Taking time out of your busy schedule to plan family portraits can be intimidating. Picking out a day when everyone's available, traveling to the photography location, and searching in your closet for the perfect outfit takes time. That's why hiring a professional Colorado family photographer can come in handy. Your photographer will be there to hold your hand through the entire process and eliminate the stress of planning your session.

Even if you decide to hire a photographer for your family portraits, however, you might not know where to start. Your photographer will come equipped with a game plan but you'll likely have questions of your own. To help ease the process, here are 5 questions to ask your Colorado family photographer.

1. Where Do You Recommend Taking Family Photos?

For beginners, one of the first questions you want to ask your Colorado family photographer is where the photo session should take place. Depending on the time of year, your photographer may recommend taking portraits outside versus inside.

Luckily, living in such a beautiful place as Colorado, there are thousands of great family portrait locations throughout the state. A few popular outdoor locations include Red Rocks Park and Amphitheatre, Garden of the Gods, Lookout Mountain, and Rocky Mountain National Park.

If it's winter time or the weather is bad outside during your planned session, your photographer may recommend taking portraits in the comfort of your own home. Your home is the perfect photography location when trying to take pictures of your family during the holidays. By deciding to take portraits at your home, you eliminate the stress of having to pack everyone up and travel to the photography location. This is especially helpful when you're extended family members are in town.

Whether you're interested in having your portraits taken outside or in the comfort of your home, discuss your options with your photographer. They will be more than happy to accommodate your requests and travel to you if necessary.

Colorado family portraits in Golden by Sara Turbyfill Photography.

2. When Should the Photo Session Take Place?

Secondly, you'll want to ask your photographer when the session should take place. Determining a date and time for your family portrait session relies on several factors. Most importantly, you'll want to know your photographer's availability. During the holidays, Colorado family photographers book up fast. With relatives coming into town at this time of year, many people request family portraits, so you'll want to reach out to your photographer to make sure they will have availability on your desired date.

Another factor to consider is the weather. Regardless if you're having your photos taken indoors or outdoors, weather can play a significant role. If you're having photos taken inside, chances are you will need some natural light. Even if the photographer has lighting equipment, natural light is often preferred. Therefore, you'll most likely want the photos to take place when there is still plenty of light outside.

If you're having the photos taken outdoors, then timing is everything. Photographers typically recommend taking outdoor photos during the golden hour. Golden hour occurs twice a day and is referred to as the first hour after sunrise and the last hour before sunset. This is the optimal time of day to take photos because there is still enough light outside but it isn't too bright that it reduces image quality.

Either way, it's best to discuss the options with your photographer. If you're having photos taken outside, be sure to also watch the weather and ask your photographer about their rescheduling policy if the weather doesn't work out.

Family portraits in Centennial by Colorado family photographer Sara Turbyfill.

3. Is There Anything I Should Bring to My Family POrtrait Session?

In addition to the questions above, you'll also want to ask your photographer if you should bring anything to your session. Your photographer may recommend bringing props and other items with you to make the photo session run as smoothly as possible. For example, they may recommend bringing a blanket with you so everyone has a clean place to sit when taking pictures outdoors.

If you're taking the family dog with you, there are a few other items you might consider bringing. To help your dog cooperate during the session, you might want to bring treats, toys, and a water bowl. Again, it's best to discuss this with your photographer and ask for their recommendations.

Family portraits in aspen trees by Sara Turbyfill Photography.

4. Do YOu Provide Outfit Recommendations?

Another important question to ask your photographer is if they can provide you with outfit recommendations. Although coordinating outfits might not be as important for individual pictures or couples photos, it can make a huge difference when it comes to family portraits. Therefore, it's important to cover this with your photographer.

Ask them for help with picking out your outfits. Depending on the time of year, color and patterns can play an important role in your outfit selection. As an experienced professional, they should be able to provide you with a full list of outfit ideas.

Family portraits in Colorado Springs by Colorado family photographer Sara Turbyfill.

5. What Products and Services Do You Offer?

Finally, you'll want to ask your Colorado family photographer what products and services they offer. Sadly, in the world we live in today, this question is often overlooked because most people are only focused on digital files. However, full-service photographers offer a wide range of products and services to their clients.

Photography products can include acrylic blocks, gallery-wrapped canvases, framed portraits, heirloom photo albums, metal artwork, and much more. There are thousands of family portrait wall ideas out there, so the options are endless. Additional services beyond the photo session can include helping you pick out your outfit, providing a list of pose recommendations, and even assistance hanging purchased artwork on the wall. If you're unsure whether your photographer is a full-service photographer, the best way to find out is to ask.

Family portrait photo album by Sara Turbyfill Photography.

Speak with a Colorado Family Photographer

In conclusion, finding and hiring the right person who specializes in Colorado family photography can be a challenge. There are so many aspects that go into planning your session, like picking out your outfit, coordinating with the rest of your family on a date, and deciding on a photography location. Hopefully after reading through the list above, you feel more prepared to discuss your options with a photographer.

If you're interested in speaking with a Colorado family photographer, my name is Sara Turbyfill and I'd be happy to help. I'm a full-service or boutique photographer that specializes in family portraits. I offer my services throughout the state of Colorado and would love to discuss your options during a complimentary consultation. To book your complimentary photography consultation, click the button below. I look forward to hearing from you!