Saturday, August 21, 2021

Tips for beach pictures with little ones | Sanibel Photographer

Sanibel Island Family Beach Pictures


If you follow along with our adventures you've likely seen that we photograph a ton of family beach pictures. I definitely love photographing families, but more specifically, families on the beach are my real specialty. I love the beautiful setting and the stunning backdrops here in SWFL. From Sanibel Island to Fort Myers Beach we spend a lot of time on our favorite little islands capturing professional pictures for families that are here on vacation. Over the years I've learned a few specific things that are helpful when planning a family portrait that includes little ones. I made a list of those tips and important things to consider when planning that family beach portrait session. I've compiled those tips here for my clients and anyone considering doing professional family pictures on Sanibel Island or anywhere on our gulf coast beaches. 

1. Timing is everything. Sunset is gorgeous, but if your little one is in bed by 7pm every night we definitely don't want to disrupt the sleep schedule for pictures. Consider sunrise for an equally beautiful backdrop. Some of our most stunning family pictures have happened with a 6:45am meeting time. A sunrise family portrait is a great option to capture your babe at their best moments. Sanibel Island specifically gets a beautiful view of the sunrise, however even on Fort Myers Beach or on Captiva Island where the sunrise isn't directly over the beach the sky color and overall lighting is still stunning.

2. Is this babies first visit to the beach? A lot of little ones aren't super keen on the feel of sand in their toes. I suggest waiting a few days into your vacation for your family photo shoot so the little ones have had a chance to get used to the beach. A good day or two hanging out in the sand can often help to ease their way into beach life and have them ready to get right in when it's time for professional pictures. 

3. Pictures with little ones can be unpredictable and that's okay. Some kiddos take time to warm up, others expire pretty quickly. Roll with the mood and go with the flow is our game plan. I love the candid, fun, just enjoying the beach and each other kinda pictures. We don't always need 100% cooperation to get those great moments. Some of my favorite images are ones that couldn't be planned. Letting the shoot just happen however is most comfortable for our young clients is always the best approach.

4. I'm not a parenting expert (don't tell my kids!) so don't quote me on this one. BUT, bribery works. It's okay to bring along the favorite snack. Rewarding the kiddos can be the trick to keeping their attention. Bring the gummy bears or Puffs along and we can pull those out if we need to get more smiles.

5. Be ready to sing along. Baby Shark and the Wheels on the Bus are some of my favorite songs (I am willing to pretend they are anyway!). Dance parties and sing alongs are all part of the fun. My fabulous assistant Maddie has been known to magically eat a sea shell from time to time while I've learned the art of balancing shells on my head. Yes, things get goofy, but a genuine reaction to a silly moment is part of what makes a great family photo shoot.

6. End with a bang! Towards the end of a photo shoot I suggest just getting in the water, sitting in wet sand and splashing around. Outfits that are okay to get a little wet are definitely the best option. If we are meeting at a public beach area or away from the hotel or house you are staying at pack a change of clothing for the little ones for the ride home. 

So there you have it. A few things to think about as you plan your family beach pictures. And of course if you are not scheduled to with Impressions Photography for your family portrait definitely hit me up! I'd love the opportunity to capture your family beach pictures too. My services are primarily available to families on Sanibel and Captiva Islands and Fort Myers Beach however I also meet clients in Naples and I'm happy to adventure out to North Captiva too. Shoot me an email and let's talk more about your family pictures!


Looking forward to talking more and hopefully being a part of your next family vacation!




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