How to Create More Candid Moments During Your Family Photos

Getting in front of a camera can be intimidating, and if you’re anything like me, you might need some gently reminders for what to do throughout your family photo session. Recently I shared an Instagram reel highlighting my top three tips for how to create more candid moments during your family photos. Today I want to take the time to go into more depth on these tips so that you can review and utilize them at your next family photoshoot. They’re simple, and if you’re working with me, I’ll likely remind you of them before and during our session. 🙂 Let’s dive in!

  1. Always be touching. This is impossible to do the entire time, but seriously, touch as much and as often as you can. And get close. Like, really close. This is a great starting place if you’re feeling awkward or unsure of what to do in front of the camera. Hold someone’s hand, touch your loved one’s face, pull your child in close and let them snuggle in. There is so much raw and authentic emotion that can come from a simple touch. A few other ways to show love and connection through touch are to pick your child up – put them on your back, shoulders, or cradle them in your arms. Touch a lock of their hair, twirl their curls in between their fingers, kiss their cheeks, share butterfly kisses, snuggle in close. You’ll feel the magic when it starts happening.
candid family photos
  1. Look at each other. Simple and yet so powerful. Looking at a familiar face can ease your own tension as well as theirs, and take the focus away from my big camera lens nearby. Smile, make a funny face, have a staring contest, or gaze lovingly into each other’s eyes. Or simply observe the other person. Point things out to one another or watch the sunset together. My favorite photos are rarely images where everyone is smiling at me, though I do make sure to capture a few of them at every session, not to worry.
playful family photos
  1. Last but certainly not least, play with one another and have some fun! Don’t be afraid to get silly. Oftentimes people feel like they’re acting ridiculous but the photos turn out magical because they’re filled with genuine emotion. Tickle each other and create a big pig pile! Swing your kiddos, play peek-a-boo, dance, run, or skip around together. Sometimes these games can be super fun to play with older kids, too! It brings them back to those care-free years when they ran a little more wild. If your family loves playing certain games or sports together that require additional props, bring them along. Play keepaway with a soccer ball, toss a disc, or sit down to a game of Slap Jack. However, I do suggest keeping them more active than inactive as movement brings more joyous energy to your images.
fun family photos with movement

I hope you found these tips on how to create more candid moments during your family photos useful! If you use these tips at your next family session, I am confident that not only will your images turn out better than you expect, but you and your family will genuinely enjoy the experience so much more! And that’s the point, right? To capture authentic, everlasting memories for you and your family to relish, and hopefully display some beautiful artwork in your home. So have fun and do just that! Make memories!

I hope you find these tips useful and take them to heart. It would mean the world to me if you let me know what you think of these tips in the comments below.Do you find them helpful? Looking for more?

With abundant love and gratitude,


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June 22, 2022

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