How to take your senior pictures: Case Study-Part 2

If you stumbled here without reading part one of this case study, you can read that here.   Onward to part two!

Thanks to the great family that allowed me to follow along on their DIY Senior Picture outing.  This is part two of our case study where we show you exactly how this family took their own senior pictures. Now that we have been through one clothing change, it was time to go to a completely different location.  We knew from our plan (have I mentioned that plan thing before? 🙂 ), that the family wanted some pictures that looked more natural instead of urban at the next location, so what better place to find nature than at a large local park!

DIY Senior Pictures in the park #1

One of the things that DIY Senior Picture families often struggle with is how to pose their senior.  Luckily, mom (Mamie) had a plan for this.  She researched some poses before the shoot on Pintrest that she wanted Cassie to try.  She was even pulling out her phone and looking at some others as we approached each location.  Now that we had some poses to try, it was time for the next difficult task.

Convincing your senior to try the pose.

I was able to sit back and watch all of this happen as the family interacted.  Cassie, the senior, would say “But mom, it feels kind of stupid.”  Her mother answered in the most perfect way that she needed for that moment. “Look, your only job today is to be the model, enjoy it, try a few new poses.”  And so she did.

It was the perfect response.  I am glad I was there to witness it. I will use that one on my professional shoots! Cassie was able to let some of those fears go and go with it.  This is one of the top reasons to go DIY.  The senior is surrounded by the people she is most comfortable with…. her family.  She was able to let go and look more natural.  Below is a perfect example of one of those moments.  Mamie (mom) suggested that Cassie (our senior) peak out from behind a tree in the park.  Of course, she responded that she thought it was goofy, but she gave it a try.  I think it is one of the best photos of the bunch.  She looked so natural and relaxed.  The photo expresses some of the child playfulness that is still there, even though now she is growing up.  I think it is priceless.

DIY Senior Pictures in the park #2

This is a good time to mention this again, always be aware of your background!  Imagine if we had something very distracting like a colorful playground in the background.  Remember, we were in the park! It would take away from the calmness of this photo.  Always, be aware of your background!

Again, this is a family with minimal photography experience! If they can do this, you can too!  A few simple tools ( the reflector), a borrowed camera, and a day walking around and they have great photos to show! Not only did they end up with some fantastic looking photos, they had this awesome experience with their daughter that they can cherish for years.

Just remember when you are shooting DIY senior pictures for the first time keep it simple!  Sometimes the most simple poses create some great photos.  Take for example this simple pose in this picture below.  An arms crossed three quarter length (from above the waist up) portrait makes for a wonderful elegant photo.  We found this faux stone wall that was holding up the street above and used it for our background.  We use a black lens vignette edit ( more on that in part three of the case study next week) to tone down the brightness of the wall an pull the focus in on our senior.  What a great simple shot!  So easy to setup and turned out so well.

DIY Senior Picture simple pose #1

Remember your first time out, keep it simple.  You can get more and more complex on the many shoots you will do another weekend.  Trust me, you will have so much fun, you are going to want to do this more than once!

OK, I think that is enough for this week.  Next week we will go over part three.  Part three will consist of a very important and often intimidating part of the photographic process….Editing.  Stayed tuned for that to come in about a week.  Want to stay informed when it is released?  Fill out the form to the right and we will email it to you when it is ready.

Continue to part 3…

What is your biggest barrier to taking DIY senior pictures?  Put it in the comments below and let’s discuss it.  Be sure to go over and join our Facebook group and connect with other DIY senior picture people!  Please help us get the word out about DIY Senior Pictures, share it on your favorite social media platform or just tell a friend!

Thanks for being a part of DIY Senior Pictures.  Need more immediate help?  Need a step by step process?  Check out our latest Kindle books.  Why not check out our bonus video section too?  Leave a comment and let's discuss your photo concerns.  Talk to you soon.

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