Family Portrait Ideas

Every family needs a portrait, and not everyone wants the same traditional group photo. These days, people are after a more human touch. And many families are after fun and wacky ideas to make their photo session unique.

family portrait ideas

“Myrtle Beach State Park” captured by Ryan G. Smith

Location

Finding the right location can completely change your photo for the better. The background can add contrast and alter the mood of the photo. A photograph tells a story, and you want a location that complements the story. Here are a few ideas to make your family photos more interesting:

Urban: If you’re in town, take a walk down the city streets and look for trendy spots, such as garage fronts, brick buildings, park benches, and sidewalks.

ideas for family portraits

“Beacon Hill Family Portrait Session” captured by Krista Guenin

Grit: Visit your local junkyard and take a few shots between piles of scrap metal and written off cars stacked on top of each other.

Natural: The best natural shots do not have a lot going on in the background and appear calming and friendly. A great place for a simple, natural shoot is a big open field filled with tall grass. Instead of walking to the park, take a walk down a nature trail, and you will find some amazing spots. Take a few shots with the family leaning on a tree or sitting on fallen trees. Surrounding rivers, lakes, and water beds also add a natural and calming touch.

family photo in the park

“Perfect Family” captured by Yogendra Joshi

Odd: Think outside the square! If you’re looking for an unusual twist, take any of the locations mentioned above and add a couch or chair. Try a contrasting red stool for a forest setting or a plush couch at the junkyard.

creative family portrait

“Family Portrait” captured by Vincent Garcia

Natural Shots

Some of the best photos are natural shots with a shallow depth of field. Aim to get your subjects to be relaxed so their expressions appear genuine.

posing for family portraits

“Chen Family Portraits” captured by Benjamin Chan

Activity: Working with kids can be lovely, or it can turn into a disaster. Forcing kids to stand and pose will only cause fake smiles. Let the kids run around for natural shots, and you will notice their personalities coming alive. Also, getting the family down to the kids’ heights will lower the intimidating effect of adults standing over them.

family photo

“Family” captured by Irina Oreshina

Pets

Having the family cat or dog in the photo adds warmth to the family portrait.

Natural lighting in open areas or rooms with large windows are great places for the shoot when the family pet is involved. The ample ambient light will help eliminate the need for flash photography, which may upset the pet.

family portrait with pet

“Family Portrait” captured by Glen Peterson

Positioning: As opposed to having the pet sit next to the family, have the family come down to his level. Take the photo at the pet’s eye level or below. Having the family go to the pet will be much easier than trying to stop a dog or cat from wandering around.

About the Author:
A professional photographer knows the tricks that can make any family portrait shine. If you would like to find out more about fun photography then visit the creative and professional Brisbane Photographers at Studio Kirby. As a writer I have published a number of articles in the photography industry and am happy to be working for the team at Studio Kirby, as well as a number of different industries.

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