Sometimes that means all you bring is a black t-shirt and jeans. Sometimes that means six completely different outfits with completely different styles.
“What do I feel good in? What do I LOOK good in? What am I comfortable in? What colors look GREAT on me? Each of us has that magic color that gets the compliments, looks good with your unique skin tone and lights up your eyes. It makes them POP. Wear THAT.
THE TRADITIONAL GUIDELINES
It’s true that solid, rich colors photograph well. I’m a HUGE fan of true blues, dark reds, warm browns and deep charcoal grays.
It’s true that large logos, high-contrast patterns, big stripes and prints are distracting. The white shirt, black pant combo really freaks cameras out.
It’s true that most photographers will warn you against wearing white. I am so NOT afraid of white. Forget the warnings. If you love it, wear it.
JUST DO ME A FAVOR
More words of wisdom? Yes! Remember your feeeeeet. Whether you cover them with socks and shoes or go barefoot…I cannot hide your feet in EVERY photo! Nor can I hide much of anything else. If you are super self-conscious about a part of your body, be sure what you wear is as flattering as possible. And please mention it ahead of time. Posing and angles can help so much. I want you to LOVE your photos.
One more pro tip…skip the “inappropriate” clothing. I don’t do boudoir photography. Seriously! Or anything potentially offensive. You’ll want to be sure to bring at least one outfit that fits your yearbook guidelines and can be framed for Grandma. Yes, that usually means one outfit with no cleavage.
WORRIED? NEED HELP?
Ask me. Text me a photo if you’re nervous about something. Ask friends. Look at last year’s yearbook. Look at my gallery of favorites.
Heard of Pinterest? Get a board going. Collect some ideas, get inspired and then shop. You can even follow mine. I collect outfit ideas and portrait posing ideas, too.
Acne? Usually not a problem. I will fully touch up blemishes before you ever see an image. However, if something is swollen or making you uncomfortable, let me know. I’ll help you decide if we should go for it or postpone.
SOME GOTCHAS FOR THE GIRLS
Breath and Bend (aka Not too Tight): Your session will be so much more fun if you and your clothes have some flexibility.
Hidden Layers: Wear something underneath those skirts and dresses so poses can done with the minimum possibility for embarrassment. Think about how you’ll change. Many locations don’t allow for much privacy so difficult changes are, well, difficult.
Zap the Straps: Bring the appropriate type of bra for each outfit. Bra straps can be a real bummer.
Makeup Mayhem: Just keep it real. Keep it matte…no shimmery, shiny night-time makeup. How do you normally wear it? A little more than normal is fine. A lot more will look harsh…but, hey, sometimes that’s the artistic touch you want.
My biggest tip is to do your makeup with intention and to know what the camera will see. We’ll be working with natural light, so apply your makeup with natural light. Take a mirror outside and make sure you like what you see. Take a selfie! And go read this article for more camera-ready make-up tips. Be sure to bring some powder if it’s warm and whatever you need to touch up your lips…even if it’s just Chapstick. No dry, cracked lips!
MORE TIPS FOR BOYS AND GIRLS
Head to Toes: Already covered this, but it’s so super important. I’ll be zooming in and zooming OUT. Plan outfits completely. Pay attention to those socks and shoes. Your pants will ride up a little on the leg. Your socks will matter. Pro tip for guys…sometimes you should even wear socks.
Hair Havoc: Changing your hairstyle or hair color or cutting your hair right before your session is a little scary. Be absolutely SURE. But if you are convinced a big change is in order, don’t wait until after your session. It’s such a drag to print images that look nothing like you a month later. These photos should hopefully represent you for your whole Senior year. Another note…quick easy hairstyle changes during your session are great. But, if it’s a straight to curly or curly to straight project, let’s discuss if we should schedule two seperate 1-hour sessions.
Props to Props: In short, yes! Let’s do it. But we should discuss them in advance and plan our location accordingly.
Accessorize: Hats, jewelry, scarves, sunglasses, etc, give great personality and attitude to a photo. Scarves are especially awesome at adding the perfect pop of color to bring out the color in your eyes.
Glass glare: Some prescriptions are more difficult than others. I’m sure you know if this is the case for you. That said, if you always wear glasses then we should not do a shoot without them. It wouldn’t be YOU.
I’m very good at working with the glare (I wear glasses and so do my kids), but one creative idea is to take the lenses out. Or even borrow the same frames from your optometrist…some cool docs will actually loan them out.
