Let’s take the stress out of choosing what to wear for your session….
I’ll start with WOMEN first because I think they think about it the most! First, think of an outfit you LOVE to wear because you feel good in it, you feel pretty because it’s ‘you’ AND you feel comfortable moving around in it. It can be casual, it can be dressed up, but it should be ‘you’. This portrait will become a memory point for you – you in this time of your life, so choose something that you think will reflect who you are right now. AND, your portraits will potentially hang on your walls, or become a part of a keepsake album, so choose clothing that ‘portrays’ who you are. Whether you’re vintage, classic, hip, earthy, sporty, or glamourous, bring THAT to the session!
You can absolutely bring more than one outfit to the session – a skirt and jeans, for example, plus some easy blouses/sweaters to swap out. (This, of course, depends on your feeling comfortable changing in my car as we may not choose a location close to a suitable changing place). In portraits, simple goes a long way! I like to keep the focus on the subject; therefore, simple clothing choices are best for creating timeless portraits.
There are a few items to avoid. First, try to stay away from busy patterns or logos/words. Florals are fine as long as they don’t overpower. Stripes are generally not a good idea, however pinstripes work – the idea is not to let your wardrobe steal the attention away from your gorgeous eyes! Your clothing choices should work to ENHANCE your features, not distract from them. White clothing can present challenges in exposure due to high reflection of light, so if you absolutely MUST wear white, please keep it to a minimum. Colors are a lot more fun, anyway! Please let me know if you plan to wear white so I can plan accordingly.
Shoes, hats, bangles and belts….have fun with accessories! If you love to wear hats, bring some, as well as other accessories such as scarves or funky belts, earrings or bangles. Again, your clothing ensemble should reflect your personality and your comfort in the clothes will make a difference in the photos I capture. Consider whether you want photographs that are casual in nature, or more formal and ‘dressed up’. I usually shoot a few images that are full-length, some with shoes on and some with shoes off, location permitting.
Now, MEN: My advice is similar – wear what you feel good or handsome in. Unless you are desiring images of an extremely laid-back nature (and some people do!), you should err on the dressier side, or at least bring a shirt that is something you’d wear to a wedding reception. If you are being photographed with your wife, wear clothing that complements her outfit(s). It doesn’t need to ‘match’, but it should definitely NOT clash with what she is wearing. Again, don’t forget to bring shoes or sandals that are clean and unscuffed. Tennis shoes or flip-flops will work in a very casual portrait, but dressier shoes will photograph better in most cases. I will probably ask you to remove your watch as it tends to distract in photographs. Consider whether or not you want a clean-cut look or unshaven look.
If CHILDREN are being photographed together, clothes that are similar in style give a more coordinated look. Again, try to select outfits that don’t compete for attention, but are complementary. Bare feet are especially fun, and kids love it too. Shoes that are worn should be in good shape, and not scuffed. Please remember to refrain from selecting clothing with logos, cartoon characters, etc. UNLESS this is EXACTLY what you want to remember your child wearing – his favorite Superman shirt? Totally fine if it fits in with the style that others in the session are wearing (family sessions). Bring a brush or comb to the session, and lip balm if you can remember.
FAMILIES: All of the above applies, however I strongly suggest clothing that has the same ‘tone’, not necessarily the same color. Keeping within the same ‘family’ of colors is one way of thinking of this – pastels, bright, cool or warm colors. Complementary is what we’re aiming for, and again, a true representation of who your family is right now.
If you’re unsure of what to wear, pick out a favorite outfit and bring a couple more to try at the session. I will be glad to help you choose what I think will photograph well at the particular location we choose.
If you have any questions prior to your session, please feel free to give me a call!
Looking forward to our session!