Playful Prop Ideas for Your Next Family Photo Session | North Oaks, Minnesota Child & Family Photographer

If you’re not too keen on the idea of a traditional, posed family photoshoot, adding props into the mix adds an element of fun to the shoot. Props allow you to be playful during the photoshoot as the photographer captures genuine moments between you and your loved ones.

Below are some prop ideas for your next family photo session.

  • Get your noses in some books. Love reading? Have each of your family members bring along their favorite book that can be incorporated into some of the shots. Lay on a blanket reading or have each one of your family members peep over the edge of their book. 
  • Use the holidays. Christmas is a great time for your next photoshoot and there are so many options when it comes to choosing props. Have each family member wear a Christmas hat or wrap yourselves in Christmas lights for a warm and bright effect. 
  • Bring out the chalkboards. Write a date or message on chalkboards of various sizes to incorporate something personalized into the shoot.
  • Get cozy. If your children are still quite young, bring a few blankets along so that you can cuddle together as a family, share a few laughs and get some great pictures. 
  • Print out props. If you want to add some fun to the shoot and get your kids laughing, why not print out a few props such as mustaches, glasses, speech bubbles and hats that you can glue onto wooden sticks and use in the shoot. There are tons of free printables online so it’s a very affordable option too. 
  • Frame your faces. Get a few frames of different sizes and colors together that can be used to pose for your next family shoot. 
  • Keep it natural. If your family photos will be shot outdoors, remember that nature gives you so much to work with. Flowers, trees, grass and water all make for beautiful backdrops and add something extra special to your photos. 

Remember to always have fun at your photo session so your photographer can really capture the spirit of your family.


Michele is a lifestyle portrait photographer in North Oaks, Minnesota.  She photographs children and their families both on location and in her studio in Northeast Minneapolis.  To schedule your next session with Michele please visit mQn Photography | Twin Cities Photographer or e-mail michele@mqnphotography.com

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Why You Should Hire a Professional Photographer | North Oaks, Minnesota Child & Family Photographer

With the current digital camera market and smart phones that take such good photos, is there really a reason to hire a professional photographer? Below are just some of the reasons why a pro is a better choice.

1. An expensive camera does not automatically result in photographic skills. Just because your friend, co-worker, or relative has a high-speed, top quality digital camera doesn’t mean they know what they’re doing behind the camera. While quality equipment does help the average consumer improve their photography game, a professional photographer offers an artistic approach, creative eye and experience that cannot be purchased at a camera store.

2. Professional equipment has its perks. Shooting with top of the range cameras and professional lighting equipment helps us to take the best shots, even in less than optimal circumstances. Capturing low light, nighttime and even high-speed action shots can be tricky for the amateur photographer but a professional knows what’s required to capture those types of shots. 

3. Posing is our thing. Ever tried to get friends and relatives, including kids, to stay still and pose for a big group shot? It’s easier said than done. Need a little inspiration for your own special portraits? A professional photographer can help. Photographers perform these tasks sometimes daily, so they have perfected the skills required to get the best results while making everyone feel comfortable in front of the camera.

4. They’re hired. Using a friend or family member to take your photos could mean missed moments. A professional photographer is exclusively hired to capture the day and won’t miss out on photos because they’re chatting with the other guests, grabbing a drink or dancing. Hiring a professional photographer guarantees you capture as many perfect moments as possible.

5. The end result is part of the process. Professional photographers not only capture your photos, they also edit and retouch images in order to achieve a beautiful finished product. They can also assist with extras such as albums, custom prints and canvases.


Michele is a lifestyle photographer in North Oaks, Minnesota photographing children and their families on location and in her studio in Northeast Minneapolis.  To schedule your next session with Michele please visit mQn Photographer | Twin Cities Photographer or e-mail michele@mqnphotography.com

Choosing the Ideal Location for Your Family Photo Session | North Oaks, Minnesota Photographer

 

Family photos are timeless and if you are looking to update your family portraits or take some for the first time, you might be wondering about what location to use for them.

