When you are considering dates, keep in mind that the best time to shoot is the "golden hour" which is usually an hour or two before sunset. This ensures soft and golden light rather than harsh early and mid-day lighting which can cast unattractive shadows.


DECIDE ON A COLOR SCHEME - Think about where you plan to hang your family photos in your home and look at the colors in those rooms. 

SELECT ONE FOCAL PIECE - Select a patterned piece that you love, such as a floral dress or plaid shirt and then plan everything around that piece.

PICK 3 COLORS - Choose three colors to work with as your main colors, then consider grays, whites, blacks, or browns - not necessarily all of them together, but one or two that work with the three colors you choose. 

LAYERS & ACCESSORIES - Cardigans, necklaces, headbands, scarves, button-up shirts, hats, and ties, combined with layers add dimension and texture and will enhance the overall richness of your photos. 

SPLIT UP THE COLORS - Don't put all three of your main colors on top or on people closest in age. Weight some color towards the bottom as well with shoes, skirts and pants. 

LAY IT ON THE FLOOR - Once you've gathered items in the colors you've picked, lay them on the floor, and look at it from afar, take a picture of it so you can see if from a different perspective. 

SPLIT UP THE PAIRS - If you have natural pairs in the family (mom and dad, brothers, sisters, Mom and baby) try to split up the colors, as they will often be standing near each other.