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Tips for Preparing for a Spring Session

Spring is nearly hear - hip, hip, hooray! I'm not sure about you, but this time of year really gets me excited. The spring bloom in Metro Detroit is amazing. Daffodils and tulips, oh my!

I have been doing my April Spring Bloom Sessions in Grosse Pointe for three years now, and each year the flowers are AMAZING! Clients who do them with me have likened my location to Narnia, Wonderland and Peter Rabbit's Garden.

But the weather in Michigan is all over the place. Last year I had a one year birthday photo session for a little boy one morning, and it was a beautiful morning. Then two days later, it was crazy cold and drizzly, but the photos from that day turned out absolutely beautiful. In fact, one of my clients from that day was one of the first people to sign up for this year's spring event.

Beautiful or not spring photo sessions, much like winter sessions, take some thought and planning. So, here are my top tips for a successful spring portrait session.

Timing and location. If you have babies or children who are still napping it is best to plan sessions, even mini sessions, during their awake times. Talk to your photographer about their schedule and find a time that works. I would avoid requesting a specific time, because light plays a major role in photography. A time you might think is perfect for photos, might not be the best time for photos when thinking about the light at a certain location. To ensure you get the best time for you, discuss your routine so the photographer can make the best recommendation.

Preparing your photographer. If you have a vision of a perfect image, that you would like to have as a result from a photo session, let your photographer know! I like to always know my clients main goals going into a shoot. If I know your #1 goal is an image of just the kids together giggling...I will aim to get that done early in the session before fatigue sets in, and I will save my best jokes and tricks for that image. If you hate candids, I won't take any!

Preparing your kids. I work with a lot with newborns, babies, young kids and adolescents. One thing many parents worry about is will their kids behave...believe me, I have one of my own and I get it! The biggest thing I like to suggest is don't make too big of a deal before your session. Kids hate to feel like they have to perform. If you have little ones, show them family pictures and talk to them about how you are going to meet a friend who is going to take a few pictures to show how they are growing. Instead of telling them what they can not do, tell them you are going to have fun. At the session, let me tell everyone what to do. Sometimes misbehavior is an opportunity for me to start a game, and if I need your help, I will let you know. So step back, let go and have fun!

What to wear - for the weather. First, remember spring mornings can be really chilly, whereas the evenings can be warm, but as the sun dips the hour before sunset the temperature drops too. Temperature does not have to be a big deal as long as you are prepared. For chilly mornings, I like to recommend at least two thin layers (if you have merino wool use it!) and then a warm top layer such as a sweater and bring your jacket. I always have a laundry basket for people to put coats into, this way you can wear it until photo time, ditch it, then put it back on for a warm up.

For little girls and babies you can layer sweater tights and cute leg warmers with ugg boots and you have a very cute yet practical little fashionista! You can also use sweater tights with boys and throw their jeans or pants on over. Cute hats, scarves and mitten are cute in photos and go a long way in keeping people comfortable and happy outside.

What to wear - colors. For sessions with families or multiple kids, I always encourage people to come up with a pallet of 3-4 colors and to mix in a neutral color. For my clients, I often provide suggested pallets, based on the colors found in the location of their photo session. In April, the location I often use is filled with daffodils and little blue flowers. So the background is lot of yellow and green with small pops of blue. My favorite colors to use here are: blue, grey, green, tan/sand, white, soft pink and purple.

Here are few possibilities I would suggest to a family with an April Session with me:

- a mix of blues and possibly grey or tan/sand as a neutral (a soft pink as a wild card color)

-blue, green and grey or tan/sand (a soft pink or purple as a wild card color)

- blue and yellow

- all white

- blue, pink, white and grey

And here are some great photos from previous April Spring Bloom Session I have held.

Grosse Pointe Family Spring Photo

Above you can see a pallet of Blue and tan, with a touch of pink and green. They stand out, while coordinating with the background! This photo was also taken last April when it was freezing out!

Despite the cold and misty wind, I was able to get images that looked like it was beautiful out. We even took one with the coat on to help remember what the day was really like!

Above you can see a mix of blues with white and tan/brown neutral used in accessories. Again, this was the very cold and drizzly day, but you would never know it from those smiles!

Grosse Pointe Baby Spring Photo

If you are interested in Spring photos this year, you have two options, a full session scheduled at your convenience or participate in my Spring Event. Please feel free to call me at 616-350-6492.

Dana Rose Photography | Grosse Pointe, Michigan | 616-350-6492 |

Dana Zarzycki is a natural light photographer, specializing in newborn, pregnancy, baby and family photography. She is located in Grosse Pointe and serves the Metro Detroit Area, to include: Birmingham, Bloomfield Hills, Clarkston, Farmington, Ferdale, Rochester Hills, Royal Oak, Sterling Heights, St. Clair Shores, Troy, Utica and other cities in Macomb, Oakland and Wayne Counties.

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