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How to Prepare for Your Family Portrait Session

Family portrait sessions are a wonderful opportunity to capture beautiful memories of your family. A well-planned portrait session can result in stunning, natural-looking images that you’ll treasure for a lifetime. Here are some tips to help you prepare for your family portrait session:

Location: Studio or Outdoors?

One of the decisions that you’ll need to make when planning your family portrait session is whether to have your portraits taken in a studio or outdoors. While there are benefits to both options, there are several reasons why studio portraits can be a better choice for your family:

Controlled Environment: Studio portraits offer a controlled environment with no distractions

In a studio environment, the photographer has complete control over the lighting and background, which allows for consistent and high-quality images. The controlled environment of a studio also eliminates the distractions that can occur during an outdoor session, such as unfavorable weather conditions, unexpected crowds, or distracting backgrounds. A studio session can result in beautiful, timeless images that put the focus solely on your family.

Timeless Look: Studio portraits have a classic, timeless look

Studio portraits have a classic and timeless look that never goes out of style. The clean and simple backgrounds of studio portraits emphasize the subjects and create a classic look that will remain beautiful for years to come. This classic look also ensures that the focus is on your family and the emotions that are captured in the images.

Comfort: Studio portraits offer comfort and convenience

In a studio, you and your family can relax in a comfortable environment without worrying about weather conditions, insects, or other outdoor distractions. Studios are also equipped with amenities such as changing rooms and restrooms, which can add to your comfort and convenience during the session.

Clothing: Coordinate but don’t match

What you wear to your portrait session can make a big impact on the final images. Choose clothing that is comfortable and makes you feel confident. Coordinate your outfits, but don’t match exactly. Choose colors that complement each other, and avoid loud patterns or logos that may distract from the image. Consider bringing along a change of clothes in case you want to switch things up during the session.

Timing: Schedule your session at the right time of day

This really applies only to outdoor sessions. The time of day that you schedule your portrait session can make a big difference in the final images. The best time for natural light is during the “golden hour,” which is the hour just after sunrise or the hour just before sunset. This is when the light is soft, warm, and provides the most flattering light for portraits.

Studio portraits are great, because the timing doesn’t matter as much, and we have complete control over the lighting. Everyone knows getting kids out the door and on-time to a session could be difficult!

Preparation: Get your family ready for the session

Preparing for your portrait session can help reduce stress and ensure that the session runs smoothly. Make sure that your family is well-rested and well-fed before the session. If you have young children, consider bringing snacks, drinks, and toys to keep them entertained during the session. Don’t forget to pack any necessary items, such as extra clothes, shoes, or accessories, and bring along any props that you would like to include in the session.


Preparing for your family portrait session can make a big difference in the final images. Choose a location that is meaningful to your family, coordinate your outfits, and schedule the session at the right time of day. Preparing your family for the session by making sure they are well-rested and well-fed can help reduce stress and ensure that the session runs smoothly. With the right preparation, your family portrait session will be a fun and enjoyable experience that results in beautiful images that you will cherish for years to come.

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