Portrait Archive

Fall Portrait Palette Ideas!

I always do this…I play it cool, I act like I don’t really care about our family pictures being the most amazing ever.  As long as at least half of us are smiling? Right? And then a few days before the shoot I PANIC because, actually, deep down inside, I DO care.  I mean, I should have pictures half as awesome as my client’s do right!? So, I have been playing it so super cool that no one really has anything cohesive to wear for our shoot next week and, in an all out scramble,  I am pulling together outfit ideas.  Like a good photographer and friend, Sarah Sandel (doing a little portrait swap this year!) has talked me down from the ledge and sent me a few fabulous color palette ideas for inspiration.  We picked ours and now I and wanted to do the same for you and give you some color inspiration to help take the stress and guess work out of picking family portrait outfits!!  So, here is the Shay Cochrane Photography ultimate guide to family portrait outfit success and awesomeness!

1. Don’t match, compliment. You dont have to wear identical pieces of clothing or even identical colors (pretty please don’t!) Instead pick a color palette and just dress everyone comfortably withing that set of complimentary colors. See ideas below for fall/winter 2012 ideas!

2. Layer. Layers look great, add opportunities for more color, are more visually interesting, and if you lack inspiration for how to layer, you can check out a site like GAP kids and see how its done!

3. Accessorize. Again, it is all about adding color and visual interest.  Accessories include hats, scarves, jewlery, etc especially when it reflects that individual family member’s personality! For example, if your daughter does not leave the house without a tutu on or your son has been wearing the same cowboy boots for 3 months straight – just pick items like these that are in the color palette.  It may irritate you now but it will warm your heart 10 years from now to remember their quirky favorite things.

4.  Make sure they are comfortable. I have made the mistake of buying the most stinkin adorable shoes EVER for Chloe to wear for a shoot and then put them on her the day of and they hurt so much that she refuses to wear them…on the way to the shoot. Making sure that everyone is comfortable will ensure that they are more relaxed and happy at the shoot.  A win for everyone.

5.  Don’t mix too many patterns. With a few well orchastrated exceptions, stick to only one or two patterns (a plaid shirt or floral skirt for example).  Also, stay away from graphic or message Ts unless you really have a statement to make:)

6. When in doubt, ask your photographer! (Me hopefully!)  Many clients of mine have sent me photographs of their outfit ideas/combinations for an extra stamp of approval.

And here are just few Fall/winter 2012 color palette ideas to get you started!! (Proof that Pinterest DOES make your life better…as if you needed proof!) Can you guess which one I am using?

Palette 1

Palette 2

Palette 3

Palette 4

Palette 5

Palette 6

Palette 7

Palette 8

The Winn Family!

You know it was a fun shoot when you can’t stop smiling while editing the pictures.  Literally, I just smile at each shot seeing the kids personalities come through and watching them interact as siblings. This is the second time that I have had the pleasure of photographing this fun sweet family.  It was even more sweet because I got to see how much the kids had grown and changed in just one year.  Family shoots can be hard (when your family is being photographed) – I personally have cried after both of the two little shoots that we have had of our family. haha.  Not because of the pictures – which were amazing – but because of the stress of managing crazy kids in such a high expectation moment.  So – this year with my Fall Family Mini Sessions I aimed to take the stress off by making the shoots shorter and on your home turf where everyone is more comfortable and I think it was a huge success.  Riggs just melted my heart with how sweet and helpful he was (really, he had me at clip-on bow tie)  Meredith was a little skeptical of how fun and awesome I am but I think I eventually won her over with candy and my jumping skills.  Lesley was a pro mom – laid back and smiling beautifully in every shot.  We were able to get so much in such a short period time and they didn’t even miss too much of the football game right Trevor?

I really just die laughing looking at their expressions in these two shots! Love them.

This Little Love.

