This is going to be a big DUH moment, but a lot of Seniors and other people don’t get this….You gotta play! This is about YOU! It’s about YOU having FUN! You being You, whatever that may be! Senior portraits aren’t something that is done TO you, they are created WITH you. If you don’t show up, I’m just taking a bunch of still-lifes. When you start to have fun, spontaneous things happen, and when they do, they can be uber cool. The trick is to be ready for them and jump on it. Play, dance, jump in the water, climb a tree, do a victory spike in the end zone,do the funky chicken, back flip off the diving board, what ever floats your boat or rocks your world….Have fun with it…..Life’s too short for pictures that look like you are bored stiff or have a stick in an awkward place.
When choosing a Senior Portrait Photographer, you probably do one of two things(or both) ask friends and search the internet. After about the 500thousandth photo, your eyes are glazed and your fingers numb. How are you supposed to know what is just okay and what is great? This is why I have put together this lovely graphic with some quick tips on what to look for!
- Beautiful skin – good retouching to remove blemishes without making your Senior’s skin look plastic
- Eyes that sparkle – This is a result of two things: light being correctly positioned to create “catchlights” and illuminating the eyes. The other reason is they are having fun!
- Professional hair and makeup – I consider this a must for my seniors. It makes all the difference in the world.
- Poses that flatter you – We cannot all be model thin and able to pose beautifully at will. The photographer should know how to pose you, “clear down to your eyelashes”, so you look your best! No one likes to feel awkward in front of the camera!
- Variety – Multiple poses with each outfit/background are a must. You need a variety of verticals and horizontals: smiling and serious: casual and formal: beautifully posed and carefree dancing
- Gorgeous Lighting – This is last, but most important. Look for photos that demonstrate the photographer’s ability to handle any situation and create different looks with light. Do they have the skill? Do they have the equipment?
- If in doubt look for the Laura Trovillion Photography Logo! You will know its Awesome!
In our previous post on the three P’s of Better Senior Pictures, we talked about planning. Planning involves answering the questions; what you want, what to wear, where to go and when. This post breaks it down even further into how to prepare for your senior pictures!
The first step is to talk to your photographer. You need to both be on the same page and you need to schedule your Senior Portrait Session! Your photographer should be able to give you more advice as to what to wear and where to go.(unless you have somewhere specific in mind) Most photographers are not mind-readers, so you have to tell them what you want or at least what you think you want. Remember, the photographer wants what you want; Awesome Senior Portraits!
Once the date is set for your Senior Portrait Session, it is time to prepare!
- Plan to have your hair cut/colored no later than 2 weeks prior to your session. (Especially in the summer). Do NOT decide on a new hairstyle right before your senior session…This includes shaving your head for sports camps!!!! Gals if you are getting your brows waxed, schedule it a few days prior.
- Shop or select the clothes you plan to wear. Make sure everything fits well and is comfortable. If it needs ironing, do it now.
- Each outfit should be put together on a hanger, and any special undergarments, accessories or shoes go into a plastic bag, also on the hanger. Hanging clothes prevents wrinkles. Wrinkles are bad!
- If you plan to have Sportraits or other photos in a sports uniform, contact your coach ASAP, so you can have access to the uniforms you will need. If your sports portrait also requires a special location, such as a swimming pool or gym, make sure you will have access on your selected date as well. Reconfirm the week of your Portrait Session to make sure everything is a go!
- Sports uniforms, like other outfits all go together on a hanger. All gear associated with that sport should go in a duffel bag. This includes headgear, helmets, pads, goggles, balls, bats, poms, EVERYTHING you need goes into the duffel.
- If you want photos in your letter jacket, make sure it is up to date with your most recent letters and patches.
- Avoid the sun for the days prior to your Portrait Session. More specifically do not make plans to go to the beach, boating, fishing, or any event where you will be in the sun for hours on end. Not only do sunburns hurt, they are ugly when they peel and are more difficult to contend with in post production.
- Get sleep the night before…enough said
- Gals make sure your nails, fingers and toes have either no polish or are freshly polished…chipped, nasty nails just look bad.
- Guys…shave(I don’t care if it’s “No Shave November”)
So, you have talked with your photographer. You have scheduled your Senior Portrait Session. You have your outfits planned, and on hangers. You have your sports gear and permission from coach to use the pool, gym, etc. Your hair, eyebrows and nails are all done and beautiful. You have rescheduled your trip to the amusement park and the all night gaming party scheduled for the night before. Guys have a post it on their mirror that says: SHAVE!
You are officially prepared. Next we will talk about the fun part…Participation!
Thanks for reading! Hope everyone stays safe and warm through this next round of winter weather! Laura T
Hannah was unsure coming in for her senior portraits. She doesn’t like to have her picture taken. She isn’t really crazy about a lot of makeup either. I asked her to trust me. Half-way through her shoot she was rocking the posing and looking beautiful and seeing how amazing she is. When I look at these photos, I see an AWESOME senior!!! Hair and makeup by Sarah Kellems.
Braving the cold and the wind, Abbey and I set forth to create some amazing senior photos…..And as you can tell, WE DID!!! Hair and Makeup by Tia Crom!!
Sydney chose to explore the funky alleys and sidestreets of downtown Urbana, with a quick stop on Campus to get some awesome water and reflection shots as we lost light and the streetlights came on! Special thanks to Caitlin Cole for all of her help! Hair and makeup by Sarah Kellems.
I had the pleasure of taking these three beautiful Class of 2014 Seniors to Downtown Chicago’s Millenium Park this week for a Senior Portrait Mini-Session. It is so inspiring to go somewhere that you have never photographed before. It was a great adventure for all of us, and hopefully I will get the opportunity to go back for a full senior session later this year. Special thanks to Kathy Browning for driving, and helping to make this trip awesome!