11 Things You Need to Know About Senior Portraits
Senior portraits are often a huge milestone in your life. You’re gearing up for high school graduation and the start of a whole new adventure, but before you do, you want to capture these amazing memories from high school: a perfect picture of you exactly as you are now. Before you schedule your high school senior portrait session, however, there are several key things you need to know.
#1: You can wear more than one outfit.
Traditionally, when you did pictures at school, you probably wore just one outfit. When you do your senior portraits, on the other hand, you have the opportunity to wear more than one outfit. Let’s talk before your session: how many outfits do you want to wear? In general, you should bring at least a couple of changes of clothes along so that you can get the most out of your session.
#2: Great pictures start with simple, classic looks.
You may be tempted to wear your favorite, trendiest outfit for your senior portraits, but that may be a decision that you regret 5, 10, or 15 years down the road. If you have a trendy outfit you want to wear, consider making that one of your outfit changes. For the rest of your outfits, go with a timeless look that you’ll enjoy looking back on for years to come.
#3: Girls: keep your makeup simple!
It’s tempting to go all out and “glam up” for your senior portraits. Instead of stressing about your makeup, however, try keeping it simple and natural. Also, avoid too much shine: super-shiny lip gloss or lipstick can create bright white spots in your pictures, which probably isn’t the look you’re after. Instead, try a softer gloss.
#4: Arrive a little early for your session and leave plenty of time in your schedule.
If you feel rushed on the day of your pictures, it will show in the final images. Your smile won’t be as bright, your eyes won’t shine their best, and your posing just won’t be as natural. When you arrive a little early, you have time to get comfortable with your photographer and prepare yourself to be in front of the camera. You’ll have a chance to ask any last-minute questions and relax, rather than feeling as though you have to rush through the session. Make sure that you’ve left plenty of time in your schedule to take care of your pictures so that you don’t have to rush away when you’re done, either. Unforeseen events can add to the time needed to finish your session successfully and get in all the poses you were hoping for, but if you have plenty of time, those difficulties won’t ruin your session.
#5: Choose your colors with care.
What colors are you choosing as you put together your wardrobe and select your accessories? Think about where you’ll be taking your pictures as well as the color scheme you want to use. Bright white, for example, can draw the eye, while dark colors may make your face appear paler. Consider what colors look best on you. If you’re not sure, I’d love to talk with you about picking the perfect outfit after you schedule your senior portraits.
#6: Think about things that have meaning.
Do you have a special shirt from a favorite event? A power outfit that you typically wear when you have a major presentation or something big going on at school? Let’s celebrate it! What about a special piece of jewelry that reflects who you are, whether it’s a necklace from someone special or a promise ring or piece of religious jewelry? If you have something special you’d like to use in your senior portraits, let’s talk about it ahead of time. I want to help you capture memories that include the things you love most.
#7: Don’t sweat the small stuff.
If you wake up on the day of your senior portraits with the Zit That Tried to Eat Your Face or you have some bruises from a too-vigorous practice session of your favorite sport, don’t sweat it! Many of those little details can be taken care of in editing: when you see the final picture, you’ll never know that it was a problem.
#8: Focus on the positive.
What are your best features? The day of your senior portraits is the perfect opportunity to accentuate the features you love most about yourself. Do you have a beautiful smile? Don’t try to keep it under wraps. Toned upper arms? Feel free to go sleeveless for your senior portraits. As you’re choosing your outfit and accessories, you should also consider which features you’re going to hate seeing in your pictures. I want you to be happy with the results, so play up the features you love most in yourself and play down or cover the ones you don’t like as much.
#9: Think about your poses.
I’ve taken a lot of senior portraits, and I have plenty of poses in mind. If there are particular poses that you’d like for your senior pictures, however, I’d love to hear about them! If we talk about them before your session begins, there’s a better chance that we’ll both remember them. Take a look at my portrait galleries or check out some of your friends’ pictures to get a better idea of what you want. If you have ideas, I’d love to hear them. After all, this is your session, and I want to help make your vision reality.
#10: Feel free to look like yourself.
The day of your senior portrait isn’t a day to experiment with all the things you aren’t. Rather, it’s a day to embrace who you are! Keep to a hairstyle that you use on a regular basis—though if your usual go-to is a ponytail or a messy bun, you might try leaving it down. Don’t force yourself into uncomfortable clothing or make yourself wear makeup that you wouldn’t normally wear. Instead, give yourself permission to go to your senior portrait session as you! Your friends and family want to remember you as you are right now, during this great, fun period of your life.
#11: Relax and have fun with it!
Your senior portrait can be a lot of fun. It’s a great chance to just relax, and show off your best side. As your photographer, I want to capture you at your best. We’ll get a little silly together, try out some new things, and just, in general, enjoy our session. Don’t spend your time worrying about your perceived flaws. Instead, celebrate your body and be comfortable in your skin. We’re going to have a great session together!
Are you ready to schedule a stunning senior portrait session that will help you capture the best memories from this amazing time in your life? If so, contact me today to get your session scheduled or to learn more about my style and what you can expect from your senior portrait session. I can’t wait to help you capture those memories!