6 Tips for your Photoshoot with Your Local Photographer

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Tips for your photo shoot with your local professional photographer.

I have six tips below that I think are at the top of my list of things that will make you really enjoy your session and portraits.

1. Talk together prior to the session. If possible meet have coffee somewhere or go to the studio if your going to be there for the session. Tell them what your hopes are, what your concerns are, and about your family. This is the first step to creation of the artwork. You wouldn't walk into a painters studio for a self portrait without an idea of who they are, what you want, and what they can do. If they can't help you or are not interested then there is a problem. Tell them if someone will have an issue with the session, physical, emotional, or otherwise. A great example was a session were we had an autistic child. If we had not known about this ahead of time the session could have been a disaster! Another one was a session where it was unclear of the relationships. We accidentally called a new boyfriend dad...... and end scene! That definitely crushed the mood and we were so sorry as it was just a slip of the tongue. Then there are physical limitations, sometimes it just isn't possible for someone to sit on the ground or a low chair. If the photographer knows beforehand they will plan for a different look.

2. Listen to the photographer when it comes to clothing and setting. If your looking for a chic look and then pick a backdrop or setting that is really rustic then you might be off. Your photographer should be able to help you. Colors of clothing are also extremely critical for mood, style and layout. Outdoor sessions in Oregon lushness means that greens and browns are going to make you blend right into the background. The same goes for black colors. Listen to the artist, the colors need to match your personality but they should also fit for the setting. A great photographer will want to know what your wearing ahead of time, and adjust the setting, or your wardrobe to match. When in doubt bring the clothing options to the session or planning meeting. We personally like to see pictures at least of your clothes prior to the session.

3. Be honest about what your able to do or what those in your portraits are able to do. I hear a lot about fun lifestyle posing but when I ask a client to dance and have fun they are so shy that it doesn't work. Remember, the photographer has seen almost everything and they want you to be over the top when asked to do so. Don't be to shy to kiss your loved one, or hold them, or smile big, or laugh, or dance! We really are not ashamed to make a fool of ourselves and even when doing formal posed those moments in between make the session go so much smoother. Pretend and fake it if you have too. If you are normally reserved tell us and we will ease you into the activities. Believe me we work on the ice breaker pose and chat going into the session. The idea that you should dance like no one is watching is really true. Practice your smile ahead of time and then use it.

4. Let go of your self control and let it all hang out!! Be willing to be pampered or pamper yourself prior to the session. Get ready for the session like your going to impress the one you love!!! If you feel beautiful you will look beautiful. We had a client a while back who got all the way to the selection of their portraits and said that if she had known she would have done something more with her hair and make up. I was stunned as I had never thought that someone would have needed to be told that portraits are something special. But if your experience with photography is a mass production photographer or shoot and burner maybe that is all the effort they would have put into it. So my recommendation is to pamper yourself and your portraits will come out so much better and you will be so much happier with how you look.

5. Have fun!!!! We are going to!! This is not going to be a root canal unless you make it one. 

Happy emotions

5. Once posed remember to sway a little or move position. We don't expect you to be a statue. If the shot is a single do the model thing. Shift from leg to leg, play with your hair, move your head around a little, laugh, be serious, smirk, and let go. There is a cool video on fast modeling here https://petapixel.com/2017/07/22/chinese-models-get-photo-shoots-done-fast/. I am not saying to do this but the moral is that they are in motion, not standing rigid. Let the photographer get you into a position then move around during the shooting. 

6. Love the people your in the portraits with you. It is ok to snuggle, squeeze, tickle, kiss, etc. Unless you want the formal over the top stiff posed portraits, but do you know why they look like that in paintings, THEY HAD TO SIT FOR THAT PAINTING FOR A LONG TIME!!!! It is pain and a long time. We can capture that formal moment quickly and also have fun with some others. See number one above about talking with your photographer. 

That is enough for now, I will list some more later and we can talk about them. My question is, what are your tips to the successful photo session you have done.