© Gregory Daniel

5 Tips for Taking the Best Family Photos

1. Plan ahead

What’s meant to be a fun, memorable event can quickly become a stressful, panic-inducing nightmare. All too often people spend the day before their photo session running around with last-minute preparations. Having your family’s photo taken by a professional is a unique experience, so it’s important to plan in advance to avoid any unnecessary stress. Below are a few tips to help you prepare for your session.

2. Talk to your kids beforehand

Kids are smart and they love feeling grown-up and informed. Get your children interested and involved by explaining the plans for the day. Show them the outfits you have picked out or let them be involved in the clothing selection process. Tell them a “professional photographer” is coming over and that’s it’s going to be a lot of fun. Convey positivity to minimize the stress of new people and new things that can overwhelm small children.

3. Decide on a reward

Sometimes a little bribery is necessary to make sure things go smoothly during your session. If you would like to try an extra incentive to keep your kids calm, pick a reward beforehand that you would be comfortable following through with after the session is over. If your kids like ice cream, for example, we can talk about using ice cream as a bargaining tool with the kids when they need to smile more, sit still, or pay attention.

4. Ensure everyone is well fed and rested

Make sure to get as much sleep as possible, and don’t forget your breakfast and lunch depending on the time of the photo session. Your photographer may provide snacks, but pack some extra goodies for the kids in case they get hungry or restless. Preserve your energy for the session so that everyone is bright-eyed and bushy-tailed with smiling faces.

5. Trust your photographer

We know how stressful it can be to get a family portrait done, but it doesn’t have to be that way! Professional photographers love when kids get giggly, smile wide, or show off a little attitude—anything that shows off their true personalities. Trust your photographer and follow their lead. They are here to guide you through the process and make sure it is a memorable experience for all.