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I think people have one of two responses to family photos. First response… start prepping outfits immediately! Second response… what the heck do we wear?
I LOVE helping folks come up with color palettes and ideas for wardrobe choices with their photos. I get asked “what should we wear?” all the time. So, let’s talk about what photographs well!
Solid colors are the bread and butter when it comes to photographs. I like patterns, don’t get me wrong, BUT….. when you have multiple people in photos, it’s BEST to have at least one (or more) of them sporting a solid color. When you have multiple patterns, it complicates the eye and truly it doesn’t know where to focus. My goal is for the focus to be on the individuals in the photos, and not their outfits.
I love having mom (or the bride-to-be if engagement photos) start with picking out her outfit first. Have you ever heard, “if mama ain’t happy, nobody ain’t happy?” yep. it’s true! I encourage ladies to pick out something they feel extremely confident in because this will shine through during your session.
After the lady-of-the-house has picked her outfit, then we start with her partner, and the kiddos. I do not encourage “match-matchy” outfits. Pick a color or two and start finding solid color pieces, or maybe even one pop or two of pattern to place with it.
There are a few colors that I don’t like just for the fact that it can make interesting changes to skin tones with reflective surfaces. Coral and Turquoise. These are not my jam in-camera. Sorry folks, but these either turn your skin red or gray!
If you have a grand location you are photographing at, then by all means, GLAM IT UP! I love seeing families and couples dress up when they have a location that offers gorgeous panoramic views!
Here are a few color palettes that I love photographing:
Another type of color palette I love photographing would more of a monochromatic wardrobe. A mono-ka-what? Monochromatic means that you are essentially wearing one color. This works really well with a variation of beiges and creams. Light colors like beige, white, and cream can help bring out more contrast and light. I had the pleasure of photographing another photographer’s family and she did slightly monochromatic wardrobes and it turned out so beautiful! I didn’t help her with any wardrobe choices because she already knew what photographed well, and let’s be honest, she made perfect wardrobe choices here!