One of the biggest questions I get from clients as a Ringoes NJ Family Photographer is, “How do I prepare for my Family Session?” That’s a totally valid question! With so many things taking up space in our brains (because kids come with a lot of coordinating) it is so easy to feel overwhelmed by preparing for a photo session. Does this sound like you? The good part is it doesn’t have to be overwhelming! I’m here to help!! Below, I’m sharing my family session checklist. Don’t forget to snag my free guide, Top Five Tips for Photos with Kids this Fall!

Family Session Checklist | Ringoes NJ Family Photographer | Golden Heart Photography

Complete Client Questionnaire

This first step is so important in helping me prepare for your session. On all sessions both mini sessions and full sessions you will be sent a client questionnaire once you’ve paid your retainer and signed your contract. The purpose of this questionnaire is to help me serve you best. Please take the time to be thoughtful in filling it out. It will let me know who will be in the session and their ages so that I can come prepared to provide you with the best experience possible. I love to be able to use the kid’s names from the moment they arrive (it helps build trust and make them feel special)! The questionnaire also covers any special instructions that will help me best serve your unique family. I want to get to know your family and build a relationship and this is just the beginning!

Client Experience Guide

As part of the Golden Heart Experience you will receive a Client Experience Guide in the same email as your questionnaire. This guide will provide you with so much useful information from what to expect before, during and after your session to tips for styling your whole family! I continually update this guide to provide value to best serve my clients. My goad is to make the experience as easy as possible. I highly recommend reviewing the Client Experience Guide as soon as you receive it.

Plan Ahead & Arrive Early

Next, get started on the outfits! (Remember try to give young kids/toddlers some options). You want to have as much time as possible to select outfits and accessories for your family because it will reduce your stress. The guide is there to help and I also welcome you to send over options if you are not sure. I love supporting my clients in this process any way I can. This is also why I have a Golden Heart Momma Client Closet that for full sessions you are more than welcome to borrow from! (select spring & summer minis have the option and this will expand over time). Make sure when it is your session day you plan to arrive early. We all know when we have somewhere to be we inevitably hit traffic! Leaving early will ensure you have a less stressed timeframe leading up to your session and you don’t miss out on your photo session (especially minis).

Bring Bribes

You will thank me! Bribes can be the difference between tears with a meltdown and smiles when it comes to photos. Remember this is a lot of new things for your little ones to process. It can be overwhelming even when we do our best to prepare them. A nice treat goes a long way. PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE keep them as mess free as possible. (Mini Marshmallows are Perfect). Make sure it is something your kid likes! Keep them a secret until we need them.

Relax & Enjoy Your Family

Soak up this beautiful time with your family. I will make sure we get what we need from your session. Enjoy the ride and don’t stress. Let your kids be little because it is such a precious time. Remember you are looking to preserve this season of life and while it may seem wild in the moment, I promise there are gems in their wild. As a Ringoes NJ Family Photographer I see this all the time and I love turning your family’s love into beautiful images for you to treasure!

Family Session Checklist | Ringoes NJ Family Photographer | Golden Heart Photography

I hope this was helpful for you! If you’d like for me to capture your family’s memories, I’d love for you to contact me HERE!

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