Senior Girl Portrait Session in Middle Tennessee

Senior Girl Portrait Session with Crystal Freemon Photograpy hy

Gah, I can’t believe these kids are growing up so fast. This senior is the oldest daughter of one of the moms in my crew….my VP when I was president of the PTO when the kids were in elementary school. So just the other day we were organizing fun runs and silent auctions to build playgrounds, and now we are researching colleges. Where does the time go?

Emily had the awesome idea of shooting her Senior Portraits at Cheeks Bend, a place where we both frequently go hiking. It’s probably not a location that I would take most clients because we actually hiked to get to the various spots, but for Emily it was perfect. I especially had fun photographing her in and around the caves. I hope she loves this session as much as I do.

Looking for a photographer in Spring Hill, Franklin, and Columbia in Middle Tennessee? I photograph families at all stages, from newborns to seniors. See my website for more information or book a session from my online calendar. I would love it if you considered following me on Facebook and/or Instagram.

Extended Family Session – Identifying Priorities

Extended family session with Grandparents at Sarah Benson Park

I have a love/hate relationship with extended family sessions. I love being able to capture the love and joy in big family groups. I think it is a fantastic idea to capture all of these beautiful relationships. I especially love photographing grandparents with their grandbabies.

What I do not like is that there is never enough time to do what I want. I carry around a list in my head of all the shots I want to try to get at a family portrait session. This includes things like family standing looking at the camera, family standing hugging, family sitting, individuals of each child looking at the camera, candids of each child, siblings, etc. For a typical family session with 2 or 3 children, there is generally time to get all of those photos and have some time to relax and capture candid fun shots.

But when you bring in a large group with multiple individual families, I’ve learned that prioritization is the key. So on my session intake questions, I ask that clients booking a session for a large group let me know what they most want out of a session. That helps me understand what photographs to focus on because we just can’t normally get to everything I’d love to include. And it’s generally not a matter of just extending the session time, particularly if there are small children (and Dads). I find that people generally lose focus after about an hour so making session times longer doesn’t always help.

Prioritization was definitely important for this session. Even though all five children were under five years old, these kids did an amazing job and were such troopers. But it was so cold. The day before had been in the 70s, but that’s Tennessee weather for you. Rescheduling wasn’t an option because one of the families was visiting from out of town. We ended up having to hurry through and finish earlier than normal because it was so uncomfortable. But thankfully we had already discussed what the priorities were.

For this session, the most important thing the family wanted was a large group shot with everyone. Secondly, they wanted to focus on the grandchildren together with their grandparents. After that, I was able to get some other photos before everyone became too cold to continue. I am really glad I knew ahead of time what was most important to them. So if you are booking a photo session with lots of people, it’s a good idea to be clear about what you want most out of the session.

These beautiful children had me smiling the moment they got out of the car. I am so happy I got to capture this big, beautiful family.

Looking for a photographer in Spring Hill, Franklin, and Columbia in Middle Tennessee? I photograph families at all stages, from newborns to seniors. See my website for more information or book a session from my online calendar. I would love it if you considered following me on Facebook and/or Instagram.

Fall Family Photo Session in Spring Hill TN

Spring Hill TN Fall Family Portraits

I’m sure you all know by now that Fall is my favorite season. How could it not be? I love the gorgeous fall color, the pleasant temperature, and meeting lovely families for their fall portrait sessions.

One thing I wanted to note about this family portrait session was the playground photos. Sometimes I shoot at local parks that also have playgrounds. For some little ones, this can be a problem because they immediately want to go to the playground instead of doing photos. This is especially true if the park is somewhere they already frequent and if the kids are quite young. It’s just too much for them to understand we have to do photos before playtime. In those cases, I’ve had parents decide that a location without a playground is better for their session.

But if the children are a little older, like these cuties in this family session, it can work out quite well. Little brother saw the playground and wanted to go. I told him if he managed to give me some time to focus on photos first, we could all go to the playground together. I happen to love playground photos. They are a fun way to get candid photos of kids in their own element. So if we are able to use it as an incentive, then I’m all for it.

The swings are my favorite. Is there anything that symbolizes the carfree wonder of childhood like a swing?

Looking for a photographer in Spring Hill, Franklin, and Columbia in Middle Tennessee? I photograph families at all stages, from newborns to seniors. See my website for more information or book a session from my online calendar. I would love it if you considered following me on Facebook and/or Instagram.

Family of Four Photo Session at Winstead Hill in Franklin

Siblings at Family Portrait Session at Winstead Hill Park

I love seeing my favorite repeat clients yearly for their annual family portrait session. But I especially love it when the kids reach my favorite ages for photographing. Kids ages one to four have always been my favorite to capture, and this family portrait session shows why.

Young children are so authentic and true to their own feelings. They are filled with wonder about the world around them. Even a leaf on the ground becomes fascinating, and a hike through a park is an adventure. Photo sessions with young children involve a playfulness that I love to capture.

Looking for a photographer in Spring Hill, Franklin, and Columbia in Middle Tennessee? I photograph families at all stages, from newborns to seniors. See my website for more information or book a session from my online calendar. I would love it if you considered following me on Facebook and/or Instagram.

How to rock your family portrait session

Family of five Lifestyle portrait session in Spring Hill TN

Yesterday, I shared with you Emily’s First Communion Photos. We combined those photos with a family portrait session, just like we’ve done in previous years. That meant we had about an hour to do Emily’s pictures inside the church, change her, and do family photos outside the church.

I did not feel we needed extra time to do the session because I’ve been taking photos of these girls all their lives, and they are old enough to follow directions. But even still, after we finished the session, I felt like it was too easy. I wondered to myself, “Did I get enough photos?”

Well, it turns out that I have too many photos. So many that it’s hard to narrow them down to a reasonable level. A big part of why the session feels so effortless is that I’ve been taking photos of these kids literally since they were born, and they know what to expect.

So I thought I would list a few things that make them so easy to photograph in the hopes that it might help others better know what to expect from a family photo session.

  • Their wardrobe is perfection. The colors are gorgeous. They coordinate without being too matchy-matchy. Everyone seems comfortable in what they are wearing. I love the textures in the corduroy. The little details like Hannah’s belt and bracelet really add interest and bring it together. And Christy looks absolutely stunning in red.
  • They take direction from me but also understand that I’m not looking for super posed images. They know they are free to be silly. I love the photos below of the three girls hugging and falling to the ground. This is the kind of circumstance where parents who are less used to my style might have been fussing at the children to be serious and stand up straight. But Christy and Brian know my style, and they know that sometimes those photos where the kids are being silly are the best ones.
  • They weren’t in a hurry. Sometimes people (usually dad) have this idea that we will “get a few photos” and then be done. That mindset makes it really hard to capture candid, authentic images. Brian has been showing up for my family photo sessions for many years and absolutely does his part to be patient and fun.
  • They get that authenticity is the goal. Everyone was encouraged to be themselves, which shows through in the images.

Did I miss anything? What do you think is the key to a fantastic family portrait session?