When should I get family photos taken?

I often get asked by parents what is the best age for photos of their child before booking their family photoshoot. For some reason this is especially true of those parents of newborns or very young children.

Rather than write another post where I’m sarcastic and flip it on you at the end, I’ll start with the obvious answer. Your family is worth photographing whatever stage you are at…

Let’s have a look through the different ages, the various benefits of photos at these ages and what might suit your family.

Why have a newborn photoshoot (0-4 weeks)?

There is a misconception that babies are boring. They’re not going to be doing the Can-Can, but you’re not trying to capture them doing anything. You’re booking photos for you. That newborn fog will lift and the details will feel a little fuzzy round the edges. The photos bring them back into sharp focus through those photos.

A newborn shoot captures your family growing from two to three people or when your daughter becoming a big sister for the first time. These moments, rather than your newborn doing anything, is what makes newborn shoots amazing…

That being said, if your newborn can do the Can-Can, I NEED to see this!

Why have a baby photoshoot (4 weeks – 1 year)?

Babies are just adorable to photograph… they are starting to really let their personalities shine (plus they often get those adorable chubby leg rolls!). I always think it’s amazing that you can plonk a baby down and a room full of adults will watch them for hours on end. That’s what’s fascinating about babies – we are as transfixed by their achievements as they are!

Now they are a bit more interactive the photos do stand on their own merit a little more; the smiles, the sitting up, the crawling or pulling up all make for a more varied gallery. There is so much rapid change taking place for your baby that photos at this age are always a fun reminder of an active and happy time in their development.

Why have a toddler or preschooler photoshoot (1-4 years)?

Well, toddlers certainly come with their own challenges, especially as they learn to push boundaries, say no and throw things, but in my experience these years are as hilariously funny as they are frustrating!

For every tantrum there is also something that probably has you in stitches as they jumble words and the most enthusiastic hug you could possibly imagine to follow! 

Preschoolers start to get their speech and coordination down but are just as amazing to have photos of because they’ve yet to develop any sense of self-consciousness that afflicts us as we grow older.

Why have a photoshoot with school aged children?

I know it seems hard as your kids get older to get them in the photo. They are getting a little more reluctant, a little more self-conscious and so maybe it seems all too hard to try and arrange? The benefit of having a very relaxed photoshoot is that your kids will relax and show their wonderfully unique personalities in your photos. Plus, if you let them be themselves, you avoid the horrific cheese faces they’ve somehow become masters in during this period.

I think because kids in this age group are more reluctant to get in the photo, it’s doubly important to make photos a priority. My son isn’t quite four yet but I can already see him becoming wary of my endless photo taking so efforts must be doubled 😉

Why have a photoshoot with older pre-teens and teens?

Is it the holy grail of parenting a pre-teen or teen that you dream of having a photo when your child isn’t sneering at you with disdain or gurning at you?!

When I was at this age, complete with train tracks and a terrible Tina Turner haircut (why?!) I felt horrific in photos. I wish someone had taken the time to let me be myself in photos rather than trying endless to get me to smile through my awkwardness.

Get kids this age involved in their favourite activities, let their personalities shine and you’ll be able to preserve how they navigated this awkward half-child, half-adult portion of their development. Yes, they may list Playstation or taking selfies as their top hobby, but don’t dismiss either quite yet. Both have a place in photos to remember who they were at this point in time.

All ages are worth photographing…

As you can see, all ages have their merits for getting in the photograph and I hope this has helped you figure out what age is best for booking your photoshoot.

By letting your kid relax and be themselves, they will shine in photos and we will capture your family navigating whichever stage of family life you find yourself at right now.

Obviously, I love having photos taken so it’s a priority for me and we take photos at least once a year. The callous business person in me wants to say it’s a necessity to have photos at least 3 times a year, every year, FOREVER! But I know that’s a financial luxury that is out of reach for the majority of us. So I’d be happy to help chat through what might be the best age for photos for you to get photos you think might be the most emotionally valuable to you.

Check out my other FAQ posts here for other questions I get asked a lot…

Drop me a line below, I’d love to chat.

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