Different photographers have different ideas about what you should (and shouldn't) wear to a photo shoot. I have listed a few of my favorite tips below:
General clothing tips to consider:
- In general, avoid stripes, polka dots, logos, words, and large plaids. Keep in mind that some prints can be overly distracting.
- Avoid bright, shiny jewelry.
- Comfort is key. If you are uncomfortable, don't wear it. Family photos most often involve a bit of climbing on rocks or a walk through the park. Many a family portrait poser has ended up in a tree. My goal as a photographer is to have a fun photo session with you! If you can't have fun in your outfit because it's too restricting, too revealing or you can't get it dirty, please wear something else. It will make your family photo session much more enjoyable for you.
- Don't do trendy. Since the 80's everyone has made fun of skinny jeans and they seem to be back. Don't let your tapered leg pants or any current trend be the brunt of jokes for the next 20 years. If you own them and want to wear them, fine. Just think about whether that's how you want to remember yourself in 10 years.
- The smaller the logo, the better it is. Nothing is more distracting in a family portrait than a giant NIKE Swoosh. Enough said.
- The shoes make the outfit. A great outfit is completed with great shoes. If you own funky shoes, wear them! White sneakers show up like a purple elephant. As much as I love buying new runners, please don't include yours in your family photos. If you don't want them to stand out, keep with neutral. Also, please don't be afraid to take them off! There is an excellent chance we will do some barefoot shots.
- If it fits, wear it. Just keep in mind that the camera does record every detail of your outfit. If you are thinking that an article of clothing might be too tight, it will definitely show up as too tight in your family photos. You don't want this to happen. But...don't err on the side of caution and wear something that is clearly too big. Just make sure the outfit is comfortable and not accenting anything you don't want accented.
Specifically for the girls:
- If you have a flowing skirt or dress that fans out when spinning, please bring it.
- Fresh manicure/pedicure...or at the very least, fresh polish...or bare nails. No chipped color.
- Bring along 2-3 different outfits...no green, please.
Suggestions for the family:
- Stick to one style and color scheme: Make sure everyone in the group is wearing one style of clothing. Don't have Dad wear a dress shirt while Junior has on a "No Fear" T-shirt; don't have Mom wear a formal gown while Sis has on a halter top and shorts.
- You want to coordinate your outfits, not match them. Choose a color scheme and work with it. Different colors from the same color palette look great. Soft colors with soft, bold colors with bold..
- Choose an outfit for the hardest person to dress, then build outfits for everyone else around that style and color.
- Avoid bright, shiny jewelry and large belt buckles. You want the main focus to be on your family, not your clothes.
- Again, wrinkle-free, please!