First comes love, then comes marriage, then comes babies!!!!!  There is just something really beautiful about preparing for your first child together.  It is a pivotal moment in the relationship when you make the decision that it will no longer be just about you two and you begin to prepare your hearts for the most important act of selflessness you will ever be a part of; parenting.  I have been so blessed to get to know Johanna as a friend. Our paths were meant to cross in more ways then we realized when she first contacted me a few months ago to do her pregnancy and newborn shoots.  She has a beautiful heart for children already and I don’t think she even fully realizes how God is going to expand her capacity for love all the while doing a great and unexpected work in her own heart.  Isn’t that the truth about being a mom though?  There is an unexpected refining that takes place when you become a mother.  It is a constant and often-painful dying to yourself but an even more beautiful blossoming as a daughter of God.  As a mother, God works in you to be both as strong as an army and, at the same time, weaker then you ever wanted to admit.  Inside her belly is not only a growing life but a new perspective, a new marriage, a new future, a new and beautiful helplessness that will, with God’s grace, not only grow their relationship with each other to a new and deeper love but it will grow them both as believers as they are daily-dependent on the One who gives life. Johanna and Chris I cannot wait to meet (and photograph!) this little love of yours!

My kid crush!

Oh my, how I love this sweet little thing!  I kind of have a kid crush on her…maybe because of her love of shoes and accessories…maybe because of those pigtails…maybe because I have photographed her since she was a teensy tiny little baby. I mean seriously, look at her! As with any 2 yr old, we had a window of about 30 minutes that I could hold her attention and so armed with accessories and chocolate (I mean what girl doesn’t like those things!?) we rushed off in a little red wagon leaving mommy behind for the shoot (Mommy gets a quiet break and everyone wins! haha).  First stop was to my living room where we got these precious shots in my favorite part of the house with lots of beautiful natural light.  Second stop was just up the street in our neighborhood, Seven Oaks, where they have some of the most beautiful covered walking trails – a great go-to spot for easily beautiful images – leading lines, natural light, natural bounce off the bridge, lots of depth, even shade…perfect recipe! Just add a sweet little girl with pigtails, and ask her to spin like a princess for some chocolate, sing a few silly songs together at the top of your lungs and DONE. :) I have been photographing Chloe there for the past two years.  I just love the simplicity of it and with kids, sometimes you just gotta keep it simple right!?  A big thanks to auntie Kortni (or “Nortni” as Elizabeth would say) for donating her amazingly fun accessories for our dress up time. Here’s a tip when it comes to shooting kids…instead of trying to make them do what you want them to do for the picture, why not find a way to do what they love to do?! You will both have more fun, you will bring out their most amazing natural smiles, and capture them as the truly are, with their unique favorite things to do at that age!   Here are a few of my favs from the shoot.

Umm, Mrs. Shay, I’m bored! hahaha

Mentor Session: Sonal Creates

In addition to growing a little one in my belly, I am also currently growing a new area of my business in the coming year!  For the first time ever I have started offering formalized one-on-one mentor sessions! These are essentially similar to the workshops that I offer but since they are one-on-one they are personalized to fit the individualized needs of the amazing photographers that I get the pleasure of spending my time with!  Amazingly, (praise God!) without even starting to really advertise these sessions I am already booking them like crazy.  I cannot even tell you how much fun it has been to sit down with photographers like Sonal in the early stages of their business and give really personalized training not only in areas of technique that are giving them trouble but also in business basics like establishing pricing and packages, building clientele, portfolio development and even branding!

For this session I had the pleasure of spending half of the day with Sonal! A budding photographer in the Hyde Park area.  Sonal has a true creative eye and such a sweet personality.  She did a fabulous job working with our model Kortni (another local photog!) and I cannot wait to see where her business takes her this year! We spent the shoot portion of her mentor session talking about finding the right type of lighting to look for when doing an on location shoot.  I shared with her one of the lighting “equations” that I look for while out on a shoot (clean dark background, even light on the subject and a natural/neutral reflector bouncing light into the subjects face) as seen in the parking deck images.  Just lovely:)  Here are a few of my favs…

Thank you so much Kortni for your fabulous style, modeling skills and patience!

If you are interested in finding out more about SCP mentor sessions you can check them out here on the workshop website!

Also, I am looking for a “model” for another mentor session next week (Wed Feb 8th from 11:00-12:30) in the Tampa area.  Shoot me an e-mail at info@shaycochrane.com if you want to get in on the fun:)

Twitter Pinterest Instagram Contact