But before we get started I’ve got a special surprise at the end of this post!  I’m taking part in a blog circle with some photographer friends of mine.  We’re linking to each other’s posts, so you can check out what they’re up to. This month, I’m linking to a fabulous lifestyle photographer in Connecticut, who’s sharing some recent head-shots she photographed.   Find the link at the end of this post.

Now on to some things to consider before choosing a location:

Comfort

A family photoshoot is where you get to smile, laugh and be yourselves. If some of your family members are shy then you might not want to choose a very public spot. 

Personalities

What makes your family unique? Choose a location that fits in with who you are as a family. Do you enjoy spending time in your garden or on a couch reading books? Perhaps you spend lots of time outdoors and on camping trips? Your location should speak to your personalities.

Convenience

Take each member of your family into consideration. What are their ages and needs? If you have two toddlers that might need to use a bathroom at any time, then a remote spot is probably not the best idea.

Family Photoshoot Location Ideas

Below are some ideas of where you could arrange your photo session.

At Home

Sometimes the best shots can be taken right at home. Get your family outside in the garden or setup your living room for a classic look and feel.

In the City

For a more modern feel to your photos you could get out in the city and take a few photos next to an interesting building or in a funky alley way.

In Nature

If you’re looking for a calm, natural setting then choose an outdoor location. Parks and forests make for beautiful backdrops.

In Studio

If you’re looking for a more private setting where you can use props and backdrops, then a studio setting might be more for you. Studio photos will also give you the option to take more posed, structured photos.

Oh and don’t forget to follow along the blog circle.  There’s a group of six of us this month, and next up is my friend Dacia from Connecticut.  Click here to check our her blog post: Lifestyle Photography in Norwich, CT


Michele is a lifestyle portrait photographer in North Oaks, Minnesota.  She photographs on location or in her studio in Northeast Minneapolis.  To schedule your next session with Michele please visit mQn Photography | Twin Cities Photographer or e-mail michele@mqnphotography.com

6 Ways to Always Look Fantastic in Photos | North Oaks, Minnesota Family Photographer

Photography tips and tricks to help you look your best.

From school yearbooks to friends’ weddings, we’ve all been in front of camera at some point or another and if you’ve recently looked at a photo with disdain then this post’s for you. If you know that you’re going to have a lens pointed in your direction in the near future, below are six simple ways to get better results.

  1. Get to Know Your Face. This applies to professional photoshoots as well as every day photos. Take time getting to know your face, how to smile naturally and which side or angle of your face you like better.
  2. Easy on the makeup. While an evening out is a different story when it comes to makeup, if you’re having headshots, family or maternity photos taken, go easy on the makeup. You want some basic coverage but don’t overdo it. You should also only stick to accentuating one part of your face so choose either your eyes or lips but not both.
  3. Facing the camera. Your photographer will help you when it comes to posing for photos but in general you shouldn’t be facing the camera head on. Positioning your body at an angle always makes for better photos.
  4. Controlling your chin. Photos where your neck is elongated and your chin is pushed slightly forward will lift your face and give it a more angular look. You might want to practice this beforehand in order to get used to it.
  5. Pick your outfit carefully. Put some thought into what you’ll wear to your shoot. Pair bold designs and patterns with solid colors to avoid too much distraction. You should also pay attention to the fit and shape of your outfit. Make sure it compliments you and that you feel comfortable.
  6. Use lighting to your advantage. This is something that your professional photographer will be an expert at but the right lighting can mean the difference between that wow factor and disappointment. Avoid standing directly under a light as this will create weird shadows on your face. This is something we will help you out with because we are experts so take our advice when we suggest a specific time for photos.  If shooting outdoors, the best light will be 15-20 minues before & after sunset.  Unless it’s an overcast day, we will always try to get you in full shade so that the lighting isn’t dappled or causing weird shadows on your face.

As much as the above tips will help you during your professional photo session, always remember to have fun and relax as this will do wonders for your photos.


Michele is a lifestyle portrait photographer in North Oaks, Minnesota.  She also has a studio in the northeast neighborhood of Minneapolis that she uses when she’s not on-location.  To book your next session with Michele please visit mQn Photography | North Oaks Family Photographer   or e-mail Michele at michele@mqnphotography.com