Oh family photos. You get such a bad wrap sometimes but you also kind of deserve it. We've all been a part of family photo session that you thought for SURE was going to end up an internet meme. It was was just so unbelievably awkward with all the family members in weird poses that you wonder where your aunt found this 'professional' photographer.
But that's why you're here, scouring the internet for family photo ideas to make sure your family portraits are classy, beautiful and something you can look back on and smile instead of cringe. So let's start planning your amazing pictures!
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Choosing Your Location
The location for your family portraits is one of the most important elements of the whole shoot. Once you have that decided, then it helps narrow down things like your family's outfits, activities and posing. Knowing the huge part location plays in the success of your family photo can make you feel a lot of pressure but let me walk you through a few different family picture ideas so you can find one that's right for you.
Outdoor Family Photos
This is hands down my favorite way to photograph families, especially ones with young children, because there's lots to see and space to move around. Even grownups (I'm looking at you, dads.) will be much more relaxed and look better int their pictures when they're able to move around and walk off a bit of the nervous energy. In my family photoshoots, I never keep my clients in one place for too long. We're always off to the next spot of beautiful light, great tree, fun field to run in before anyone has the chance to stiffen up in front of the camera.
At Home Family Photo Shoot
When you have shy little ones, having your family portrait photography at home can be a great way to help them relax and warm up to me and my camera. They can show me all their favorite toys and feel confident knowing that they're in a safe place. Even the most hesistant of little ones, are happy to play with me and my camera by the end of our session. And if the weather's nice you can get the best of both worlds by starting your session at home, and then moving to a local park or nature preserve once the kiddos start getting antsy.
And depending on the weather in your area, outdoor family photos might not always be a possibility so as long as you have a room that gets good, natural light, we can cuddle up at home for a more cozy family session too.
Fall Family Pictures
Fall family photos are one of the most popular times to schedule a session. With the weather that's not too hot, not too cold, and all the leaves turning magical colors, it's no surprise that so many people want that to be the setting for their family photo.
If this is when you choose to do your family photo session, skip the bright, bold colors in your family's outfits and choose a more neutral and muted color palette so you don't compete with the beautiful, fall leaves. Get more ideas for more fall family pictures from this Chic Family Fall Photoshoot in Halton Hills.
Choose a Meaningful Location
Sometimes families choose to be photographed in a place with special meaning to them ( like these Relaxed Casual Family Photos at the Beach ) and it's one of my favorite family photoshoot ideas. It could be their grandma's backyard that has so many memories of family dinners, or a favorite beach where dad proposed to mom. The sky is the limit. Just try to be aware of lighting if you're choosing an indoor space, because a dark room can equal very dark photos.
Photos with the Entire family
Family pictures that include extended family members are definitely the trickiest type of session but can be so meaningful too. My main family photo idea for this type of session would be to make sure you choose a space with lots of room for the photographer to back up and get a shot with everyone. Because of that, an outdoor location is usually best. Plus then you give young kids a chance to run around and get their wiggles out when they're not in the photos.
My favorite extended family picture ideas are when I join in on a family vacation and document all the fun memories as they happen with a few more formal portraits and different family groupings here and there. It really shows off the family's personality that way.
Just make sure to check with your photographer to see if they have a limit as to number of people in a session. Most will simply have an extra fee per person, and are happy to accommodate a large family photo shoot.
Family Vacation Photoshoot
When we're at home, life can be SO busy with crazy schedules, work, socializing, chores, etc. that it's hard to be present and just take a breath. But when you're on vacation, so many responsibilities are off your plate. So that can be a great time to have photos taken. Just soak in the moment with your family, enjoy a beautiful place, and know that you don't have to DO anything.
When choosing a family photographer for your trip though, make sure to do your research and beware of the hotel photographer. Try to find a professional photographer who's work makes you feel something and that you connect with. Then you'll be able to enjoy your family pictures long after the instagram photo dump.
Family Photos With A New Baby
It's easy to let the years tick by without getting around to taking family pictures, but when a new baby has arrived, you know that time is of the essence since they grow SO fast. That's why, instead of doing just photos of the new baby, it's a great time for a family photoshoot with baby as the star. It's so special for kids to see those photos as they get older, and to see just how excited everyone was that they were born. Including older siblings can be a really sweet too, highlighting the beginning of their friendship (and sibling rivalry. lol)
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