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Type A Images is a portrait and wedding photography company based in Wisconsin but available for any place your little heart desires! If you are interested in booking your event or session, hit me up on email!

Type A Images has been featured on The Rock and Roll Bride blog, The Offbeat Bride Blog, WeddingWire's Brides Choice for 2010 and 2011, and The Knot Best Of Weddings for 2011. Type A also offers a hospice photography program called Kindred Spirits through the Beloit Regional Hospice, which was featured as WPPI's Photolanthropy of the Month for September 2010.

11.02.2010

Hey! Portrait Clients.....Cmere! | Milwaukee Family Photographer

It's been another great summer season chock full of family portrait sittings. I've met some super-duper families and I cannot WAIT until next season when it starts all over again. It really made me think about making things as stress-free and easy for clients next year. A lot of clients may be "first-timers" to the on-location photography experience....or the professional photography experience. Some may only have their run around with Walmart Portrait Studio (SHUDDER) to go by.


So.....for this week's photography related blog, I thought I'd go over some simple "guidelines" for getting the best out of your portrait sitting with Type A Images (or anyone else, for that matter....though I am super fun and I highly recommend me).

I have to thank Betty Claire for providing the "example" pictures here. She's my model-of-many-example-poses.


1. Dress for the Weather.
Wisconsin weather is highly unpredictable (and sometimes downright cruddy). So, even if you envision a portrait of your little one frolicking through the meadows in nothing more than a tutu and tank top, if it's 40 degrees....I really don't recommend it. Because hypothermia does not make for good frolicking.

Dress smart....you can look cute and still be comfy and warm (or cool).

Modeling the latest in snow-suit fashion

2. If You're Sick....Stay Away From Me!
I know that when you schedule a sitting...it can be hard to wait. The excitement is tangible! I understand, believe me. Photo sittings are super-fun! : )

But, if you are struck down with plague-like symptoms, please reschedule. A sick baby/kid is not a happy baby/kid...and Photoshop can't cure the common cold.

3. Bring Kleenex
Kleenex is a wonderful tool....especially in any job where kids are involved. There's snot. There's boogies. There's food leftover from breakfast.
So, come prepared. Bonus points if you actually bring baby wipes, for those more stubborn snot issues.
See Guideline #2 regarding what to do if the snot cannot be contained by Kleenex alone. : )

This is only cute at birthdays.

4. Be On Time...and ALLOW Enough Time!
A rushed kid is an unhappy kid. And a photographer who has to wait is...well...an unhappy photographer. Be on time for your sitting and allow enough time to get a nice, relaxed session.

5. Let It Be.
I cannot stress this ENOUGH....you have to just let your kid be and let them do their thing during these sessions. The more you urge them to "smile this way" or "pose that way" or "fix your hair" or....whatever...the more uncomfortable your kid is going to look. When I shoot, I'm looking for a natural, relaxed look to the image. Not a forced smile, and not absolute perfection. Because, let's face it...they're kids!
So, if your photographer is stepping in to give gentle direction, let them go for it. Stand back and let the shooter do their job. Try to resist the urge to "Stage Mom" the bejesus out of the shoot : )
I know its hard......
Believe me! I'm the worst....I can tend to go all Joan Crawford on Betty if I'm looking for a certain reaction....but even with my kid (who, let's face it, is totally used to the camera by now) resists the direction. The more I tell her "do this!" the more she does something else.

What happens when I say "Smile!" to Betty. This is why we should try to not direct our own kids.

6. Food is NOT a Good Bribe
This kind of goes along with the whole Kleenex thing. Unless it's something super-not-messy (like...I dunno...water. Or carrot sticks...but who are we kidding?), using food to bribe your kid into behaving can really backfire.....in the form of food all over the face and a gigantic mess and more stress for the parents. Which then leads to complete photo-session meltdown.

If you must bribe, bring cash : )

Spaghetti. NOT a good bribe.

7. Avoid Nap Time.
Tired kids (much like over-directed kids or kids covered in goo) are unhappy kids.

Work with your photographer to schedule a time where your kids will be well rested and fed. Now, if its a newborn session...typically asleep IS preferred. Talk to your photographer about what is best.


Kid with no nap = bad portrait.

8. Don't Bring Your Own Camera.
This one always kind of surprises me. You hired a photographer to take your picture, I'm hoping you did so because you love their work and want that look for your pictures. So, why are you toting along your own P&S to document someone else taking pictures? Not to mention the copyright issues that could be attached...but that's a story for another blog (that I think I already did!)

Bringing your own camera to portrait sessions is not cool. Save it for home. Let the professional you hired work solo : )

(Unless, of course, you're Betty Claire Photography and you do whatever you please! Right Andrea? Andrea from Andrea Paradowski Photography was totally "Uncle Bobbed" by Betty at our family photo session. So, looks like my kid needs to learn to practice what her mommy preaches!)

My kid: There's Momtographers....are there such things as Toddlertographers?

9. Just Be Yourself.
I've talked about this before with regards to weddings ...but if you're trying to pull off something that just isn't you, it's probably not going to work too well. If your little girl is a rough and tumble tomboy and you want a portrait of her being a delicate English Rose.....she's probably going to either fight it, or not perform to "satisfaction"...producing less than stellar results. If you just let them do their thing and be "them" (and you do the same), the pictures will be relaxed....natural...and probably more fun for everyone involved.


Betty is who she is. Cowboy Hat and all.

What's most important to remember is commissioning a professional photographer to do studio or on-location portraits for you is very different than toting the kids in their Packers finest for a quick snap with the teenager at the mall. Professionals want the best out of your session, and they are willing to put the time, talent, and effort into getting the best results.

To help them along, follow the simple guidelines and when in doubt, ask for guidance from your chosen shooter. I'm sure they will be happy to fill you in on how to get the best from your session.

1 Peanut Gallery.:

maureen cassidy said...

awesome article...I love the bring cash. My kids love getting cash money!

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