A Modern Day Fairy Tale

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Tips and Tricks for A Great School Picture #backtoschool

The sneeze caught on camera. The haircut gone bad. The tee that blends right in with the background giving you a floating head look.

Oooh, the dreaded bad school picture!

We've all had at least one, right? It's a common occurrence it seems and one that is the topic of many a kids'/family tv show! We cannot always avoid the pimples or the silly faces that kids will inevitable make as the camera snaps, but there are some school picture mishaps we CAN avoid! Today, I'm sharing my tips- as a photography enthusiast- on planning for a great back to school photo!

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Choose your background wisely.

At some schools, you may not have much choice when it comes to the background, perhaps a simple color or two to choose from. Others you are given too many to name- multiple color options, fall scenes, starry scenes... you name it! But for me personally, I think simple is better! First and foremost, this is a photo of your child, and a simple background is going to ensure that they are the focus! A fancy background may seem like a good idea at the time, but makes it more difficult to plan outfits and if you plan to display your school year progressions together, you'll want to keep a similar looks throughout! I personally always choose a simple grey or blue- it suits my child's skin tone, coordinates with everything and doesn't detract from your adorable child!

The night before picture day is NOT the best day for a new hairstyle. 

We've all seen those bad haircut school photos, right? If you're planning a new hairstyle for your little one, it's always best to try it BEFORE picture day, not the night before. For haircuts, give it a week or two if you can. Not only will this keep you from having a hair disaster right before the big day, but we want our children to look like THEM, so a huge change before pictures might not be the best idea anyway!

Pack a 'clean' lunch!

Typically, my son has always had lunch after pictures, but just in case... it's probably not the best day to pack your leftover spaghetti in the thermos! Or a pb&j, heavy on the j! Be mindful of the mess when you're packing your little one's lunch on picture day!

Plan your outfit in advance.

Just like you need to choose your background wisely, you need to plan your outfit wisely too! Choose colors that look great on your child, and that will work nicely with your background. Have everything laid out and ready beforehand so that you are not rushing at the last minute to find the finishing touches...and so that if you're running late that morning, it's already ready to go!

Be mindful of t-shirts/designs.

Personally, I prefer not to go with t-shirts at all for photos, BUT if that's all your child wears then go with it... but be mindful of the designs. You don't want to choose something with a phrase that will be cut off mid-statement, likewise with a graphic. When it comes to tees, I personally once again find that simple is best. 

Let your child show off their own style.

Sure, a photo of your child dressed to the nines might be absolutely adorable...but if your kid is a jeans and t-shirt kinda kid, it's not really going to look like THEM. So, give them some say in what they wear! It's fine to make it a dressier version of their everyday style of course, but make sure it's still them. For the kid who loves to wear a t-shirt, again, simple designs and layering can be great ways to turn their everyday style with a little more excitement for picture day! My son happens to love button ups so we like finding bright colors and fun prints that look great on him. They are great on their own, layered or even with our favorite fashion accessories like suspenders or bow ties! When it comes to boys, you cannot go wrong with a great button up. 

Remember, it's only a picture!

At the end of the day, even or most careful planning cannot keep our kids from making a silly face...so remember, if it doesn't turn out perfectly, it is just a photo! All those silly faces, unfortunate haircuts or style choices will just be something we can look back upon and laugh! 


  1. It is only a picture. You are capturing your kid right now.
    slehan at juno dot com


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