Unexpected Photography Tips

Tips for the best photography experience

A few weekends ago, Brian and I traveled to Washington D.C. to explore our nation’s capital and for me to take part in a photography mentorship with in-home family photographer, Natasha Sewell of NPS Photography. We had a lot of great food and coffee, walked 20-30 miles, and hit a lot of the major museums. In addition to all of that, I stumbled upon some unexpected photography tips that can apply to YOU today!

Birmingham family photography

If you have visited Washington DC before, you know there is no shortage of museums. Brian was able to visit several while I was with Natasha, but I insisted that we visit the National Museum of American History and the National Portrait Gallery together. While we were there, I learned a lot about our country, but I also picked up a few unexpected photography tips and points that we can all apply to photography- whether it’s while you are choosing your photographer, when you are prepping for your session, or even what type of session you want to focus on.

Unexpected Photography Tips I learned in Washington DC

Choose YOUR Style

  • The Museum of American History has a beautiful display of place settings from every American president and first lady. Some of them were very formal, where others were simple and elegant. Some wore the seal of the president, while others nodded to their home state. But in the end, every one of those plates held the same purpose- to hold food and represent the families who served in that role.

When I think about those plates, I have to consider how many amazing family photographers live in the Birmingham, Alabama area. There are photographers who offer more formal work and feature smocked heirloom dresses and others who have a more casual style of everyday clothes. Some photographers are bright and bold, others have a more vintage look, while others are bright and airy. Some photographers work in studios, some work in parks, some work in-homes. When I looked at all of the plates that had graced the tables of the White House over the past 250 years, it all came down to the style of the ladies who chose them. With photography, that’s YOU! Consider photographers- note their style, personality, images, and how those fit with your family and will be best displayed in your home, then choose what is best for you!

Make it Personal

Make your Birmingham family photos personal
  • In the National Portrait Gallery, there were incredible paintings of most all of the American Presidents. President Barack Obama’s portrait stood out more than most because in his portrait he was surrounded by greenery and beautiful flowers. This was a bit brighter than the typical portrait and struck me as odd until I read the sign. Each flower had a specific tie in to the Obama’s and their life- a chrysanthemum because it was the flower of Chicago, Jasmine as a symbol of Hawaii where the president grew up, and African blue lillies that were in reference to his father.

The same is true of photographing your family. The images that you love and feel the most are the ones that hold a personal connection. Whether it reminds you of the feeling you get when you are with your people or it’s in your home that brings memories of your kid’s childhood, you want it to be personal to you.

Dress mama first

First ladies' beautiful dresses
  • The American History Museum has a beautiful display of dresses from many of the first ladies. Once again, each one was very different and the style was a big thing. But also, I didn’t see their husband’s suits hanging anywhere in the museum.

When you are preparing for your session, remember that as the mom and wife, you want to feel amazing in what you are wearing. You want it to scream *WOW! I look good!* You know those ladies’ dresses wouldn’t be hanging there if they didn’t inspire that feeling in them. Consider that as you are getting dressed and recognize that once you are comfortable, it’s a lot easier to choose everyone else’s clothing. Pick yours first!

Choose the style that best respresents YOU

Photos that show your personality
  • President Donald Trump’s portrait was clean and simple. It created a powerful image that I imagine compliments his personality.

I offer Personality Sessions just like those with So Filled with Love Photography 😏. If you are interested in a similar session, contact me and let’s find a time to make it happen!

Keep a look out soon for the last two things I learned in the National Portrait Gallery. A little hint- it includes unfinished portraits and our number one guy (and his gal) πŸ‡ΊπŸ‡Έ.

Can’t wait to chat again soon!

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