7 Tips to get kids to cooperate for a photo session!

It's that time of year!  Family photo time!

Round Rock Family Photographer-Emily Ingalls Photography-Austin Texas Family Photographer-Pflugerville Texas Family Photographer

Time to get the annual family photo session taken for your Christmas, Hanukah, Kwanza, or whichever Holiday you and your family celebrate, so you can put it on your Holiday card and mail it off to family and friends in December.

Most parents love and dread having their family photo taken.  They love it because those photos create memories of how their kids (and themselves) look and acted that particular year.

But let's be real, it can be a tad stressful on Mom and Dad.  It’s tough coordination schedules, games. Then you have to find a photographer who’s work you love, book your the photo session, and gather outfits for the family.  Not to mention bribing, threatening, and begging the kids to behave, smile, and act nice during their photo session.

Sound familiar?

It's pretty common.  I can't tell you how many times I've had Moms and Dads stressing about how to get their kids to cooperate for their family photo.  And with four kids of my own, I completely understand and can relate!

So with the busy season of photography starting, I compiled a quick list to try and make everything go a bit more smoothly at your next family photo shoot.

  1. Make sure all your kids are well fed.  Yes, it sounds like their pets, but it works!  Kids who are hungry are generally not willing to cooperate.  Does the term hangry sounds familiar?  So make sure they eat a good meal or heavy snack before the photo session.

  2. Kids should be comfortable in the clothes they are wearing.  If that gorgeous shirt/dress/skirt itches and irritates your child's skin, it's going to show in the photos.  If your little girl doesn't normally wear a hair barrette or headband, but you want it on her for the photos, chances are she's going to constantly be playing with it or taking it off.  If you're kids are comfortable in their clothing, they'll be more relaxed and willing to cooperate.

  3. Bring snacks!  If you have young children, snacks are always a good motivator for them.  As a parent, I know I can feed my child a full meal and 30 minutes later they'll be hungry again.  It's normal.  So having non-messy snacks handy during a photo shoot works wonders!

  4. Talk to your kids before hand about your photo session.  Surprising your kids with a family photo session never goes over well.  Tell them what's going on and what to expect at the photo session.  If they know your expectations from the beginning, they're more likely to cooperate.

  5. Bribes and Rewards.  As a parent, I'm not above bribing my kids sometimes.  Is it ideal?  No.  Does it work? Heck yes!  Promising them ice cream or a special treat afterwards usually gets kids to cooperate better during a photo shoot.  My kids love Dum Dums (even the older ones), so I'll grab a handful and promise them one when we're done.

  6. Allow your children to smile naturally.  I can't tell you how many times I've had parents behind me tell their kids to say cheese.  Although their children smile, it's not natural.  It's my job as a photographer to photograph your kids natural expressions.  I promise I can do it even on a bad day.  Plus, they're natural smile is a lot more photogenic than a 'cheesy' smile.

  7. Just relax!  If you as a parent are tense, your children are going to feel it and be tense too.  Family photo sessions can be a lot of fun and interactive.  A good photographer will guide you naturally through your session and have fun as the same time.  Don't sweat it, I've got ya!

Although these suggestions are more of a guideline than hard rules, they'll help you and your family get through your Family Photo Session with ease.  Just enjoy the moment and allow us photographers to capture your families memories!

I still have a few spots available for Fall sessions. Email me at emilyingallsphotography@gmail.com or contact me here to book your photo session today!

Round Rock Family Photographer-Emily Ingalls Photography-Austin Texas Family Photographer-Pflugerville Texas Family Photographer

Family Photo Session | Pflugerville, TX

Large family reunions are one of my favorite types of sessions to photograph!

I come from large family.  My mom was one of six, and my dad is one of three.  I have somewhere around 20 cousins and more than a dozen aunts and uncles.  Add in the fact most of my cousins have children, and let's just say a family get together for us becomes large, loud, and fun very quickly!

When a family asks me if I'm ok photographing close to 20 people for a family reunion, I always laugh a little to myself.  Mainly because large families don't scare me off at all.  I love shooting them!

