Your family portrait photoshoot checklist

My photoshoot checklist
This quick and easy photoshoot checklist will help you prepare for your upcoming photoshoot. I have a PDF linked at the end of this blog so you can print out this checklist.

Now that school has started and schedules are getting back to “normal” (what’s normal?), let’s talk about lists. As a busy mom, wife, employee and entrepreneur, I have to manage a lot of details in life. I’ve found that it’s easier if I have a checklist of all that I need to do. Are you the same way?

Last week we talked about why you should schedule your family portraits now (have you done it yet?). This week, let’s talk about the checklist you need to have for those photos. Getting valuable family photos involves more decisions than when to show up. You also have to decide where in Northwest Arkansas you want your photoshoot and then how you want to use your family pictures. That last one is the focus of today’s blog and the checklist I’m going to provide for you.

I’ve found that when couples wait until the photo viewing to make some of the following decisions that it can lead to rushed decisions and even minor disagreements. It’s also important to communicate many of these to your photographer before the photoshoot even happens because some decisions might affect image composition and cropping.

Here’s what I usually advise clients to consider when they are scheduling their Northwest Arkansas family photoshoot:

What style of image do you want? Do you want it to be casual or more formal? Does an urban setting or a country one better fit your family and how you want the photos used? For example, is the primary purpose for a holiday card or do you plan to hang the prints on the wall all year? where we take the photo, what your wear, and the style may be impacted by your plans for the photos.

What size prints will you want to display? The photographer needs to have an idea of how the photos will be used to ensure the composition will fit the right crop for you. Do you want more landscaping in the image for a more artistic look or do you want the faces to fill the image? I take photos considering both options but not all photographers do, so if you have a preference it is important to communicate it. Another reason to consider how you will use the prints is crop size. If you plan to order 8×10 print sizes but your favorite photograph during your photo viewing appointment is in a pose that works best for 8×12 you may have an issue. It’s a good idea to consider how flexible you are on the print sizes.

What are you doing with your photos? As I mention above, how you plan to use your photos might make a difference in the types of photos that are shot. If you plan to use your photos to make a collage on your wall your photographer should know so he/she can ensure consistency in the backgrounds so that the images look great on your wall. Also, if you want special child and/or parent combinations in your collage be sure to tell you photographer the day of the shoot.

How will you display your photos and what size? Will you be using frame, gallery wraps or matting? Putting them on cards? Making prints for scrapbooking? Some of the print options such as gallery wraps require much more background than a regularly framed image so the photographer will need to know ahead of time to leave plenty of background to make a gallery wrap print. You need to have a list of probable uses in mind, especially if you plan to gift prints to grandparents, so you know which sizes to order and how many of each size the day of the photo viewing.

As promised, here is a PDF of the My photoshoot checklist that you can download and print. Have you scheduled your family portrait yet? Call me today.