Posts tagged family photos ma
Owen | Lifestyle Documentary Newborn Session | Bridgewater Massachusetts

This summer I had the privilege of photographing Adrianna and her baby boy Owen while we visited Owen at the hospital, and then again once he was finally home after a long wait. Owen is a preemie and was born at 35 weeks, and I have been so totally amazed at Adrianna's strength and grace as she navigates this challenge with her new family.

Strength doesn't always mean putting on a brave face - strength is asking for help, it is waking up at 2AM to make sure your baby has milk and driving 30 minutes to the hospital multiple times a day to cuddle and feed, it is riding each wave as it comes and putting this tiny persons needs before your own over and over again.

I don't want to pretend to understand an experience I've never been through, but watching friends grow into such incredible mothers has showed me motherhood can be darkness and light, heartbreak and joy, all at once. And seeing this family home, finally together, makes it worth every difficult moment.

In Home Lifestyle Family Photography Session | The Connelly Family | Dagny Kream Photography

As we sat in Sabrina's living room listening to Hunter read and playing games together, a huge smile spread across my face. I had asked the kids to pretend that I was invisible, to act like I was a friendly ghost with a camera, and they were totally happy to skip the fake smiles and matching outfits and cuddle up with mom on the couch.️

It's nice to have a great photo of everyone looking into the camera and smiling, but these quiet in between moments are the memories that will make you cry and fill your heart up when you look back on your images in 10, 15 or 20 years.

If you're not familiar with lifestyle family photography, I'd love to share more about this incredible experience with you. This is nothing like how you've been photographed before, so throw your expectations out the window. It is all about capturing the in between moments of your life naturally and authentically. We can bake cookies, build a blanket fort, throw a ball in your backyard or read a book together. Your daughter can dress like a dinosaur, your son can wear his favorite Paw Patrol t-shirt.
We'll laugh, and cry, and have spontaneous dance parties in the living room. You'll receive beautiful images that you can print and hang on your walls to remind you every day of the little moments you love so much.

Now is the time to start planning your in-home family lifestyle photography session. Spring months are booking up fast! Most families book 1-3 months in advance for this experience. 

Preparing For Your Portrait Session

So you’ve booked a portrait session! Consider this your mega-guide to everything you need to know to prep for your shoot. You’ll be the most well-prepared clients and you’ll love your photos so much more for the little extra effort you’ve put into preparing.


Pick a style that everyone in your family will be comfortable with, and make sure each outfit matches that look so that your images are cohesive. Decide if everyone will be dressed more casual (jeans and a nice sweater or flannel) or dressy (think dresses with sequins or lace, khaki pants and button downs).

Consider the season you are having portraits done in! If your shoot is in the fall or winter and there’s a chance things could get chilly, leave the short dresses and tank tops at home and opt for something you can wear with layers such as tights, light stylish jackets and darker colored pants.

Be conscious of color combinations. I generally recommend either parents in neutral tones and kids in brighter colors, or everyone in the family stick to either cool colors such as bright red, purple. grey and blue or warm colors like yellow, green, orange and burgundy.


Stay away from the cliche blue jeans and white shirts, and lots of busy patterns like stripes or hounds-tooth. I know it can be hard to get everyone to match in all different outfits, but with the color combo tips above I’m sure you’ll be able to come up with something great!

TIP: Wear something that you are comfortable in! If you’re constantly tugging, making adjustments or sucking in your belly it will show in the photos. Likewise, if your kid refuses to wear that dress you bought specifically for the shoot but would be perfectly happy in their favorite t-shirt, consider just letting them wear it! You’ll be much happier with your final images if everyone is in a good mood and smiling, than if they are miserable but all their clothes match.

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I always tell clients to just do their makeup like they normally do - and if you don’t wear makeup at all, there’s no reason to start just for photos. These images should be a reflection of who you really are, so now is not the time to perfect that winged eyeliner look you saw on Pinterest!


Be cautious of baseball caps and other hats as they can make shadows on your face. Scarves and jewelry can be a great way to tie your look together. If you normally wear glasses, there’s no reason to switch to contacts or go into the shoot blind as a bat. Keep in mind however that if you have glasses that transition to sunglasses in daylight, it will look like you’re wearing sunglasses in your photos!

I will usually ask anyone who is wearing sunglasses to remove them during our shoot and make sure that all phones and wallets have been emptied out of pockets so we don’t get that dreaded pocket rectangle. Don’t forget to consider the environment we will be shooting in - if we end up on a beach or hiking through the woods, it’s probably best to leave the high heels at home.


I always have a spare blanket with me on my shoots, but if you have a family picnic blanket or any meaningful mementos you would like included in your shoot, be sure to bring them along.


For the best light, I will only schedule shoots within 2 hours of sunrise or 2 hours before sunset. We are aiming for the “golden hour” when the sun is nice and low in the sky and the light is soft and warm. Most families opt for an afternoon time slot so you aren’t rushed to get ready in the morning, and depending on the time of year my afternoon sessions take place between 2pm and 6pm.

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