Just as I explained in How to Choose a Newborn Photographer, there are 2-3 different general types of family photography. I’ll give you a quick explanation of each below.
Studio/Portrait Family Photographer
These would be considered more traditional portrait family photography, where the photographer poses the group, and everyone is looking at the camera and smiling. This type of portraiture can be done in the studio or outside.
Lifestyle Family Photographer
If you’ve read my What is Lifestyle Photography post, you’ve already got this one down! A lifestyle photographer does some directing and posing of the family, and then gets lots of candid photos sprinkled in of family members interacting and connecting with each other in a genuine way that shows each person’s true personalities. These sessions are inside or outside.
Documentary Family Photographer
A documentary family photographer typically spends 2-4 hours with a family, usually in their home, documenting their day-to-day lives in an unscripted way. Photographers do a tiny bit of prompting, but mostly they observe the family and take true-to-life photos.
So first, you have to decide which style you like the best for your family photos: Studio/Portrait, Lifestyle, or Documentary?
Once you figure that out, do some online research to find a photographer in your area that fits the type of images you want. Does their style resonate with you? Are their photos consistent and cohesive? Is their website helpful and professional? Have they been in business for a while? Do they have good reviews?
If you answered yes to all of those, then reach out!
See if they’re available and willing to spend a moment chatting with you and answering your questions. Getting family photos is a big investment, after all, and you are essentially paying your photographer for the best experience ever, even before they pick up the camera. Getting photos is stressful enough, right? 🙂
See examples of more of my family sessions here and here.
I hope this helps navigate the crazy world of family photographers, and helps you make a more informed decision. If you’re interested in chatting with me about a future session, give me a holler!