Photo Shoot - What to Wear Guide

So, you’ve booked your professional photo shoot with me and we’ve penciled in a date and set a location – great! I get very excited at this point as outdoor photo shoots are my favorite!

Choosing and booking your photographer feels like the main job is out of the way, but there is a lot more you can do to ensure that the photos I capture of you and your family are of them at their very best and photos that you’ll look back on with pride.

Now all there is to do before the day is decide what everyone should wear. Simple? I know from experience that a lot of Mum’s agonize over choosing what everyone should wear, so I have put together some tips and suggestions to make the decisions a whole lot easier for you.

Comfort is key

The main thing is to be comfortable in what you are wearing, as a family photo shoot should be a relaxed and happy event and wearing clothes that make you feel comfortable will help you ease into the shoot. It’s about what works best for you individually, your family group together and your surroundings.

A semi-casual look works best, dress as though you are going out for a nice afternoon meal, nothing too dressy, but something you take pride in wearing. A mix of fabrics and textures (lace, knits, cotton, denim), shirts with collars, knit jumpers and layers look great in photographs and can really bring an outfit together.

Colour and Contrast

When choosing what colours to wear for your photo shoot, there are a few rules to follow. You can choose to wear contrasting, complimentary or neutral colours (pastels) and it is important that everyone follows the same rule so that you don’t clash.

Below is a colour wheel that you can use for inspiration. There are 3 different ways in which you can use a colour wheel.

  1. Complimentary – opposites attract, so choosing colours on the opposite side of the colour wheel works well
  2. Analogue – colours that sit next to one another on the wheel
  3. Triad – using colours from every third of the wheel

Below is an image of a large family group, this photo was taken in summer when the leaves were a vibrant green. They chose to each wear complimentary colours to one another, but something that suits their style too. Blues and blacks contrast well together and with the surroundings of the photo shoot, which also sets them apart from the background.

Equally with a smaller family group, choose colours that compliment one another.

Family photo shoot pendle hill in the background

If your photo shoot is taking place in autumn, think about complimentary colours to the season. Yellow, orange and purple tones work well as they complement the seasons vibrant colours.

Family photo shoot pendle hill in the background

What to Avoid

A few things to consider.

Clothing with large logos, character designs and motifs take the attention away from you and are a distracting element to the photograph.

Matching outfits, this erases individuality and often looks dated.

Hats and caps are fine, but choose a style that doesn’t shade your eyes.

If you’re wearing a button up shirt or blouse, be sure that the buttons don’t pucker.

If you’re wearing a sheer top, think about the clothing underneath.

Take into consideration clothing that might slip off your shoulder.

If your wearing foundation, ensure that the coverage is even and there are no lines around your neck, if you go for a spray tan don’t overdo it or you could end up appearing too orange.

If the weather is overcast you might want to reconsider wearing whites and grey and going for a pop of colour as a contrast instead, to set yourself apart from the background.

Colours to avoid, reds and bright pinks.