Nothing brightens up a room like a picture from your recent family photoshoot. A special decoration unique to your family, these portraits are great for re-living those special memories.

If you’re planning on getting a family photograph taken any time soon, you may be surprised to learn that having your family photoshoot isn’t as simple as it may seem. In fact, many factors go into creating the perfect family photo.

That’s why we’re here. In this guide, we’ll tell you everything you need to know about how to take the perfect family photoshoot. From the color scheme to pose, we’ve got all the tips and tricks necessary to make your next family photo turn out right.

Ready? Let’s dive right in!

Why You Should Take Family Photos Regularly

Family Photoshoot - ShutterTurf

There are several benefits to taking family photographs regularly. Let’s look at a few of the major benefits of taking a family photograph annually.

  • Timeless Memories—A family is a strong unit that represents love, strength, unity, and belonging. When family members have to go separate ways in life, family portraits are the best possessions to take along. You can proudly show your friends your family pictures or smile at them when you miss home. They bring up memories of the photoshoot and all other moments spent together caring for each other.
  • Great Decorations—What better way to decorate your home than with beautiful memories of you and your family? Stun visitors to your home with professional-grade photographs of you and your loved ones. Family photographs make great wall art and are also perfect mantle-pieces and coffee table decorations.
  • Everything Changes—Let’s face it: though we often wish things would stay the same forever, nothing ever does. Family photographs offer a unique look back into a special time in you and your family’s lives. If you’re wondering why you should take family photos regularly, there’s no better reason than capturing the beautiful memories of the way your family once was.
  • Family Tradition—Family photos don’t have to be stressful. Instead, they can serve as great bonding opportunities for you and your loved ones. Let your seasonal or annual family photograph be one of those things you and your family do together and build a tradition everybody will love.
  • Show Off—Who doesn’t want to send off that perfect family Christmas card every year? By taking regular family photographs, you can! Amaze your friends and distant family with specially-made cards.

If you are wondering why you should take family photos regularly, the above reasons are a good start!

What is the Ideal Setting for a Family Photoshoot- Indoor VS Outdoor?

Finding the perfect location for a family photo can be the trickiest part of it all. There are so many beautiful places that come to mind, yet you have to consider other factors that are involved. 

Why does this matter? 

Because a location can make or break your photo.

  • Comfort – The idea of a family photo is to capture a moment when everyone is happy and comfortable. Hence, your location must be somewhere you all know and love or are comfortable in. If you are looking towards outdoor family portraits, then consider where would be the best fit. If not, think of indoor photo ideas.
  • Personality – Yes, every family has an identity or personality. Some families love sports, swimming, or hiking. With such common hobbies, your family outdoor photoshoot can be at the beach or a park. 
  • Convenience – Regardless of the unity and love that flows through a family everyone has their individual preferences. Consider if the family photo ideas for a location works for everybody. Are your kids too young to be outdoors? Does your spouse dislike indoor pictures? Such factors should influence your decision. 
  • Outfit – If you planned the outfit before the place, then this must be considered as well. You can’t wear heels to a family photoshoot at the beach. 

Location Ideas

  • Your Home – This should spur indoor family portraits ideas. Usually, your home is your best bet because it is the place everyone is comfortable. You can choose the room to use with the photographer’s help. Clean it up and ensure there are enough lights.
  • The Beach – Hardly any location can beat a beautiful beach with sand beneath your feet and the peaceful waters in the background. If you live near the beach or enjoy visits with your family, this location is ideal for outdoor family portraits.
  • Fields – Tall green grass can never disappoint you in a photoshoot. Choose the right field and proper outfits to match the surroundings.
  • Urban areas – This is a city setting with or without people in the background. Urban locations for outdoor photoshoot are popular now. Let the photographer help you find the right spot. Take into consideration how busy the area might be.
  • Studio – A studio is a classic option. If your family isn’t one for adventures and the stress of a location, a studio would be fine. Spice it up with the right backdrops and outfits.

How to Take Family Photographs

Taking the perfect family photograph often requires extensive planning and effort. This means that you shouldn’t rush into your family photograph. Instead, take the time to find the best idea, pose, background, and color scheme for your photoshoot.

When planning your photograph, consider the following questions:

  • What pose do you want?
  • Is your photo seasonal or nonseasonal?
  • What type of outfits do you want your family to wear?

