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Family Sessions: How to Choose a Location

Choosing a location for your family session doesn't have to be a challenge! But I understand that where to take your family photos can always be a bit anxiety inducing. These are the images that are going to live on your walls for years to come and you want them to look just right!

I totally get that!

There are just so many spaces and places on Long Island, NY that are absolutely AMAZING for you to take your photos. Most professional photographers have a favorite place or two that they can always count on to give beautiful images for you and your family. For me, I love to change those based on the season - a beach session for your summer photos or a great autumnal forest for your fall or holiday photos! I also have a studio in Manhasset that if outdoor adventuring isn't for you or your family, is a great option for all seasons!

As I always mention, we cannot have a productive session without a pre-session consultation. It's where we get to know one another, brainstorm, and make sure that your vision for the end result (the photographs!) is conveyed clearly and understood ahead of the moment I pick up a camera and start documenting your family.

Ahead of our pre-session consultation, I will ask that you brainstorm what you want your family's photos to look like. Perhaps you're a family that loves to hike and would prefer a more wooded vibe. Or, you grew up going to the Hamptons and you want something that evokes a beachy vibe. I love photo sessions that celebrate a holiday (like getting that perfect Christmas card photo for instance). Then, we might want to go on location to a Christmas tree farm or think about props and outfits that help evoke a more wintery vibe.

Once we have brainstormed what resonates with you and your family, we'll match that up with your location! I spend hours scouting new locations all year long so at any point in time that you reach out, I likely have a few favorite spots that are close to your home. I mean you can get pretty far on Long Island in 30 minutes at the right time of day!

For families that are a bit shyer, the best way to have a truly candid and fun photo session is to be in a place that is familiar to them. Believe me, I can make kids smile with my crazy antics but closer to home means they're more familiar with their surroundings. They feel more comfortable and can open up a bit more.

Prior to the session, I'll send you some outfit ideas. I'll be posting soon about the best way to dress for your family sessions but each family that books with me gets their own custom family outfit guides based on our conversations and the vibe you are trying to achieve as well as colors that will be complimentary to the location and your walls at home!

Children also really pay attention to their parents. If mom and dad are stressed ahead of our session, it's highly likely the kids will be anxious and nervous ahead of our time together. Every family gets some "tips and tricks" ahead of our family sessions to ensure that everyone, yes even you, has a great time!

Locations including playgrounds, parks, beaches, pools, even your own backyard, are great options for us to have a really fun photo session. Most of these private sessions last 1-2 hours and in that time I try to get portraits of each family member as well as full group shots and some various composite shots. Watching your children interact and capturing those spontaneous moments always provides the best photos, in my opinion. We will also do a variety of posed photos. I will come with a session posing guide so I know how and in what positions you should pose for the most frame-worthy photos but, as always, we are family-led so your family might have their own ideas about who stands next to who! That's OK. The point is for everyone to look and feel their best which translates into the best possible photographs.

If you have kids under five, I will keep your posed options limited. At best, we will have the children's attention for the first 15-20 minutes. The rest of the time we'll let them be kids and capture that joy that is really so fleeting for you and your family.

After the session is over, I will work with you directly for all products and the installation of those as well as any digital images. All images are edited by hand and by me to make sure they are exactly as you envisioned!

Now that you know how I choose a location, why not reach out to schedule your own family session on Long Island?

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