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Clothing Selection for a Family or Group Portrait

The following are some suggestions related to dressing for your next Family or Group portrait session.  Credits to Virtual Photography Studio Blog for sharing these.  Remember that these suggestions are all oriented towards making you, the subjects, the focus of the portrait and not your clothing.  If you have some really cool or unique clothes that you want to show off and feature in a photograph, I would love to discuss it. Here is the list:

1. Choose one color hue per portrait. People stand out if they are different from the norm of the photograph. If the majority of the people show up in black sweaters, and one shows up in red, the photograph will be dominated by the one in red.

2. Wear similar styles. Long sleeves are usually preferable. In all cases, the less distraction the better, and the more focus will be put on the faces. Again, if the majority shows up in long sleeve black sweaters, and one shows up in a purple tank top, you’ll focus on both the color of her shirt, and on her bare arms. It will also confuse the overall look – is it summer or fall?

3. Dress for the surrounding location. An evening gown would look out of place in the middle of a forest. We will discuss the style and background beforehand so that you can match your clothing accordingly.

4. Avoid distractions. Have you ever seen a portrait with bright plaids, checks or polka dots? Where do your eyes move to? It’s always the clothes that get the attention. A great portrait focuses on the eyes and on the faces – not on the outfits.

5. Dress from head to toe. In many portraits, feet show. Muddy boots, or bright orange tennis shoes will stand out, and be the center of attention in the portrait. Choose appropriate footwear for the rest of your outfit.

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