First find a great photographer that you are comfortable with. If the price seems too good to be true it probably is. Find someone with lots of patience and experience. If your photographer doesn’t seem to have time to help you plan your session he or she isn’t going to go the extra mile to ensure you are happy with your final gallery and prints. If you can’t reschedule make sure your photographer has a backup plan in case of bad weather. Especially here in Saskatchewan, we should all have a back up plan! Personally I know of two good indoor locations in Regina and I have a studio.
Get a good night’s sleep and drink plenty of water. I always have bottles of water on hand to make sure my clients are comfortable and hydrated. If you need a haircut do so at least a week before so it has time to grow out a bit. If you have a “good side” tell your photographer. He or she will want to work with you to enhance your best features. A photographer that understands the light can ensure you look your best.
Give some thought to what you are going to do with the photos. If you know what you want, it will help your photographer pose you. He or she can show you the products that will work for you. Chose a photographer that specializes in large prints so that your session results in wall art not just jpgs on a disk.
The number one question I am asked is “what should we wear?”. I suggest choosing a style (casual, dressy?) and going from there. I love solid colours, jeans and outfits that go together but do not necessarily match (check my pintrest page as I am always adding great clothing ideas). Beware logos, narrow stripes and anything so trendy it will date your photos. Wear your normal makeup and don’t forget shoes (or go barefoot). Lay out your clothes a couple days before and send your photographer a cell phone shot so he or she can give you a couple last minute ideas.
Bring along personal, meaningful touches. A beloved stuffie, a book or anything that makes your family unique is beautiful in a photo. I welcome pets, Saskatchewan Roughrider jerseys and I am open to any idea that families have to make their photos unique, meaningful and beautiful.
If you want to help the photographer get your child to smile or look at the camera stand right over their head but be careful not to get backed into! Your photographer should not be in a rush. Allow children to take breaks to ensure you get natural relaxed smiles. Resist the urge to tell children to say cheese – I have yet to see that result in a great smile but telling a funny story, making funny noises or playing “I’m going to get you games” never fails. If you are going to use food to reward your children be cautious it isn’t messy or wait until the photos are over.
Finally don’t stress! Chose a professional photographer who makes it seem so easy you can’t believe its done. Resist the urge to get mad at your children. Give them time to warm up to the session. If you are having fun it shows in the photos. So relax, have fun, laugh and enjoy this special time together.
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