Welcome to the first post in The Photo Project series! If you're not sure what I'm talking about, click back to this post to catch up!
I'm so excited to introduce you to Kristi today, from Kristi McKeag Photography! Kristi and I met at the Creative at Heart conference this year, and quickly bonded over pictures of our kiddos back home, and the highs and lows of running a small business while also raising a family. She's as sweet as they come, insanely talented, and I'm so honored to have her guest posting today. Oh, did I mention she has the cutest family ever?
YAY!! ’Tis the season!! Can you believe it’s already time to start thinking about holiday cards and getting those holiday pictures taken?!? Well, me neither! It always seems to creep up on us, huh? But that’s okay because I am here to help you get the most out of your professional photos! And to get you in the mode to start thinking about them!
1 | FINDING THE RIGHT PHOTOGRAPHER
First things first, finding the right photographer. I know this can feel like a daunting task sometimes because you may be feeling overwhelmed that there are so many photographers out there. And the ones you absolutely love, may be out of your price point. But, something to keep your eyes open for are “mini-sessions.” These are very common around this time of year and you may see your favorite photographer offering these. Mini-sessions are usually discounted from a photographer’s normal session fee and will allow you to get a few new family photos with your favorite photographer. These sessions are also not as long, which can be great for the kiddos, and can last anywhere from 15-30 minute sessions. Not all photographers offer these but if you keep your eyes open, you may just see that “mini-session” opportunity appear. And you know what? It never hurts to e-mail a photographer you love just to see if this is something they offer. Because if they don’t, they may just have a list of other photographers with styles similar to theirs and can give you their names.
2 | DETERMINE YOUR STYLE
Speaking of style, this is a good way to narrow down photographers to find the perfect one! Find a photographer with a style that you love. Are you looking for more of a lifestyle session or more of a formal session? This is also a good question to ask a photographer because if you are looking for more of a studio-feel, you’ll want to make sure you find a photographer that has that feel. A good way to see if you like a photographer’s work is to look at their website and/or blog. Can you see your family in that setting? Is that an image that you would want of your family? That’s usually a good start!
3 | A CHILDREN & FAMILY PHOTOGRAPHER
And lastly when it comes to finding a photographer, especially if you are looking to do a full session, I would look into photographers who specialize in family/children photography. These photographers are usually trained in that area and have some good tricks up their sleeves to work with the little ones!
4 | PREPPING YOUR KIDS
With little kiddos, I know it can be hard sometimes because we want them to dress a certain way, smile, and not misbehave. But as we know as parents, it doesn’t always turn out how we want it to…but THAT’S OKAY! Go in to your session with an open mind. Trust your photographer and let them lead. They will try their best to pull out your little ones personalities so just have fun! Kids can sense tension so if you just have fun and be yourself, your session will be great! Love on your little ones, your spouse, your pups…laugh, kiss, tickle…be you…because sometimes those candid pictures will end up being your favorite ones!! If your kiddos see you having fun, they will have fun and feel more comfortable! Sometimes you just have to forget that you are in front of a camera!
And for those of you with little, little ones, there are a couple things you can do to prepare for your session so that your little one doesn’t have a meltdown. First, make sure you don’t schedule a session during nap time or around bed time. Those times are never good for anyone if they are tired! If you can get a morning session, those are really the best for the little ones as they tend to be the most happy then:-) Also, make sure they are well fed so again, they don’t get cranky in the middle of the session because it’s time for them to eat. If you need to, bring a snack for them just in case, but I would start by making sure they eat before your session. And lastly, bring a favorite toy of theirs! This is always great for the photographer to use if they need to! Ones that make noise tend to be the best but if there is a toy or lovey that they love and it makes them comfortable, then I’d say go ahead and let them have it:-) Because again, it captures that time in their lives. And if it makes them happy, then okay, let it be in the picture... It really won’t be that big of a deal, I promise!
5 | JUST HAVE FUN!
But most importantly, just go prepared to have fun! To get one good picture of you all smiling and then some that captures you as a family! Holiday cards are so fun these days that you can put more than one picture on them and family and friends love seeing the love and joy that your family shares! So use several pictures or use just one. The one of you all smiling for the card and then use the others to display around your home…because those are the memories that you’ll always want to remember!!
Thank you so much Kristi! Make sure to come back on Tuesday for our next post from The Photo Project! Happy Weekend, Friends!