7 Outdoor Family Photography Ideas That Will Make Your Photos Stand Out

If you’re anything like me, you cherish precious moments with your family. And what better way to capture those beautiful memories than through outdoor family photography? 

There’s something magical about capturing a perfect family moment in a photograph. It’s a way to preserve memories and create a lasting legacy that can be cherished for years. However, capturing those perfect shots can be a daunting task, especially when it comes to outdoor family photography. The right lighting, angles, and setting can all make a difference in the final product. 

That’s why I’ve compiled a list of 7 outdoor family photography ideas to help your photos stand out. From capturing candid moments to choosing the best time of year, these ideas will surely take your family photos to the next level. So grab your camera (or hire a professional family photographer), head outdoors, and let’s get started on creating picture-perfect memories.

Choosing the best time of year

First things first, let’s talk about timing. Picking the right season can make all the difference in your family photos. Spring blossoms, summer sunsets, autumn foliage, or even a snowy wonderland – each season offers a unique backdrop for your outdoor family photography. Consider your family’s personality and preferences when selecting the perfect time of year.
Read more: Here are 3 important (but simple) things to remember when scheduling your family photos.

Choosing the perfect location

The next step is choosing a location that speaks to your family’s heart. Whether it’s a local park, a beach, a charming downtown, or even your own backyard, think about a place where you feel comfortable and happy. Your favorite spots often bring out the most genuine smiles and interactions.

Think about what kind of setting you want your photos to have. Do you want a natural, rustic backdrop? Or would you prefer a more urban, modern setting?

Once you’ve chosen your location, consider using the surroundings to your advantage. Look for interesting textures, patterns, and colors to enhance your photos. A brick wall or graffiti-covered alley can provide a unique backdrop. At the same time, a field of wildflowers or a forest can create a natural, ethereal setting. Feel free to explore and experiment with different locations until you find the perfect one.

Finding the best family photographer for you

Having a skilled photographer by your side can turn ordinary outdoor photos into extraordinary memories. Find a photographer who shares your vision and understands your family’s dynamics. Look through their portfolio to ensure their style resonates with yours, creating a seamless connection between your family and the photographer. And find one whose personality gels well with you… there’s nothing worse than hiring a photographer you don’t feel comfortable with!

Pro Tip: Book your session 3-4 months in advance to secure the best date and time! Family photographers typically book fast.

Timing your photo shoot for optimal lighting

Lighting can make or break outdoor photos. The right lighting can enhance your photos and create a stunning effect. In contrast, poor lighting can make your images appear dull and lifeless. 

Aim for the golden hours – the first hour after sunrise and the last hour before sunset. During these times, the soft, warm light bathes your family in a flattering glow, adding a touch of magic to your images.

During the golden hour, the sun is low, casting a soft, warm glow on everything it touches. This creates a magical, almost ethereal effect for capturing stunning family photos. It also reduces harsh shadows. If you can’t schedule your shoot during the golden hour, avoid shooting in direct sunlight, which can create harsh, unflattering shadows and overexposure.

Creative posing ideas for family photos

Now, let’s get creative with posing. Instead of stiff, formal poses, opt for natural, interactive shots. Capture candid moments of laughter, hugs, or even a friendly tickle fight. Don’t be afraid to get silly, and let your family’s unique personalities shine through. It’s these genuine interactions that make for the most heartwarming photos.

Capturing candid moments

Speaking of candid moments, some of the best family photos happen when nobody’s posing. Encourage your family members to be themselves, whether playing a game, sharing a joke, or simply enjoying each other’s company. These unscripted, authentic moments tell the true story of your family.

Incorporating pets into your family photos

For many of us, pets are cherished members of the family. Why not include them in your outdoor photo session? Whether it’s your loyal dog, a playful cat, or even a friendly horse, pets bring extra love and warmth to your family photos. 

Some pets may be shy or nervous around strangers, while others may be outgoing and playful. Choose a location and setting that is comfortable and familiar to your pet, and be prepared to take breaks and give them plenty of treats and attention. You can also use props and accessories designed for pets, such as collars, leashes, and toys. Remember to have fun, be patient, and let your pet’s personality shine through in your photos.

Pro Tip: Be sure to have treats to keep them cooperative!

Sharing and displaying your outdoor family photos

Once you have your stunning outdoor family photos, it’s time to share and display them. Create a beautiful photo album, hang a gallery wall, or send personalized holiday cards to loved ones. Sharing these moments is what photography is all about – spreading love, laughter, and the joy of family.

Pro Tip: Invest in an heirloom album! They are, hands down, the best way to preserve and display those memories.

Bottom line: outdoor family photography is not just about capturing smiles; it’s about preserving the essence of your unique family. 

So, choose your season, location, and photographer wisely, embrace candid moments, include your beloved pets, and proudly display your memories. With all this in mind, your outdoor family photos will stand out, becoming cherished treasures for generations.

You may also be interested in reading: Your Ultimate Guide to What to Wear to Family Photos

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Photography is in my blood and seeking truth is in my soul. Which is a deep way of saying, I’ve loved to take photos for a really long time, y’all. I’d love to share my story with you then listen to yours.



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