Let's get in to it.
When you choose to hire me as your photographer, you’re getting a uniquely tailored experience to ensure I properly tell your story. I’m not going to just show up the day off, snap some photos and then send them to you a few weeks later. We’re building a partnership to create something you want to frame and hang on your walls. Imagery has so much power to capture a feeling, but I can’t do it alone.
I want to work together to make the entire session feel true to who you are, but in the most elevated way. Part of creating such meaningful imagery comes from the emphasis put on styling, and that’s where you come in! When you curate outfits that are true to you, while incorporating some of these key tips and tricks, it has the power to transform the entire vision.
So, where to begin? I want to make this as enjoyable as possible for you, so I created this page as a starting point. Browse below for some tips and tricks that I have learned along the way. If you’re still unsure after reading these recommendations, please feel free to reach out. I am here to help every step of the way.
WEATHER & LOCATION
PLAN FOR THE Environment
Always keep in mind where our session will be and what the weather might be like when planning outfits.
Session on the beach? Ladies, consider if you want to wear a long dress and have the bottom get wet when you’re wading in the water. Guys, rolled up pants and barefoot is a killer beach combo. For the kids, think about clothing colors that compliment the sand since you know they’ll be digging in it.
Cooler on the day of your session? Add that button down, cute jacket, or scarf to wrap around your shoulders. Layers can be a great way to add dimension to your look, and it makes for really organic photos when I catch a shot of your scarf blowing in the wind or you adjusting your collar on your jacket.
At home session? Feel free to keep it casual. I want to see how you live, like I’m just catching you on any given day. There’s no need for shoes or anything fancy. Show up in your sweats if you want, but let’s make them cute sweats please! Think Free People loungewear ensemble and not the sweats you wear when you’re deep cleaning your home/going to the gym. Same goes for your kiddos! Baby birthday suits welcome! You won’t regret getting a few shots of your little baby’s naked bum bum to look back on when they’re older.
Don’t let the weather deter you either. It ends up snowing on the day of your session? Perfect, bring your cute hat and boots and lets get a shot of that snowflake landing on your eyelashes or your little one trying to catch a snowflake on their tongue.
Rain can also make for beautiful shots. Bring an umbrella and let me capture you and your family dancing in that rain, splashing in the puddles, or just all out ditching the umbrella to get soaked. A maternity session in the rain can make for some of the most beautiful shots too. Don’t believe me? Just wait until I catch a raindrop sliding down your pregnant belly.
It’s important to be practical when planning outfits, but there’s never a need to wear those workout Nike shoes the day of the session. Please leave those gems at home.
SELECTING YOUR COLOR PALETTE
neutrals | bold | muted tones
This can be the hardest part of styling, but picking a color palette is key to achieving the look you want for your photos. Think about how you want your photos to feel, how they will look hanging on the walls of your home. Are you drawn toward a calming color palette? Then doing a mix of muted blues, greens, and browns, might be perfect for you.
Neutrals keep all of the outfits in the same color family making for a timeless look that is super easy to do. The best part? You don’t have to perfectly match! Put the whole family in a range of creams, whites, and light tans, and you’ve got a winning look. It’s really hard to go wrong when you choose a neutral color palette, and it goes well in any location we choose to shoot at.
If a bold color palette is more your style, all I have to say is go for it! This can make for really unique photos that give more of a playful vibe. Just be careful to avoid doing too many loud prints or clashing colors. One or two prints within the same range of colors is best. I love a bold look when shooting at eclectic locations like an old ice cream parlor. This is a perfect time to bring out your wide leg pants or your funky sunglasses to really make a statement.
If you fall somewhere in between neutrals and a bold color palette, then doing a combination of muted tones is the perfect option. Choose 4-5 colors for your palette and keep the whole family within that range. I suggest choosing one color as your foundation and then layering complimentary tones around it. This palette looks good in any outdoor location and is guaranteed to blend right into your home when you hang the photos on the wall.
HOW TO INCORPORATE PATTERNS
MIX AND MATCH WITHOUT BEING MATCHY-MATCHY
I touched on this in the last section, but I know prints can be tricky, so let’s talk more. There’s a way to tie everyone’s outfit together that isn’t you all being in matching plaid shirts. As cute as that may be, let’s mix it up a bit. Pattern mixing can be done seamlessly by following a few general rules:
Keep the patterns smaller and more intricate. Bigger patterns draw the eye’s attention and doesn’t let go. They take away from the beauty of the photo as a whole. Plus, they are really hard to coordinate with.
