As a Halifax Family Photographer, I know that capturing the authentic connection and love between family members is the most important part of my job. However, I also know that wardrobe plays a huge part in making photographs beautiful. The better you feel in what you are wearing, the more relaxed you will be which will naturally shine through in your images.
Below is a list of ten tips and tricks that I've learned over the years, both having my own family photos taken as well as being the photographer!
1. Patterns, Textures & Logos
Gone are the days of white shirts and denim!
Don't be afraid to mix textures and patterns into your wardrobe. On a cool evening, wear a thick knit sweater, or on a summer night wrap up in a lace kimono over a tank top.
Just remember to not incorporate too many patterns. My rule of thumb is to have one pattern (maybe two) and coordinate the rest of the family's colour palette around it. And never more than one plaid. Never.
Last tip - make sure not to wear clothes with large logos. Logos detract from the pictures!
2. Those Dancing Feet
It's true that the best shooting locations always require a bit of walking.
Wear shoes that you are comfortable in!
For women, I recommend neutral coloured ballet flats.
For babies, I recommend something that comes off easily as we often like to take the shoes off to get pictures of those sweet toes!
Shoes are an important finishing touch of wardrobe selection, so choose carefully!
3. No Red Light District
Watch what colours everyone is wearing.
Avoid neons at all costs!
This includes stripes on kids sneakers, accessories, anything!
Wearing neon in photographs draws the eye to the brightly coloured item and away from what they should be looking at - you and your beautiful family.
4. But What About My Face?
So your clothes and shoes are starting to come together but what about your face?!
To help add depth and contouring to your face, it's recommended to wear your makeup about 20% darker than you normally would.
That being said, make sure your foundation matches your natural skin tone!
5. Double Trouble
Make sure you dress your kiddos uniquely and embrace their individuality!
While it can be tempting to dress kids alike, try to avoid too much matching and go for an overall colour palette instead.
It's all about complementing each other, rather than matching.
6. Don't Forget Those Wrists
I find myself constantly reminding my clients to remove their hair elastics or smart watches from their wrists!
While it can seem like a small thing, having a big, dark watch in the middle of a close up photo of dad embracing his littlest babe can really detract from the emotion of an image.
I would rather Photoshop out tan lines any day than have a watch or hair elastic in your images!
7. Bright Colour in Moderation
The brighter the colour, the less there should be of it!
Bright colours can be beautiful in photos but it is important to remember that moderation is key. Too many or too much bright colours will detract from the family members. Remember, we want all of the attention to be on you and your sweet family!
8. Baby It's Cold Outside
Sometimes sessions can get a little chilly depending on the time of year! We are in Nova Scotia after all, so need to be prepared for anything!
Instead of wearing jackets, layer clothing with undershirts and long underwear! Thick knit sweaters add texture to images - add in a vest or scarf with jeans and you have the perfect outfit!
Fear not chilly sessions! During your time with me you will be snuggling with your family, exploring the location and moving a lot so you will keep warm!
9. Accessories & Details
It's all in the details - and accessories!
Adding jewelry, a scarf, or even a vest can create visual interest and add to any outfit.
Statement necklaces or large rings can add personality to a maxi dress, or even jeans and a kimono.
That being said, often kids will want to wear their jewelry if mommy is. If that is the case, I always make a deal with them that I will take some photos with the toy jewelry and then I get to wear it for a bit while I take some pictures of them without it. Sneaky, right?
10. A Neutral Color Palette
Still stuck? All of the colour choices and mixing and matching can definitely become overwhelming.
Earth tones including creams, browns and tans are always a great bet and pair well with any location!
Not only that, neutral colours never go out of style and pictures will always look great hanging in frames on your walls!
When going with this colour palette, skip black and white as these colours tend to not photograph well - white can be too bright and distracting, while black tends to show in photographs as one dimensional and flat.
When you are choosing your outfits remember, you are not aiming to contrast with your background in order to 'pop'. The goal is to complement the location of your session! As your photographer, it is my job to make sure you 'pop' and I do that through the way I document your family!
Another quick tip - wear clothes that allow movement. Take this opportunity to dress up a little and wear either a maxi dress or kimono, if that is your style! I have a small client closet and would love to work with you to find a dress you are comfortable in!
Still stumped on what to wear? Would you like a second set of eyes on what you've picked out? Send me a message and we can chat!
You can also check out my Pinterest boards that I have created to show some great examples of wardrobe!
Interested in learning more about what a family session is like? Check out my family session page here!
Thank you to Twig & Olive Photography for these great graphics!