Monday, January 30, 2012

Tips For Great Family Portraits

This family gets an A+ for being so much fun! 
This subject was  inspired by a shoot I did a few weeks back.  

Family Portraits!...........To do, or not to do? That is the question!

    They are not for the feint of heart. The minute you make the announcement, the moans and groans ensue. They will complain in an attempt to have their way, but you want your way too, so you MAKE them do it. Suddenly everyone's grouchy. Well, what did you expect? Then come the threats.... I have heard mothers tell me tales of children and grown men who threaten them with "closed eyes", "crossed eyes", exposed tongues,"bunny" ears over a sibling's head, and....Broken cameras....GAh!! What's a woman to do but extort good behavior from her child with a promise of special candies from Cracker Barrel, and if they're older the bribes become pricier.

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So, what is the secret to creating a fun, and natural portrait session, where it does not appear as if, in every photo they have been threatened within an inch of there life? How do you make a successful family portraiture session fun?
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 Do something fun! First you must create an action for your family, an action towards the fun. Something that will get them moving naturally. What do you love to do together? Tennis, fishing, shopping, the playground?? Whatever it is, it has to be fun. 

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Do you love outdoors? Make a picnic lunch to match the theme of your outfits and don't tell them you've done it. Make it a surprise, because lets face it, who is not curiously excited over an unexpected surprise. Put beautiful cookies inside pretty purses (this creates detail as well as adds interest to a photo).  Your goal, is to get a family of complete and utter happiness on film, so you can look back, and remember, that you had fun. Your family was fun, and wow, what a great family portrait session that was. Lets do it again someday.
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      I Had a fantastic time with the Langford Brood, they were wonderfully charming while they were getting Quffed and Puffed. (slang for hair and make-up;-) I loved how little Chloe warned me, ever so nicely, that she would scream "coconuts"really loud if I burnt her scalp....LOL... and her sister Maddy told her mommy very sweetly that, "she didn't know how to wait!" (for her turn in the chair). We made Paper Chain hearts for baby Brother Payton. I had the girls write, his name, and the year of his birth, on the hearts. 

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Words for Payton: 
       Dear Baby Payton, 
  They love you and you're not even here. They placed your name on their hearts, then had these photos taken so you would know you are special. You are a highly anticipated event.

More Family Portrait advice!!