May 10, 2021

How to prepare your children for a family photoshoot

Preparing for your family photos

Well done for booking a professional photographer for your family photo shoot! I bet you’re excited about getting those beautiful family photos of your whole family together and the prospect of finally getting some family portraits into those frames that have been sitting empty!

Then the doubts start to creep in… what should you be doing in the run up to the shoot? What if the kids (or the husband!) don’t cooperate on the day? What if you don’t like the images? What if, what if?

Spring family photoshoot St Albans

Firstly, let me say that everyone has concerns about how the shoot will go. That’s the benefit of working with a photographer that makes sure relaxed and fun-filled are top priorities for all family sessions; it’s just like hanging out with a friend (who happens to have a camera with her!)

I hope this information will help you feel ready for your family photography session and confident about it so you can relax and look forward to the day!

spring time family photos in St Albans

Things to think about before your photoshoot

1. If you are thinking about getting your hair cut or coloured for your family photos then make sure this is done in advance. Generally, a week or so before your photos gives your hair time to settle. It’s a small detail but it makes a difference.

2. If you usually wear makeup then I’d say stick with what you do best and rock your normal look. The camera can be a bit unkind on heavy makeup so it’s not usually the day to try out a brand-new look. Plus, you want to look back and look like yourself, right?

mum of a boy, Hertfordshire family photographer, st albans family photographer

3. Pick your clothes in advance so you aren’t stressing on the morning. I’ll have sent you some information in the planning your shoot guide when you booked about how to dress for your shoot and am happy to answer any outfit related questions you have before the day.

4. Make sure you review the info I sent you; where we’ll be meeting, timings, the photoshoot guide.

5. Make sure you leave extra time to get to where we’re meeting and ideally turn up a bit ahead of schedule. Nobody likes turning up flustered and stressed – not the way you want to start your shoot ideally!

happy girl on swing in St Albans park

Preparing babies and toddlers

The best way to prepare a baby or toddler for their photos is to try and make sure they are well rested and well fed. Wherever possible try and schedule your photo time around their naps so that they will be fresh and happy when I arrive. Nothing more stressful for you than a little one who just wants to go down for a nap and is all sad!

Similarly, bring a drink and snack if you’re having photos on location so that your little one can take a break if they become hungry or thirsty. Nothing worse than the food related grumps kicking in!

weaning baby, Hertfordshire family photographer, st albans family photographer

Preparing older children for a photoshoot

With older kids you can talk to them in advance and get them excited for the photo experience. Explain to them what you’ll be doing, how much fun you’ll all have together and explain who I am (even show them a photo of me on my about me page!)

Because shoots are so relaxed and fun, I don’t usually have any issues getting kids to cooperate with the camera. However, if your children really don’t want to play ball and get in the photo I would recommend seeing if I can encourage them into the picture first. Often, they’ll be a little more amenable for strangers rather than parents!

licking kid, Hertfordshire family photographer, st albans family photographer

If we’re on location they’ll have plenty of time to burn energy and run around. It’s definitely not all about sitting and saying cheese so you’ll all enjoy yourselves, guaranteed 🙂

If you’re at home, I recommend removing devices from view before I pop over so the temptation of wanting to play games or watch iPad is gone for the duration of your shoot (unless this is something you want in photos).

Redbourn family photography at home

If things don’t go to plan during your shoot

If you child has a bit of a meltdown, don’t worry. As a Mum I totally expect it and not only do I know how to cope when it happens, it can lead to some really cute photos! Don’t let it stress you out; we’ll have plenty of time to ride out their tantrums or moments and get back on track to get those photos you’ll adore.

grumpy kid, sad face, Harpenden family photographer
Harpenden family photographer

It’s time to get excited!

Now all the worrying is out the way and the preparation is done, it’s time to marvel in the wonderful thing you’re doing for your family and your children’s’ future memories. Having photos of their childhood’s is the best investment you can make for your kids and I’m so glad you’ve taken the leap!

If you haven’t and happen to be reading this then check out some of the photos I’ve taken for other amazing families like yours to see just how wonderful it could be to get your family in front of the camera. I’d absolutely love to chat to you – book a no obligation natter with me at the bottom of the page here.

About Tori

Hi I’m Tori, welcome to the home of all things happy! Here I reckon you’ll find some of the happiest photos in Hertfordshire…I love being around love so I was made for photography. Your wedding, your family days, your passion projects; they all give me the grins. Anything you want to chat about, I’ve probably seen it so get in touch because I love a good natter. Plus, maybe we’re friends that just haven’t met yet, who knows?!