“What do we wear?”
It’s a question us photographers hear a lot! And it’s a dilemma that most families face before going in front of their photographer! I know when we had our family photos done last April, with the amazing Deb Schwedhelm, I struggled with what we were going to wear too!
To make this easy for everyone around (including me!) I am going to refer to you to an amazing article written by an equally amazing photographer, Jeannette LeBlanc out of Phoenix, AZ.
To paraphrase: Be comfortable. Be simple. Feel good. Be comfortable. Don’t be matchy matchy. Oh, and be comfortable. 🙂
You are what you wear.
A little cliché? Perhaps. But when it comes to portrait photography, this Phoenix photographer believes firmly that clothing plays a huge role in the success of the finished product.
Before I go all Stacy and Clinton on you – let’s be clear what your clothing does NOT need to be:
- Brand New I’m down with your favorite ripped jeans, retro band T’s, and worn converse – as long as you know how to rock them in your own fabulous style.
- Fancy-Schmancy and Uber-ExpensiveUnless it’s your thing (If it’s really your thing, then by all means baby, bring on the bling). If you’re not normally a dress-up kind of person, don’t feel like you have to be one for your session.
- Matching No need to focus on matching everything from the color of your fuchsia headbands to the stripes in your socks. In fact, I beg of you, please, please don’t. If you’re heart is set on everyone in white button downs and khaki pants, I’m probably not your girl.
- Stressful No need to worry about each and every item, or fret about the suitability of each accessory. This is supposed to be fun. If you’re unsure – call me, and together, we’ll make sure you look fabulous. I promise.
I want you to be happy, thrilled, over the moon about your images, and I know that this is much more likely if we take the time and work together to help you choose clothing that fits these few simple rules:
During your shoot you could be sitting in a pile on the grass having a tickle battle, rolling down a hill with your fiancé, throwing your kiddos in the air or climbing a tree. Wear clothing that lets you do all that (and more) comfortably.
As for the kids? Well…uncomfortable kids have a tendency to look…uncomfortable, and are often cranky to boot. Happy kids make for happy pictures.
Bottom Line: Don’t choose outfits that make any of you feel constrained, stiff, itchy, scratchy, like you’re dressed up for Halloween, or that leave you with a nagging worry that a button might pop if you bend the wrong way. Trust me.
This can be tricky, looking good is totally subjective – right? If you’re not a Carrie Bradshaw fashionista in real life, you might want to pull in some extra help from a straight-talking friend or your trusty photographer (that would be me) who knows about such things and has plans in place to help.
Sometimes last year’s of-the-moment dress has already become hopelessly untrendy. Sometimes the current fashions just don’t look or feel like you. Sometimes outfits that look good in the mirror might not be ideally suited for photography. If you’re really looking for extra help, I can put you in touch with some incredible folks who make people look good for a living.
Bottom Line: If you don’t feel fabulous-fierce-take-on-the-world gorgeous in your outfit, you’re not going to love, love, love the end result – and I’m all about you love, love, loving the end result.
Here’s where we pull it all together. It’s not just enough that everyone look good and feel good – you’ve gotta look and feel good together AND the outfits should fit with your location and the desired mood for your portraits.
Glup. That seems like a lot, doesn’t it? (quick – revisit #4 in the top list, and remember, don’t stress).
Bottom Line: It’s easier than it seems.Think twice about having Emma in a lace prom dress if you can’t get Tommy out of his spider man cape and favorite Star Wars pajama top. If we’re going to be running around in a park, you’ll likely not decide to wear your starched Sunday best. Hate the way stripes and plaids look together but Dad has his favorite stripped polo ready to go? Best steer mom away from her beloved family tartan. Easy-Peasy. [unless Mom is really attached to that tartan, but we’ll cross that bridge when we come to it).
If you’re still not certain, and you can’t decide between the yellow wrap dress with your red heels or your dark skinny jeans and purple belted shirt – I’ve got good news. You don’t have to decide. Bring lots of options. Heck – throw your whole wardrobe into the back of the car. When we get to the session we’ll wing it all with fabulous results. Trust me.
Now take a deep breath. Close your eyes. Imagine how blow-everyone-away-fabulous-ready-for-America’s-Next-Top-Model you’re all going to look in those pictures….
Can you see it yet? I totally can. OMG, you look INCREDIBLE!
I can’t wait for your session.
Thanks Jeannette! You said it better than I ever could! I appreciate your words of wisdom! And so do my clients! Yay!