1. Forgo a photo uniform. The days of dressing your whole family in head-to-toe white for the family portrait are far behind us (thank goodness!). Instead, ask everyone to wear colors that fit a basic color scheme and seasonality. Let the memo go something like this: “Put on your favorite jeans, boots and dark colored shirts —navy plaids to green stripes—for an outdoor photo shoot!”
2. Relax and have fun! When you are having a great time, it shows. Avoid stressing over perfection. Let kids get their hair a little messy and their clothes a little disheveled. Who cares if a few people don’t feel like tucking in their shirts? Embrace it! Crank up the upbeat music, and just enjoy spending time together.
3. It’s all about location, location, location. As photos are concerned, surroundings really count. Avoid arranging the whole family on the living room sofa or against a bland wall in your home. A worn barn door or rows of Fraser firs at a Christmas tree farm is a far more interesting backdrop.
4. Tell a story. Consider letting your photo shoot be during a fun family activity. Maybe it’s going to a pumpkin patch, on a carousel ride, or to the zoo. Whatever you’re doing, adding an activity creates a narrative and ultimately pumps up the personality of the end result. (This will also take care of tips 2 and 3 in one fell swoop!)
5. Capture a moment. Likely, your most cherished memories involve funny stories, long hugs, or maybe even tears. Aim to capture a special moment in a photograph. Don’t worry about getting a photo with every eye on the camera and every smile fixed at “cheese!” Focus on snapping shots of your loved ones interacting with one another and experiencing real emotions. Trust us, you’ll be glad you did.
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