It’s easy to keep postponing your family photo session, but should you? Here are 20 common excuses I hear, and why I respectfully disagree. 🙂
1) I’m not photogenic/I never like photos of myself.
Believe it or not, pretty much EVERYONE tells me this before their session, and it never turns out to be true! I love coaching my clients through having their photos taken, and I have a lot of tricks up my sleeve to make you look fabulous! When you’re having a great time, you’ll look more beautiful than you thought was possible. I promise! 🙂
It’s not about the last time you touched up your roots, or how tired you look. It’s about taking a moment to play with your kids. It’s about creating memories for them to enjoy many years into the future.
All the makeup and hair and diets in the world cannot create beauty. Beauty comes from your heart. Beauty arrives in the way your eyes crinkle up when you smile. It cannot be hidden by cellulite. It’s not seen; it’s felt in the happiness that surrounds you like sunshine. When you stop thinking about how you’re “not enough,” your true inner beauty sneaks out from its little hiding place and shows itself to the world.
2) My kids are too crazy and they won’t cooperate.
I love getting to know my clients’ kids, even the ones who are shy/stubborn/you name it! I always approach the session as a new friend who’s just there to play and have a good time. I have all the patience in the world, and I find that being easy-going translates to happy kiddos. That being said, not every moment of the session is perfect, and that’s totally OK — in fact, it’s encouraged! In 10 years, I’m willing to bet that you’ll cherish the image of your toddler crying fake tears just as much as the one that we took 10 seconds later of him happily running toward the camera. My goal is to capture the personalities of the kids in front of my lens, including all of the beautiful quirks, details, and small moments that make up childhood.
3) I have no clue what to wear!
If you don’t have the perfect Pinterest-styled outfits already, it’s TOTALLY OK! You’re more than welcome to show up wearing your version of everyday comfortable, and I’ll make you look beautiful no matter what you’re wearing. BUT, if you’re like me and you love to plan, I’m ready and happy to help! I’ve created a session guide with clothing advice as well as some sample outfit combos if you need inspiration (fun fact: these have now been re-pinned thousands of times on Pinterest!). If you get stuck, feel free to email or text me photos of different possibilities and I’ll be happy to help!
4) My husband thinks it’s a waste.
I have had some awesome dads reach out to me for a session, but most of the time, it’s the moms who put family photos at the top of their wishlist. Most of the time, let’s face it — dads just aren’t huge fans of being photographed. My best advice? Frame your photo session as a fun evening spent playing with your family. Which is really the truth! It’s not fun to sit up straight and smile for the camera…but that perfectly posed photo accounts for mayyyybe 5% of the images we’ll take during your session. I’m more about natural family interaction: tickling, snuggling, piggyback rides, and arm wrestling. And that is exactly what dads are great at.
Explain to your husband that it’s really important for you to be in the frame and see yourself as a part of your family. This article does a great job of explaining why.
5) Our house is too messy.
I’ve worked in hundreds of clients’ homes, and I’ve never found one that didn’t work. There is always a beautiful little patch of light that’s perfect for photography! I’m used to photographing in a variety of homes, from South End basement apartments to 400-square-foot condos. If it’s home to your family, that’s all I need to work with! And PLEASE don’t worry about the mess — nothing fazes me! If needed, I’ll help you move furniture/clutter around as we go.
6) It’s not time for holiday cards yet.
Family photos are not just for holiday cards! I love that they are often the push that families need to get in front of the camera. But I believe that first and foremost, your session should be about documenting the love in your family for YOUR family’s sake, not for somebody else’s. Bonus points if we also get an awesome photo for your cards, but don’t let that be the sole reason you wait to schedule a session.
Also, a word of advice about timing: unless you have a very young baby who is changing a lot from month to month, I highly recommend having your holiday card photos taken before August! For some reasons why, check out this post (scroll down to #5).
7) I already have lots of iPhone photos. Why take more?
Your kids are still little, and you know they won’t stay that way forever. So you grab your iPhone, snap away, and then tell yourself that in a few weeks you’ll organize those Instagram images into an album. But before you know it, life happens, and instead of your own memories, you’re left with a Pinterest board full of someone else’s family photos.
As a professional photographer, I’d love do the work for you. Let somebody else make the decisions for one afternoon, and just enjoy being with your family! Instead of trying to grab the shots, put yourself in them! I’ll curate the best images to make sure that you end up with only shots that you love, so that you’re not left sifting through thousands of images you’ll never use. We can even create a gorgeous album so you don’t have to wrestle with online design software.
8) I’m too busy and overwhelmed to plan everything myself.
I’ve included a ton of planning info on this site because my clients tend to be planners like myself (birds of a feather, I guess!) However, you don’t HAVE to plan out every detail in order to have an awesome session — in fact, spontaneity can be fun! Let me come to your house and photograph you in your PJs. You won’t even have to get out of bed if you don’t feel like it.
9) How can I trust someone I’ve never even met?
