So you got your session on the calendar and now it is time to prepare! 9 our of 10 of my clients turn to me for wardrobe advice and other recommendations after they schedule with me. So I felt a blog post with all of the helpful tips and suggestions I've accumulated over the years would be an amazing idea. So here it is!
What should we wear? this is the big one. The mother load. And next to the posing and image quality, your outfit choices are going to be as equally as important in making your images the best they can be.
So take notes!
If after reading this, you still are uncertain or want some feedback about planning your wardrobe, ask me! I am thrilled to provide any wardrobe advice or even give some honest feedback about your choices. What you chose to wear affects so many aspects of your session and experience, and I'm more than happy to be a part of that!
First of all, lets consider a few essentials and general Do's and Dont's
1. I'm going to be blunt here so please forgive me. But this is important. PLEASE do not show up with your entire family wearing matching shirts. Its so 1995 and honestly its kind of culty. Just saying. Besides, im not sure that ever worked....even then.
Also, its totally okay to mix plaids and floral designs and stripes and tweeds. It looks great and adds some personality to your wardrobe!
2. Avoid wearing shirts or hats or anything else I'm not remembering right now that have large logos or large patterns on them. They are so distracting and will take away from your beautiful smiling faces!
3. Be comfortable! When your clothes feel comfortable, YOU feel comfortable...therefore you feel confident! Trust me on this one. it shows! If you are not usually comfortable in a dress, but know you can rock some skinny jeans or leggings, ditch the dress!
4. Wear clothes that fit and hug your curves. Flowing blouses or tunics or straight dresses with no form will make you look larger in your pictures than you really are. So don't be afraid to put a belt around your waist or wear fitted shirts/ pants.
5. Shoes....ladies, this one is mostly for you. I absolutely don't mind if you want to wear heels in your pictures, but definitely bring another pair of comfortable shoes to change into in between locations.
To get those epic Colorado scenes, it often requires a bit of walking and/ or hiking to get there and I can assure you it is not a pleasant experience having to get to these places in heels. No bueno.
6. Dress weather appropriate. This is especially important for any little ones that will be at the session. Nothing is more difficult than trying to get a cold toddler to smile or interact in the posing.... Do a ton of layers if you have to, find a nice coat that isn't too bulky but will be a great addition to their outfit. Their comfort will be more important than anything else and the best way to ensure happy and smiling faces. Also, if its cold, feel free to bring a blanket! It really adds a cozy feel to a winter session!
7. Layers are an AMAZING way to add depth and dimension and a extra warmth if needed! So feel free to do as many layers as you want! during the summer, put a belt or sash on your dress with a pendant necklace. During the winter, go for a cardigan, belts, blazers, scarfs, hats, etc. You just can't go wrong with layers.
8. I always suggest going a more casual route. Because most of us don't spend our days in fancy dresses or suits. If you are more of a jeans and T shirt type person, stick with those. This is how people know you and see you on a daily basis. A simple, relaxed feel is usually the way to go. Of course there are always exceptions, and im more than happy to photograph any formal attire if the situation calls for it.
9. Hair and make up! If you wear makeup, go for a shade darker than you usually wear so your features show up better on camera. Its okay to style your hair, but avoid any slicked back pony tails or tight buns. And definitely hold off on any drastic color changes or styles until after your shoot...same goes for spray tans. If you do get spray tanned or airbrushed, go for a very light application. If done wrong or with streaks, it can be very difficult to edit out.
10. What time of year is your session? And of course, where will the session be? Consider these two things when picking your wardrobes. Bright colors and pastels really would not be appropriate for a winter session, but just the thing for a late spring/ summer session. If the location is very green, avoid wearing green. We want the focus to be on YOU amongst the beautiful scenery, and wearing green will just make you blend in with the scenery and tends to give people a washed out appearance.
Speaking of seasons, lets talk about them. If its fall, stick with darker palette colors; dark reds, browns, dark yellows, black, deep purples and blues...these colors will stand out the most amongst the fall scenery.
For a winter session; bold and deep colors are a great choice....as are neutrals and grey/ blacks. Be sure and grab the Jeans and boots, sweaters, vests, scarfs, hats....
all of the cozy things you wear outside to stay warm will work perfectly! And again, feel free to grab your favorite blanket!
Spring and summer is your chance to bring out the bright and pastel colors to your wardrobe. Hot pink and polka dots and floppy hats and flip flops are all wonderful things to incorporate into your session. Don't be afraid to really go all out with some colors! This is your chance!
I hope this can be a useful tool when planning for your session. In addition to these tips, I also suggest eating before your session and bringing plenty of water and even some snacks for any littles. Being well rested and hydrated makes a world of difference for not just your mood, but your complexion.
I highly recommend leaving at least 15-30 minutes earlier to allow time for traffic issues or problems finding the location, or anything else that could potentially delay the drive. Most all sessions are scheduled an hour before sunset as this time of day has the most optimal light and so we will be working against daylight. Showing up late and rushed greatly affects the flow of the session and turns what should be a comfortable and fun experience into a stressful and rushed situation. I want to achieve high quality and authentic images for each and every one of my clients, and its difficult to do so when time is restricted and everyone is stressed.
I am looking forward to photographing all of my upcoming 2019 clients and their families and creating images you can treasure for a lifetime!