Photo Tutorial, being on the other side of the lens

It is time for one of Julianna’s Photo Tutorials again.  I really wasn’t prepared for this one as I was going to give another blogging member a shot at a tutorial but time got cut short and here I am last-minute writing my heart out.

This is sort of two in one photo tutorial, talking about being on the other side of the lens and how to prepare for a photo shoot when going in to get your family shots done or how to do prepare for a shoot from the other side of the lens.

This is one thing I am guilty of, not being in any of the photographs of family events myself.

It is very important for you to record your presence at the events for your scrapbooks as much as it is photographing your children.  The older they get and as they have children of their own they are going to want to know more about you.

Treat yourself and your daughter or son or both to a photo session.

Weather you go to a professional photographer or DIY at home with the photo tips given (it’s always a blast for me and my daughter to use my iPhone when we are waiting or having still moments to pop out the camera and look cute together!) Or don’t be afraid to set up the tripod and timer, especially with digital today, oh my so easy!  I think I even got a Canon 60D off camera shutter button from Amazon for less than 5.00 and it works!

Preparing for a photo session:

Pick a time of day that is best for you and your children.  Yes this is challenging with natural light,  especially DIY.  At my house if mornings are best I take them through the front windows, if afternoon is good I use the sliding glass door, dining room area.  This is where the light is best at my house.

First of all everyone should have plenty of rest and hydration for everyone.  Nothing worse for a photographer to see the parents getting mad at their little ones for being tired cranky or hungry.  Most photographers will be understanding and reschedule then seeing an upset parent over photographs.  That is part of the business.

Insure your little one takes a nap if that is his/her routine, schedule your day around the shoot, not the shoot around your busy day, believe me it will make a difference.  Why does a child not like a camera in their face when tired cranky or hungry?  Who knows!  We don’t need to know we just need to prepare for it, bring snacks if needed.  Healthy snacks, crackers, nutrition bars, healthy foods not chocolate, or candies to bribe them or even sweet fruit like blueberries can make my little one spin in circles.

Make up and Jewelry: Ah such as tough one for some of us women!  We love bling, fancy jewelry and look great in bright colors of lipstick but your camera does not so much.  Go natural, I recommend good quality makeup but if you are an over the counter girl just don’t go to heavy or to bold with the colors.  The bling doesn’t bling in photographs, it makes blown out white spots, glitter the same.  The bright colors of blush, lipstick or eye-shadows will be brighter and bolder than ever, it is usually best to go as natural looking as possible, it’s ok to cover blemishes as long as it is not caked on, but be sure that your makeup color matches your skin tone and is applied evenly.  If your nails or toes will be in the photograph be sure that they are well-groomed as well.  Clean neat and simple, again nothing bold to detract from who you are as the subject.

For men: Facial hair should be well groomed, for men and women if you are getting your hair done be sure to do it at least one week ahead of time.  This gives it time to grow out and look more natural, or time to change it.  Do  not do anything out of your ordinary just before a shoot, you may not like it so much and will be disappointed on your big day.

It all depends on what kind of setting you are doing, a senior portrait, a family shoot or a portfolio head shot.  Here are some family tips that have been around since camera’s came alive.  To make your shots timeless, the only thing you can’t hardly avoid timeless is hair style unless you are a natural with the timeless style you already have.  No need to change who you are just for a family portrait.

Clothing:  This is a very big thing.  Some families love to match white tops with blue jeans, or go all red or snow-white Christmas time… whatever you like it doesn’t matter what matters is that it all blends.  I don’t recommend writing on the t-shirt or bold patterns or have everyone do the same then have one stand out of the crowd.  If you do go with all one color and you have a large family the colors need not to be an exact match, but yet blend together.  This separates you as individuals and less hassle for multi-family photographs.  Try not to make the blends to contrasty (some very bright and some very dark).  This makes the photo uneven and harder for the photographer to handle the composition.  As we have a way of setting up families, if the wrong one at the wrong height is way off contrast it could detract from the focus of the portrait. Choosing what to wear for the session, the less skin tone that is showing  the better.  Unless you are doing modeling shots or high key photographs.  I am not saying to wear long sleeves and a turtle neck on everyone but sleeves are important.  spaghetti straps are not recommended, in the fall or any outdoor nature shots, earth tones are always a hit. If outdoors at a park,  I don’t recommend green because you do want to separate yourself from the background, but all earth tones that complement your skin tone is always a hit.  Scarfs, hats, and things like that are fun but you may want to wear them towards the end of the session.

Choose your photographer carefully.  Yes Sears does photos but wow there is a whole world of photographers with creative ideas that will match your ideas.  Every photographer has their own style as they are interviewing you while you are interviewing them as well.  Find out if you are a match.  Portfolios are great but they are showing their best shots out of the session.  Get to know their style and be sure this is a style you want for you. If someone came to me and told me they wanted to be photographed jumping out of a plane, I wouldn’t jump for it just to make a few bucks, they want their portfolio to look as good as you want your photographs to be so choose carefully who you go to.  Sometimes budding photographers are inexpensive but will you be happy with what you pay for?   Family photographs are captured moments in time,  you want to make those moments to be who you are and feel comfortable as you can.  Many photographers go on location if you have a special place your family enjoys being at, or want to show your new home for a back ground to show this is where you belong.

Posing: if you have a photographer they will help you but if you are on your own you may want to look up some posing ideas.  Or even if you do have a photographer you may want to know how to pose, when looking for ideas,  look in the photographer’s section on how to pose people then study those tips, as this is a wide subject to elaborate on here.  You may want to practice in the mirror, get ideas, your photographer should know what your best side is and if you have any self-consciousness tell your photographer and maybe he or she can eliminate this with tricks you can use with the posing and camera angle.

I wish I had samples for you today but I have everything archived for family portraits and I am due for my post to go live now!!  I hope this has helped you prepare for your next session.  If you are a photographer with a  young family and a great camera there is nothing wrong with going to another photographer for your family portraits.  It is to stressful and alot of hassle if you have little ones to do it yourself unless your family are naturals!  If you are feel lucky!  I know photographers who have school pictures done of their kids every year just because they don’t want to in that time frame each and every year!  How funny is that? !

Until next time…

Your comments encourage me to craft more!

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