Family or newborn sessions in the home have become some of the most special sessions to shoot. It’s an amazing opportunity to have quality photos taken of your home and invest in a memory you’ll cherish for a lifetime. For a perfect example, check out this recent sisters session that not only beautifully captured the sister’s relationship, but also documented their childhood bedroom that they’ll be able to look back on fondly.
Whether you have an immaculately styled farmhouse or an eclectic mix of decor, your home deserves to be preserved. Inviting a photographer to photograph in your home can lead to a lot of questions so today I’m doing my best to answer any potential concerns about preparing your home for an in-home lifestyle session.
What role does home decor play in photos?
In home portrait sessions are so wonderful because they include so much of the family’s personality and is a great way to document your life as it is right now. Beautiful portraits of children in fields is great but being able to look back at photos and remember your home and lifestyle is so special and truly unique.
How do you showcase a family’s unique decor?
I love to have people interacting with their environment and try to highlight some of their décor as well. I typically take some detail shots of some of the components of the home, in addition to the people themselves, as I feel it really tells the story of their lives. For example, if I am in a baby’s nursery, I will photograph some of the mementos or books on a shelf or some of the little outfits hanging in the closet to compliment the portraits. It is always my goal to not only document the home and the people in it but also the feel of their space.
Are there certain rooms you prefer to shoot in?
Lighting and background are the most important aspects to me. I will take a quick walk through a house when I arrive and assess which rooms would work the best. Typically I love to use the living room as it is the heart of the house and then bedrooms as they make great backgrounds and also have so much personality. Well decorated nurseries and children’s bedrooms are my favorite!
Any tips for working with the lighting in a home?
Natural lighting is always best so I actually turn off any overhead lights in a room. This is to avoid getting that ugly mixed blue/yellow toned lighting. I typically look for a window area and work with the clean light that comes from there.
Do you prefer homes to be a clean or do you like some clutter?
I always get asked what people should wear for their portraits and my answer is always to keep it slightly neutral but still be “you”. I feel the same way with the home. It should be tidy but still a lived in area that represents your life as it is now. I like to joke that it should be you but 10% better than any average day ☺
If someone looks best in a blue shirt then they should wear blue, just not blue with crazy patterns or logos. The same goes for the background in a home. Different colors and textures really add to the photos but too much can be a distraction. So, keep the throw blankets and pillows but hide the paperwork on the table.
How do I get that “10% better” look in my home?
In addition to clearing clutter to create a visually clean look, there are a few things you can do to spruce up your home before photos. Having some props or details really make the pictures. So, a couple of books neatly stacked on a table or beautiful artwork on the walls can really enhance the look of the room and the photos!
If you find decorating particularly challenging there are a ton of interior design resources online that can be super helpful. One service, Havenly, offers a free online chat with one of their interior designers, which would be perfect for getting some quick ideas before a photo session.
Hopefully this has given you a different perspective on an in-home photography session. If you have any further questions for me or would like to book an in-home session of your own, please don’t hesitate to contact me.