Preparing for your London Family Photography Session

As a London Family Photographer with a relaxed, organic style, I have a lot of clients who ask how they can best prepare themselves and their children to ensure the session is laid back and non-stressful. I always send out a detailed preparation guide to all my clients which covers the below and more, but I've distilled some of the tips from there below to give you an idea of what to think about beforehand, to make sure you'll all get the most out of your session and enjoy yourselves too!

Tip 1: Make sure your Child is Fed and Rested

If your newborn is very small, sleep and food will be more unpredictable (and I always schedule longer sessions with newborns to allow for this), but if you have an older child I always advise scheduling your London family photography session at a time when they've eaten and soon after a sleep if they're still napping. Tired children tend to have less energy and patience and full tummies will make sure they're on the best form, so mornings are often the best time to plan a shoot. And if they get hungry during a session we can always stop for a snack, too.

Tip 2: Prepare your Outfits in Advance

It's always worth planning your outfits in advance of your session so you're not stressing about it on the day. This is something I go through in much more detail in my preparation guides, and I'm always on hand to give you tips and advice - I encourage all my clients to send me photos and ideas of outfits beforehand so we can discuss it further. If you're having an in-home session I also recommend a quick tidy of the main rooms beforehand, although don't worry too much about it as I can always (with your permission) move or rearrange anything that isn't working on the day.

Tip 3: Let Your Child Know What to Expect

This is harder with smaller children, but if your kids are old enough to understand it's worth explaining to them what's going to happen on the day of the family photoshoot so they're not surprised when I arrive. Because my sessions are very relaxed and don't require much 'posing' you can happily present it as a fun family activity for a couple of hours where you're going to spend some quality time together, play games and laugh - and what child doesn't like that?

Tip 4: Roll with It

Ultimately babies and children are unpredictable. We don't know exactly what's going to happen on the day and you can't always guarantee they'll have the best night's sleep beforehand or be in their best mood, but as long as you stay relaxed and keep smiling through anything unexpected, I can assure you we'll get some great shots either way.


Ultimately no matter how much preparation you've done or what your children are up to on the day, I have plenty of tricks up my sleeve to keep them engaged and happy and I always work quickly and efficiently, making it a fun and relaxed activity for everyone involved. Families always tell me afterwards how much they enjoyed their shoots, so I hope you will too! Feel free to contact me with any questions.

If you'd like to receive future blog updates with family photography tips and advice, or to be the first to hear when I run special offers or discounts, you can also join my mailing list. I only email a few times a year, I promise to never spam you and you can unsubscribe at any time.

I'm also excited to be able to share another lovely photographer from the USA from my blog circle with you - Michele Quattrin is a Family Photographer in Minneapolis and her post is about creating memorable stories in Black and White. There are some beautiful images here, so do check it out!

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All content Copyright © 2019 Melissa Gray Peters Photography

Melissa Gray-Peters is a London newborn photographer, family photographer, maternity photographer and baby photographer. She offers organic, enchanting photography for relaxed families based in all areas of North London including Islington, Crouch End, Muswell Hill, Hampstead and Highgate, as well as South London, West London, East London and parts of Hertfordshire.