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Three Absolute Musts If You Want an Enjoyable Senior Portrait Session

Oh wow, how things have changed since I was a Senior in high school. I remember all the way back in… well, that’s not really important – let’s just say a long time ago, haha – everyone in my high school class was provided with the name and address of a photography studio. We called, made an appointment and showed up for our photos. And they pretty much all looked the same.

Now don’t get me wrong. It’s not a bad picture. I think I look pretty stinking cute, if I do say so myself. But it’s boring and generic and so not me.

Flash forward twen…almost got me there – a lot of years – and things are totally different. Yes, some studio still has the rights/contracts to take yearbook photos at all the high schools. But you are no longer obligated to get the rest of the photos taken there. You have lots of choices – so many photographers, styles, and locations to select from.

With all those options, it’s hard to know where to start. That’s where I come in – if you follow these three tips, I guarantee, you will be happy with your senior photo experience.

1. Find a photographer that you can have some fun with

If you take nothing else from this post, remember this: the experience of taking your senior photos is about sooooo much more than the final images. Obviously they matter – you want to look good and have them be reflective of you and your personality. But any competent photographer can take a picture that’s technically “good.” What you need to find is someone who “gets” you – who is willing to find out who you are and help bring you to life in your photos – someone you just vibe with. When you find that photographer, the fun and laughter will be evident in your photos.

2. Incorporate what makes you “YOU”

Are you a football player? A track star? A Soccer-playing bombshell? Are you a dreamer, a smart-ass, just plain silly? The whole purpose of Senior Photos is to celebrate who you are at this moment in time, this last bit of “childhood” before you go out into the big adult world. A great photographer will help you choose props and locations to capture who you are at this exact moment in time, and years down the road, you will be so happy they did.

3. Be smart in planning when to take your Senior Portraits

Obviously you want to be at your best when you jump in front of the camera. And you want to enjoy the experience. So don’t schedule your photos for 8am on a Sunday morning, when you know you are going to be out at a school dance until 1:00 the night before. If you have plans at 3:00, don’t schedule a 3-hour session for noon. Taking these pictures should be a fun experience – one where you show up well-rested and are not in any hurry to get somewhere after. Bring along mom – or dad – or both. I always include a bonus photo with whoever is with you as part of your session! Make it a special day – start with breakfast or go to lunch after. I’ve actually gone to lunch/dinner with a number of my clients and their parent(s) after a session and it’s such a fun way to end the day.

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