A Guide to Shooting In-Home Lifestyle Sessions
In-home sessions are among my favourite type of session to do. No two are alike and each has their own pace and challenges (especially when siblings are involved!). Even with an over the phone consultation, talking with a client about areas in the home they think will work best, and scheduling best as possible around toddlers, you’re still walking into an entirely unfamiliar territory.
I started this session off by spending some off-camera time with this shy big sis, hearing about all her favourite toys and what she learned at gymnastics that week. Once she was suitably sure that I was alright, she led me upstairs to meet her new baby brother.
I figured I had about 20 minutes or so before big sis checked out, so we worked quickly to shoot as many different poses as we could of them alone. Toddlers generally set the flow of my in-home sessions (let’s be real, they set the flow of ALL my sessions!), so taking advantage of her excitement at the beginning was key!
Once she had enough of the camera, Dad took her out for a snack break and we focused on pics of mom and the newest little member of the family . Doing an in-home session can start with a wish and a prayer for good light, but luckily this room had the most delicious, creamy winter light which we took full advantage of. If a client doesn’t have the perfect set up with beautiful, light diffusing sheer panels as this client did, I always have an inexpensive (and when I say inexpensive, I mean literally from a dollar store) pair of sheer white curtains to put up with painters tape to soften any hard light coming through.
Now that big sis was all snacked up and ready to go for round two, it was time for full family photos. Big sis got to decide who she wanted to sit with, which usually gets me a little more co-operation for the short window we have.
Baby brother was starting to get hungry and while mom was giving him a nice, long feed, I got to spend some more time with my newest little friend. She showed me her favourite book (Robert Munsch, of course) and we got to horse around with dad while we waited!
Once baby was in a wonderfully dozy, milk-induced coma, I moved on to some close ups of his sweet little fingers and toes, individual shots, and of course, some shots with daddy.
When it comes to shooting lifestyle, going with the flow is the order of the day. Take a deep breath and know your best laid plans may fall to the wayside, but sometimes that’s exactly what’s needed to give the best images possible.
Natalie Balen-Cinelli is an Ontario natural light photographer who loves to work with neutrals and soft pops of color. Whether shooting indoors or out, she strives to make each session as unique as the family she’s photographing. Natalie gets giddy about her clients taking a first look at their photos, and hopes they love them as much as she does.
napcp contributor meet Katie Mitchell
About the Contributor: Katie, our Editorial Manager, is our wordsmith and communications extraordinaire! After college and graduate school, she worked in the nonprofit world, and briefly in politics. She realized she'd be quickly burned out, and started writing for various lifestyle websites. Before landing at NAPCP, Katie shot product photography for Etsy shops and other small business owners. Katie also works with Pinterest, as a member of their Pinfluencer team. She is passionate about making the world a happier, more beautiful place! Katie lives for her husband and two children, updating their totally 90's home, and finding joy in the small things. Even washing dishes.
Keeping Cozy for Cold-Weather SessionsWe have seen some crazy weather here in Atlanta, GA this season — we had the first legitimate snowstorm in many years, and the week prior, temps were in the 60s! As a photographer who typically shoots outdoors using natural light, I’ve found that clients are sometimes hesitant to keep their scheduled sessions when the […]
An Emotional Documentary Newborn Session & FilmInspiration I was inspired in this session by the emotional connection between the mom, dad, and baby. From every angle, there was an emotional connection and strong bond. A sense of pride, excitement, and deep love came pouring from this family. I really did not have to do much directing — these are my favorite […]
Golden Hour: A Family Session at the BeachThe inspiration for this photo session was to capture my two favorite things: children and the beach. And not any beach … Redondo Beach, California. It’s my happy place; to me it’s pure magic, and the sunsets here are stunning! In California, the land of “forever summer”, sunset beach sessions are a daily possibility. My […]
A Joyful, Refreshing Family Session1. Inspiration My newborn session style is soft and airy, and I would love my outdoor family sessions to match them. I always advise my clients to wear light, monochromatic, neutral colors to coordinate the color palette of the whole family, because they look best in the field. This family looked perfect from head to […]
We are so delighted that you are here. The National Association of Professional Child Photographers is an association whose mission is to promote and support the artistry and integrity of professional child photographers. To accomplish this mission, NAPCP provides the most comprehensive resources for its members, bringing together a community of passionate artists committed to growth in their skills, their artistry, and their businesses.
NAPCP.com (formally pronounced "NAP-C-P") is a place where professional child photographers can come and connect, learn, teach, aspire and grow. It is also a valuable resource for parents who are looking for a professional child photographer in their area, and want to be inspired and educated about our specialized industry.
December Inspired Magazine: Featuring Kristen Montgomery!
This month’s issue of Inspired features Kristen Montgomery of Kristen Montgomery Photography. Click here to see her beautiful work, learn more about the 2018 Marketing Summit and get a sneak peek at the 2018 NAPCP Image Competitions! Print your copy of Inspired straight from MagCloud! Share your favorite pieces with friends, family and clients. Save
November Inspired Magazine: Featuring Hannah Drews Eggert!
Click here to read our November magazine featuring Hannah Drews Eggert! See Hannah’s beautiful work, learn more about the 2018 Marketing Summit and read about the NAPCP 2017 Photographer of the Year! Print your copy of Inspired straight from MagCloud! Share your favorite pieces with friends, family and clients. Save Save
Marketing Summit 2018: You’re Invited!
You’re invited to register for our January 17-19, 2018 Marketing Summit in Atlanta, today! Registration is LIVE. We’re talkin’ setting and accomplishing goals, the best way to market yourself through blogging and email campaigns, and anything and everything you need to know about growing your social media presence organically (read: in the best possible way). […]
October Inspired Magazine: Featuring Second Half 2017 Image Competition Winners!
Click here to read our October magazine featuring the winners of our Second Half 2017 Image Competition. See their beautiful work and read their inspirational interviews – guaranteed to give you the little “push” you need to get you through to Christmas. Don’t forget, Inspired is now printable! Print your copy straight from MagCloud, and […]
The National Association of Professional Child Photographers is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com