Moving families from traditional to lifestyle portraiture - part 2 of 1 2 3

by Alison Carlino Published 01/08/2015


Sometimes lifestyle sessions revolve around a time-honoured activity that has been passed down through the generations. For example, imagine photographing a lively scene of laughing women baking a favourite recipe with many generations all in the kitchen together! Or maybe the men are in the workshop creating a masterful wood project that takes time and skill, and is worth passing down through the generations...

We've also seen the lifestyle sessions happen at places that describe the parent's place of employment. If dad was an airline pilot, we might go to a hanger with vintage planes and shoot there. We have a solid base of families with young children and those kids usually aren't involved in organised sports yet. If mom and dad enjoyed activities at the beach before the children were born, that would be a meaningful place to return to with their young family. Something as simple as a blanket in the park, blowing bubbles, or reading books together, is a great activity for the family with very young children. It's great at this stage to have them show how they connect with one or both parents, face-to-face and not looking at a camera.


When clients have been with us for a while and they mention they are looking for something different this year for the annual session, the first thing that I recommend is centering the photos on their hobbies. It's a natural progression in the conversation to begin talking about locations, clothing, and props. One of the best things to come out of our lifestyle sessions (besides the family time together) would be the art book that combines all of their images into story form. The family now has a true storytelling, day-in-the-life representation of what that year looked like for them.

I find a lot of stress on mom deals with the clothing. Lifestyle sessions aren't all about buying clothes that you only wear for photos and never wear again! The family is encouraged to be photographed in normal attire as well as bringing along the jerseys/uniforms and props essential to setting the scene. Pets are definitely encouraged!

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1st Published 01/08/2015
last update 21/07/2022 10:42:07

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