4 Quick Steps to pick a Family Portrait Photographer

4 Quick Steps to pick a Family Portrait Photographer

It’s fall, and this is when many folks start thinking about portraits. I often get questions like, “How do I pick a Family Portrait Photographer?” So, here ar:

“4 Quick Steps to pick a Family Portrait Photographer”

Step 1: Recommendations from friends can be a good way to go. But a caveat:  just like people have different tastes and budgets for clothing and decor, they will also have wildly different styles in photography. Some people just want a photo that is one step above a snapshot. Others just want one really good family photo. Others want a high-end, boutique experience with a full gallery of WOW images. If you have a friend who has a similar taste and budget in interior decor and clothes, that can be a good indicator that you might like the photographer they use.

Step 2: Then check their website. Their photos should grab you, you should feel right away – “Wow! I love these!”

Step 3: Videos – I also always suggest that clients look at an entire photo session before booking their photographer. That way, they can see if the photographer can deliver a consistent and full gallery of WOW images.  This means different angles, close up and wide-angle, each person alone, kids together, kids with parents, both posed and casual, different expressions, etc. That’s much more reliable than seeing just one or two good images.

On my video page, you’ll see about 30 different sessions, to give you an idea of my style. A few of them even have BTS (behind the scenes) and client interviews, which gives you even more of an idea on what it’s like to work with me. Of course, if you want the quick read, my testimonial page can provide that.

Step 4: Contact the photographer. Do they get back to you within one business day? Do they seem to know what they are doing? Do they ask lots of questions to make sure they understand what you are looking for, and you understand what they offer? Do they explain things clearly?

So, there you have it. A complicated process simplified to four key steps. I hope this helps you pick your family photographer. And whether you pick me, or someone else, please do have family photos taken this year! Every year your children change sooo much – these precious times deserve to be captured. Oh, and if you are doing holiday cards ….please please include you and your spouse/co-parent if you are together. Your friends love seeing your kids, but even more than that – they want to see YOU! I feel so passionately about this, I should probably do an entire blog post on “Make sure you appear on your holiday card!”

Here is a sample session taken in the Boulder mountains. I can’t wait to photograph this family again this weekend, this time with their newest family addition!

Session in Boulder, Colorado (with guest appearance by family dog)

Westminster Family Portraits Outdoors in the Boulder Mountains from N Lee on Vimeo.

*Your dogs are part of your family! And we often include them in portraits. There are a few steps to follow to make sure we get the best photos possible, and one of the key  things is to have someone who can take over the dogs once we are done photographing them. A neighbor, a friend, etc. It’s also a good idea to have them groomed a couple days before, and bring them a little bit hungry so they will pay attention.

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Client Story: Isabelle in Broomfield – Family Photo Session with Dogs

Client Story: Isabelle in Broomfield – Family Photo Session with Dogs

Today I’m sharing some of my favorite photos from a Family Photo Session with Dogs last Fall – and this one included two adorable Shelties! As you’ll hear from Isabelle below, we have a tendency to procrastinate family photos. We really want them, but we keep pushing it back. Family photos are so precious. And, if you pick the right photographer, they will bring you so much joy! So, there is every reason to “just do it” now.

She also touches on one of the things many people are worried about – avoiding “fake smiles.” And, that’s one of my passions – to capture your family’s true emotions. That means real smiles! And, sessions with me are so FUN, natural and free-flowing, that we are sure to get some happy authentic images. You can click here to read what other families say about that.

Family Photo Session with Dogs in Broomfield or WestiminsterFamily Photo Session with Dogs

  1. Isabelle, tell us a little bit about your and your family:

I work in elder care. In my free time love learning new things. Right now I’m learning hand lettering. I paper craft and make handmade greeting cards. The whole family enjoys role playing and table top games as well as video games.

For quite a while now we have been working toward a vacation in New Zealand.

  1. What made you decide this was the time to do a photo session? Were you marking any special occasion, etc?

I have always wanted professional family photographs. We tend to procrastinate and the kids are growing so fast! It was time to just go ahead and do it.

  1. Tell us about your dogs, who were included in the session:

Fuzzy Dice and Freya are two year old Sheltie siblings. Freya is the little one. She is very reserved and behaves much like a cat. Dice is a playful dog who loves belly rubs.

  1.  Was there anything you were nervous or worried about before the session?

It’s tough to get a genuine smile from the boys during planned photos. I thought we would have only a handful of good finished shots because of that. Natascha did an amazing job and gave us plenty of great finished shots to choose from.

  1. What made you choose Natascha Lee Studios?

I searched the web for professional photographers near me and I was immediately drawn to the images on Natascha website. The locations she uses and her style were exactly what I was looking for.

  1. How did the actual photo session go? What was your favorite part of your session? Any funny stories?

Our session was great. Natascha had a clear plan and was flexible at the same time.  I loved how we moved from one location to the next, stopping to take advantage of a great interaction, light or place.

