• Jessica Guercio

Friday Five - Have your best family photo session yet!

Holiday mini session season is right around the corner! I'm so excited to see so many familiar faces and looking forward to meeting many new ones! But, I'll be real with you... I know that family photos can be challenging at times. They are important (and totally worth it!) but it is not always the most fun way to spend part of your day! This week on the Friday Five, I'm going to give you five tips that will make your Holiday Mini Session run as smooth as possible!

1. Choose your outfits carefully and leave yourself plenty of time to get ready.

Get those outfits nailed down in advanvce. Think about what your ideal family photos look like. Are they soft with neutral colors? Fun and bold? Make sure your family coordinates but not too matchy matchy. Accessories like hats and scarves are a great way to incorporate some interest into your images. Pick someone to start with... does your daughter have the perfect dress for photos thats hunter green? Or your son have the perfect holiday plaid? Use that as your starting point for the whole family. Keep patterns to a minimum so your photos dont look too busy. Make sure the day of, give yourself more time than you think to get ready! Mommas, get a blowout or leave plenty of time for yourself... your confidence will come across in the photos and your family will follow suit !

2. Make sure everyone is well rested and well fed.

Mini sessions can be a blessing and a curse, especially if you have little ones. They are great because they are quick and painless! They can be challenging because its harder to be flexible, especially if your little one takes a beat to warm up to new faces. The best thing you can do is make sure everyone has had a good nights sleep if your have morning photos or has some rest during the day for evening photos. Please don't show up with an empty stomach. I know what hangry looks like and it doesn't translate well to your pics. If you have dinner scheduled after photos, make sure your little ones (and big ones!) have a little snack pre-shoot.

3. Dads - this ones for you.....

Ok mommas, go ahead and pass the phone over to your husband... this one is for him.

Listen guys, I know a family photo shoot is the last place you want to be. You are probably already dreading it. I get it. Its awkward, everyone is frustrated, and there is probably a game on that is way more entertaining than me. the good news is... this session will be over before you know it. These are photos you will appreciate years from now when life is different and your kids are older. Please be a cheerful participant. You will look better, your wife will be happier, and you'll have amazing photographs! I can't tell you how many "that wasn't so bad" or "this is actually fun!" comments I've gotten from dads just like you. Ok, dad... you are done for now... pass the phone back. ;)

4. Have fun!

I know this might seem cliche... or even like a simple request. But it makes such a difference in your photos! During our session, I want you to relax. I want you to have normal interactions with your family, not forced cheesy faces. But I know this is easier said than done sometimes. I will talk to you, to your kids... I want to get to know your family. I'll gently guide you and pose you... but I try not to make things to stiff. Don't be afraid to toss your kids in the air. Or tickle them. Kiss your wife on the cheek. Joke with your husband. Have fun. Laugh. Giggle. Joke. Embrace. Kiss. Snuggle. Play. I'll be there... snapping away so you have really great moments captured. Let's do this!

5. Your photos don't have to be perfect

You might be the kind of client who wants the perfectly posed photo... all eyes on the camera! Big smiles! You might be a client who wants a pic with everyone snuggled in together... everyone looking at one another. You might be a client who wants them both!! I fall in the category of loving both types of captures. As your photographer, I don't have a clue what you really want unless you tell me. I love the posed shot just as much as the relaxed one. I will do my best to get you lots of options during our session. Just know, sometimes the best photographs are often times the ones where everyone is just interacting with one another like I'm not even there. If your just having fun and loving on each other, your smile will be natural and real. Those make the best photographs that we cherish forever!

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