Blair family shot by Candice Stringham
It’s been far too long since I have braved the annual family photo shoot. In fact, it has been a few years. When thinking about tips for taking great family photos, both from a professional photographer and in my everyday life, two bloggers came to mind as being good resources for tips and inspiration.
Gabrielle Blair, who blogs at Design Mom, has a family of six beautiful children and has some of the most creative and fun photo shoots. Here is her advice she has for getting the family photo shoot right.
• Take the time to find a great photographer. Research, look at shoots you like, ask around.
• What do you want to capture? Once you’ve scheduled a date with a photographer, take some time to think about what you want. Talk over your ideas and plans with the photographer and look to them for guidance.
• What’s your style? As far as family photo trends go, 10 or 15 years ago it was all about matching denim shirts. Then family photos trended to candid, up close shots — photographed by your best friend or neighbor. What’s happening now? A more editorial style — as if the family photo is being shot for your favorite magazine. Find your style and go with it.
Sometime when shooting with children, things tend to be a bit chaotic. More important that get the perfectly posed family photo, really focus on the family’s dynamic rather than to have everyone looking the same direction. Ali Edwards really does this right. She captures the real stuff. “I like photos that showcase relationships – especially the real ways in which people interact everyday.” Here are some of Ali’s tips for getting great everyday photos of your family.
• Turn around. What’s happening behind you as you walk ahead?
• Capture moments of delight. I do a lot of looking through my lens to capture delight. It’s one of my favorite emotions and one of the things that I love to see most on my children’s faces.
• Get perspective. I love shots that demonstrate size perspective – this is especially cool with kids. How can you show that both when you are up close and farther away?
• Motion. I love shots that show motion. Bring on the blur. What sort of movement is happening that can be captured on film?
• Rule of thirds. Studies have shown that when viewing images that people’s eyes usually go to one of the intersection points most naturally rather than the center of the shot – using the rule of thirds works with this natural way of viewing an image rather than working against it.
• Get me in the shot. I think it’s important for me to see myself in my own life.