CONFESSION: You know all your darling holiday cards or those fancy family photos you post on Facebook? Yah? Well, they kind of make me want to jump off a bridge.

Okay, fine. That’s sort of an exaggeration. Truly, all of you in your matching chambray work shirts, in front of that oak tree look lovely. Really. But I’m a little jealous. I want to look polished. I want to look together. I want to look (and feel) complete.

I’m certainly not trying to sound all woe is me, (as I so often like to do), because I realize there’s been nothing stopping me from putting Jonah and I in matching get ups and taking photos… But I just haven’t done it. So it goes without saying that when I was contacted by Michelle from Monarch Lane Photography, I was THRILLED.
She and her sister were a delight to work with and I loved the way the photos turned out. In fact, I’m thinkin‘ one of these puppies could very well be a holiday photo this year. (Act surprised when it comes in the mail).
Looking to take a family photo? Here are Michelle’s tips for what makes a good family photo shoot:
1. Find a photographer you connect with and feel comfortable with. There are many great photographers out there, but if you don’t feel a good rapport with them, it will be hard to feel comfortable in front of the camera, and your pictures may show that. Also, you want to make sure that what you have in mind for your photos is a style that that photographer does. For example, if you want natural lit pictures, make sure that you don’t choose a photographer who only shoots in a studio.
2. I find that the best family pictures are the ones that are the least posed. I try to capture my clients candidly, because those always make for the most genuine pictures. It’s hard to feel totally natural when you’re having your picture taken, but play around with your kids, laugh and most importantly have fun, and that energy will be apparent in your photos.
3. Depending on the setting of your shoot, what you wear can really give your photos different vibes. I shoot outdoors, which is great for all kinds of different attire. You can never go wrong with black, and I find lots of bright colors, work well outdoors too, because they really “pop” against the colors in nature. For little girls, I always think some fun, textured tights can look really cute, and for boys, a collard shirt or little blazer looks cool out in the beautiful scenery and provide a neat contrast. I always tell my clients it’s best to avoid white, since it can end up looking blown out, but sometimes my client will have a particular look that they are going for that will involve wearing like a white, flowy dress or something, and then, that’s OK. If it’s not your “vision” though, it’s best to stick with other colors. Another thing I recommend staying away from is big logos. They can be distracting in a photo.
4. Make it fun for the kids.The more pressure the kids have on them, the harder it is to get a good picture. If a child is relaxed, or even acting silly, it gives us the opportunity to get some great expressions and lots of smiles. Bringing water and a few small snacks can keep their energy levels up, and a snack break can break up the session, which can feel particularly long for kid.
To see more pics from our shoot, (click HERE) or head to Facebook!
FILED UNDER: A Little Life

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  1. Wednesday, February 1st, 2012
    These are GORGEOUS photos. Wow! Very nice.