Tips to Prepare Kids for a Photo Session

Tips to Prepare Kids for a Photo Session

When kids aren’t prepared in advance for a photo session, sometimes there can be challenges.

By educating your kids in advance, you can remedy most of these challenges.   They may still have some moments, but the idea is to make less of these.  To get the most out of your experience, I’ve come up with some tips to assist them at being their best.

Lay The Groundwork

Let them know we will be doing a photo shoot and that it will be fun.  I will incorporate some fun into the shots and for younger children, even a little playtime to capture some more candid shots.  Let them know they will be expected to be in the photos and we may need them to sit or stand in a few different positions. You can also prepare them by showing them a photo of me from my website on my about page.  That way I won’t feel like a stranger when they arrive at the session.

Offer a reward.  I’m not necessarily suggesting a bribe, but if you mention that as a family you plan to visit the ice cream shop after the photos, it gives them something to look forward to and just makes the whole experience sound more fun!

Resist the urge to ask your child to smile.  Natural smiles are always better.  I try to make them laugh by being silly or cracking jokes,  but I’m open to suggestions as well.  You know your child and know what makes them laugh.  I’m happy to work together on this.  I’d rather do this than try to force a smile.  For smaller kids, try to make sure they get their nap in.  Also, don’t try to plan too much the same day as the photo shoot or everyone will be tired.

Dress for Success

One thing that might make a child difficult during a photo session is if they are uncomfortable.  Don’t make them wear a hat if they hate it.  Don’t put them in clothing that they don’t feel good in.  Making sure they are comfortable during the shoot will help them enjoy it, and in return will ensure better photos.  If there is something you really want them to wear, make sure they wear it a few times before the photo shoot so they are more accustomed to the fit of the clothing. Visit my article about what to wear regarding colors, patterns, etc. and for more information on this topic.

Beware the Hangry

When I was about 18, I went on a road trip with my two close friends.  One of my friends mom told us before leaving to make sure he eats because otherwise he gets cranky.  I thought this was really funny at the time.  But it’s even more true with kids.  I’ve definitely discovered this with my own daughter!. So I think most parents know what I’m referring to when I say “hangry.”  Some kids have more difficulty with this than others.  The fact is that food fuels us and kids without food, can result in a challenging session.  That said, making sure everyone is fed in advance is very important.  Also, bringing a few snacks is not a bad idea.  While I’d prefer not eating during the photo shoot, it would be better to have something available if needed.  If you see that they need a break, by all means let the photographer know.  We can always take a quick break for a snack.  So napkins or wipes might be a good addition to this.  If they are snacking, then there may be a need for cleaning faces.

That brings me to the next item to bring along.  Depending on the time of year, it can be pretty hot in Austin, so water is very important.  But even when it’s not, it can’t hurt to have extra water around for thirsty kids.

Hopefully this information has been helpful for you.  By talking to everyone in advance about the session, preparing your clothing and making sure everyone is fed and has snacks and water available, you should be on your way to a successful photo shoot!

For information on scheduling, contact me.