Well, it’s the Thursday before I open up my fall portrait sessions to book! And I’m so excited! Most of the sessions from now to the end of the year are Christmas photos. And it brings along a fun challenge to make each session unique to that family and I want to make sure that you get as much variety in full gallery as possible!
There are quite a few things that I encourage my clients to do in the planning process as well as a few things I do while I am shooting, to get the most variety out of the session. These tricks have really just become so second nature to me now, when planning and shooting, but they really do make the biggest difference in your gallery.
This is good for couples, seniors, and families to know. The fewer the number of people in the photo, the more of a challenge it is to get a lot of different looks. With families, typically we do not have time for them to switch out outfits during the session, therefore, we just switch the backgrounds and the groupings in order to provide the most variety.
But with seniors and couples, we get to play around a bit more! We can easily switch outfits, add in accessories, play with different hats or cardigans, florals, and jazz up the location.
In this blog, I will be sharing my top favorite tips to make sure you walk away from your session with a complete gallery, that has a lot of variety between the photos.
Style Two Sets of Outfits
This is probably the simplest way to add variety to your session! If your session has enough time, you should definitely add another outfit (or for seniors add 2 more outfits). I suggest that you add one outfit that is a bit dressier and one that is more Sunday casual. So, if you want to wear a gorgeous flowy dress and have your man in khakis and a sports jacket for the first half of the session, then for the second half you can wear jeans and a nice top (or even a more casual cocktail length dress) while he wears jeans and a button up (he can even roll up the sleeves for a more casual look).
Or if you are taking Christmas photos, but plan on using them all year long, you can choose a more timeless outfit for the first half of the session and then switch into your nice sweaters toward the end. This way it gives you more choices of photos throughout the year.
Sidenote: If you’re looking for places to shop at for women’s ‘style-guide friendly’ outfits, you can check out this blog, for a few places my past clients loved!
Play with Accessories
You want to be careful to not go overboard with accessories, but you can easily add in a few accessories that subtly adds more visual interest to the photos. For example, you can bring a floral arrangement and have it in a few photos and take it out for others. You can play with a hat or a cardigan. These are really simple ways to add to the full gallery. And it really only takes a few seconds while you are shooting, but it gives you a lot more choices of photos! This is my number one suggestion for mini sessions!
Choose a Location with More Variety
This is a really great and simple way to add more variety between your photos, and this will completely change the look of the photos. I like to make my way around the location in one outfit and then follow the light to the best parts of the location in the second outfit. This has such a big effect on the variety of the photos. You can take photos within minutes of each other and they can look like completely different days.
While those are all ways you can plan and be really proactive about making sure you get the most variety out of your session, there are a few things I’ve noticed I do while shooting that also helps… (You can even take these few tips and remember them for the next time you take photos with your iPhone).
Capture Different Compositions
The composition is just how the photo is laid out in camera. Typically, I will shoot a really wide photo and then slowly move in closer to a really tight composition. Even just where you decide to place your subject, whether right in the middle, left, or right, can really add extra variety to your photos. You want to make sure that you photographer plays around with the different composition. You would be surprised with how different two photos with the same people, outfit, location, and pose can look, just because of the composition!
Play with Different Poses
While I do love hopping to a new part of the location, I can easily (and often do) spend 30 minutes shooting in one spot with good lighting, just by playing around with different poses! And the photos can look very different! Even small tweaks to a pose, like changing the direction you look or where you place your hands, can change a photo a lot! This is just a fun thing to play around with at your next session (or even when you take your next iPhone photo)!
I hope this blog, helped you to see how you can do a few quick things to add even more variety and a little pizazz to not only your sessions but also to your personal photos. If you are interested in learning even more ways that you can enhance your iPhone photos, be sure to download this freebie: “10 Tricks to Take Better iPone Photos Today!”
Annnnddd, if you do play around with a few of these tips, be sure to share them and tag me @bethiegrondinphotography on Instagram!!