How To Have A Great In Home Family Photo Session
Typically around here in Austin, photographers are our busiest during the Spring and Fall seasons. It’s understandable, because most other times of the year are pretty horrific when it comes to weather. The spring and autumn months of the year have some of the best weather days (although, you might have to watch out for rain), and are great times to have outdoor family photo sessions. But what about the other seven months of the year when the weather is either hotter than the core of the sun, or just a little – or a whole lot as it was this past Winter – too cold to be outside for an hour? Do you need to wait until next Spring or Fall? When is the best time of year for a family photo session?
The truth is that there isn’t just one certain time of year when you can get your ideal family photos. Now, that doesn’t mean that you have to sweat your ass off or freeze to get beautiful photos. So, what’s the answer?
Easy – have a family photo session in your home! It protects you from outside elements, and really can show your family’s story in a beautiful, meaningful way.
You might be thinking something along the lines of But, Alyssa! My house isn’t a big, beautiful, white and fresh, studio! My kids have toys all over the place, our house or apartment is tiny, and we don’t have a lot of fancy lights. Listen carefully – it is absolutely okay! Your home is so much more than how it looks, and what’s inside. I’m no stranger to a small, less than tidy space myself, so just know that our time together is judgement free, and we can still make beautiful photos together! So, then how do we get those photos from inside your house? Here are a few tips!
When it comes to lighting, I’m a big fan of natural light. So, if you’re planning on having your next family session in your home, be sure to let that natural light shine through! Turn off all of your overhead lights, and pull up your blinds – yes, even if you don’t have wall to wall window coverage. Indoor, overhead lighting can give you unflattering shadows under your eyes, cheeks, and nose. Natural light from your windows will help give a more even lighting effect if it’s done at the right time of day. And you want to make sure to pull your blinds or open your shutters all the way up so that we don’t get a stipe on your face.
Sure, it’s easy to say “Oh, just clean up your house before your session,” but we all know that actually being able to do that can be tough. Maybe you’re in the middle of renovations and are relegated to a certain area of your house. Maybe you just have a toddler that goes right behind you, taking out every toy and emptying every dresser drawer that you just got cleaned up. So, saying “just clean up” can be a little discouraging. Instead, let me help you find the best places in your home for photos when I get there. We might need to do a little rearranging of things, or a quick pick up of an area when we’re working, but that’s why having the time for a full photo session is helpful. Having said all that, if you’re looking for a more slice of life, documentary session, then I’m there to capture your true every day life. A big clean up isn’t even necessary! Sometimes, life is messy – and it’s okay to document that. Either way, we can work with what’s around us.
One of the best reasons to have a family photo session in your home, is that it can help your kiddos feel at ease! They know and feel comfortable in your home, and all of their best and favorite things are there. It can be difficult for kids to be in a place that they aren’t familiar with – even if it’s a beautiful, fun park. Sometimes, the pressure of getting dressed up, driving in the car, and showing up to a location smiling and ready for pictures can be a little difficult. So, we can take some of that pressure off by getting dressed…and staying home, surrounded by your own furniture, toys, and bathroom. When kids are home, they’re fully in their element, and that’s when a little bit of magic can happen. Plus, they have their favorite lovey there if they need a minute, and if there are any wardrobe malfunctions, we’re just a few steps away from their closet.
These three tips are the top things to keep in mind when you’re thinking of or are on the fence about having a session in your home. I love going on location for a lifestyle session, but sometimes Mother Nature has different plans. We can adapt, head indoors, and still take some honest, meaningful photos of your family all year round! When you’re ready to plan your in-home family session, let’s chat!