You finally decided to document those everyday moments at home, now what? Here are my five tips for a relaxed at-home family session. If you follow these tips, you are setting yourself up for a successful at-home family session.
The last thing that you want to do is book your session on a day filled with other obligations or a weekend full of activities. If you are like me, you get totally stressed out when you have a million things on your calendar. So, why would you want to be stressed out on the day of your session? You don’t. Choose a day where the calendar is completely to mostly clear I promise you will thank me later.
Still not convinced? Think about the days that you are hopping from place to place… dragging your kids in and out of their car seats. You find yourself continuing to say “just one more stop.” What does that result in? Endless eye rolls and heavy sighs. Now, think about the days where you wake up and have nothing to do? You don’t have to set an alarm. The kids can wake up on their own. You fix a big pancake breakfast and drink your coffee before you have to reheat it. Speaking of, baking together is a perfect activity to do during your at-home session.
My point is, you don’t want to be stressed or rushed during your at-home session. Therefore, do everything you can to avoid that.
This one probably sounds easier said than done. Don’t worry though, I am going to give you a few ways to do that.
Let them know ahead of time. Most kids don’t do well with surprises (or at least surprises that don’t entail a birthday party for them.) I mean, do you like things sprung on you 5 minutes before it happens? Probably not. So, I would recommend you don’t do that to your kids either. Instead, give them a heads up a few days before. Let them know that “a photographer is going to come to our house to take some pictures of us doing the things we love”.
This lets them know a few things.
They don’t have to do anything out of the ordinary.
They get to show off what they love.
Their normal day activities are worth documenting.
It gives them an idea of what is happening.
Have them pick out one or two things that they want to show the photographer. One thing that is pretty consistent with all children is that they like to show off the things that they love. I mean, even us adults like to do that. So, one way to make sure your child is excited about your at-home family session is to let the child prepare to show something off. Another bonus of this is that they will immediately want to show it off and start playing like they normally do without you having to ask them.
Don’t ignore or alter sleep schedules for photos. One of the hardest children to photograph is a child who is overtired. I am a mom, so I know that you don’t have complete control over your child’s sleep schedule. However, there are multiple things you can do to set them up for success.
Here are a few things to try to adhere to before your session.
Put them to bed at a decent time the night before.
Plan your session around your nap schedule (preferably a little while after a nap).
Don’t wake them up early for your session.
Don’t stay up late for your session.
Please don’t wait until two days before your at-home session to pick out your outfits. It will lead to you being stressed and frustrated – remember tip #1? When you book a session with me, I will send you all the tips & info you need to choose the perfect outfits for your session. I recommend immediately starting to plan once your session is booked. You don’t have to have them completely nailed down, but it does help to at least have your color palette picked out. The best thing you can do for yourself is to have your outfits selected and laid out the night before. If you are confident in your decision ahead of time (I can even give my opinion a week or two in advance) you won’t second guess your choices at the last minute.
Stay Tuned for part two of Tips for a Relaxed At-Home Session.
June 21, 2021