In order to take the perfect family photo, it’s crucial that you consider each of these questions. Furthermore, it’s important to keep in mind that there are several dos and don’ts when it comes to your family photograph.

For this reason, it’s recommended that you keep the following tips in mind as you plan your photoshoot.

  • Take Your Room into ConsiderationIt’s likely that you want to hang your family portrait on the wall. If that’s the case, you should be very careful when deciding the color and design of your photoshoot. You don’t want a portrait that contrasts too harshly with the rest of your room.
  • Wear Fitted ClothingIt’s better that you and your family try not to wear clothes that are either too tight or too loose. For your family photograph, it’s worth investing in quality outfits that are well-fitted to each family member. In general, one outfit is enough (unless you absolutely have to have multiple photos and different themes) 
  • Remember Your ShoesIf your desired pose shows feet, make sure you don’t leave shoes out of your planning. While it’s certainly okay to go barefoot, you don’t want to wear shoes that are garish in color or design—or, for that matter, that are too white.

The above tips are designed to show you how to take unforgettable family photographs!

Family photoshoot outfits – What to Wear for Family Photos

Family Photoshoot - ShutterTurf

Here’s the deal!

If you have been delegated to choose the family photoshoot outfits – yay! You have so much control over the aesthetics of your upcoming family photoshoot.

When you are brainstorming clothing ideas for family pictures, it may tempt you to take the chicken way out- make everyone wear white. This is a bad idea and the time when families wore white or other matching colors for a photoshoot is long past.

I am well aware of the pressure family photo outfits can bring, you suddenly realize you are not such a fashionista after all. Well, with the right tips, anyone can pick the best outfits for a family photo. Read on to arm yourself.

  • Start early and choose your outfits ahead of time – The first rule to a successful family photoshoot is to select the family photo outfits early! No one has time to do laundry and find perfectly-coordinating outfits the day of a family photoshoot. Get them out ahead of time, wash, iron, and save yourself so much stress the day of the photoshoot! Check what everyone has, and go shopping if needed. 
  • Complement and don’t match – This isn’t the military, and any teenagers in the family will most likely balk at the idea of matching with anyone else in the family. You know, individuality and all that. Rather than perfectly-matching outfits, go with color-coordination. Your family outfits should complement each other. Choose a color theme if possible, and work on each person to compliment others. The beauty of a family portrait is to see how colors bounce off each person with harmony.
  • Consider the home décor – Regardless of if you would use this indoor location, consider how the clothing choice will affect the photo when placed in the home. Your photos will be used as memories for years. Consider how the outfits will match with your decor before you make your final choice! Do you have strong colors in the home décor? See how your outfits can complement that as well.
  • Accessorize – Husband, wear a tie for the wife to pull in one picture! Or maybe a clunky necklace on the momma of the family. The little touches make the most significant difference. Don’t underestimate the relevance of accessories in family photo outfits. These items bring personality into the pictures. They include things like a tie, scarf, hat, the teenager’s skateboards, and so on.
  • Limit patterns – Except you have a fail-proof way of making patterns suit the photo, try to limit them. The more patterns you wear, the harder it is to color-coordinate with the rest of the family, not to mention with your surroundings! Limit your patterns, or avoid them entirely.
  • No characters or large logos– Just like a large representation of patterns is bad, so is the inclusion of characters your kids love. Do not give in to your child’s plea to wear his Toy Story shirt. Also, large logos can distract from the overall integrity of the picture as well so avoid clothing with large logos as well. Keep it simple and organized.
  • Check the background – When your clothes are perfect, the background could easily ruin it. Make sure you are certain of the location and the background before choosing outfits. These should complement each other as well and bring harmony to the picture.
  • Choose practical clothing – This is probably not a day for stilletos. If this is an outdoor family shoot, you may be covering some pretty rough terrain. Your level of comfort (or lack thereof) shows in the pictures, too, so choose outfits that you will be comfortable in.
  • Avoid all-white or all-black outfits – Although you are avoiding patterns and Woody the Woodpecker, you do not want to go in the opposite direction. All-black or all-white outfits tend to wash out the details on the other side of the camera. 
  • Textures are your friend – If you do plan to wear significant amounts of black or white clothing, break it up with textures! Fun scarves or shoes can add a new pop to the family photo. Coordinate the fun textures across the family members. Match Dad’s tie with daughter’s shoes, and so forth, and enjoy the result!
  • Think classy! – This family photo may well be up on your refrigerator or framed on the wall for years. Choose outfits that will stand up to the test of time. 
  • What’s the season? – Consider the season when you make your outfit choices! For spring, consider pale peach, blush pink, mint green, baby blue, cream, light gray, soft yellow, spring green, or lavender. Summer? White, yellow, bold red, bright orange, bold pink, turquoise or royal blue. Browns, mustard yellow, burnt orange, dark shades of green, dark purple and neutrals are perfect for fall photoshoots. Try white, cream, brown, black, medium to dark gray, ruby red, dark purple, emerald green or blue for winter/Christmas photoshoots.
  • Look for collections – When shopping, look for coordinating collections that would help make your job easier!
  • Lay the outfits out – Lay the entire family’s outfits out beside each other ahead of time, to avoid any possible mismatches and to envision the shoot before the photoshoot day itself.
  • Have fun playing stylist! – Let your family’s personality shine!

