Why I Want Your Kids to Misbehave During Your Family Photo Session | Family Photographers Portland Oregon

Portland Oregon Family Photographer

Okay, I know this sounds insane. I know. But it’s completely true! I want your kids to misbehave during their photo session with me! If your kids were searching for family photographers in Portland, Oregon, they would probably choose me because I allow them to BE THEMSELVES! Actually, I’ve totally been hired by a child before????. True story! She was 11 at the time, did all the googling, and contacted me through Facebook (with her parent’s permission, of course). She thought I sounded fun ????.

But anyway, the point is, your kids should have the freedom to be themselves during your session, because that’s how we get genuine smiles and true emotion, and their individual personalities can shine through.

You already know from a previous blog post that we play games during my family sessions, and this post is all about letting your kids be kids.

Freedom Helps Personalities Shine

mom and daughter during photography session

Below is an example of some fake smiles. While still incredibly adorable, there is no spark in the eyes and doesn’t give you any insight into this little girl’s silly little personality, or the sweet relationship between these two.

Now let’s take this same mother and daughter and give them the space to be themselves. Let’s allow them to play and get silly! Which photo do you like better? You know my answer????.

mom and little girl laughing and having fun during family photography session in portland oregon

And again, we will take this same little girl and let her talk about farts and poop! Lol.

adorable laughing girl | best portland oregon family photographers

So my point is this: It’s totally fine with me if kids want to talk about gross things or be a little naughty during their session because that’s what kids think is funny.

Let Them Do What They Do

This little guy thought that running away from the camera and his mom was hilarious. That’s fine, we made it a game! And when his mom finally caught him, it was all worth it. Plus, we both got a workout without even having to go to the gym! Bonus!

mom and toddler laughing | family photographers in Portland Oregon

He also thought it was great fun to whip the bubble wand around and try to splash both his mom and me. We let it happen! I just moved my camera if he got too close, and it was the end of the session anyway so mom was totally fine with getting bubble liquid all over her. Ha!

If we had told him to stop doing this and taken the bubble wand away from him, he probably would have cried and that would be that. I never would have gotten this hilarious photo…

little boy playing with bubbles in portland oregon

The takeaway is this…

I don’t necessarily want your kids to be hyped up on soda and candy and totally out of control. I just want them to have the space to be themselves. So that means that when they do get a bit hyper, say something disrespectful or gross, or have ideas other than what we are trying to get them to do, you let it go just for this one hour. And probably the hour leading up to the session, to make sure everyone is in a good mood.

If someone yells at them because they made a fart joke, they’re going to get sad and possibly shut down, and that’s the opposite of what we want. They can get a bit rowdy if that is how they are, and I will capture that so you can look back on it later and all laugh together about that one time little Jacob wouldn’t stop saying the words, “pooper scooper.” Or Sally kept making funny faces at the camera. Or whatever. ????

little girl making a funny face at camera


If you like fun, happy photographers that will play games and goof around…

I’m your family photographer.

If you’re looking for someone who will just roll with it when your kids are full of energy and toilet jokes…

I’ve got all the patience in the world!

But if you like the super posed, stiff bodies and cheese smiles, you’ll have to look elsewhere because that’s not my thing.

Book your silly family photography session with me in the Portland, Oregon area or check my pricing page for more info on packages.

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  1. Candids always make for shots that truly capture the moment (much like the ones you have here). Good thing you work well on the fly since toddlers, in particular, are so prone to mood swings ;p

  2. I love this post!! As the mother of two older kids, I always preferred candids over posed family pics because they told the true story of our family and each of the quirky personalities of my kids. These photos are gorgeous that you took!

  3. This is so true! Every time I (or anyone else) tries to get a posed pic of my kids I kind of cringe at the results. The best ones are ALWAYS candid! And them being themselves is what I want to remember when I look back at pictures of my family 🙂

  4. I love your fun, go with the flow outlook on family photos! My little one is two and we can get about 5 minutes of him listening and obeying, then it’s cut loose time! It’s great that parents don’t have to worry about spending money on pictures only to have the photographer be unable to work with the rowdyness. These photos are beautiful!

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