Senior Picture Tips: How to Prepare for Your Photoshoot So You Feel Confident & Authentic
Getting your senior photos taken is an exciting rite of passage and this photo will likely be spread far and wide, seen and cherished by many. Senior photos are used in yearbooks, and graduation announcements and framed as gifts to loved ones or friends as mementos with notes written on the back of shared memories and wishes for the future. In order for the session to be enjoyable, memorable, and stress-free, please read and follow these senior picture tips to ensure your photos reflect the true you while also helping you feel organized, prepared, and confident, knowing what to expect.
What do you bring to a senior photoshoot? What can I expect? Do you have any senior pic tips for me?
Bring your well-rested, well-prepared, well-fed, open-minded self. The goal is to capture your authentic smile and body language as well as what makes you in terms of hobbies, style, and interests. If you play an instrument, bring it along for some photos. If you play a sport or two bring a ball, baton, or racquet – varsity jackets also look great in photos! Your photos should reflect and celebrate your individuality. Your pet is welcome and often a furry pal brings out genuine smiles and natural poses. Some seniors opt to pose with their car or bike or horse. You and I are a team, working together to make your senior photos stand out from the mundane or typical. Your session should be fun and utilize clothing, props, backgrounds and poses that make sense for you. Here are some senior pic tips that have helped others during their senior photo session with me:
- Bring more outfits than you think you need for your senior photo experience and be prepared to change outfits throughout our time together based on backdrops and poses used.
A general rule of thumb is 2-5 outfits, each of which reflects your individual style.
It’s a good idea to try on each ensemble to ensure it allows you freedom of movement and comfort in all sorts of poses and to steer clear of clothing that is too tight, too short or too much of a fad.
- Bring accessories like jewelry, hair ornaments and neckties for individual outfits in baggies and a brush, comb, and makeup, especially powder and lipstick, for touch-ups.
- Bring a close friend or family member to help you fix hair and outfit issues and to lend you support.
If you have photos of poses you like, bring the pictures or magazine pages. I will suggest poses but am open to your ideas. You can preferably get these to me ahead of the shoot to maximize our time together.
What if I feel awkward or stressed?!
Um, that means you are among the majority! Most high school students have not been through a professional portrait session experience prior to their senior photos so many initially have the jitters. As we ease into the session and I help you figure out where to place your arms and hands, how to sit, stand or lean toward the light in natural ways, you will likely begin to enjoy the time.
Once you are in a pose, I will take a handful of shots and adjust angle and composition and then will likely have you change position, background and/or outfit and prop and do the same thing over again.
Having a family member or friend there with whom you feel at ease will help you be yourself and relax which then comes out in the pictures. I often see the senior I am photographing enjoy laughs and special moments with their family member or friend during this unique time.
When do you take senior pictures?
It’s always a great idea to plan ahead and book as in advance as possible to ensure you meet the yearbook deadline. Yearbook deadlines are generally in the fall, so you want to allow time to look over and choose your photo for submission as well as those you wish to order for family and friends or graduation announcements. When booking, think about how comfortable you are with heat as shooting in the late afternoon or early evening time tends to be cooler with fantastic light. It truly is never too early to book with me. It gives you and I time to brainstorm and plan together where you want the shoot to be and what things you and I will do to make it a success.
Once the date, time and location are set use these tips to prep for your senior pictures:
- Use Pinterest, Instagram or other websites to research and list ideas about how you want your photos to look.
- Pay extra attention to self-care. Getting quality sleep, eating healthfully, and drinking plenty of water leading up to your session date will keep your skin and eyes looking their best. Spend a little more time shaving to avoid nicks and rashes.
- I hope these senior picture tips are helpful! I want this experience to be a special one for you as it is an exciting time in your life and you should look back on it fondly. So, if you have any concerns, questions, or ideas, please know I am open to discussing them and encourage you to reach out. And congratulations on your impending graduation! I look forward to hearing from you!
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