Finally, try your clothes well in advance. Avoid using the image in your head as a guarantee. Get everyone to wear their outfits to be sure everything is fine.

The things you should avoid in family photoshoot outfits are clothes that don’t match your surroundings- like a tuxedo by the lake, bright white clothing, and neon colours

What Color Should I Wear for My Family Picture?

Family Photoshoot - ShutterTurf

In order to take the perfect family photo, it’s important that every detail is perfect. That’s why you want to make sure that your family’s color scheme is well-thought out and clicking on many levels. If you’re wondering, “What color should I wear for my family picture?” in-depth then this guide is for you!

To begin with, you don’t want to wear matching clothes. Though it may sound like a cute idea, it’s better for your family to wear coordinating colors that fall within the same scheme. For this reason, you and your family may consider wearing warm colors, such as brown or orange, that compliment each other.

Soft colors, such as blue and gray, are also popular options. While the color scheme is up to you, try to stick within one color scheme so that your final family photograph turns out well.

In general, it’s recommended that you don’t wear clothes with garish patterns. This is especially true if multiple family members plan on wearing patterned clothing. You want to keep distractions to a minimum in order to produce a final piece that looks coordinated and professional.

If you plan on taking your family photos outdoors, consider building your color scheme around your surroundings.

Understanding your background is the first step to deciding your color scheme.

As a rule, you want to wear colors that help you and your family stand out from but also complement your background. This means that your color scheme for outdoor family photos largely depends on the current season and your particular shooting location.

Keeping these outdoor color schemes in mind can be helpful for your future family photoshoot:

  • Summer: Orange and Teal; Tan and White
  • Fall: Brown and Maroon; Denim and Tan
  • Winter: Glitter and White; Navy and Crimson
  • Spring: Blush and White; Blush and Teal

Family Photo Poses

Time for the fun part! Deciding your family’s photoshoot pose can be a very thrilling experience. Consider the ideas below for your family’s next photoshoot!

  • Family of Three—If it’s just you, your loved one, and your little one, consider the following pose: you and your partner sit on either side of your baby. This is especially moving depending on your background (the tide, a leaf-strewn path, etc.).
  • Family of Four—If there are two little ones, you can spice your photo up a little more. While you and your partner face each other, have your children on your backs. This pose shows a family full of love, fun, and commitment to one another.
  • Family of Five—If you have a family of five you can consider an indoor shot of you and your partner with your two children on the side and one in the middle.
  • Family of Six—For a family of six, consider an outdoor setting where you and your partner are surrounded by your children.

Incorporating the above family photo pose ideas into your next photoshoot can help you get the perfect shot! If you have a newborn baby, considering checking this article for a newborn baby photoshoot ideas and tips.

Family Christmas Photoshoot

Christmas Family Photoshoot - ShutterTurf

Taking the perfect family Christmas photoshoot can be the capstone of your holiday season. In order to manage this, however, you will need to consider a variety of factors.

For instance, you will want to keep in mind:

  • Purpose—What are you taking the shot for? Is it your family’s once-a-year photoshoot, or is it a Christmas special? Knowing this is the first step to deciding what to wear and how to theme your photograph.
  • Outfit—While many photographers recommend nonseasonal options for more timeless shots, you can certainly take special, decorative shots if you are looking for something funnier or more festive. Dress in complimenting Christmas sweaters or wear reindeer accessories—anything for that special shot!
  • Location—If it snows in your area, you may be inclined to get an outdoor shot. This can elevate your family Christmas photoshoot and give it a more seasonal feel. If you’re not up for the cold, indoor shots by the Christmas tree are also spectacular.

