Six must-dos for your family photo shoot

Cherish beautiful memories for years to come 

Family photo shoots can be stressful and challenging - so many things need to go right for the shoot to go well. But don’t worry! We have professional tips to make it a smooth process, and the result will be incredible photos to cherish for years to come. A little planning and preparation is all it takes. Here are our top six tips for your next family photo shoot.

Family of eleven together on a hill

1. Get everyone involved

Encourage everyone in the family to participate in the photo shoot, from choosing a date and location to picking out clothes and helping with poses. Including everyone in the process will ensure the event feels fun and exciting instead of like a chore.

Bonus: The more interactive the family is during the planning stage, the more comfortable they’ll feel in front of the camera! 

2. Give yourselves enough time

You may feel the urge to book a spontaneous photo shoot to capture the beauty of the current season, but last-minute family photo shoots rarely turn out how you want them to. Planning your photo shoot well in advance is essential for two main reasons:

To find the right photographer

You’ll want to research to find a photographer that suits your style and has a good rapport with you and your family. This can take some time! Hint: Word-of-mouth reviews are your best bet - ask your network for a good recommendation, and then meet them in person before signing on.

To get organized

If you want everyone in the family to look their best, you’ll need time to schedule haircuts, plan outfits, and take care of any other personal grooming that will show up on camera.

Family of four on beach

3. Pick a location that means something to your family

To create beautiful family photos, consider choosing a location that is meaningful to your family. A place with personal significance will make your photos all the more special. Other things to consider when selecting a site:

• The time of day; light can significantly affect the overall look of your photos.

• Consider the season. Are you hoping for a winter shoot? Or perhaps you want to take advantage of fall's vibrant colors? Be aware of the weather before you decide on a location, or even better, make sure you have a wet weather option just incase!

• Choose a spot with a clean and simple background for classic, tasteful looks, or go for something whimsical or unique to match a theme or make a statement.

• If you have small children, pick a safe location where they can explore freely.

Young family on beach

4. Decide on a wardrobe color scheme

When choosing outfits for your family photo shoot, think of color coordination rather than color matching. If you’re unsure where to start, choose one outfit first and let everyone else coordinate from there.

• Select something seasonally appropriate and avoid clashing color schemes.

• Try to choose tones that are flattering for everyone in the group.

• Choose colors that will complement the location.

5. Have a plan for the day of the shoot

It’s difficult for rushed participants to look relaxed and happy on camera if stressed about time, so being on time for your family photo shoot is crucial. Plus, your photographer may be on a tight schedule.

• Come with prepared ideas for shots to ensure the most creative results.

• Think of any props you may want during the shoot, such as balloons, baskets or toys, and bring them along.

Family of four on bed

6. Relax and have fun

Once you’ve planned all the details and got everyone to the location, it’s time to let go and let the shoot unfold. Be flexible, go with the flow, and don’t take things too seriously - remember, the more fun you have, the better the photos will turn out! Explore the MILK gallery for family photo shoot inspiration from our community.

There you have it - six must-dos to ensure a successful family photo shoot. We are confident you’ll be pleased with the results and enjoy the photos forever. When you're ready, don't forget to create a photo book of all the snaps. There's nothing quite like family, and there is no better way to document your moments together than with a MILK Family Photo Book or Album. Good luck!

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