*Disclosure: This is a sponsored post written on behalf of Shutterfly.com through Global Influence.  I will receive holiday cards for my participation and no other compensation will be given. All opinions are 100% my own.

Several years ago I decided that, like with everything else, I could take our family photos and save us a dollar or two. We typically use our portraits for both photo books and cards once the holidays arrive.  

Family Photo Tips

Although our pictures may not have been the best, they still mean the world to us as a family. We have found great locations near our hometown and make sure to do family photo shoots at least twice a year. The kids have actually become quite good at modeling ad posing for me!

In fact, we have been doing this so long that we have come up with a few tips on our own.

#1 – Coordinate everyone’s wardrobe – This doesn’t have to be too complicated… although we tend to make it more complicated than it is. We try to pick a family or two of colors that blend well and work from there.

Having 4 girls and 1 son, we have to get creative sometimes because my prince does not like to wear anything feminine. As a matter of fact, for one shoot I had to pay him $5 to wear a shirt with a pink line on it. Seriously! But, it was a price I was willing to pay that year!

Coordinate colors
One of my all-time favorite photos!

#2 – Schedule around naps, mealtimes, etc – If you have a man or kids involved in the picture taking process this can be crucial to the success of your shoot!

You do not want to deal with hungry or sleepy models! It can get ugly otherwise! We try to shoot after breakfast and hours before nap time. Everyone is fed and then dressed and groomed for the outing.

Afterwards, there may be a treat for how well it went and a nap for those that are now in need.

Mad Princess
I took this over my shoulder because she was really mad! You want to avoid this in your photo shoot! 🙂

#3 – Think outside the box – Don’t be afraid to shoot from several different angles. Get creative in posing everyone and choose fun locations.

Let the kids pick their own poses and capture them in the moment.

Every picture does not have to be one that you have thought through carefully from beginning to end. Random, fun shots typically turn out to be the best ones in the end!

Wagon Wheel
Monkey has always been {and still is} fascinated with the wagon wheel. Absolutely love this one!

#4 – Be ready to move quickly – The past summer, the kids and I learned this great new trick. Knowing Monkey was only going to stay still for so long, we began to let her dictate how the shoot would go. She would go from one location to another, stopping only long enough to look at the camera and say, “Cheese!”

Therefore, we would move the other 4 into the frame and get them posed as quick as possible. Monkey would come into the shot close to where we asked her to go, turn around, say, “Cheese” and then be off.

We had to keep everyone moving and we actually ended up with some great shots! It was fun and became a game for the rest of us.

Say Cheese
Notice the “cheesy” smile? But, at least we were able to get her to sit long enough to grab the shot! 🙂

Do you have any great tips that you have found to work for your family?

I would love to hear more ideas.