3 Tips For A Successful Spring Mini Session
It’s that time of year, folks; it’s Spring Mini Session season! Minis are great when you’re in a bit of a time crunch, your budget may not allow for a full session right now, or if you’re wanting to try out a new photographer. I’ve heard plenty of parents say that minis are easier, because their kiddos can’t handle an entire hour of photos (btw, I’ll never ask your kids to sit like statues & smile at the camera – I’ll run around with ’em and capture that energy that is so purely child like).
But they can also be pretty stressful if you’re not quite as prepared as you’d like. They’re only 15-20 minutes long, and in that short time frame you’re hoping for at least one good photo that you can share with family and friends. Meanwhile, during the scramble to make it to your session in time, you realize you forgot your baby’s absolute favorite feel good item – what are you going to do?
If you’re excited about your upcoming mini session, but want to avoid the stressful stuff as much as possible, I have three great tips for you!
When I was in theater in high school, and we had a show call time our teacher would always tell us “Early is on time; on time is late; and late is not an option.” As someone who sometimes struggles with being just the regular type of on time (late by Mrs. K’s clock), I’m constantly repeating this phrase to myself. So, when it comes to your mini session – get there early! With such a short time for actually taking photos, you want to be able to use every second. Showing up early is so helpful for traffic & GPS issues, the small hair or make up touch ups that need to be done, and bathroom trips that you just know will become emergencies right when your session is scheduled to start.
Okay, I know it’s all too easy to succumb to the gentle rocking that happens when someone else is driving. So do your littler kids! Even though it may feel like they never sleep, I remember the car being one of my daughter’s favorite napping spots – and not just when she was a newborn! And you’ve probably seen what happens when you wake your child up from a car nap before they’re really ready to be awake. There’s often confusion, maybe feeling a little annoyed, and sometimes even tears! Not exactly what you want to have photographed during your mini session.
It can take your little one the entire 20 minutes of your session before they’re fully awake and ready to shine in front of the lens. So, if your child needs a nap, adjust your schedule on the day to allow for them to take their nap well before your session. You might ask “Can we just keep them awake and have them go to bed earlier for the night?” I have found that this plan usually backfires. Trust me, scheduling the nap for a few hours than normal will help keep everyone smiley for your photos.
Some mini sessions are set up to only stay in one place or with a defined set up. I, personally, enjoy a less restricting mini session and often hold them in nearby parks or downtown areas. So, we might be doing just a tiny bit of walking around to get some variety in your photos. While this location change normally won’t take any time away from your session, it will start to leave you with less photo time if you have to pack up a diaper bag that’s filled with every toy your toddler has ever smiled at.
I know how fickle littles can be with their toys – one day, Mr. Giraffe is their best friend and the next day they don’t want anything to do with him. If there’s one security item that your child has a habit of adoring, it’s okay to bring it with you! Bring that along with the diapers & bottles! But maybe leave the baby blanket, carriers, strollers, and iPads at home.
I hope you found these tips helpful for your upcoming Spring mini session! If you have a tip that you’ve discovered that makes your mini session run smoothly, be sure to share by leaving a comment!