Dress for the theme. In fall wear earth tones or plaids and scarfs, in winter wear solid colors that pop on white, in summer were summer hats, dresses, and warm colors. Don't be afraid to show more skin during the warm months to help portray the nice weather and temperatures.
Bring interesting props. For children, bring: antique lanterns, teddy bears, dolls, big colorful lolipops, wagons, wooden trucks and planes. Woman: summer hats, scarfs, victorian umbrellas and dresses. Men: axes, scarfs, fur hats, fadora's, cowboy hats plaids & jeans.
For couples: Bottle of wine, blanket, a single rose are a few ideas.
For holidays: use holiday theme items such as halloween costumes, pumpkins, christmas hats or giant candy canes, stuffed easter bunnies or colorful eggs.
Try to keep all members of your party on the same theme. If plaid shirts is what your doing, make sure everyone is in sync with each other. This goes for color coordination and themed ideas such as cowboy / cowgirl as well. Make sure you match in either color, theme or style.
Prepare to pose. Most family shots will consist of positioning of the family members and everyone smiles, this is the basics. But for children, the photographer will secretly capture them quietly exploring the setting for a much more natural look. For couples, the poses will be more so about looking at each other with love, emotions and of course kissing. For solo portraits, a no-smile natural look is the best. Its more of a distant gaze rather then a natural smile for the best portrait. Body positions should feel natural and loose, not stiff. hand positions will help portray your story. Don't just let your hands hang, put a finger on your cheek to portray thinking or lost in thought. with a partner, touch each other, wrap your hands around your partners neck to embrace them, or simply just hold each others hands. Bend one leg so that it is different position then the other. Lean on a nearby tree or bend over to smell a flower. All these simple actions can dramatically improve the final photos.
Show up clean but be prepared to get dirty. The more willing the client is to get into poses, the better the final results. For example, if it just rained the night before, dont be afraid to sit on the ground for a few shots. When a client is unwilling to sit or lay down, this will greatly limit the variety of poses and final outcome of the photos. Throw the leaves in the air, even if there wet! Lay down in the snow even if its cold! step into the water with that dress and get it wet! The more willing the client is to do such things, the better the results. Prepare by bringing a change of clothes, or quite simply by not being afraid of dirt. Some clients will bring a blanket to sit on, sometimes this makes a great photo, other times the shot would be better with no blanket and just sitting on the earth. It is your investment, make the most of it!
Bring ideas to your photo session! This means don't be afraid to request a pose you may of seen from a friend or found on google. Photographers are artists and will always welcome new ideas, concepts or props. Dont be afraid to suggest things!
Payments: Try to pay for your package before or on the date of your photo session. The photographer is always willing to shoot your session before payment, but you will not be in queue for post production until payment is received. The longer you delay payment, the more newer clients which pay before you move up in queue ahead of you. Most small jobs require about a week to complete in post production while weddings can take 6+ weeks to complete. During the busy seasons, the time frame to complete a job after payment is received can be upwards of 2+ weeks depending on how many jobs are in queue. Remember, once you have your photo session done, the photographer is not at home all day working on only your photos. We have other clients to go out and shoot as well as other clients in post production. Most post production is during week days during the morning hours while the afternoon hours and weekends are reserved for actual photo sessions. The sooner you get in queue, the sooner you will receive your package.