How to prepare for your family session | Palm Coast Family Photographer

November 6, 2023

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It’s that time of year when we are all picking out the best outfits and preparing our families to step in front of the camera (mine included!)!

Every year I get the privedge of capturing so many amazing families during the holidays but something that isnt talked about enough is how to prepare your kiddos for their session!

Here’s a few tips on what to do, (and what not to do) to make the most out of your session!

Arrive ahead of your scheduled time. 

Most photographers will plan to start promptly at the designated time chosen for your session. When shooting outdoors sunlight is a huge factor, and running behind could mean your session gets cut short. If you are attending a indoor scheduled session and other shoots are factored in to that day, arriving late may cause you to be bumped to the end of the line when a spot becomes available.

Plan to arrive to your location 5-10 minutes ahead of your scheduled time.

Two outfits are better than one.

Outfit planning can be stressful in itself, and trying to keep the kiddos clean is hardly an easy task. Planning two outfit choices for your shoot can help alleviate the stress of “not getting dirty” prior or during the shoot. Keep your 2nd choice in the car just incase of spills or falls incase a quick change is needed.

Instead of saying anything to your children that will make them believe the session is a chore, the best thing you can do is pump your kids up and get them excited for the session! 

Stay away from saying things like “As soon as we are done, we can get ice cream.”;  “we will be done with photos very soon.” or “cooperate and listen so we can get just one more.” This allows kiddos to believe that if they do it “just once” they can be done, when in reality there may be a handful of other shots that are needed and will cause them to get frustrated when your photographer asks them to do the next thing.

Instead, change the narrative! Say things such as “Today is special, our family gets to visit somewhere new together and explore!” or “Let’s make some very special photos together and then you can choose the best ones to send to Grandma” (or another special someone they adore!)

A little extra grace and patience goes a long way.

Inevitably, kids will be kids. They may come in and be excited, they may be hams, they may be shy, or, they may have a meltdown. Rest Assured its all okay. To them, your photographer is (most likely) someone new they haven’t met, and you are going somewhere they haven’t been. If they need a minute to adjust or check out the space, they are more than welcome! They should feel comfortable throughout the shoot and a few extra minutes doesn’t hurt to get warmed up. (Or take a break if need be!)

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