A lot of my clients tell me that the session ended up being less scary than they thought because I was super energetic and bubbly the whole time, which made them feel more comfortable and happy. I’ll be chatting away with you during the entire session, which will make your session feel less intimidating and more like you’re just hanging out with a friend. To keep your kids happy, I’ll be running around in circles and making silly faces.
If you’re still nervous about being photographed by a stranger, let’s get on the phone and talk through your concerns!
10) What if we don’t have enough time to capture great images?
As a loose guideline, sessions typically last between 1-2 hours. But if we reach 2 hours and we still haven’t gotten that image you wanted of your newborn wearing the sweater his grandma knitted for him, we will absolutely take the extra time.
That being said, we usually need less time than you think. Kids have a limited amount of attention and energy, and I work very quickly to snap all of our “must-have” images while they’re still having fun. I’ve photographed entire sessions in as little as 10 minutes when my clients had time constraints.
11) The weather probably won’t cooperate.
Boston weather is fickle…I can’t argue with you there! But I keep a number of backup dates open each month in case of bad weather, and there is no fee to reschedule to a new date if it’s raining or overcast.
12) Family photos are too expensive.
I’m proud to provide an experience that my clients have told me is worth every penny! You can learn more about what it’s like to work with KLP on this page.
I won’t give you that whole spiel about how you could afford family photos if you cut out your daily Starbucks…because I love my coffee and I would never give it up, ha! But what I will say is that professional photography is worth the investment.
As a photographer, my wedding photos were monumentally important to me, and I started saving for them before I had even met my husband. And you know what? They were worth every. single. penny. Those images let me travel back in time to one of the happiest days of my life. They are a physical representation of a feeling that would otherwise be intangible.
13) I’m always broken out.
I can fix pretty much anything in Photoshop! I retouch every image you purchase to remove flyaway hairs, bruises, pimples, and random tourists wandering through your background. I also apply this magical effect to skin that makes you look 10 years younger. 😉
14) I’m not good at posing and I freeze up in front of the camera.
Nobody comes into a session knowing what to do in front of the camera, so it’s my job to teach you! I’ll help you set up each pose and give you little tips to make you look your best. For instance, did you know if you bring your chin forward and down, it will get rid of your double chin, accentuate your jawline, and make your eyes look bigger? Now you know! 🙂
15) All of the people in Kate’s portfolio are prettier than me!
There’s not a single professional model featured in my portfolio…but if they look like models to you, then I did my job correctly! All of the images you see are of REAL people. Almost all of them told me beforehand that they weren’t photogenic, and I think you’ll agree that they were wrong! I work hard to find the beauty in every person and draw that out in front of the camera.
16) What if what I want doesn’t match what Kate wants?
Before the session, I’ll send you a questionnaire that helps me learn more about your hopes and dreams for your images. I’ll ask you about any concerns you have, special Photoshop requests, what your kids are like and what they enjoy, what you do as a family, and what your personal style is like. All of these answers help ensure that we reach the goals you have in mind for your session. I’ll also check in with you throughout your session to make sure that we’re on the right track for what you had in mind!
17) I don’t like to be the center of attention.
I hear you…let’s just say that I chose to be on the other side of the camera for a reason! However, every year I make it a point to hire a professional photographer so that I can empathize with my clients about what it feels like to be in the spotlight. And you know what? I’m always nervous about being photographed, but every time I walk away feeling glad that I did it (and it usually gets way more comfortable after the first five minutes, anyway!)
If you hire the right photographer, it won’t feel uncomfortable! A lot of my clients tell me that the session ended up being less scary than they thought because I was super energetic and bubbly the whole time, which made them feel more comfortable and happy. I’ll be chatting away with you during the entire session, which will make your session feel less intimidating and more like you’re just hanging out with a friend. To keep your kids happy, I’ll be running around in circles and making silly faces.
18) I’ll do it after I’ve lost 10 pounds.
Your kids do not care about the few extra pounds around your midsection. Who doesn’t have a few extra pounds there, really?! What they’ll remember is the soft, strong arms that wrapped them up and held them tight.
What do you remember about the photos of your own mom? I’m willing to bet that even if she had frizzy hair or a double chin, you didn’t notice any of that. What you noticed was how much you cherish that memory of her.
So when it’s time for family photos, give yourself permission to set aside the weight of your personal expectations of beauty. Your photo session is simply a time to play with your kids and snuggle them tight, so that your kids will be able to see your love for them 20 years down the road.
I LOVE this Huffington Post article about why the weight doesn’t matter!
19) I’m waiting to have our last baby so that our family photos are complete.
I understand this reasoning, but I think family photos are just as important while your family is in the process of growing! Your oldest child will appreciate seeing what it was like when she was the center of your world…and your yet-to-arrive baby will love to see what life was like before he arrived! We can always take your “complete” family photo when the time has arrived…but for now, let’s capture this little slice of your family’s life before it changes!
20) If we don’t love the photos, it will have been a waste of money.
On average, I spend about 10-12 hours on each client to make sure that the experience is amazing from start to finish. If something isn’t the best it can be, we will try again until you’re happy. My first and foremost goal is for us to create something that you’ll treasure forever, and I will go above and beyond to make sure that happens!