How to Plan for a Photo Shoot

We had a really fun time taking Cooper’s one-year photos!! My photographer came over and we took a lot of cozy fun pics in the bedroom and then we went outside and to the beach! Here is one of my favorite photos from the beach, and a few tips on how to get ready! We just received our Christmas card, designed by the talented PrintsForEvents, and I will share next week!


I spend a lot of time in front of the camera and it may surprise you to know that although I am comfortable filming, I hate dressing up and wearing makeup! I mean, don’t get me wrong, I love the occasional pamper and it is pretty fun to get all dolled up, but only on occasion ;) I would much prefer to be in leggings with a pony tail! That said, I know I am starting to sound very contradictory, photos are very important to me. I will forever cherish the ones taken of Cooper the day after he was born, I love a good Christmas card, and my phone is at capacity with casual snaps! With Cooper’s first birthday approaching I was of course excited to take photos to capture this time in our life. Shooting with a walking one-year-old can be tricky! His patience is nowhere near mine, and neither is my husband’s for that matter ;) So here are 4 tips on how to plan for a family photo shoot!



Wherever YOU want! Forget Pinterest and all of these cute family photos you see in the woods, etc. Shoot where you feel at home. Maybe that is at home! You want the photos to reflect you. It would be weird if you went to a park for photos but literally never went to a park in your normal life, ya know? Try and pick a place, a room, that really reflects your family during this time. When you look back at these you want to have wonderful memories of the place as well.


books: Find a book that fits the outfit and color scheme. I know, sounds crazy, but a book can be a good prop and if you are anything like me then you have a ton of children’s books! And then obviously bring that one book that is really ugly but makes noise.

stuffed animals: Similar to the books, bring a stuffed animal that goes with the look too. Perfect for entertaining the baby and for a cute photo!

food: Bribery at it’s best! Well, Cooper LOVES food. Like all food any time. Great way to keep them occupied!

toys: Bring a few toys to occupy them. I love loud ones. I mean, I don’t, but when in doubt bring things that make noise haha.


You are very prepared. The rest, is not up to you. The weather, the random person walking around without a shirt at the beach, the drool from teething…I could go on and on and on! But! If you choose a great photographer they will capture great moments. I truly believe in that. From my experience with shooting food for my cookbooks I know that for every 15 photo we get “the one”. Photographers will take many photos and you will get a handful of photos that you love. And that is another thing. You do not need 100. You need 5 that you like! I think about that when I think about our wedding. How many photos do you frame? 4? So don’t stress about the quantity of photos, just get a good one and that is good enough :)

Oh, and I was finished writing this blog post and had to add one more sentence. On the Thursday before our photos, I picked Cooper up from daycare and he had tripped (because he is always running!) and he had a HUGE bruise on his forehead. Talk about not being able to control things ;) All good, is what it is! Don’t stress!

I will share family photos soon!