourself and who you are. Trust me, if you’re not being yourself at the session, it shows. It’s okay to step outside of your comfort zone, but you definitely don’t want to display serious facial expressions when you’re normally smiling or goofing off. In order to get great photographs, it’s important that you’re relaxed and comfortable at the session.
Plan ahead of time.
It’s important that you plan for the session ahead of time. Waiting until the last minute to book a photographer, could leave you in the position of not having photographs to document this important time in your life. And, in the event that you are able to book a photographer at the last minute, there’s still so much planning that goes into a session. Trust me you don’t want to scramble through boutiques or stores trying to find outfits for your session with no guidance at all.
Dress to impress.
Clothes should be fitted prior to the day of your session, so that you know exactly how they fit. Make sure to get rid of the wrinkles prior to the session. Blouses and bottoms should hang neatly on hangers. Avoiding clothing with large logos or graphics because they take away from the person in the photo.
Don’t worry…be happy.
Last minute pimple show up the night before or day of your session, that’s okay! I’ll take care of your acne and blemishes so there’s no need to worry. All you have to do is show up to the session and have a great time -I’ll take care of the rest!
Professional hair and makeup artist.
A professional hair and makeup artist can completely transform your senior session. They are trained professionals and know how to cater to your needs. You’ll have less time to stress and worry about your hair or makeup, and more time to focus on being pampered like a queen!
*Bonus: schedule a makeup and/or hair trial a few weeks before scheduled session. We recommend professionals like:
Sports equipment, jersey or uniforms, musical instruments, and books are just a few props that can really tie your personality into the session. They can also add meaning and originality to your session. No props? Not a problem, you’ll rock your session either way.
Get a good night’s rest.
Often overlooked, many seniors tend to forget to get a good night’s rest; however, it’s more important than you think. The more rest you’ve had, the more time you’ll have to enjoy and have a great time at your session. You’re also more likely to feel comfortable and have more time to focus on the details.
Take care of the necessities.
This may go without saying for some, but it’s worth it to include anyway:
Clean shave. Unless of course, hairy legs and lots of stub are your thing.
Guys, it’s best to get a haircut at least 6-8 days prior to the session.
Bring a hairbrush or comb. It works great for fly-aways and touch-ups.
Nails should be manicured, while skin should be moisturized.
Have any questions or tips to include yourself? Contact us now to learn more about how we help take the stress out of your session day.