Family Photography Tips

How to Take Better Pictures of Your Family

by Jay Forman

Family photography tip: photographing people close together
Close Together and Having Fun
© Jay Forman
All Rights Reserved

Posing Techniques When Photographing Your Family

The best technique is to position everyone so that their heads are close together. This usually does wonders to make everyone look extra friendly and happy.

There's something else to think about when planning for a family picture like this. What should your family wear? Make sure everyone follows one simple guideline: Wear bright solid colors. Stripes, sports logos, polka dots, and plaids act as distractions, pulling the viewer's eye away from your subject.

Family photography tip: solid simple colors best for family pictures
Group Portrait with Solid Colors
© Jay Forman
All Rights Reserved

For a Great Family Picture, Keep Things Simple

It's best if you put all your creative efforts into photographing one main subject. You can take plenty of additional photos, so don't worry about including everybody and everything in one picture. If you put too much stuff in your photo, it will look messy. It works best if you keep things simple, including just your subject and being careful to not include a bunch of other things in the picture.

What if you're shooting several family members together? That's OK. Since they're posing together, they in essence become one subject. The subject of that photo is really the relationship between the various family members.

And Lastly... The Early Bird Get's The Worm

Try to take your family portrait at a time of day that produces the nicest light - like early in the morning when the sun is just rising (if you can get everybody up that early!).

No worries, though, if you have a bunch of sleepy-heads on your hands... the light can also be beautiful late in the afternoon, when the sun is just about to set.

If neither early morning or late afternoon work for your family, look for bright open shade or the light just inside a doorway or window.

Article by Jay Forman. To learn more about photography, explore the many online photography and Photoshop classes offered here at