How to Prepare Your Children for a Sunset Photoshoot

June 17, 2021

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Golden hour is my favorite time to do a photoshoot (along with most every other photographer in the world). It’s the quality of the light, the softness, the beautiful color, and it just makes everything beautiful. Golden hour happens approximately an hour before sunset, or an hour after dawn. Most of my families prefer sunset instead of getting up and ready by dawn. However, when the days are longer, this means that sunset is much later. Winter sessions are starting at 4PM and summer sessions are starting at 7:30PM!

brothers and sister sitting on a bridge in the summer

So how do you get your little ones prepared for an evening photo shoot?

Well, here are a few tips that can help:

  1. Don’t expect things to be perfect. It’s ok if things don’t go exactly as you expected them to be. In fact, letting go of expectations and letting things happen naturally, usually brings the best, most surprising, and wonderful candid results!
  2. Naps. Adjust the nap schedule a little later in the day. Or add a nap for those who don’t normally take one, that includes you 🙂
  3. Quiet day. Plan for a low-key quiet day prior to the photo session. This way they will have lots of energy.
  4. Prepare them to have fun. Instead of telling them they have to smile for someone with a camera, tell them you have a little play date planned. I will give you lots of prompts and little games that you can do that will distract them from the camera. I like to keep everyone moving.
  5. Bring their favorite snacks. A little fuel can go a long way to keeping them happy.
Brother riding on his brother's shoulders
Brothers and sister holding hands as they're walking
Little boy with bubble machine

The most important thing is to have fun, and just be yourself.

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I’m a Loudoun County, Virginia photographer for families, newborns, and businesses. I’m dedicated to listening, to making a difference, and to reminding people that their story is important.

I'm Jenny Sessoms.