How to Get the Most out of your Professional Photography Experience
Your senior year is already packed full of new responsibilities, commitments and opportunities – like having your senior portraits done professionally. (Like, at KenMar!) This can be one of the best parts of your senior year! I hope you have had, and will continue to have, many opportunities to be professionally photographed. For many, this exclusive one-on-one professional portrait session is a rite of passage. A way to truly know: YOU ARE A SENIOR! You’ll want to do it right!
For many, this exclusive one-on-one professional portrait session might be a bit intimidating. How do you plan for an experience like that?! Here are some tips I think are most helpful in getting the most out of your senior portrait session!
1. Hire a GREAT photographer! – Ask your friends where they went and what their experiences were like. These pictures are too important not to choose an experienced photographer who specializes in the style of pictures you love. Know that their experience and training on the best poses, lighting, and editing will also know how to make you feel comfortable. All this will guarantee that you have the best experience possible!
2. Scheduling your session – A professional photographer will make sure a picture you love is included in the yearbook. We know the deadline and sizes for submitting your pics. Just be sure you schedule several months before that date! You don’t want to be stressed out trying to get them done last minute. And what happens if you need to reschedule?!
Consider which season you’d prefer to be photographed in. Be sure to book your session a month or so in advance if you want flexibility in scheduling.
3. Choosing your outfits
- Colors: Do you have a favorite color? Do you get compliments when you’re wearing that color? Then bring it! I can recommend that you stay away from too many bright neon colors as these can be a distraction from your face.
- Fit: choose clothes that fit closely without being tight. You don’t want anything too baggy. (I know, mom thinks you’ll grow into it. You’re looking for something that fits good now!)
- Layers: an outfit with layers like a sweater, vest, scarf, or hoodie, or jacket makes an interesting look and a quick way to get in a lot of outfit changes!
- Variety: bring a lot of different types of outfits. Variety is the key to better portraits! Bring something more dressed-up, bring what you wear to school, and bring an outfit you wear when you’re totally chillin’.
- Personality: most importantly, choose comfort! You want your friends and family to recognize the person underneath the clothes.
- Don’t stress!: last but not least – remember that your pictures are about you, as a person, not your wardrobe! The best thing to do is to arrange a pre-portrait session to really get all you can out of your session.
4. Hair, nails, and makeup – Whether you want to get your hair and/or makeup done professionally before a session is up to you. Either way, here are a few tips: If you’re going to get your hair cut, get it at least a few weeks before your session. Go with tried and true, not so much experimental. Guys should have a fresh shave the day of your session. Girls, hiring a professional to do your makeup for your session is not a bad idea. Blemishes, bruises, and basic skin boo boos are what professional retouching is for and it’s included in the price of your portraits. Braces removal, glasses glare, and more intensive retouching may cost more. Hands, and sometimes, feet may show up in the pictures so be sure to make them look good.
5. Using props – I encourage bringing in what ever make you – you. Your sport, hobby, your passion, your pet:
- You want your pictures to be timeless so that you can enjoy them for many years. Trendy props can date you really fast!
- Bring along equipment and/or uniforms if you are wanting to take pictures around your sport. Full gear looks best and makes the most sense in pictures.
- Be sure to have someone else along to handle your pet!
6. Bring a friend, sibling, or parent – You will feel even more comfortable if you have a friend with you who knows just the right thing to say to make you laugh! And we’ll even take a professional picture with them!
7. Meet with your photographer ahead of time! – (I had to put an exclamation mark behind that one.) It can really help to chat a bit in person, or at least on the phone, before the session. Meeting face-to-face will help you get even more of a sense of comfort.
8. Have Fun! – Remember that you have worked hard to get to this milestone and to celebrate this achievement!