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  • Kim Lloyd Photography

What does a "typical" family photo shoot look like?

When you have kids, it's important to know what to expect with something new so you can prepare them ahead of time. Family photo shoots are no different! My goal with every session is to make things as easy as possible, from helping you decide on a location to what you're wearing to what you want to do with all of the images I'm going to create during your session. I want you to be prepared so that your family photo shoot is seamless!

Because every family is different, your session isn't going to be like everyone else's. But there are some similarities from session to session and I'm happy to share them with you here.

What time does the session normally start?

Fantastic light is what makes a "good" image amazing so I tend to shoot when the light is the best for each location. For most locations, 90 minutes before sunset is the best start time. This gives us plenty of time to play before the light gets too dim (and the soft light just before sunset is magical). This timeline works well for sessions in downtown Tampa as well as my favorite Odessa field (and Cypress Point Park too).

With my in-home sessions, I work with each family to determine when they have the best light in their home and base the session time on that. And if you and your family are morning people, no worries....early morning light is also beautiful! No matter what kind of session you want, we can find a time that works for you all.

What will my family and I do at our photo shoot?

This is a question I get asked a lot. If you've ever been to a photography studio, you know how quickly they move you from pose to pose. They have to because they have another session scheduled immediately after yours. You just follow what they tell you to do and hope your kids all smile and look at the camera at the same time. It can be really stressful!!

I actually hated working at a photography studio for that was too stressful for everyone involved. And I didn't really get to know any of the families I photographed because we had to keep each session to 30 minutes or less. When I started my business, I knew I was going to take a different approach. I wanted things to be easy and stress-free and relaxed. And that is what I strive for with each session.

A family of four is sitting on the ground and smiling

Because I don't have a set time limit for each session, we have plenty of time to explore and play games. Nothing is rushed...I want you to enjoy the time you are spending with your family. With most on-location sessions, we stroll together until I find a good spot to photograph. I give directions on where to sit or stand and help with positioning everyone (but no awkward poses, I promise!) and then usually get the family talking, tell a few terrible jokes or play a game. Once we're done with that location, we stroll to a different area. If the kids find something cool, we take time to check it out. Many of your images from your session will be of your family looking at each other, not at me.

For the at-home sessions, I talk with the family ahead of time to plan some activities they can do together. This helps to take the focus off of the camera and allows them to just enjoy being together. Sometimes it's baking, sometimes it's building legos or reading a book. It's up to each individual family to decide what activities they want to do together.

So to answer the question of what to "do" at your session...enjoy being with your family! That's it! I will take care of the rest. One thing I can tell you is to be prepared to get close! My families love to snuggle...

A family of four is sitting on the ground and smiling at each other

If you're looking for more tips on how to have a successful session, check this out!

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