Bring a Pal: A BFF or parent or sibling or even a pet is absolutely welcome. I’ve had guest appearances by dogs, cats, horses and sheep so far. Bringing along your favorite someone can help relax you, tame stray hairs, hold extra clothes and tell embarrassing stories that add that great color to your cheeks and sparkle to your eye.
Braces: I can’t make them go away. I just can’t. You can minimize the effect they have by getting clear bands. And, if you know they’re coming off in the Spring, then I will offer a split session. We can get that yearbook photo done in a mini-session in the fall and then finish up big when the braces come off in the spring.
Seniors – your joy is contagious – graduation is soooo close!
It was amazing to spend a few hours with each of my Class of 2018 clients. So now with my heartfelt congratulations I cannot resist sharing one more peek at your glorious faces. But before I do, it is the season of celebration but also when adults feel compelled to share words of wisdom…so here are mine…
“You can’t miss your boat. It’s yours. It stays docked till you’re ready. The only boat you can miss is someone else’s.” – Glennon Doyle
Check back as I continue to add more faces of the Class of Twenty Eighteen. Or watch Instagram and Facebook for daily posts as these almost graduates make room for the Class of 2019 (which is starting to book now – just saying). And don’t miss my Love Your Photos Newsletter. It’s full of monthly advice whether you are behind or in front of the camera. You can read the first edition and sign up to receive the next one here
Senior parents! Clutch your hearts and take a deep breath.
It’s about that time to think GRADuation Announcements. I know. It will be okay. Just breathe.
Pricing and ordering information is coming soon to you inbox. I am super excited to get creative and help you mark this amazing moment in your senior’s life.
The Class of Twenty Seventeen is about to GRADUATE. I am so excited for the seniors, my son included, to close this chapter and begin to define their futures. Our futures. The future of the world. It is a big job ahead and everyone is wanting to give you advice and know your plans. I know, right?
My advice – yes, even I have some – comes in three little words that I stole from the brilliant Neil Gaiman…
Trust Your Story
You have the tools, the intelligence and the character to make what you want out of your life. Don’t wait for that ship to come in. Go build it.
Thank you to the seniors who trusted me to capture this amazing year for them. That is a gift I treasure.
Melissa is a fan of flowers so when we talked locations, I was super excited she liked my suggestion for a little rose garden out in St. Paul. I was even more thrilled that she had spent some time at the Dahlia Festival and brought breathtakingly gorgeous bouquets to use throughout her session. The flowers were such a beautiful touch of color to those sunset images in the field.
In the fall, Melissa will be moving on from Sherwood High School to Oregon State University. I know for certain that her future is bright in Corvallis. But for now, Melissa is embracing her last few months of high school with new and old friends. She has also begun the hunt for the perfect prom dress. This girl has style, so you know it’s going to be a stunner. I couldn’t believe just the amazing shoes this girl had for her senior photos (see below). Melissa has dreams of one day owning a dress boutique and helping to make every girl’s prom one to remember. Perfect!
I’m always so excited when clients pick urban for the their Senior photos. The textures and colors are amazing. And, I feel like a bit of a bubbly tour guide for my clients showing off the hidden gems around each corner. You really see that “same old town” with new eyes when you are taking portraits.
There is one itty bitty negative. I’m usually starving after a session in the city after smelling all of the great restaurant food steaming through the back alleys.
Hayden was a super fun Senior to work with. So relaxed and totally engaged in his photo session. It was pretty neat to meet and get to know him at the start of such a big year…I don’t think I’d seen him since he went to preschool with my oldest son. Yikes! Hayden’s a smart and thoughtful one, and it will be fun to track the fabulous things he’s sure to accomplish in the years to come.
Got any super cool, beat up blocks for me to check out? Leave a comment…I’m always looking for fun buildings for photos.
Some photo sessions just fly. This was one of them. We had a gorgeous evening at one of my favorite parks, and Tiffani is a delight to work. We laughed a lot. Especially at her kah-RAZY black lab who literally ran circles around us.
And, it’s always fun as a photographer when you get a gorgeous pair of bright blue eyes and a natural beauty to work with!
Tiffani is excitedly jumping into the Spring of her Senior year. Her final tennis season is sure to be memorable as her love for the game HUGE. I just might have to catch a match to see this girl in action.
Tiffani will heading to the University of Oregon this fall. Go Ducks!