Fall is the perfect time of year to take family photos. The weather is milder, there are fewer bugs, and the colors are unmatched. In the Midwest, fall is the busiest season for family photographers. The changing colors and mild temperatures make it the most coveted time for photo sessions. As a professional photographer, I only offer mini sessions during the fall. It’s also a great time to experiment with outfit colors, patterns, and textures in photos.
The most common questions I receive from clients are about the best locations and outfit choices for fall family photos. I understand the challenges that come with these decisions, as I plan my own family’s photo session every year. Below, I will provide expert advice on these commonly asked questions, how to make the most of your fall family session, how to prepare for it, and how to reduce pre-session stress as much as possible.
Best Locations for a Fall Family Photo Shoot
While the changing colors of nature are a popular choice for fall family photos, don’t limit yourself to outdoor settings. Pumpkin farms and apple orchards can also make great backdrops for fall-themed photos. If you’re considering these locations, be sure to check with the business beforehand to see if there are any requirements or fees. Supporting a local business while enjoying a fun activity with your family is a win-win situation.
What to Wear for a Fall Family Photo Shoot
When choosing your fall outfit, consider the location. For example, if you’re going to a pumpkin farm, avoid high heels and opt for boots or comfortable shoes instead. Don’t be afraid to play with colors, mix patterns, and incorporate textures into your outfits. Coordinating outfits within a color family (neutral earth tones, jewel tones, or black/white/gray) can create a cohesive look. You can add different colors through patterns (such as plaids or floral dresses) and incorporate texture with scarves or blankets that match your clothes.
I always recommend starting with one person’s outfit, usually the person in charge of dressing the family, and then coordinating the rest of the family’s outfits around it. This helps ensure a cohesive and visually pleasing result. Remember to choose something you love and feel comfortable in before searching for coordinating outfits.
The Best Fall Weather and Time of Day for Family Photos
The weather can be unpredictable when photographing outdoors. Clouds and wind can suddenly change the lighting and atmosphere. However, don’t cancel your photo session just because of cloudy skies. Overcast weather actually provides even lighting without shadows or squinting eyes. It can also add a touch of drama and coziness to the photos. Aim for a photo shoot about an hour to an hour and a half before the sun sets to capture the beautiful golden light. If you’re booking a mini-session, opt for the latest time slot available to maximize the chances of getting that desired golden light.
The most important thing to remember during any family photo session is to have fun. The goal is to capture your family as they are, imperfectly perfect. I’ve had clients who were stressed before the shoot but were amazed by how beautiful their photos turned out. Remember, the goal is to preserve the moments that matter and cherish the memories of your children just as they are.