Whether you have 5 or 20 people in your session, it can feel daunting to bring your family together for a portrait session. It can look like a giant mountain you need to scale. Firstly, you have to convince the photophobic members of the family to even show up! Then you need to get everyone’s wardrobe in place, organise a time that fits everyone’s schedule (including working around the baby’s nap time), and finally, think of a location that is suitable. Before you even start, you feel tired already!
Trust me, your situation is more common than you think. As a photographer who has been in front of the camera too, I have personally faced every single challenge listed here. So here are some strategies to help you make this planning process smoother.
1. Convincing your photophobic family member to show up
Remind your family members that they are taking part in a family moment that will eventually be a visual heirloom for years to come. The years will just go by so quickly, and before you know it, the kids will have grown up, and it will be a different season altogether. As a photographer, I have personally invested time and energy to photograph my family every year. It’s my way of seeing how the kids are growing and how our family is ageing as the years go by. It is much better to have these images than to regret never doing it at all. Here’s Michelle and Kishore’s way of documenting their child’s 1st year as a baby, through a 10 month project with us!
2. Scheduling Conflicts
One of the biggest challenges in planning a family portrait session is finding a date and time that work for everyone involved. With busy lives and conflicting schedules, coordinating everyone can be a daunting task. Start by planning well in advance. You can create a shared calendar or use scheduling apps to find a suitable date that accommodates everyone. Be flexible and consider weekends or holidays when family members are more likely to be available. We have had clients organise a family portrait session for 40 people. It was difficult, but they made it happen!
3. Location Dilemmas
Choosing the right location is crucial for setting the tone and style of your family portraits. However, different family members may have varying preferences, making it challenging to decide on the perfect backdrop. You would also have to consider older family members, like grandparents in wheelchairs, etc. A strategy to work this through would be to openly discuss location options as a family and consider everyone’s input. If possible, select a location with sentimental value, such as a favourite park, family home, or vacation spot. Alternatively, you can opt for our professional studio, where we can control the environment.