5 Things to Bring to Make Your Family Photos More Meaningful
Jul 2, 2019 | By: Maria Sampaio
One of the best ways to make sure your portrait isn’t just another photo, but a family treasure that will be as compelling in 20 years as it is today, is to include things that are special or unique to your family, a sentimental trinket that has special meaning to you and your family. Choosing items that have meaning or sentimental value to grace your portrait is a sure way to make your portrait, whether it's a family portrait or a children's portrait, more special, more timeless, and more treasured for many years to come. We believe the magic is in the details, and there's nothing more magical than showcasing what makes your family unique right there in the portrait.
As a bonus, the following items can also add visual interest and appeal to your artwork. You can't go wrong. So, before you show up to your next portrait session or family photo session spend some time thinking of things you could incorporate into your portrait to make it really special.
Below are just a few suggestions to help you get your creative juices flowing.
5 Things To Bring To Your Family or Child's Portrait Session to Make It More Special and Memorable
1. Something handmade.
Is there a craft enthusiast or artist in your family? Maybe your late grandmother spent hundreds of hours making the most amazing quilts or your uncle is a great woodworker. Including these beautiful things in your portrait can be a really special way to honor their craftsmanship and make your photos more interesting, too.
2. Childhood treasures.
A favorite baseball glove. The teddy bear you carried with you everywhere for the first 10 years of your life. That dress that was your favorite when you were a kid that your mother saved and now your daughter loves. Grandpaps dogtags from his military days... These are things that are sentimental, but will eventually wear out and have to be put away. Even a favorite food or treat that reminds you of your carefree childhood days can be a really sweet addition to a portrait.
Think outside of the box here. The more unusual your item, the more likely it is to make your portrait super unique and special to you--and that’s the whole point, isn’t i?
Most people have at least one or two special things in their families that have been passed down from generation to generation. These are the things that maybe you keep in a special box and forbid the kids to touch--they’re so special you can’t risk getting them lost or broken.
But if you want a really special portrait (whether it’s a family portrait or a portrait of your children), this might be the perfect time to take those things out of storage. How completely adorable it would be to let your toddler wear your great grandmother’s pearls -- just this once! Or maybe a portrait of your son holding the family Bible that’s been in your family for generations would be sweet way to connect your past with your family’s future.
4. Reminders of your roots.
If you don’t have any special family heirlooms, you might have to be more creative to incorporate your roots into your portrait. Think of things that might be symbolic of your family’s country of origin.
Do you know that your ancestors came to America from Europe? Is there anything that you could include in your family portrait to remind you of that journey or the place your family called home many generations ago? For example, if your ancestors came from The Netherlands, you might bring fresh tulips to your session. A portrait artist LOVES to incorporate flowers into imagery - creating a pop of color so delicate adding a little more to the portrait at hand.
5. Something that reminds you of your favorite place.
Another way to tell your family’s story through your portrait is by honoring a place that is special to you for whatever reason. Maybe you have a vacation spot that immediately makes you feel relaxed and happy. Or a particular city holds a special place in your heart because that’s where your husband proposed to you or where you went on your Honeymoon. If it’s, say Charleston, SC (where we’re based), you could bring a sweetgrass basket since sweetgrass weaving is such a big part of Charleston’s history and heritage. You see them all over, recently I saw some gorgeous ones in the historical area - both the Charleston Day Market and the Charleston Night Market have them and they are amazing!