Taking a good family photo can be tricky, especially, if have small children and/or pets. I take a fair share of photos for personal and social media purposes but to have the entire family engaged and happy … well, that’s a challenge! The best time to catch us all together and smiling is around plates of food. Recently, I decided now that we are relatively settled into our new home, to have some professional photos taken. After unpacking our old photos, I felt guilty that all our ‘proper’ photos were of Ang as a toddler. In 2017, I had some lifestyle photos done but four years on I needed an update. In the end, I booked a session for myself and my family to have our photos taken. Here are my personal top five tips for a successful family photo shoot


Book A Child-Friendly Photographer

You must work with a photographer who’s not just talented but also capable of working with children. By capable, I mean someone who’s warm, friendly and patient. The shoot should be fun and engaging to hold their interest.


Choose A Location To Fit Your Aesthetic 

Select a location that everyone in the family will be comfortable with but also suits the aesthetic you want to achieve. You could rearrange a room in your home, add a few pieces of interest and use that as your studio for the day. Alternatively, go to your favourite park, café or even a quiet street that everyone likes. The possibilities are endless.

The more at ease everyone is, the better your photos will be.

park photo shoot

Choose A Time Of Day That Suits The Location

Set up your shoot for the time of day that works well for the location, vibe you want to create. We had our outdoor photos done in the afternoon and the natural light was amazing for me. In my family we each have a different skin tone and I’m the darkest. As you can imagine, sometimes getting the balance of light that works well for us can be fiddly.


The Outfits Should Bring A Balance To The Image

In my opinion, family photos (or even couples) photos don’t’ have be matchy matchy. You can plan your wardrobe palette to complement each other. Choose a colour and tones within that or maybe prints that work well together. Additionally, take each person’s personality, personal style and the shoot location into consideration


Make The Experience Entertaining

Be sure to pack toy (or gadgets) to keep kids happy. Depending on how long your photo shoot will be, it’s a good idea to have music to get you in the mood. Especially, for those all important family Christmas photos. We usually take ours at home, as a selfie. Although, to be honest, the best ones are those take at a Christmas themed attraction. Everyone is happy, excited and so vibrant with the days activities that the pure joy shines through.


Also, though It’s not entertainment but don’t forget refreshments either!


We worked with a photographer we collaborated with in the past and the results showed. The Ang and Val were relaxed, even hubby was at ease. I’ve used the image for my new Instagram account Xpat At Home , it’s also the feature image for this piece, do you like it?

If you have any tips to share, please comment below I’d love to hear from you.





(updated 8th November 2021)




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