I don’t know Bobbie, the woman in the above photo, very well. But I’m pretty sure that she doesn’t normally do her makeup and hair before she works out and sweats. No, Bobbie got ready for her photo shoot! I don’t know how long it might take you to get ready for a shoot. I have seen women get ready in a few minutes or a few hours. Neither of those are exaggerations. But if you want truly extraordinary portraits that you will be proud to show for decades to come, then I advise you to put a lot of effort into preparation. It really makes a difference.
And the difference is not just in how your face and hair look. The difference is in your confidence and that shows not only in your face but in your body language.
When I photograph a wedding I am sometimes photographing the bride on the day that she will be the most beautiful she has ever been in her life - because of all the preparation! Many of the brides in my weddings have their hair and makeup professionally done for their wedding. And I’m going to suggest that you consider doing the same before you step in front of a professional photographer. It’s just a suggestion. Many women are very good with their own hair and makeup, but we pay professionals because they do it for a living.
Caitlyn had her hair done for this shoot.
2) Have Fun!
It’s fairly normal to be self conscious, nervous, anxious, all of the above. You don’t get in front of a camera for a professional photo session very often.
it’s not easy to overcome this, but there is one sure fire way I’ve learned over the years. Have fun. And there’s a big bonus here. The camera picks it up and you will look great! I promise.
Sergio Scharf family photos
Can you imagine how boring this would have been if they had just stood in a row in front of me, all nervous and rigid? Instead they have this photo, this moment, to cherish for a lifetime. A fun time was had by all - me too. So yes, I understand, it’s nerve wracking in front of the camera. I really get it. Please, just trust me on this. If you have some fun, it will pay off big.
Lorena and Hector having fun
3) Leave Plenty of Time
Things go wrong. Not always, but if you or the photographer end up having problems, you don’t want to feel pressured to rush and finish this. If you followed what I’ve written here, you’ve taken time to prepare. You’re spending money on the photographer. Maybe you spent money on new clothes and/or accessories. Maybe you paid to have your hair and makeup done. The last thing you want to do after all of that is feel pressure because you have to leave.
4) Go Old School and Get Prints For Your Wall
Prints are pretty old fashioned. Everyone does everything online. Me too. And I’ve noticed something. Those photos that I have had made into prints and hung on my walls are there, in my eye, every day. Maybe my mind doesn’t always notice them, but because they are there, sometimes they catch my attention and make me remember the time my son and I climbed thousands of steps to get to a fantastic lake in Argentina, or the time I caught the perfect sunset over a lake, and on and on. After you have done everything you could to get fantastic photos, take the last step and pick out the best one, two, three or even four photos and get them made into high quality prints for your walls. You will never regret it.
5) Look At The Photographer’s Work Before You Hire Him or Her
Make sure you love the photographer’s style and that their work looks professional. If you do everything I have said here, you will have invested a good deal of time and money. Don’t hire a photographer based on their rate. Hire them based on their work. Remember, you don’t do this very often, so when you do it, do it right.