Christmas photoshoots offer you and your family an eternal window to a special memory. They’re also perfect for Christmas cards and as seasonal gifts. For this reason, it’s important to plan ahead to get your shot just right!

For an in-depth article on Christmas photoshoot, where we discuss ideas, outfits, props and more, refer to this Christmas photoshoot post.

What is Documentary Family Photography?

Documentary Family Photoshoot - ShutterTurf

Documentary family photography is an emerging form of family-oriented photography that seeks to capture families in their natural states. The goal of this art form is to capture a family event that isn’t staged or directed but rather spontaneous and unique to the family.

For this reason, families who choose this option are never asked to pose. They aren’t asked to wear special outfits or to stand in front of special backgrounds. Rather, the photographer watches the family for cues that a memorable moment may be soon occurring—and takes the photo when that moment occurs.

If you’ve ever asked yourself what documentary family photography is or are considering this option for yourself, keeping the above information in mind can help you get the perfect shot.

Conclusion

Professional family photographs are a must-have for any family.

Whether you take these photos seasonally or once a year, it’s important to plan ahead and know exactly what you want in your photo before you ever take it.

Doing so can help ensure that your photoshoot goes as planned. This is especially important for families with small kids—as it may prove difficult to redo your shoot. For this reason, it’s critical that you take into account the various factors that can influence your shot.

Along with outfit, color, location, and theme can play a huge role in the quality of your final family photograph. Keeping these elements in mind can help you get that winning shot—the first time around.

What do you think is important in a family photoshoot? Tell us what we missed and let us know your own stories!

Also, we recommend this article as a good follow-up read – Creative Family Portrait Ideas To Capture The Perfect Shot

FAQ’s

What to wear for family photoshoot?

During a family photoshoot, you and your loved ones will want to look picture perfect. Assembling the right outfits is essential for beautiful family photos. Since photoshoots can last a few hours, your attire must be comfortable to wear and easy to move in. Prior to the photography session, practice basic poses, like sitting and leaning forward. Additionally, commit to a color scheme that suits the theme of the photoshoot as well as your family’s personality. Arrange clothing based on two or three colors for a unified appearance. However, try not to match outfits too much. Also, try to experiment with interesting fabrics, such as lace and tweed. Those textured materials always photograph beautifully.

What to wear for family pictures outside?

When planning an outdoor photo session, dress according to the season. If you are taking family pictures during the colder months, layer up on the layers. Mix and match sweaters, scarves, and hats in your family’s overall attire. And multiple layers equals different looks throughout the shoot. For warmer weather, stick with loose, light fabrics. In general, denim clothing, like jeans or a jacket, is a safe choice. Khakis are another option that can pair well with most colors or patterns. Also, plaid patterns work well in most outdoorsy photoshoots. These adaptable articles of clothing can be dressed up or dressed down and work well against nature background. All in all, consider the season and use versatile pieces when planning outfits for an outdoor photoshoot.

What are the best colors to wear for family pictures?

When organizing a color scheme for your family pictures, it depends on the type of photoshoot you have in mind. For a Winter holiday photoshoot, pair creamy shades of white with bold colors like scarlet red and royal purple. For a springtime photo session, play around with delicate pastels like mint green and lavender. During more serious portraits, choose darker tones, such as black and burgundy. A helpful tip when arranging color schemes is choosing only two or three colors for a cohesive look. Also, steer clear of neon hues as well as flashy patterns, they will distract from the overall image. Want to learn more about creating color palettes for your family’s outfits? Check out our article on The Best Family Photo Color Schemes For Any Photoshoot.

What is lifestyle photography?

In short, lifestyle photography focuses on candid moments shared between family and friends. Typically, images center around people experiencing real-life events and milestones, like birthdays, graduations, and family gatherings. With this style of photography, there’s no stiff, rehearsed posing. The subject of the photo is relaxed and acts natural, going about their day as usual. A skilled photographer will work with the natural lighting and take pictures from the most flattering angles. Photos will catch honest, intimate interactions between people and turns them into works of art. Overall, lifestyle photography is meant to tell a story with pictures of everyday life.