Family sessions are some of my absolute favorite sessions to photograph for a number of reasons. They’re so personal, fun, and always totally unique to the family. After photographing as many family sessions as I have, I’ve been able to put together this list of tips to help you plan your family session and get the most out of your photos. The photos that you cherish and can always look back on to put a huge smile on your face.
Choose the Right Location
One of the biggest factors in making the most out of your family session is deciding on the right location. This often depends on what your family looks like, i.e. do you have children, dogs, cats, etc. and what your interests are as a family. If you’ve got some toddlers in your family then heading to one of the many parks throughout the Denver area, or really anywhere there’s nature will give the kids so much to do during your session. If you have pets that you want to be a part of your session then having all or part of your family session at home is a great way to include them.
Make the Day a Family Day
When planning out your time before your family session, prioritize moving slow and having some quality time with family. Play a game together, go on a walk together and take your time getting ready for your session as a family unit. If you have younger kids, start talking about the session and how excited you are for it earlier in the week. Your excitement will be passed along to your kids, and get them hyped to go to take photos as well! If able try not to plan any other major events for the day of your family session so as not to overwhelm your kids and mitigate any possible meltdowns
Plan an Activity
One of the biggest tips I have for making the most of your family session is to plan some sort of activity into your session. This can look like a lot of different things such as going for a nature walk or a walk around your block, playing tag in the backyard, having a water balloon fight, skipping stones at a nearby pond or lake, and so much more. This helps keep the kids entertained and engaged throughout the session and gives you a ton of beautiful photos of your family in their natural element. If you’d like to see what I mean check out a blog from one of my favorite family sessions to date. Keep in mind it’s important to keep the activity simple enough to not overwhelm or exhaust your kids while also keeping them engaged and having a good time.
Let Your Kids Be Kids
Similarly to planning an activity into your family session, one of the best pieces of advice is to let your kids be themselves during your session. Let them jump in the massive puddle on the sidewalk, play with and look at the caterpillar they found on a tree, or wrestle and chase each other around in the backyard. These moments are the ones you’ll want to capture and will always love to look back on as they’re the ones that show them as they truly are. Full of joy, wonder, and without a care in the world.
You Don’t Have to Have Human Kids to Have a Family Session
As I briefly hinted at above, you don’t have to have children in order to have a family session. Having a family session with your pets is incredibly fun and such a great way to create some memories with them. Have your session in and around your home so that they can be a part of your session, running with you in your backyard, snuggling on the couch, or taking a walk around the neighborhood together. Having your session in or around your house makes it incredibly easy to have your pets be a part of it. And if you want to adventure a bit for your session, have a friend or family member bring your pet along for either the start or the end of the session so they don’t have to be there the entirety of your session.
Let The Natural Moments Happen
Lastly and probably most importantly for making the most of your family session is to just let the natural moments happen. Drinks will be spilt, grass and mud stains are going to happen, your kids are going to get distracted by a bug mid prompt, and that is all totally ok. These photos are the real moments showing exactly who you are as a family and are going to be the ones you love looking back on the most. The ones that always make you laugh reminiscing on all the fun you’ve had as a family and how much you’ve all grown together.
If you’re ready to book a family session of your own and are looking for a photographer I’d love to hear from you. Head over to my contact page to send me an inquiry and we can start to plan your session together.