Senior's are one of my favorite subjects to shoot. They are often up on the latest styles and fashion trends. They are so excited about this time in their life and they love taking pictures. With today's social media driven society, teens are no strangers to picture taking. But while most of them can rock a selfie like one of the Kardashian's, they may have never been in front of a professional camera before. Here are a few tips to help you rock your senior photo shoot.
Tip 1 - Location, Location, Location
I'm primarily a location photographer, which means most of my shoots are done on location as opposed to in a studio. It's so important to pick the right location for your photo shoot. Pick something that reflects your personality and your interests. A lot of Senior's in my area come from an Ag background so a ranch or other natural setting is appropriate. One of the funnest Senior shoots I've done was with a young lady who was going into the Air Force. We did her shoot at Castle Air Museum in Atwater. The photos of this future Airman, full of hopes and dreams amid nostalgic artifacts of aviation history told a great story.
Tip 2 - Clothing style
Most Seniors have the style thing down. The wardrobe style for your Senior shoot should reflect who you are just as much as the location. The shoots I offer range from 1 outfit to multiple outfit changes. I would recommend at least 2 outfits; one can be more casual, the other can be more formal. Choosing a package with more outfits can give you more options. As far as color choices, choose something that compliments the setting. In this photo, if she had chosen to wear a green dress, it would have blended in with the background. The white is a perfect contrast. Solid, neutral colors are often best. Try to stay away from anything with strong patterns or bright colors.
Tip 3 - Don't worry about being nervous
While most teens know how to rock a selfie, some get a bit nervous when I point a camera in their direction. But don't worry, it's my job to get you to loosen up and feel comfortable. Throughout our session, I like to chat casually to make you feel more at ease. Talking about things that interest you and joking around will often cause you to laugh and smile naturally. This is when I get the best pictures.
Tip 4 - Bring Props
Senior shoots are all about your personality and what makes you who you are. Whether you are into sports, your muscle car or music, bring some props along to your shoot. Props make your photos more interesting and really help bring out your personality.
Tip 5 - Get plenty of rest and don't worry about the pimples
The night before your photo shoot, get plenty of rest, this will really help your complexion. Don't worry about a pimple or two that may have popped up overnight. These are easily retouched after you select your final images.
This next section is for the ladies. If you are thinking about spray tanning, save it for the beach, it makes you look orange and blotchy in photos. Professional hair and makeup is great if you are able, but it's not a necessity. Like I've been saying throughout this article, this is about who you are, not some altered version of you. So when in doubt, just be who you are. Wear your hair and makeup the way you normally would to go on a date or out with friends.
I would like to hear from you. If you have helpful tips from your Senior Shoot, please leave a comment.
About the author: Brandon Baker is a Wedding, Portrait and Commercial Photographer located in Central California.