740.927.9044 info@adlerhouse.com  Columbus, OH

Family Portrait

Helpful Hints for Your Portrait Session

Portraits have the ability to touch our emotions and to communicate how we feel about ourselves and our loved ones. When you are creating a memory that will last forever it is important to remember these simple guidelines that will help you make the most of your portrait session.

Don’t make a hasty decision on a photographer.
These images will last a lifetime and most likely you will want to have more portraits done as the years go by. Talk with your photographer to make sure you are comfortable with him or her. If you are not comfortable with the photographer it will show in your photographs. Remember that it’s okay to take your time and choose thoughtfully.

Look at the work of your photographer.
Some studios have multiple photographers and the work you see could belong to someone other than your photographer.

Make sure you are comfortable with the photographer’s style.
The two main styles of portrait photography are traditional and photojournalistic. Most photographers will specialize in one, but provide some amount of the other. When choosing, think about the style that you prefer, but also think about what types of photographs you would like to give your family and what you would like to pass on to your children years from now.

Understand what is included in the quoted price.
When comparing prices, make sure you understand what is included in the price you are quoted. What may initially seem like a low price from another studio may escalate quickly when you add in the cost of the extras you will want. Make sure you understand what all the additional costs will be.

Think about the best time of the day for you and your family.
Late evening hours generally provide the best lighting for outdoor portraits. The lighting during this time of day is soft, directional and quite flattering. However, it is best that you consider you or your children’s schedules. If you or your children are tired it will show and will make the portrait session seem long and tedious for young children. It is ideal to get enough rest and schedule a time of day when everyone is at their best!

Give yourself enough time.
A portrait session can take anywhere from thirty minutes to as much as two hours to complete. Talk with your photographer about the time he or she has allotted for the session so that you do not schedule other activities for yourself or your family during that time.

Consider selecting a location that is memorable for you and your family
Think about places you might have gone hiking or shared picnics. Your own home or backyard would make a perfect backdrop for a memorable family portrait. Think about the places that are most special to you and best define your relationships. Every family has a story to tell…the perfect setting will tell your story for years to come.

Clothing suggestions.
Clothing should enhance the photograph, not dominate it. When choosing clothing for your portrait session, remember that simplicity is best. Choose solid colors over patterns. Khaki, white, ivory, denim, blue and black are very simple colors that work well in photographs. Avoid wearing yellow or green as they can adversely affect skin tones. Also avoid wearing colors that resemble skin tones such as light pink or peach as they will drain your skin of color. Wear long sleeves and long pants or skirts with hosiery, skin tones and light colors from pants or skirts will draw the eye away from your face. If your feet will be in the photograph, be sure the color of your shoes corresponds to the color of your pants or hosiery. Most importantly, if the portrait will include more than one person pick a color or a theme for everyone to wear. Consult with your photographer before selecting colors or themes as he or she will be able to give you the best advice on what will work best for your situation.

Hair suggestions.
Try to keep hair styles simplistic. It is not advisable to try a new hairstyle for your portrait session, you may take the risk of looking dated or not feeling comfortable in front of the camera. Timelessness is a key factor in making decisions about your clothing and hairstyle. If you require a hair cut before a portrait session, try to schedule it at least one week in advance. Men should be clean shaven or have their beard or mustache neatly trimmed before the portrait session.

Jewelry suggestions.
Keep jewelry to a minimum. Glare from large or flat jewelry can be distracting and very expensive to fix IF it can be fixed! Wear very basic jewelry and try to minimize by selecting pieces that are meaningful or sentimental, like wedding bands or your grandmother’s necklace.

Enhance your décor with portraiture.
When your portrait session is complete and you have selected your favorite images, you’ll need to decide the best way to display your new artwork. Planning to decorate your home with portraiture is easier than you think! Your photographer will meet with you during your planning session to discuss your options and explore creative possibilities for your images. During your planning session you will think about all the elements of design – color, style, composition and size. You will also need to think about framing options and placement in the designated space. Your photographer can discuss your options in detail to help you make the most out of your portraiture.

It seems like there is so much to think about! But what really matters is that you are creating a memory that will last forever. Take a deep breath, let it out and enjoy this amazing time.

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