  1. How about the viewing session? – What did you think or feel when you saw your gallery of images?

The viewing session was just awesome. Natascha made a video of our images that blew me away. My husband Fred was with me and I think the results surpassed his expectations as well.

  1. What do you hope your children will say/feel/think years down the road when looking at these images?

I hope the boys feel the sense of connection we all have toward one another. I want them to feel the gratitude and delight I have when I see the images now.

  1. Any advice to other families before their photo sessions?

Trust in Natascha’s skill and talent.

  1. How did you feel/what did you think when received your final order/had your products delivered?

Receiving the order was awesome. I loved unwrapping each piece, framing and hanging them. I have a special photo of my teenage son that will go in the slideshow the school does of senior photos.

Some of the photos were meant for Christmas cards and gifts, but my husband posted them on FaceBook. So I already know that everyone loves them!

Thank you, Natascha!

Broomfield Family Photography – Fall Family Portraits  | Natascha Lee Studios

Broomfield Family Photography – Fall Family Portraits | Natascha Lee Studios

From a recent Broomfield fall family portrait. Their Sheltie dogs are super sweet, and we made sure to include them in many portraits.*

In addition to the semi-posed images where everyone is looking @ the camera, I love capturing “lifestyle” images, which are like these below – it’s a peak into your life….of course, you all happen to be wearing impeccably coordinated outfits, not a hair out of place, and it’s a lovely fall day with the soft warm light from the setting sun behind you.  😉

BTW, do you see mom’s boots! They are soooo stylish. I want to go buy myself a pair. If you follow me on IG, you’ll see that I post images of cowboy boots there from time to time. I saw so many cool ones during a photography trip to Nashville.

Broomfield Family and Pet Photography - with Dogs (Natascha Lee Studios)

Denver Family Photographer

*Your dogs are part of your family! And we often include them in portraits. There are a few steps to follow to make sure we get the best photos possible, and one of the key  things is to have someone who can take over the dogs once we are done photographing them. A neighbor, a friend, etc. It’s also a good idea to have them groomed a couple days before, and bring them a little bit hungry so they will pay attention. This clever family brought the dogs’ favorite treats and just the word “cookie” made them perk up!

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Boulder Mountain Family Photography – Outdoor Summer Portraits

Boulder Mountain Family Photography – Outdoor Summer Portraits

I often shoot in locations that have special significance to my clients. I recently took portraits for this lovely family below. They are outdoorsy, active and hikers – so they wanted to incorporate the beauty of Boulder’s Mountains into their portraits.

Didn’t the mom do a great job with the clothing? I love how she selected light Summer colors, and pulled it all together with her youngest daughter’s dress, and her own scarf.

Boulder Family Photography - Mountain Outdoor Portraits by Natascha Lee Studios

Boulder Family Photography – Mountain Outdoor Portraits by Natascha Lee Studios

Boulder – Mountain Family Portraits

Broomfield Children’s Photography – Viewing Session  (By Broomfield Photography Natascha Lee Studios)

Broomfield Children’s Photography – Viewing Session (By Broomfield Photography Natascha Lee Studios)

I’m so excited to share an image of a Broomfield portait client’s final art, hanging in their home.

Last last year, local Broomfield Mamma Jenny bid and won a photo session with me at a local charity auction.

About two weeks after a portrait session, I meet my clients in my North Denver studio to share their final portrait gallery in a lovely movie format, set to music. As you know from my studio tour, I’ve got comfty couches, beer, wine and soda, as well as a playroom if the kiddos come along. This Move Premier lets portrait clients see all their images in their full resolution glory, as well as allows me to assist them in selecting their favorite images for wall art, albums, and gifts for family members.

Jenny and I had set up the viewing appointment for 5:30pm on a weekday, not really thinking about rush hour traffic. We each encountered traffic getting there (note to self: no more appointments during evening rush hour), but we decided that some wine would take care of that…..I even had a really nice bottle of red ready. And then…TRAGIC! I couldn’t find the wine opener anywhere! Argghhh. At least we managed to open the sparkling cider for her girls. And I have since made sure we have two! wine openers in the studio kitchen.

With our non-wine drinks (tragic!), we settle into the couches and chairs and I start their Preview Movie. This super cool and fun Mamma started tearing up at the first image (which is normal – most Mammas  tear up when they are seeing portraits of their precious children.) But then her reaction was even better….. by the third image, she leaned forward with this look of..joy and disbelief.  It looked like she was in shock at how stunning her girls’ portraits were! I was smiling from ear to ear!

The adorable girls, well they loved being “movie stars” but I think their favorite was the playroom @ my studio with an Xbox, or perhaps it was the Martinellis apple cider they got to sip out of wine glasses.

After much discussion about which images to get for her wall collage, I helped her select her final portraits. And here, without further ado, is the iphone snapshot she sent me of the final wall. Isn’t it wonderful?

Broomfield Family Portraits - children and dog - images on wall jenni

Broomfield Family Photography

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