Don’t put everyone in a pattern, matching or otherwise. When everyone is in a pattern, it doesn’t allow for the eye to rest, making the photo too busy. If you’re a family of five, no more than two family members should be in print.
Pull colors from the prints for the other members of the family to wear. Remember that 4-5 number I talked about for the color palette? Those prints are wear you find those colors! This helps tie together the look as a whole and makes for a beautifully elevated look.
HOW TO ELEVATE YOUR LOOK
USING PROPS AND ACCESSORIES
We’ve got your outfits down, now let’s take your photos to the next level and make them uniquely yours with some props. They can help tell a story and add interest to any photo.
Bring your little one’s favorite stuffed animal, and I’ll catch him giving it a tight squeeze or soaring it around like it’s a rocket ship. Let’s take your kids to an ice cream parlor and let the ice cream drip off the cone and all over their hands. Bring bubbles and we’ll have fun chasing them all over to try and pop one.
Let’s add dimension by bringing a white sheet backdrop to a session and play peak-a-boo or lean into the shadows. Bring a ladder to sit and climb on in an open field. Florals are another great option to elevate your experience. They add color and beauty, and can bring in editorial vibes.
Have an old school car? Let the kids climb around in the backseat while you hang with your honey.
Props can also be as simple as the accessories you wear. With a hat, you can hold it by your side, hide behind it, or grab at the brim. Wrap a scarf tightly around your shoulders, let it hang down and graze your lower back, or play hide and seek with your baby.
The options for props are endless and so are the ways they can be utilized.
DON'T BE AFRAID TO GO BOLD
LET'S GET CREATIVE
Now for the really fun part! Don't be afraid to go one step further to really elevate your experience and deepen the creativity.
Let's finger paint a blank canvas blanket in an open field where your kids can be truly free to make a mess and be themselves. Catching the unencumbered joy on your faces will be well worth me having to wash paint out of my hair.
Let's make it editorial. Don’t be afraid to show some skin while you grow that miracle human inside your belly! I’m ready to hype you up and make you feel like the goddess you are. I have been envisioning a wet maternity session for month, either at the beach or even your bath tub. Let's make it happen.
If you already have an idea of your own, that’s great too! Or if you just know you want to do something different but aren’t sure what, let’s come up with something together! As an artist, photography is my outlet. I love any chance to get super creative. When there’s space to play into wild trends or explore new looks it allows me to do some of my best work — I promise you won’t be disappointed.
Farmdog Flowers | @farmdog_flowers
Stemming From Love | @stemmingfromlove
Florist & Hound Design | @floristhounddesign
Meadoway Flower Farm | @meadowayflowers
Teshuva Fields | @teshuvafields
Sunborn Gardens | @sunborngardens
Remington Flowers | @remingtonsflowers
Tamara Holden | @tamaraholdenhair
Alex Brown | @spacebyalexbrown
Katie | @katyasladhair
Emily | @emilyraebridalhair
Elizabeth Scott | @elizabethscottcompany
Melody | @collectivelymel
Tamara | @tamaramakeup
Kylie | @kyliejordanartistry
Erika | @erikaalexisbeauty
America | @makeupbyamericaf
Tricia Clarke | @triciaclarkemakeup
Bryana | @bryjeanartistry
Tamara | @tamaramakeup
Kylie | @kyliejordanartistry
Mai Aesthetic | @mai_aesthetic_design
Maiya is a close friend and confidant. She is extremely talented at all things fashion and design. Her family's outfits are always on point no matter the time of year or the scene. If you need more hands on help with styling yourself and your family I cannot recommend her enough!
Where to shop?
ABLE SHOPPE @ableshoppe
SUMMER AND STORM @summerandstorm
RYLEE + CRU @ryleeandcru
LAUDE THE LABLE @laudethelable
CHRISTY DAWN @christydawn
BYLT BASICS @byltbasics
OAK + DAGGER @oakdagger
JAMIE KAY @jamiekay
THE SIMPLE FOLK @thesimplefolkco
LOU LOU & COMPANY @loulouandcompany
MAURIE + EVE @maurieandeve
Z SUPPLY @zsupply
NICO.NICO WMN @niconicoclothing_wnm
JENNI KAYNE @jennikayne
FREE PEOPLE @freepeople
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Session Location Ideas
Let's meet where you are. At home sessions are my absolute favorite. I truly enjoy being immersed in your environment. Most kids take well to sessions at home as they are in their own space and feel the most comfortable.