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Friday, July 20, 2012

31 Days of Photo Fun: Day 20... Tip: What To Wear


Happy Day 20 of our Month of Photo Fun. Today's tip is one that I know many of you want to know about. What should you wear for your portrait session?

It's important for everyone to look polished, to look ready to go, but you don't really want to look all "matchy matchy". Gone are the days of a family of seven all dressed in pleated khaki dress pants and the same exact argyle sweater. On the other hand, you don't want to be wearing every color of the rainbow, in every pattern imaginable! Yikes!

Today's portraits have a more laid back, "photojournalistic" approach, which means you want to look put together, but you also want to look "fantastically casual". As if to say "Oh these outfits? We just threw these together last minute!"

Yeah, right!

To explain this better, let me use images from a session I had back in the fall. As soon as this family stepped out of the car I knew this session was going to ROCK! Mom, Amy, had nailed their outfits!

First, they all had a basic common element- here, it was the jeans. Three of the four were wearing jeans, and the fourth had a denim vest. Easy way to connect everyone! There were splashes of common colors in the red and brown (and of course the blue denim). And except for a little pop of pattern in the girls' plaid, the clothing was rich in texture but simple in pattern.

The result was a family that looked great together but in a casual and laid back way. Great job Amy!







Another important element to consider when choosing your outfits for a portrait session is location. Where are you going to shoot? Going for an urban, edgy location like downtown center city? Then get funky and fabulously bold with your clothing. Going for a more subdued and rustic look, like the session below (shot at Valley Forge National Park in late autumn)? Go for more earthy and natural tones. Here, Dana did a fantastic job choosing her family's clothing to blend well with the surroundings. The family complimented the autumn colors, and the rustic location complimented the portraits. Perfect!




Of course, it's wise to remember that lots of times the accessories make the image!

And that sometimes the simpler, the better!

(thought I'd only encourage the "birthday suit" for the baby sessions!)


And another little thing to remember is the shoes. It is said that nothing dates a photo more than the shoes in it (think about those jelly shoes we were rockin' in the 80's or the Michael Jordan high tops everyone had to have in the early 90's). If at all possible, go bare-footed for your session. It creates a comfortable and fun look, and adds a bit of simplicity to your images.


One of the greatest things to do when considering what to wear for your sessions is to simply surf the internet. Check out other family portraits on portraiture sites, or browse Pinterest (my newest and most favoritest obsession!) for great color combinations and fashion trends.

What about you? Where do you go to find the best ideas on what to wear? What do you think about when planning your outfits for a portrait session? What stumps you about what to wear?

Share with us!
In the meantime, I think I'm going to begin a "What to Wear" Pinterest board! How fun!


Pin It!

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