Kidlist welcomes Kristin Janiszewski of Kristin Janiszewski Photography as a guest contributor.
Getting family photos can be overwhelming! Parents want everything to look right, the kids to behave, the weather to be perfect, and it can be daunting. I completely get it! I’ve been on both sides of the camera and it’s always more stressful having photos taken than being the photographer. Over my last 8 years as a family and newborn photographer, I’ve discovered a few tips that can help make your next photo session a success.
1. Hire a photographer whose work you LOVE. I mean really LOVE! Chances are this happens once a year, or maybe it’s been several years or longer! If you are going to take ONE day to make sure everyone looks their best, you will want to LOVE those final images. And what’s the best way to see if you love a photographer’s work? Do a little research! Check out their website, Facebook page or Instagram, and Kidlist! Ask your friends who they have used and loved. When you find that *perfect* photographer for you, schedule right then before you forget or they book up.
2. Scheduling is KEY. If your child takes longer to warm up with new people, a full session works better than a mini session as it allows kids the time to get comfortable enough to be their true selves and show off their personalities. When kids have early bedtimes, I recommend Spring or Fall outdoor sessions since the beautiful sunset light is much earlier than in summer months. And avoid scheduling a session the day after a birthday, celebration, or some other fun event or trip. The mix of less sleep with lots of cake and commotion may not allow kids to be at their best.
3. Plan Out and Try On Clothes Ahead of Time. Sounds silly but you’d be surprised how many times people are scrambling last minute if a shirt is too big or the nice shoes don’t fit anymore. Try everything on a week prior to ensure it all coordinates and fits, and if not you have time to adjust and not be panicking the day of. I also send clients my What-To-Wear guide full of examples, and encourage clients to send me photos of their outfits so I can help them add or change anything. A little extra care can help enhance your session so much!
4. Trust your photographer! You went through the trouble to find and book with me, and I hope it’s because you love my work and trust my vision! Those pictures on my website/Facebook/Instagram… I took them all! I put a LOT of love and effort into understanding what each client wants from their shoot, and blend that with my artistic vision to come up with a personalized session to tell their family’s story. We are professionals and have experience with what works and what doesn’t. I always ask clients for any special requests, and am happy to work with them! To that same point, I am always upfront and honest if I think something will not photograph well and find a way resolve that we can both be happy with. Trust me, I got this!
5. Relax! I know easier said than done! It’s hard if Billy is climbing a tree, or Sally is crying because she only wants Daddy, but when any parent is tense, the kids feed off that energy. I have plenty of tricks up my sleeve to help everyone relax, but mainly remember this: You have one hour to enjoy your family without any devices or distractions, so use it! Play, laugh, and HAVE FUN! I know how to get even the most annoyed of teenagers or saddest of toddlers engaged and smiling.
When you stop focusing on perfection and start focusing on connection, you will love what develops! (Cheesy I know, but hey, it’s my mantra and believe in it whole-heartedly!!!)
I hope this helps and I encourage you to use any or all of these tips to help make your next photo session a success. And if that’s with me, I’d be truly honored!
Kristin Janiszewski Photography
I am a Family, Child, Newborn and Maternity photographer located in La Grange, IL, and my main goal is capturing images that make you feel something, and that tell each family’s unique story.
I have been named one of the Top Newborn Photographers in Illinois by Photography Magazine and been featured by Beauty Revived Magazine, Beyond the Wanderlust, Shoot Along, Michigan Avenue Magazine, and a member of Professional Photographers of America. For more information on sessions, please visit www.kristinjphoto.com.