- Build your wardrobe: MOM IS FIRST. More times than not, it's mom's idea, she's the one envisioning it and holding it closest to her heart (at this time) so, HER outfit goes FIRST. So if you're the mama, here's the trick: base your colors, your style and location based on the attire that you feel most beautiful AND comfortable in. Then match everyone to YOU. (you'll thank me, promise!!)
- Color Palette: Based on the above point, look for colors in mom's clothing to match everyone too. Some similar colors and some complementary colors.
- Add dimension with scarves, jackets, and jewelry for a little flare! Also limit patterns to a person or two.
- Think of the location as an inspiration to the color palette!
- If you have teenagers, let them join in--giving them a task and just telling them over and over again how much this means to you and will mean to them, helps. (or at least I assume so.. I don't have teenagers yet, but it works well to prep the hearts of my children before a session :)
- For little ones--plan for an adventure. Like an adventure in your cute clothes ;) If your location is near water, bring a change of clothes, if its colder, bring cozy layers.
- Match style to the season. But this can also be cheated. Like, photos in the fall don't have to have all the fall colors... just depends on what you want and what locations are available. What looks more like Fall to you?
These two photos are taken days apart at two very different locations :)
Speaking of matching--this is such a popular question! "we want to be coordinated but not matchy-matchy" So I'll give you a number of tips:
- Match everyone to mom's outfit (see first point)
2. You don't want anyone to "stick out"--that means if everyone is wearing more neutral clothing, don't have dad's shirt or brother's pants a crazy bold color. It moves eyes to the eye-sore instead of the whole.
3. I've linked my Pinterest board HERE. This is particularity helpful if you need a visual, but very disheartening if you try and follow them exactly. It's always best if your attire feels like "you" or at least a dressed-up version ;)
A personal note from me (as your photographer)
Bring snacks for before and after. Ill bring the treats. Bring grandma's blanket. Ill ask you to throw your kids in the air, run, tickle and keep moving on to the next thing so there is no whining or stiff family photos!
Again, I can only speak for myself, but one of my goals is for you and your children to have a pleasant memory. So I get lots of candids with a few "everyone look here!!", and then
"can you throw the rock in the water?! woah, you're so strong!
"can I see how fast you can run?!!"
"does mommy like kisses?!!"
"Oh I bet she needs a few more!"
Think of it as an adventure! If a child gets fussy, we stop and play. We get snuggling photos (a few real ones of the harder moments if you want that--most do:) Photos of you loving on your babies, enjoying the moments with a professional capturing it along the way. Yes, I make sure to get a photo with everyone looking at the camera (my MIL + grandma's only want those, haha) but its supposed to be FUN! (and yes, even for dad!)
I hope this answers your questions! Let me know if you have any more in the comments!