If you're anything like me, you've had a good laugh at those Facebook viral posts going around showing the 'worst' family photos. What most of them have in common is matching clothes and miserable family members - and the odd strange haircut or two.
Luckily, modern family portraits are a whole different ballgame.
Gone are the days of everyone standing or sitting in a neat pile of fake smiling bodies. Instead, we actually have FUN on family sessions. Genuine fun.
It's all about taking time out from your real life to focus and celebrate your little family, in whatever shape it comes in. Just for an hour or so, all you have to do is cuddle and tickle those kids.
And honestly? We are all so busy - dealing with daycares or kinders or school, working, making dinner, that secret washing pile - that it's actually nice to take time out from all that and JUST be together.
Here are 5 things you should know about having a family session:
1. It's a joint effort.
Yep. Each session is a joint effort between me, and your family. You guys bring the love and I bring the ability to capture it in a way that brings out the best in all of you. That means allowing you to relax, be yourself and most importantly, giving you guidance before and during the session. A prepared family isn't a stressed family, beyond the usual kids tanties!
2. Posing is not a dirty word
Posing doesn't mean forced!
I pose all my families into a general position because it makes THEM look good, it's pleasing to the eye and highlights the physical connection between each family member. Here's the thing though, what you do IN that position is what I capture - you can still cuddle, love, tickle and show affection in each pose, and look good doing it!
3. It really is fun
With a good photographer, kids actually enjoy family sessions. You know why? Because you're totally focused on THEM. No phones, no dinner making, no housework. And you will too, because how often in real life do we get to just sit down, laugh and cuddle our family for an hour with no distractions!
4. Preparation is everything
All my clients get a What to Wear Guide and plenty of session tips before the day. When you know what you're wearing, you know how to prepare the kids for the session and you know everything well in advance, then the outing becomes something you look forward to! Of course everyone worries about their kids not behaving on the day, but kids don't need to "sit down and smile" anymore - they will smile because their mum or dad is cuddling them!
5. It's quick!
Also mostly gone are the days of 2 hour plus sessions, and multiple images of the same pose with the same expression. My sessions are around 45 minutes, because with kids we need to work quickly, make it fun and make it real. In just 45 minutes or so, I will end up with 50 unique images of you and your family - some more formal (looking at the camera!) and some where you are just being you.
I've never seen anyone regret having a family session. Leave the house, enjoy the sun, cuddle those kids and end up with images you love!