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Hello and welcome to the BFH Blog! Here I write bi-weekly pieces on advice to seniors, tips you will need for college, BTS on sessions, and so much more!

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May 24, 2023

When to Schedule Senior Portraits: A Guide to the Perfect Timing

Senior year of high school is an exciting and hectic time for students and parents alike. There are so many things to plan and organize – from college applications to senior trips, prom, and graduation parties. And, of course, senior portraits!

As a senior portrait photographer based in Maryland and Washington, DC, I’ve worked with many high school seniors and their families to create stunning and personalized portraits that capture their unique personalities and style. One question that comes up often is: when is the best time to take senior photos?

While there’s no one-size-fits-all answer to this question, there are a few things to keep in mind when deciding on the timing of your senior portrait session. Here are some factors to consider:

Your student’s schedule: Senior year can be incredibly busy, with schoolwork, extracurricular activities, part-time jobs, and social events all competing for your teen’s time and attention. It’s essential to choose a time for the photo session when your senior is relatively free and not feeling overwhelmed or stressed. Avoid scheduling the session during finals week or other high-pressure times. Instead, look for windows of time when your teen has a lighter workload, such as school breaks or after the busy sports season.

The weather: Another factor to consider when planning your senior portrait session is the weather. Summer gives us more daylight hours, which means we can schedule portrait sessions earlier in the morning or later in the evening when the light is softer and more flattering. This can make for some really cool and dynamic portraits. Summertime in Maryland and DC offers some beautiful natural backdrops for portraits, like the lush green parks or the sandy beaches. These locations can make for some seriously gorgeous photos.

In the fall, the weather cools down again, and the leaves on trees change colors, creating stunning backdrops for senior portraits. The colors of the leaves during this time can vary from golden yellows to fiery oranges and reds, providing a beautiful range of colors for senior portraits. The weather during this time can also be mild and comfortable!

In the spring, temperatures start to warm up, flowers begin to bloom, and the days get longer. This provides a beautiful backdrop for senior portraits with the soft and colorful blooms of cherry blossom trees and other flowering plants. 

Your preferences: Ultimately, the best time to take senior photos will depend on your family’s unique schedule, activities, and preferences. Some families prefer to take photos during the summer, when students are on break and the weather is warm and sunny. Others opt for fall or spring sessions to take advantage of the changing seasons and natural beauty. You may also want to consider the time of day when you schedule the session, as the light can vary depending on the time of day.

Once you’ve decided on the timing of your senior portrait session, it’s time to start planning the details! As a professional photographer, I’ll work with you and your senior to choose the perfect location, wardrobe, and props for your photos. I’ll also give you tips on how to prepare for the session, from hair and makeup to posing and expression.

On the day of the session, my goal is to create a fun and relaxed atmosphere that will put your teen at ease and bring out their best qualities. I love working with seniors of all personalities and styles, from outgoing and adventurous to quiet and introspective. My approach is to capture their natural beauty and personality, rather than forcing them into uncomfortable poses or cheesy smiles.

After the session, I’ll edit and retouch the photos to ensure that they look their best. You’ll receive a gallery of digital images that you can share with family and friends, print as keepsakes, and use for graduation announcements and other senior year memorabilia.

In conclusion, the best time to take senior photos is when it works best for your family and your student. By considering factors like your teen’s schedule, the weather, and your personal preferences, you can choose a time and location that will result in stunning and personalized portraits that you’ll treasure for years to come. If you’re still unsure when to schedule your session or have any questions about the process, don’t hesitate to contact me, Stephanie, at Blue Fire Hydrant Photography. I’m here to help make your senior portrait experience fun, memorable, and stress-free!

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