Say Cheeseburger!

Today we are getting family pictures taken. We totally slacked off on getting pictures taken for Christmas and after Palmer's second birthday. Emily's birthday is in July so Bret thought it would be a good idea to go and all of our pictures for the year done at one time. So tomorrow we are getting Palmer's 2nd birthday, Emily's 5th birthday, and our family picture taken.

So after years of getting our pictures taken here are a few tips that I have learned (usually the hard way) of getting the pictures that you want in no particular order:

1. Pick a time that works for your family. For my kids that means in the morning or just after eating their lunch. If we go mid morning they usually get hungry and my kids don't do well after nap time. It takes a really long time for them to get woken up and back into their good mood. I usually try to get appointments from 9-10 at the latest so that I also have enough time to get everyone ready to go.

2. Make sure no one is hungry. That may mean bringing snacks.

3. Tell them what you want. I don't usually like the scene backgrounds that they have set up so I make sure to let my photographer not to waste shots on something I am not going to buy anyways. The photographer usually tries to do the family shots first which would be OK except my 2 year old has a short attention span. I always ask to have his pictures first (I know the photographers love me) and then the family shot. With Bret and I usually holding the kids we can keep them entertained and focused better than when Palmer is by himself.

4. If the pose isn't working move on. I remember when we first took Emily (she was 3 weeks old) to get her pictures taken. The photographer wanted to take her picture in this basket while she was naked. It was an adorable shot but everytime I tried to lay Emily into the basket she freaked out. (Being the young naive mom that I was) we tried to get this shot for 20 minutes before (in my hormonal state) I started to cry and beg that we do something else. It is more important to get a good picture of the kid then it is to get the right pose. Some of the really young photographers lose sight of this sometimes.

5. If you want good shots you have to work for them. Nothing makes a kid crack up faster than mom and dad making a fool of themselves. Sometimes when the photographer tries this it scares the kid more than make them laugh.

6. Know what you want before you get there. I know how many pictures of each kid/pose I am looking for before we walk in. This helps me figure out what I am going to buy so that I don't buy too much (or too little but that never happens). Let's not kidd ourselves here our kids are cute and sometimes that makes us get carried away. Who really (besides you and maybe grandparents) are going to want 5 different wallet poses of your kid?

I work pretty hard to make sure that our family is dressed to at least coordinate. I have seen friends' kid pictures that just wearing cute outfits and they look great. I love matching things though so that can be tough. I always wanted two girls or two boys so they can dress exactly alike (yep I am that mom don't get me started if I were to have twins).

We have tried a couple different places over the years to get our pictures taken and repeatedly our favorite place is Portrait Innovations. They take lots of shots, lots of poses, are reasonably affordable (they have a great $9.99 package), and you can get your pictures in less than 30 minutes (which is awesome). This makes life lots easier when getting holiday cards or just pictures to take back home so that you can hand them out instead of mailing them. Stay tuned to next week and I will show the results.

1 comment:

Autumn said...

I really need to get updated shots of the kids and the family. We usually just buy the school photos (my kids' are naturals with the camera) but this year the school switched companies and NONE of the photos came out as well as they did last year. (I mean NONE! Even parents of my kids' friends aren't happy with the pictures this year). So I am looking for something closer to home (driving to PA for a great picture deal might be a little expensive lol). I will be sure to use your tips (those that apply) so that we too can have some great looking family photos. Thanks for the advice!