Love Your Photos!

Clothing Tips, Styling Tricks

Match-Schmatch!

When everybody is wearing blue polo shirts and khaki pants on the beach, you can end up looking more like a bowling league than a family!  Pictures are supposed to be of PEOPLE not uniforms, so don't be afraid to express yourself.  When trying to figure out what to wear for a shoot, sometimes it helps to choose a basic color palette and go from there. It is also often best when there is only one or maybe 2 "rock stars" to serve as visual accents to everyone else's more neutral tones. You don't want an explosion of patterns all vying for the viewer's eye; on the other hand, life without rock stars can seem kind of hum-drum!  Strike a balance between the two! Making use of accent colors can be a great way to give a nice cohesive look.  For example, let's say big sister has a patterned dress with coral, gray, and splashes of blue, mom could have a coral sweater or flower in the hair, little brother could be in turquoise sneakers and a bow tie, while dad has on a light blue shirt or a gray vest.

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Coordinate, complement, but don't match....

Children's pure and natural exuberance can pretty much carry any picture by itself. Kids are natural-born rock stars, with an inherent understanding of their own "Bigness." The subject and his or her personality should always come first. Accessories and "outfits" are really just bonus material.

That said, the boys' khaki shorts and checked shirts pull them together, visually, but the different and complementary colors let them shine as individuals. Meanwhile big sister's dress provides a single pop of color and contrast to tie the whole thing together! With Mom, they look like a delicious fruity cocktail!

Since girls' clothing is often the more flamboyant, it sometimes helps to start with the girl's/woman's outfit and work out from there. If there are only boys, start with the kids' outfits and plan the parents' clothing around them.

 
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A Color Palette

...of browns and blues with warm cognac accents in Mom's boots and scarf. The stripes in Mom's scarf also pick up the stripes in the boys' sweaters, while Dad's neutral tones provide a terrific canvas for the whole.

 
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Don't Be Afraid to Accessorize!

Scarves, hats, flowers in the hair for girls; jewelry, sweaters, vests, jackets; interesting or colorful shoes; a funky belt buckle.... All of these things can make an outfit, and a picture as a whole, go from so-so to so GREAT.

Here, matching rain boots, a handsome driver's cap - and let's not forget a jaunty little stance - give this picture just the right amount of cohesion as well as a lot of visual interest.

 
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Win-win!

Warm neutrals here are broken up by a funky belt buckle. Not only does the color tickle our peripheral vision, but it also picks up the color in her lips and cheeks, while the shine picks up the sparkle in her eyes and smile.

 

Remember!!  Accessories aren't just for looks! 

Of course, ear muffs or a cute topper are ALWAYS fun! But  "accessories" can also be nice little ice breakers, giving you or a child something to interact with besides the camera, and helping to make everyone feel more relaxed.

A couple of pine cones, a camera, lollipops, pastries, a magnifying glass, and a beach ball have all gotten these kids right into the ZONE.

They are definitely ready for their close-up!

 

Accessories also help say something about yourself - either as an individual (for highschool seniors) or as a professional who offers specific services to clients that you want to highlight in various forms of media.

Here we have a vocalist by night, music teacher by day; a business coach; a yoga instructor/DoTerra Essential Oils Educator; a health and wellness coach; and a budding young writer, all using their "tools of the trade" to best photographic advantage.

 

Baby it’s Cold Outside!

Some shoots get nippy! Bring layers that can be thrown on and off as needed, and accessories like hats, mittens, gloves, or even hot drinks that can serve double -duty: they keep you warm AND provide great visual interest. Late fall and winter shoots can be some of the most beautiful of the year. You just have to embrace it!

 

Guys! Accessories aren't just for girls! That said, don't overthink it. These pictures are supposed to be of you, so just be your (best) self!

Wear what makes you feel like your best self - what you would wear to meet a new client or to an important meeting/interview. My pictures will capture the great vibe you have as a professional. Small items can have a big effect. Need some ideas?? These are all great accessories for men, but don't be afraid to find/choose your own. What's YOUR stock in trade?

  • watches

  • scarves

  • bracelets

  • a necklace

  • rings

  • funky shoes

  • chunky belt buckle

  • sun glasses

  • a hat

  • vest

  • t-shirt with unique messaging

  • bow tie

  • jacket

  • pocket squares

  • interesting tie clip

  • cool pair of glasses

  • magic tricks (if you do them!): cards, coins, balls, scarves, rings, you name it...!

 

The Best Pictures Focus on the HUMANITY of a MOMENT.  

Ultimately, for families and couples, you should choose clothes that you love to see your children in, and clothes for you and your partner that make you feel comfortable, attractive, and "ready for your close-up."  No need to "dress up" or "dress down." My pictures will capture the fun and love that you have as a family or as a couple; in the end, no one will even notice the rest.