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How to prepare for a summer family photoshoot?

10 Tips for a Successful Summertime Family Photoshoot

Bay Area Family Photoshoot
Bay Area Family Photoshoot

So while you are spending most of your time outside, enjoying your days in the sun, there’s another thing that you should knock out now, your Family Photo session!

I know, I know, it's not fall, but summer is actually gaining popularity for photo sessions. There is so much more time in summer to get the pictures done, no skipping classes or school nights to worry about and ample amount of time to make it to your holiday cards. And the best part is, it is so much easier to get on the calendar of your favorite photographer!

Now that you know summer is actually the perfect time to get family pictures done, let me tell you everything you need to know to book yourself a Summer Family Photoshoot.

What are some of the best locations for Summer Photoshoot in the Bay Area?

Summers in California bring with it some wild flowers and beautiful Golden grass. All the natural preserves are filled with the golden brown hues and those provide the most magical backdrop for the Family Photoshoots.

From the gorgeous hills filled with tall grasses to the lakes in the local parks, the Bay Area is filled with places that are absolutely gorgeous for summer photoshoots.

Bay Area Family Photoshoot
Bay Area Family Photoshoot

What is the best time to get Summer Photos in the Bay Area?

The best part of summer are the long balmy evenings and the Golden Hour that is well after dinner time.

What is the Golden Hour you may ask? Golden hour refers to the time period an hour(more like 40 minutes) before sunset. During this time the sun is lower in the sky and shines a beautiful golden light which makes the photographs “magical”

The beautiful golden hues, the gorgeous sun flare and the hazy light that drenches you in gold… yes, that is shot in the Golden Hour.

However, summers are notorious for having later Golden Hours which can interfere with the little one’s bedtime. If that is the case, talk to your photographer to figure out the times that work for your family.

Bay Area Family Photoshoot
Bay Area Family Photoshoot

What to wear for a Summer Family Photoshoot?

Outfits in Summer can get so tricky but if you stick to what the season has to offer, it's actually not that bad!

When deciding your outfits for summer, think in terms of fabric and the color palette.

The fabrics that photograph well in Summer and won’t burn you down are:

  • Cotton

  • Linen

  • Long Flowy dresses with breathable materials

  • Chiffon(sometimes!)

Avoid wearing fabrics that cling to the body, the summer heat will make it very difficult for you to enjoy your photoshoot.

Now let's talk about colors. Here are my favorite colors to photograph in summer:

  • Whites and off whites

  • Pastels

  • Earthy tones

  • Light blues

  • And a pop of color with earthy Reds, Organes or Yellows

By all means, please avoid anything neon, hot pink and dark colors.

How to Find a Photographer for my Summer Family Photoshoot in the Bay Area?

Well, this is definitely not the easiest part of the Summer Family Photoshoot! Finding the right photographer can be as intimidating as finding a Pediatrician. You want someone who can understand your kids, your family but also someone who is relatable and easy to get along with.

A Photographer is someone you will share some most meaningful and intimate moments of your family with, they will photograph the very first picture of your babies and they will photograph the graduation pictures of your young adults, yes, they do grow so fast!

So it's only fair that you put in some research.

I know how daunting it is to find the right Photographer for your Family in the Bay Area, that’s why I wrote an in-depth article to help you with your search. Hope you will find someone you will absolutely love!

How much does Summer Family Photography Cost in the Bay Area?

Well, like with everything else in life, you get what you pay for. You can get a photographer who will give you 100 images in a pendrive for $80 and you can also get a photographer that will help you plan your dream session and give you 10 finished products(that will take your breath away) in $5000. Good service and experience comes with a cost. So let me ask you this:

  • Is it important for you to be able to plan your dream session and come back with images that make your heart sing?

  • Are you looking for a fun, heartfelt photo session that leaves you wanting for more?

  • Do you want to know and vibe with the person behind the camera? They are after all invited into the most intimate and meaningful moments in your life.

  • Do you prefer high quality, premium products?

  • Do you prefer consistency in communication, style and the kind of art you will receive?

  • Do you value relationships that you build with your Family Photographer?

These might seem like surface level questions, but in reality they are pretty deep! If photographs are a once and done kind of thing for you and you will go find a new photographer everytime you wish to take pictures, you can go with the first one you find on Google Search.

However, if you value the memories you create and you invest in the relationships you built in and around your life, you might have to do some research.

Like I said, you will find a photographer in any range, but here’s how you can find out what photographer, style and pictures work for you and How much does a photographer cost in the Bay Area. You can check my pricing and packages here.

How to book my Summer Family Photoshoot?

Once you have picked your photographer and have a pretty good idea about the locations and the time of the photoshoot, now comes the part that got you to this guide!

Most photographers have a “Contact” or a “Book Now” page on their website. That is where you should start.

Contact your favorite photographer. Most will come back asking you more questions about you, your family, your expectations from this photoshoot. If you take just one advice from this guide, let it be this!

When they ask you questions about you or your family, hold nothing back! Tell them everything that will help know you or your family better. Tell them your kid’s favorite songs or TV shows. Tell them what you love to do as a family, what is your idea of spending a Sunday afternoon. Tell them your story and ask for their’s!

The more you know about each other, the easier it will be to connect. That way when you will meet them for the photoshoot, you will hit it right off the bat!

How to prepare to get the most out of your Summer Photoshoot?

The hardest part is already done. You have booked your family a Summer Photoshoot and have a pretty good idea about the fabrics and colors. Now to prepare yourself and your family for the photoshoot, get everyone involved!

  • Let kids pick their outfits from the two choices that you provide them

  • Ask them if they want to take picture with their favorite toys

  • Involve them in the planning, take their suggestions on the props that you will bring to the photoshoot

  • On the day of, make sure you give everyone ample amount of time to get ready, still keep a buffer. Everyone is in a much better mood when they are not being rushed.

  • Bring enough water and some snacks. Summer heat can make them dehydrated quickly and a little snack break is always a welcome surprise!

  • Once you reach the location, let all the expectations go and just enjoy the beautiful evening with your family.

Bay Area Family Photoshoot
Bay Area Family Photoshoot

What to do after the photo session?

I hope you will have an amazing time at the photoshoot. Your photographers go through a lot of thoughtful planning and gestures to make a session memorable for you. From making your kids laugh to singing and dancing with them. They make you all feel special and may give you a little something as a gift in the end.

Now is your time to show some love.

Nothing makes a photographer's day better than a sweet note from a client telling them how much they enjoyed their time together!

If you want to make their week, month, year, leave a Google Review! Your one review will help the photographer and the countless other families choose the photographer they’ll love.

What to do with the photos from your Summer Family Photoshoot?

Life belongs in print! To make sure your precious memories don’t get lost in the Cloud or get dusted in a pendrive in your drawer, I give you a print credit that you can use in my store to print your beautiful pictures and create heirlooms you will cherish for the rest of your life.

These are precious memories and deserve to be re-lived day after day and year after year!

I hope this guide was useful and helped you with your Summer Family Photoshoot.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact me or leave a comment below!


Hi! I am Heena.
Your very own Family Photographer!

I am a mom and to two little munchkins and just like you I am a memory keeper of mprecious little family.


This is why I created this Memory Keeper's Handbook. My hope is with this Memory Keeper's Handbook you will be able to preserve the beautiful and fleeting moments of everyday life.

I believe the most important legacy that we give our children is happy memories.



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