As you prepare to graduate from high school and begin the next phase of your life, senior photos are the perfect way to mark this huge moment. But a senior session is often the first professional portrait shoot for most teenagers, and it can be a little intimidating. How do you dress? How do you pose? Should you bring props?
Don’t worry! Being a little nervous about your senior session is totally normal, and it’s okay to have questions. That’s why we put together this little guide: to help you feel completely prepared for getting some amazing photos to mark this accomplishment!
You may not graduate until May, but it’s important to schedule your senior photos well in advance. Think about what season you want to take photos in, and book your session at least two months ahead of time. Senior sessions book fast, especially in fall, so the earlier you book your session, the better!
Once your session is booked, start looking around for inspiration. While your photographer will have plenty of awesome ideas for your images, if there’s something specific you want a shot of, be sure to let them know! Pinterest and Instagram are both great places to find images you like, and you can even check out some of our previous senior sessions to get an idea of the kind of images we can create. [insert link to gallery]
It’s a good idea to have a few outfit options for your senior session. You’ll want something casual, like jeans and a T-shirt, and something more formal. If you play a sport or participate in an extracurricular activity like band, you may want to take photos in your uniform as well. Avoid loud patterns or neon colors that can wash out your skin and draw attention away from you and your smile.
If you wear glasses, consider picking up a cheap pair that looks similar and popping out the lenses. Glasses can easily cause glare and ruin an otherwise perfect photo, but if they’re part of your everyday look, you definitely want to include them. Another option is doubling up and taking each photo both with and without your glasses, just in case of glare.
For more detail on how to choose your outfits for your session, check out our guide [insert link to What to Wear for Your Senior Photos].
When choosing your outfits, it’s important to pick something that allows you to move around easily. This is especially important when picking out shoes. Go with something comfortable over something stylish. However, if you absolutely want to wear a pair of heels, bring along some sneakers to change into for any walking.
A senior portrait session should reflect your personality, your interests, and your accomplishments throughout your high school career. If you play an instrument, consider bringing it along to include in your photos. If you play a sport, bring your equipment. There are a variety of ways to include props in your photos, and we will help you out with integrating them into your images. You can even bring along a pet, if you have one! Just make sure Mom or Dad comes along to handle the pet while we take the rest of your photos.
A little pampering can go a long way in helping you look your best. In the week before your senior session, be sure to drink plenty of water to give your skin a fresh, healthy look. You also want to get plenty of sleep so you look well-rested, especially the night before your session.
Ladies, if you plan on painting your nails, wait until the night before to do it. Chipped nail polish will be noticeable in some of your images.
Guys, if you’re going to shave, do it the night before your session. If you do it right before, your skin may be red or irritated. Shaving the night before gives that redness a chance to go away before you get in front of the camera.
Give yourself plenty of time to get ready and get to your session location on the day of your session. Rushing will stress you out, and we definitely don’t want that! Take time to eat a good breakfast and bring along a snack and a bottle of water for later in the day.
Your parents will want some nice posed photos, but don’t be afraid to show off your personality in your images, whether that’s a funny face or a goofy pose. Your senior session should be a fun experience, not just something to get through. We’ll do everything we can to help you feel comfortable and make sure you’re having a good time. After all, the best images are the ones that capture your authentic personality!
The most important thing you can do is just take a deep breath, smile, and let your photographer be your guide through your whole session. They’re an expert on posing, lightning, and making sure you get images you’ll be eager to share with your family and friends!