As a Princeton family photographer I’ve worked with dozens of families all over New Jersey and the tri-state area. The Whitfield Family moved to Flemington, New Jersey in 2012 and the first thing they did was contact me to photograph their family as a way of celebrating their move to a new state. Their family portraits in 2012 turned out so wonderful that each year after that they contacted me back to schedule their yearly session. Their previous family portraits were shot in Flemington, NJ in 2012 and at Peddler’s Village in Lahaska, PA in 2013. This year I decided to take them to Princeton, New Jersey. When photographing a family that have small children, it’s always best to have a generous amount of activities for their child to partake in. That way the children are kept happy and pre-occupied with their surroundings instead of focused on smiling for the camera. If the children are happy then it is easy to photograph their natural reactions together as a family. A Princeton family photographer should know this area quite well. Luckily for me, the princeton campus is filled with beautiful areas to photograph all my families that I shoot.
Instead of always trying to have your family sit and pose for the camera, sometimes it’s best to have them walk together and capture their smiles naturally. Children always need something to do and rarely ever sit still. So walking is an extremely easy way to keep everyone happy and smiling. Here you can see the Whitfield Family taking a stroll through the Princeton University Campus and enjoying the beautiful fall weather.
Interaction is another very important aspect to any family portrait session. Getting the parents to hug and kiss their children or tickle them is a great way to capture nothing but smiles and laughter. Here I placed the Whitfield Family in front a historic building on the Princeton Campus and told them to simply relax together as a family. Simple as that. A princeton family photographer should know this area and luckily for me the campus grounds has no shortage of beautiful areas to shoot in.
Here is another perfect example of interaction. By simply telling my family to tickle their son Ben, the natural interactions that unfold provided me with endless amounts of wonderful smiling portraits of their entire family. I made sure for this shot that my subjects were between me and the sun and let them enjoy a moment together.
Using my surroundings to my advantage is something I do a lot. By simply letting their son Benjamin sit next to the Princeton tiger statue I was able to shoot without any kind of direction whatsoever. I almost always shoot all my portraits with my Canon 70-200 2.8 IS mark ii lens. This gives me the ability to be far away from my subjects and let them relax and be together as a family, without worrying about my presence. I’m so lucky, as a princeton family photographer I get to utilize the beautiful campus and all that it has to offer my families.
A good rule for shooting beautifully lit outdoor portraits is to keep your subjects between you and the sun. Shooting backlit portraits is something I do a lot. I really enjoy the beautiful rim light the sun provides. It also helps to separate my subject from the background. Between shooting backlit portraits and photographing my subjects with shallow depth of field, it is easy to make any background beautiful and visually appealing.
And lastly, here is another example of a perfect natural interaction. Letting the parents simply hold their child’s hand as they walk always yields beautiful results.
If you’re looking for New Jersey beach weddings inspiration then you will definitely want to check out this couple’s wedding day gallery. Kara & Justin were married on the beaches of Manasquan, New Jersey and their beautiful wedding reception took place at the Brielle River House in Brielle, New Jersey. Any time my photography business allows me to photograph on the beaches of New Jersey, it always reminds me how blessed I am to have a career like this. Luckily for Kara & Justin the weather was absolutely gorgeous on their wedding day and their collection of wedding photographs turned out beautiful. The Brielle River House did an amazing job and the staff was very helpful and extremely friendly. If you’re looking to have your New Jersey beach weddings in Manasquan, I’d definitely recommend checking out the Brielle River House.
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