Sharing some happy today, Fall Family Photos via my first ‘mommy and me’ photoshoot. I’m also sharing five tips for your own family photos – DIY or professionally outsourced.
Plus, the one thing my photographer said to me that changed my mindset on family photos….
I can’t believe I haven’t updated you guys on little Rosalie in a few months. Rosalie is 11 weeks old now. Rounding the corner to three months – oh my.
So much to share, but writing posts is a luxury these days. I am currently holding a sleeping miss Rosalie in my lap as I type this. Time is sparse, eyelids are heavy and my zombie mode is plentiful. Hello postpartum life.
Photoshoot Day, with baby…
Our very first mommy and me photoshoot .. outside of our home.
Though I DIY most of our family photos these days, I was lucky enough to actually get out of the house last week and have a few photos taken – socially distanced in a very empty park – by my friend Heather.
Heather Leven is a talented photographer with a budding photography business here in Southern California! Check her out: Heather Leven
9am, Rosalie was fussing on the changing table, while I ran a curling iron through my barely brushed hair, robe still on and makeup half done. A few messy curls later and I slapped on the extra bright lipstick, did another layer of blush and brushed some of that sparkly highlighter on my cheeks too – to get as much glow as possible. One more coat of concealer as well, because those mom eye circles are real.
I pulled on some jeans — that felt weird! And (gasp) fall boots, also weird to wear real shoes and not my everyday Rothy’s. And a warm burgundy long-sleeved shirt, Barefoot Dreams brand.
I pulled something cute onto my baby, a fluffy sweater from Peek kids. (Cutest brand!)
Then out the door with Rosalie in my arms, diaper bag over my shoulder and a mask on my face. Oh 2020.
And success! I made it to the shoot, and pretty pictures happened.
Fall Photos with Rosalie
Rosalie tolerated her glam shoot, haha. But really, she just wanted to check out all those pretty fall trees!..
In love with this little face…
I love her fuzzy Merci sweater from Peek kids. Cute brand!
But let’s talk about a baby photoshoot. Don’t expect them to care or even smile, haha. More on that below..
The One Thing Heather Told Me About Family Photos…
About halfway through the photoshoot I was feeling sad because Rosalie wasn’t doing her cute new smile!
She has really embraced smiling, and even silent sweet giggles a lot the past few weeks, but she was being a shy little girl at the shoot. She was more interested in analyzing the trees and staring intensely at Heather’s bright red dress, than smiling.
But my photographer Heather had some words of wisdom about that…
Heather reminded me that when you look back on these photos they will have captured this stage of life!
This precious window of life – for Rosalie, the window where she has no idea what a photoshoot is and just wants to scowl and stare skeptically at the nice lady pointing a black box snappy thing at her. And how sweet is that!?
After Heather said that, and while looking at these photos, I love them even more. Zero smiles and all. LOL!…
What is this, mommy? I’m so confused.
Always looking for a reason to wear my Bhava vegan boots!
It was sweet seeing Rosalie be shy for once! I was super shy as a child so I always wonder if she will get that too, even though her personality is so spunky and bold and sassy at home!
Little Smile… And Done!…
And that’s a wrap miss Rose! Headed home to eat + nap!
Snagging Fall Family Photos – 5 Tips
1 – Outsource it!
My best tip is to find a local photographer and outsource those pics. There is a phrase called “mini sessions” that a lot of photographers use to describe those quickie shoots that are cheaper than a full blown photoshoot.
Mini sessions are perfect for a family photo for use on holiday cards or to snag that yearly family snap.
Where to find local photographers? Ask around. Check out moms groups on Facebook. Search Instagram for local location tags of photo hotspots. An old fashioned google search can help too
2 – DIY it!
Y’all know I love a DIY photoshoot! I did them alllll through my pregnancy, with the exception of one real life maternity shoot on the beach.
So yeah, you can totally DIY your fall family photos. You will need a semi-pro or pro camera for the best shots possible, but even an iPhone or similar could work! Especially if you don’t plan on printing your photos and just want them for online use.
You’ll also need a tripod and either a camera remote or some auto timer skills. Although I highly advise a remote! I set my camera on either 2 second or ten second timer via my remote.
Photoshoot DIYer’s BFF: Canon remote on Amazon
3- What Time of Day to Shoot? Lighting?
Think early or late. So morning shots get a sort of milky muddled cool light – good for glow and brightness on a sunny day. And late afternoon – aka golden hour – will give you a warmer sunny glow. I prefer late afternoon, but sometimes that morning time slot is more convenient.
If you go to a public spot to shoot, morning might be less crowded, but it will vary. Choose the least crowded time when possible!
Lighting: If doing a DIY shoot, choose a naturally lit indoor location with a background that is free of excess clutter. A large window on one side or right in front of you will work wonders. To brighten/clean up your light, hand a clear white shower curtain or use this window film by RabbitGoo – I love it!
Or head outside in your back or front yard for easy lighting!
4 – Hair, Makeup, Wardrobe?
In a pandemic, and for many family shoots, all of the above will be DIY. More exhausting, but doable! Remember, for photos, you want to overproject! So more lipstick, more mascara, more blush, more color. These probably won’t be close-ups, so think about the big picture color arrangement.
For family photos, you probably don’t want matchy match colors, but more complimentary colors in a pretty palette. Choose fall colors like magenta, orange, beige, gold, dusty rose, army green, burnt caramel, mustard and even warm reds and musty blues or teals.
5 – Oh the Editing…
Editing your family photos can be a big job. Especially if you are trigger happy on that remote. Give yourself a nice 2-3 hour chunk of time to go through your snaps and process and edit them. Lightroom is a super resource for editing if you do not have access to the full Photoshop application.
And if you hate editing, or don’t quite have the skills to make colors pop, remove imperfections and get a glowy light look – outsource it! Photographers will sometimes edit the photos you took yourself!
Another option is to try some of those lightroom filter packages. Presets that will help you achieve a professional edit for your fall family photos.
My current photo setup for family photos looks like this…
My Camera Equipment
DIY Fall Photos of Rosalie!…
Yes, you can DIY fall family photos, using a pro or semi-pro camera – or even your iPhone!
And the moral of the story: just take the photos! Smiles are NOT a must-have for family photos. Frowns, cries, scowls, shouts and even hair pulls are all allowed. And sometimes cute as heck…
Just snap some pics of your beautiful family, promise, you will never regret it!
But yeah, those smiles always get me……
disclosure: this post contains a few amazon affiliate links — check out Heather Leven‘s website for her photo packages and details! (Not sponsored, just a friend) 🙂