6 Fun Ways to Pose for a Family Portrait

6 Fun Ways to Pose for a Family Portrait

Beth Callaghan
Jun 11, 2012

During the last holiday season, our family took this portrait while jumping on a trampoline. It seemed like a perfect setting and activity to portray the light-hearted way our family tries to approach life. Recently, it got me thinking about unique ways to document your family, and I rounded up some fun examples that you might be able to incorporate into your own photo sessions.

An unusual take on a family portrait can make your picture convey more than just an image. A different approach allows you to represent meaningful elements or a sense of your family's personality.

Try an unusual activity: Here, we chose the trampoline. How about everyone playing miniature golf? Or a joint jump in the waves at the beach? Choose an activity that has meaning for your family or that represents your aesthetic. (Remarkably Domestic)

Use unexpected props: I love this photo from Nina Matthews Photography. The rain initially seemed to pose a problem for the photo shoot, but then they decided to use it to their advantage. Not every family photo needs to feature faces; this one shows everyone's life stage while conveying a playful feeling.

Try a different vantage point: Laurie Bailey from Laurie Bailey Photography takes amazing family portraits, and many of them use unique approaches. In this photo, the family on the beach isn't new, but we love how Laurie chose to take this photo at a distance, featuring more of the environment than the family. The result has much more emotional impact and a sense of atmosphere and represents the family as a single unit, instead of as a group of individuals.

Choose a non-traditional venue: We love this photo from Karen Ard of a family inside their English, right-hand drive vintage Mini Cooper. Choosing a location that is unexpected yet has meaning for your family can make your photo more than just a record of what everyone looked like; it's a document of your family's history.

Try a crazy pose: We've all taken group photos where you pose stoically and then the photographer says, "OK, everyone be crazy!" Often those crazy shots get relegated to the cutting room floor, so to speak, but with a little planning you can make your crazy shot the best one of the bunch. This photo from Kelsey J. Gibbs Photography makes a sweet statement that shows the parents as a couple as well as their fun-loving relationship with their kids.

Focus on something other than a face: While the most traditional of the bunch, this photo of a family's feet offers another option for a portrait. We like that this one from Cherry Stem Photography skips the tired "bare feet on the bed" motif and shows the family in their shoes and out in the world. Consider featuring other body parts, too: hands, the back of heads, even a close up of eyes.

Have you taken any unique family portraits? Let us know your tips in the comments!

(Images: as linked above)

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