10 Tips For Your Upcoming Senior Photo Session
10 tips for your upcoming senior photo session
Whether you are a senior preparing for your senior session, or a senior portrait photographer yourself, chances are you’ve seen no less than 100 differing opinions on how to do things in the senior portrait world. It’s completely normal to feel a little awkward when taking senior portraits. Many seniors tend to feel self-conscious about their appearance because they feel uncomfortable taking photos on their own. Below are ten tips for taking on your senior photo session with grace and confidence and leaving with photos that you will love for years to come.
1. Keep your locations in mind.
Shooting your photos in the middle of a forest? You might want to avoid wearing predominantly green or brown so you don't blend in with the trees! Try a bright color or neutral. Urban locations are a bit more interesting since there is typically more variety in backgrounds, but you should still try to match the mood of the location. For shoes, think about where you will be walking! Some locations can be a bit of a heck to get to, so trekking through the wilderness in heels isn't ideal. Either ditch the heels completely in situations like that, or bring along a second comfy pair of shoes that you can easily slide off when you arrive at the location.
Being stationed in a place can sometimes produce a very staged and cheesy look. It is important to create movement with your poses, such as playing with hair. I always make sure each hand has a purpose. Just because you are sitting or standing still doesn’t mean you can’t change the angle of your body to create a look that is fresh and inspired. Try leaning into the camera slightly to appear more engaged, shift your weight from left to right, or simply move your chin slightly up and down for different shots as this gives us a variety of facial expressions to work with.
3. Bring a friend.
The way my sessions are structured (and a lot of other photographers do this too), you have a certain amount of time allotted for the session, and driving to locations and changing outfits is included also. Rather than waste precious time driving to the next location, lugging your stuff out of the car, then hurriedly trying to change and fix your hair, bring a friend with you, or a parent. While your friend or parent drives you to the next location, you can be in the backseat changing into your next outfit (in the air conditioned atmosphere). And maybe most important of all, they can make you feel comfortable and get some genuine laughter out of you! Just be sure to say thank you and buy them some coffee when you’re done.
4. Do your homework.
Know your photographer's style. Sometimes it can be frustrating as a photographer when clients seem to have a photography preference that is vastly different from the work you consistently produce. If your photographer loves candid, lifestyle photography, you may not be happy with the results if you like a more polished and posed look. Neither is bad, but the photographer ultimately wants you to be happy with your images. Keep in mind their shooting, posing, and editing style, and make sure you like what you see on their portfolio and social media accounts!
6. Think about how you're going to use the photos.
If you're making a graduation announcement card, keep in mind that you may have several different photos right next to each other on the card, so make sure the colors of your outfits are uniformed. Additionally, if you know you need one really good vertical image in your cap and gown, for example, communicate that to your photographer so they can be sure to get you what you need!
7. Ask Questions
Sending a questionnaire to seniors allows you to gather essential information about the client for your records as well as ask them questions about their hobbies, interests and style. The pre-session meeting is also very important if you choose to have one. Being upfront with your pricing is also critical because you’ll be wasting your time and theirs if you set up an in-person meeting just to find out that you’re outside of their budget. As a senior, if you have any questions or have anything specific you would like to have done, communicate this with your photographer beforehand!
8. Relate to Your Customers to Stand Out
Relating to clients and giving them a memorable experience is key in order to offer a premium service and to stand out above your competition. The most important thing to remember is that high school students are very social and most of them interact using social media and technology daily. In general, they prefer text messages and e-mails to phone calls. Get to know each client and be willing to be flexible on how you interact and communicate based on their needs and preferences.
9. Treat yourself.
Get your nails done or do a face mask the night before your shoot! Be sure to go to bed early so you are well-rested the next day. Hydrate throughout the day. For your nails, think about what color will work with all of your outfits. If you plan on showing off a class ring or engagement ring in your photos, make sure you get a manicure! If you're wearing open-toed shoes, treat yourself to a nice pedicure
10. Think about how you're going to use the photos.
If you're making a graduation announcement card, keep in mind that you may have several different photos right next to each other on the card, so make sure the colors of your outfits coordinate. Additionally, if you know you need one really good vertical image in your cap and gown, for example, communicate that to your photographer so they can be sure to get you what you need.
11. One last bonus tip.
HAVE FUN while you create beautiful images!
If you are looking for a photographer for your senior photo session, head on over to the contact page and get in touch with me, I would love to help you create beautiful images!
Keywords: Cedar Rapids, Cedar Rapids Photographer, cedar rapids portrait photographer, Cedar Rapids Senior Photographer, iowa senior photographer, senior photo poses, senior photographer, senior photography, senior photography tips, senior picture tips, senior pictures, senior pictures in cedar rapids, senior style guide
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