A simple guide to picking the right photographer for your family photoshoot

Family portrait photography is a very personal experience and it’s important to choose the right photographer for your family.  You’ll want to pick someone who you feel comfortable with because that is the foundation of every beautiful photoshoot, if you’re not comfortable it’s going to be impossible to capture authentic moments.

Each photographer has a unique style and there are a few elements you may want to consider when evaluating their portfolio.

Photographers’ Style

Photography, like every artform, is very subjective and each photographer will have their own unique style when it comes to editing images.  Their style will be a combination of how they pose their subjects, to the locations they choose, how they use light and how they create images.

You might consider the poses in their portfolio images and imagine if those are the types of images you want to capture your family.  Lifestyle images are typically images that capture moments which are more unscripted and less looking at the camera.  These are beautiful images, but not everyone is drawn to that style, some people prefer a more classic portrait style where all or most of the faces of the subjects are clearly visible.

I’ve put together a small sample of images which I would consider a mix of lifestyle and classic portraits as examples.

The most obvious consideration when looking a photographer’s editing style will be their use of colour.  Trends change regularly and as this happens you will start to see many photographers’ using similar colour palettes.  When considering this take note of the colours you love in your home and whether the style you’re considering will match in your home.  You can discuss this with your photographer before your shoot to ensure that you plan for colours that will match the tones in your home.

My style is very natural and true to real life because I want to create images that are timeless and endure beyond the trends of this season.  I often work with clients to create a palette that suits their home, I just focus on the natural background colours and co-ordinating outfits in the same tones instead of colouring the overall image.

Telling your story

Photography is very much about telling your family story and more specifically, about the mood we want to create at your photoshoot.   With little children the overall moods tends to be joy with a few tender moments in between simply because children are just so full of energy and laugh so easily.  Your children may be more reserved though and your family story may be one of gentle smiles and calm cuddles.  Make sure your photographer is adaptable to your family dynamic.

I’ve put together a few images to show how moments can differ between families, the goal is to capture your unique connection sincerely, not recreate poses.

Picking a Location

The location for your family portraits is very important.  Firstly you need to consider a location that is comfortable for everyone, make sure it is easily accessible and not only looks beautiful but is also easy to be comfortable at.

For example, some mountain locations are stunning but hard to reach or not great spots for little children to run around freely at.

The beach is a favourite always, but at certain times of the year the wind may make it hard to capture portraits where your hair looks good.  Are you a fan of windswept hair or do you prefer to have your hair styled beautifull in your portraits?  Some of these are very personal preferences and it is up to your photographer to point out the pros and cons of every location while you are making your choice.

I’ve put togther a few images showing how a location can change the overall feel of an image.