So I hear that a good blog should include elements that benefit and inform the reader. Tips, tricks, tools, advice, yadda yadda. (Yes, I grew up watching Seinfeld) For the most part this blog so far has tended to be about whatever inspirational attributes our latest photo session provided. The goal has been to capture the spirit of the experiences shared between the Jourdan Photo crew and our clients with each post. It speaks to the heart of what we do here. However, in the interest of always trying new things, this post will attempt to give you, dear readers, my Top 5 Photo Session Tips. Here goes nothin’….
#1. Wear clothes that make you feel good. A future post will elaborate on the do’s and don’ts for photo session outfits. For now, suffice it to say that if you are comfortable in your gear, you are one step closer to being comfortable in front of a camera. It is wise to plan said outfit at least a week in advance so you save yourself the trouble of choosing something in the midst of photo session day nerves. Naked photo shoots take some serious planning, so please do arrive WEARING your get up.
#2. Mind your creature comforts. Be rested, fed, and hydrated. We all need these basic needs met to be able to perform optimally. This especially goes for the kiddos. Full bellies make for satisfied smiles. Good sleep makes for brighter eyes. Satiated thirst is one less distraction. Sessions can last up to 2 hours, so feel free to bring along a snack and water bottle. Side note: This Photographer loves coffee. Just sayin….
#3. Ask questions. Feeling clear and confident about all that a photo session entails goes a long way to helping you go into your shoot relaxed and ready. I’m here to answer your questions before, during, and after the session with pleasure so don’t hesitate.
#4. Be open & patient. Everything that myself and my rockstar assistant do is with the intention of making you look good and authentic in your images. Do your best to roll with our guidance knowing that there is an organic process happening to make the most of our time together. Prepare yourself to be asked to do some things that might feel weird but lead to good results. We’ll never ask you to do anything unsafe or inappropriate, just occasionally silly and/or awkward.
#5. Laugh…or Cry. Nothing chases off jangled nerves like a proper belly laugh. We bring our sense of humor so bring yours too. Conversely, sometimes a good cry has the same effect and makes for some truly moving portraits. Little glimpses of heartfelt emotion whether joyful or melancholy are the moments that we want to capture and preserve as the art we are making together.
Those are my Top 5 Photo Session Tips. Much of it has to do with good planning before the big day. The idea is to take care of the details ahead of time so that you are more at ease during your session.
Please feel free to add what has worked for you in the past in the comments section below. I’m sure plenty of you have helpful insights from your own experiences during photo sessions that might be illuminating for others.
The family in these portraits did an amazing job exemplifying the list above. They were serious troopers as the day was absolutely bone chilling. Their clothing was coordinated but appropriate for the weather. Good thing too as we took some of the shots on a bridge over the Willamette. Any idea we threw at them was met with a spirit of curiosity and adventure. The cold gave a good excuse for some sweet snuggled up shots and a pit stop for hot chocolate to soothe our frozen fingers and noses. They definitely brought the fun and shared their joy in being a family. We were grateful for another great photo session experience. Thank you!