APPLE PICKING, TICKLES, AND SQUEEZES, Orchard Family Session | PA Photographers

Sunset at brecknok Orchard.
Mohnton, Pennsylvania

1.
Naps & Snacks

The day of your shoot, give yourself time and space, whether that looks like taking the day off or prepping your meals the day before. Basically, plan ahead—if you know you’ll be cranky mid-way through the shoot if you don’t eat something, bring along a sandwich, bar, or some nuts. We need the you that is not worried about rushing home from work, frantically feeding and dressing everyone in under fifteen minutes, or fitting in that conference call right you are supposed to leave. Whatever clears your head and gives you a boost of energy — do that. Take a nap, diffuse some oils, have sex, do some yoga, take a longer-than-needed shower, put the littles down for a nap earlier than normal... Know what makes you and your crew your best selves.

2.
Pass on the “Cheese”

Maybe when you hear “family pictures”, the flashbacks rush in of the last time you tried to get all the grandchildren to smile at Christmas. Are you hearing a chorus of “cheeeeeeese”? Chills. But, good news, shake off all that PTSD because we do not need to use that trick this time. You don’t have to worry about the poses you saw on Pinterest, or how you are going to trick everyone to not look obnoxious for a hot second, or even how to keep your hair in control. No constant eye contact. No forced grins. No all eyes on me. None of it. In fact, it is our goal to capture your faces while they looking at the ones they love most and while they are feeling the most loved. So you can leave the “cheese” behind!

3.

Your job vs. Our job

Your job is to genuinely and fully enjoy your people for the day; Whether that is your wife, your three boys, your husband-in-52-days, or your toddler-that-just-learned-the-word-no. You may be in a field of trees, or at a lake mid-June, or even out back by the swing. You are outside. In fresh air. With someone to love. I want you to almost get lost in loving those someones of yours. That’s literally your sole job. Relief, right? Our job is scouting the location, coordinating your vibe with outfits and tones, taking your hair ties off your wrist, fixing that stiff arm, waiting for the real laughs without forcing them, guiding you to stroke her hair or lean into his cheek, and taking magical, dreamy portraits of your family — just how they are. Messy, yet beautiful. Art. Meaning. Warmth. Home.

4.

How to React When Your Kid Picks Up That Stick

You all know what we’re talking about. You’re in the middle of capturing beautiful photos right on the edge of an amazing set of trees by a lake with the perfect lighting—and out of the corner of your eye you see your youngest bring a basically fully grown tree branch into the shot. Your first reaction is to grab him, scold, do anything to stop what’s happening. But here’s the deal: You don’t need to. We love kids. We have plenty of experience with kids. And we will all survive when your kids are well, being kids. My tribe is a tribe of clients that are willing to get in the water, come home with a little more dirt than they left with. My tribe stays relaxed, makes out with their husband, and keeps the tone gentle and warm. So tribe: When they pick up that stick, laugh it off and trust us.