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How to Prepare for a Family Photoshoot in Vancouver and the Lower Mainland

Picture of All images by Pursell Photography. 
All images by Pursell Photography. 

Quality Photography Experience That Is Different.

Preparing for a family photoshoot with young children can be a delightful experience when approached correctly. For those living in Vancouver and the Lower Mainland, here are some strategies to help you prepare and ensure a smooth photoshoot session.

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Planning Ahead

Start planning your outfits at least a week in advance to ensure that you’re relaxed and ready on the day of the photoshoot. Prepare your kids subtly, keeping the atmosphere casual. For instance, tell them that you’ll be “spending time with our friend, the photographer, on Saturday!” or “going to the park to play!”.

001 - Family enjoying the natural beauty of British Columbia's mountains

Think about any specific props, mementos, or particular types of images you’d like to have captured. Review all the materials your photographer has sent you, such as links to blog posts or any helpful emails to ensure you have a successful session. These resources are packed with helpful tips and information. Lastly, ensure everyone gets a good night’s sleep, babies have a nap, and eat a meal before the photoshoot, or bring snacks on the photoshoot to make sure kids and yourself are fed and happy.

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What to Wear

Dress appropriately for the Vancouver weather to ensure everyone’s comfort. Rather than wearing matching clothes, opt for colours that complement each other, like earth tones and neutrals. Avoid wearing shirts with writing on them, or really tight patterns or stripes. Choose clothes that properly cover undergarments in all types of movement scenarios. 

Wear comfortable shoes and clothes that you can move in. Be ready to move! Accessories like bowties, suspenders, hats, flower headbands, chunky scarves, beautiful flowing dresses and skirts can add visual interest and movement to your photos. Always remember to take bulky items like phones and car keys out of their pockets before the session starts.

What to Bring

You might want to bring personal appearance touch-up items like lipstick, hairbrush and a pocket mirror. Have plenty of snacks on hand, and, if necessary, treats to encourage cooperation from the kids. Make sure the snacks won’t stain lips or fingers. Bringing toys or playing your young child’s favourite songs on your phone to get them to dance and relax can work wonders. Comfortable walking shoes are crucial as you might need to traverse short or moderate distances on unpaved trails, possibly with hills.

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A change of clothes for the children in case they get dirty could be useful, as could a towel. If a beer would help a family member relax a bit beforehand, consider bringing it along.

007 - Scenic family photo in Vancouver's peaks

How to Pose

There’s no need to force a ‘cheese’ smile. Encourage authentic expressions and natural interactions. Laugh, play, tickle, and snuggle to capture the REAL moments. Not everyone has to be looking at the camera. It’s okay to focus on your partners and your kids. When in doubt, just smile and look at your family lovingly. Stand as close together as possible. Relax, slow down, and don’t force anything. Just be present with your family and the photographer will do the rest.

008 - Vibrant family photo with the mountainous skyline of British Columbia

What to Expect After the Photo Session

Once your session is over, your work is almost done. You can relax a bit. Typically, your gallery will be ready within 4 weeks of your session. We will help you pick out your favourite images and what to do with them on a screen-sharing video call. You can conveniently order high-quality prints, framed photos, and albums during this ordering session.


The final step: ENJOY YOUR PHOTOS! Appreciate them in your home every single day.

6 amazing family photography

Activities for the Kids to Keep Them Engaged

Children are naturally active and energetic, making it a challenge to have them sit still for a photoshoot. Here are some activities that can keep them engaged during a photo shoot in Vancouver and the Lower Mainland:


Play Games: Simple games like peekaboo or tag can be a fun way to capture candid moments and keep kids entertained during the shoot. The photographer can capture their genuine laughter and enjoyment.

Explore Nature: If the photoshoot is outdoors, let the children explore their surroundings. They can collect leaves, rocks, or flowers, and these natural elements can also serve as great props.

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Blowing Bubbles: Kids love bubbles and it’s a great way to capture their curiosity and joy. This can also help in creating a playful and relaxed atmosphere.

Story Time: Bring along a favourite storybook and capture the kids’ reactions as you read to them. This can also be a great opportunity for some close-up shots.

Props: Kids love props! Bring along their favourite toys or stuffed animals. Not only will this keep them entertained, but it will also make the photos more personal and memorable.


Crafts: If possible, consider bringing some simple craft supplies. Kids can make a little art project during the shoot. This will keep them busy, and they’ll be proud to show off their creation in the photos.

Snacks: Never underestimate the power of snacks. They can be a great distraction and also a way to keep energy levels up.


Remember, the goal of the photoshoot is to capture your family’s unique story and personality. So relax, have fun, and let the kids be kids!

009 - Family portrait taken in the awe-inspiring mountains of British Columbia

To book your family photoshoot, connect with us today to see if we are a great fit for you. 


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