One of the most common things families stress about before a photoshoot is what to wear. First, let me tell you to take a deep breath! There is no right or wrong way to dress yourself or family members. What really matters is feeling comfortable in your own skin, and showing confidence. Here are some factors to consider:
Style: I try to tell people to consider the context of why the photos are being taken. These are professional images, so it is best to avoid wearing your lazy-pants or a graphic t-shirt. Want to take the whole family shopping for the perfect outfits? Go for it! If you stick to a simple color and style palate, you should be able to all look great without buying all new clothes. For most types of photography, wear something that you would wear on a special day that you feel confident in!
For kids, a change of clothes is also a good idea, especially on muddy days. Don’t worry about carrying things, I always bring my trusty photography wagon. If kiddos want to have the option to wear a princess dress, or have been obsessed with Batman recently, bring it along in addition to some regular clothes!
Color Matching: It is not 1982 anymore, so your family doesn’t need to all show up in matching windbreakers. The best way to have cohesion across a group is to pick a set of colors or tones that go well together to plan outfits around. My ideal rule is to pick 3 colors for the session and make sure everyone is wearing at least 2 of the colors in their own outfit.
Layering is a great way to achieve this and also keep warm in the Fall weather! Otherwise, the actual clothing can vary as much as your individual personalities. Think similar, but not identical.
Comfort: We will be moving around a lot, posing, playing and walking to different locations. Wear clothes that move well and Avoid wearing anything that causes physical discomfort. My aim is or everyone to have fun on this photoshoot, we want happy smiles not grimaces!
Accessories/Props: Bring them! Embellishing your outfit with a scarf or a jacket is a great way to add personality and visual interest to the shots. Bringing items you can change out quickly during the shoot will also help to break up the images so they don’t all look the same. Some fun ideas for Fall are Scarves, Rain Boots, Matching Umbrellas or other PNW gear! For themed shoots feel free to bring along signs (ie a Birthday), blankets, or toys to keep kiddos entertained.
Some final tips:
- Show off what makes you unique: Member of the armed services? Does your culture have a specific style of dress? Bring along outfit changes that have deep personal meaning for a few of the shots.
- Avoid neon or extremely bright colors (like red). Colors that are too saturated can be distracting and can reflect weird tones onto the skin. Colorful is great, just don’t go overboard.
- Let everybody pick their own outfit. Sometimes you might want to assign what your family members will wear to the photoshoot. This can cause stress and make our session less fun. Work together to choose the final outfit from possibilities they decide on for themselves.