*Relax at Your Family Session*

So I get a lot of inquires and sessions for family photos. The number one concern for a family session with young children is "I hope they smile and behave". This is a true fear for any parent when they are spending money on something they want perfect. They want to have their child's "best face" forward and get really stressed when things don't go as planned. 

I want to share a couple of tips and reminders for when you schedule your family session with your photographer and you have young or even uncooperative teenagers. 

1. Don't stress! Ever single child has a meltdown now and then. Especially when you put them in front of a stranger that has this big camera pointing at their face. It can be scary for them. My job as a photographer is to help the child through this. I show them my camera, maybe even let them push a button or two. (Hey, it's insured. And if it so happens that it breaks, and this has never happened, I always have a backup). Most of the time the kids love to be included in the process. It's my job to get that great smiling photo you want. So if they know what I am doing and what this crazy equipment is for, they are less likely to hesitate and be scared. 

2. Teenager won't smile? Not to worry. Again, my job as the photographer is to get that "tough" teenager to crack at least one smile. It really doesn't help when a parent is hounding them to "look nice", 'stand up straight", "is that your best smile". They tend to lock up and get frustrated too. Sit back and relax. I promise we will get that photo you want. 

3. Nothing goes as planned. I usually get those posed family photos where everyone is looking good, good posture, smiles on their faces and this is the one photo that mom/dad "wanted". But I also get those candid photos. Those unexpected laughter and giggles between parents and kids. The genuine smiles and happiness. More often than not, this is the photo hanging over the mantle. So go with the flow. I always have plenty of variety so you have much to choose from (as do most photographers). Sit back and relax and try to enjoy this time. 

4. Bring something from home that is comforting for your younger children. This may be a stuffed animal, a favorite blanket or even a toy. Something that will give them a good feeling about being in a strange place. Plus this can add to the photo as it is something that is sentimental to the child. 

5. And lastly, try to have fun! I know when you get you're family all together whether it's three of you or twenty of you it can be stressful. What to wear? Who is miss behaving? Why are they crying now? Someone just spilt juice on there new white shirt! These are all normal things and happen at every session. I will make sure we get what we need. YOU just relax :) 

I hope this helps put you at ease at your next family photo session! 

-Amanda

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