Sunset family photos in fun hiking spot in portland oregon

Late to your family photos? What to do! Advice from a Portland Photographer

What to do if you’re late for your family photos

Well, you did everything you could to prepare ahead of time, got the kids ready while also getting yourself ready, and time just wasn’t on your side today. Maybe it’s the Portland traffic, or maybe you just took longer than expected. But what should you do now that you’re in the car but the GPS says you’ll be late for your family photos? Here’s a quick checklist:

  • Message your photographer! You should have their phone number, but if you don’t, you can google them or check their website and see if their number is on there. Send off a quick text with an accurate ETA and apologize profusely. Ask if you will still have enough time (because the sun might play a factor in this, or if you booked a short session and your photographer has another family after you).

  • Drive safely. No photos will be taking place if you get in an accident. And if you get pulled over you will be even later.

  • Do not let your kids see that you are stressing. Or try your best not to stress because there’s nothing you can do about it now. Kids feed off our energy and if you want them to have a fun time, then the whole family needs to be in a good mood.

  • Be prepared for your session to be a bit shorter than planned, especially if your photos are scheduled for sunset. The sun doesn’t wait.

  • Keep in contact with your photographer if your drive is longer than 20 minutes. Send another text when you’re 10 minutes away with an updated ETA. Be courteous because your photographer might be stressing a bit about the sun right now. But if you’ve chosen the right photographer, they won’t let you see their stress once you get there and you will all still have a great time!

  • When you arrive, try and shake it off and just be present with your family during the session. Play, cuddle, laugh, and enjoy your time together. That is how the best family photos are made.
Family of four playing and laughing during family photos in Portland

Funny story…

There was an insane amount of traffic in Portland this day and these beautiful people ended up getting to their family photos 35 minutes late. But even so, they still hiked 15 minutes to the top of a mountain with me and had such a good time playing and laughing together! The trick is to not stress over things that are out of your control. They had texted me while on their way about being late, and I just assured them that it would be fine. Keeping calm is super important for photo sessions, especially with kids. They sense your mood. So on the walk up the mountain, we all chatted and got to know each other and by the time we got to the top and were ready to start the session, everyone was relaxed and ready for playtime. Starting later worked out anyway because we got an amazing sunset! I definitely had to be fast, though, and we did this entire session in 35 minutes!!

So if you’re going to be late, try not to stress. If you’ve chosen an awesome photographer, you will still have a great experience and your photos will still be beautiful.

Of course, it’s better to be on time but if this happens to you… hopefully, the advice here will help!

Now enjoy some adorable photos of this portland family.

family photos on Powell Butte at sunset
Little boy laughing at family near Portland
Portraits of young brothers laughing
Family playing in a portland park
Family cuddling on blanket
black and white photo of little boy in Portland Oregon
Dad and son laughing and playing at sunset in portland
Mom and toddler son dancing near a tree on Powell Butte
Brothers hugging and laughing at sunset
family laughing and cuddling together during family photos in Portland
Mom holding son laughing with golden sun behind
Silhouette photo of a family throwing kids in the air
Family playing together with the orange sunset behind
Parents alone at sunset with pink and orange sky

If you have your portland family photos booked already, here is a great blog about how to prepare for your photo session! Hopefully, this will help prevent you from being late and needing the advice on this page! ????

Looking for your own family photos in Portland?

If you’re still searching for your own family photographer, check out my portfolio and see if my style is what you’re looking for. Then head over to my pricing page or contact me to schedule your family photos in the Portland area, Columbia River Gorge, or Oregon Coast. And if you’re not quite ready to schedule yet, follow me on Instagram to keep up to date with my seasonal offerings.

Another article you might really enjoy is my Complete Guide to Getting Portland Family Photos!

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