A couple of weeks ago, I photographed this family's reunion during a hot, humid July day.  They had family coming in from out of state for a vacation during the summer, and Mom/Grandma wanted photos of her children and grandchildren. And to make it even better, they had Great Grandma there!  Four generations in one photo!

If you ever get the chance to have a generational picture taken by a professional photographer, please have the photo taken.  You'll never regret having a professional photographs taken!  You will treasure them for a lifetime!

Family Photographer_Round Rock Family Photographer_Emily Ingalls Photography_Austin Family Photographer_Pflugerville Family Photographer_Georgetown Photographer-3.jpg

Emily Ingalls is a professional photographer. She specializes in family and child portraiture, newborn lifestyle photography, and commercial photography.

My Crazy Summer... home construction, playing chauffer and more!

Hello!  It's now July, and I feel this summer is both flying by and crawling at a snail's pace.  

I've spent the entire month of June under construction.  Now me, personally.  But my house.  My husband and I have been in our home since 2013.  We went bought it my biggest issue was 'the pantry'.  I mean it was small, like tiny.  It was less than 2x3ft.  And seeing as my family has 4 children, three of those being boys, it was definitely not big enough.

I had food and other sundries in the laundry room, taking up cabinet space in the kitchen, and the coat closet, no joke.  Yes, I had stuff that should be in the pantry in the coat closet.  It was quite frustrating for 4 years going into various rooms to make lunches for school.

Finally, we found an awesome contractor to work with, and the construction began.  Not only did we expand our pantry to triple the size, but we also closed in the formal living room made it into an office and separated the new office and formal dining room.  Check out Amthor Construction and talk to Dane Amthor.  He's awesome!!

I can't even tell how excited I am to have this finished!  It was a little bit of a living hell (for me) to live in a construction zone when I like everything clean, put away, and organized.  But now it's done, and I have an awesome pantry!

Now the pantry, office and dining room is done!  I have an actual office with a separate desk and computer from my husband (yeah!).  I love my husband, but having to share a computer and desk with him drives to a little nuts.  Especially when I have to work and he has to work (cause he's in the tech industry), it didn't work out well.  Now, we have separate desk and computers, and I'm a very happy wife.  Anyway, I'm still here and alive!

Between the construction, the kids being home for summer, being a chauffer between camps, activities and general summer stuff, I'm not just getting time to sit down and write.  And I can't begin to tell you how much I've missed writing and blogging.

I'll be back soon with more writing and more wit!

I can't be the only one with a crazy summer going on.  Tell me how your summer has been!
Have you gone on vacation?
Are you at home with your kids?
Are you like me and have been playing chauffer?

 

One of the many lunches we ate upstairs while the construction was going on.

One of the many lunches we ate upstairs while the construction was going on.

It's moments like these I wish I could bottle up and review when I hear them fighting.

It's moments like these I wish I could bottle up and review when I hear them fighting.

Proof we did make it to the pool a few times!

Proof we did make it to the pool a few times!

Smash Cake In-home Lifestyle Photo Session | Round Rock, TX

This little man turned 1 year old!

This little man had a blast making a huge mess at his first birthday party surrounded by his grandparents, parents, and aunts.  I was able to photograph him before the cake capturing his 1 year old milestone photos.  After his 1 year milestone photos, I shot a few family photos.  Then the cake came out!

Little man had no idea what to do with it after first.  His Grandma and Aunts helped him out after he tried to put out the birthday candle with his fingers.  The cake ended up everywhere, but he had a lot of fun making a huge mess.  And I had a blast photographing his birthday cake smash!

Family Photo Session | Round Rock, TX

Growing up a Military brat has left me with a soft heart when it comes to Military Families and Veterans.  These people choose to serve our country and are truly selfless.  With both parent's being former Military and now Veterans, I loved being able to photograph their growing family for them.  Plus, they just recently moved to Round Rock, so it was fun to show them a little bit of Round Rock history.

If you are a Veteran or active duty Military, I'd love to be your photographer!  With my Dad serving 22 years in the Navy, it takes a community and I'd be happy to be a part of yours!