not sure how to prepare for your senior session?
You’ve booked your senior session with Kali, so now what? You’re officially a #KPSenior and I’m SO excited to work with you! It’s time to decide on a look for your session and choose your outfits carefully. This is one of the most exciting ( but also overwhelming ) parts of the experience – there are so many options, but I am here to help!
Keep reading to find out my go-to tips and tricks for preparing for your senior session. This guide will help you get the absolute most out of your senior portrait experience, and make sure that you love all of your images!
Your session is going to begin at a pre-determined location, based on the answers to your senior questionnaire and the session length you chose. We will meet there a few minutes before we plan to start shooting so that I can help you finalize any outfit choices! Please try your absolute best to arrive on time, if not a few minutes early. As a natural light photographer, your session is scheduled around the time that the sun sets or the best lighting possible. Therefore, if you arrive at your session even 15 minutes late, it can affect the length of your session. If you are more than 30 minutes late to your session, we will need to reschedule for my earlier convenience (which is often 2-3 months out).
read below to see my favorite tips and tricks for preparing for your senior session!
OUTFIT TIP #1
The most important thing is to be authentic! A lot of times we view picture day as a special occasion, so we want to go out and buy something for the occasion. And a lot of times, we choose things we wouldn’t normally wear. I get it, you want something nice, and you want it to be special. It’s about finding… Balance.
My advice is to find something special IN YOUR OWN STYLE – you don’t need to go buy a new ball gown or an over the top outfit that you would never wear again. Often, when you try something you typically wouldn’t wear and haven’t tried on before, you can feel uncomfortable and this can reflect in your images, it’ll feel awkward. If you don’t like tight fitting clothing, leave them at home! Personally I try to steer clear of tight fitting on certain parts of my body, and prefer tighter fit on other places, otherwise I’d be constantly wondering if it looks bad. So, if there are items in your closet that make you feel self-conscious or uncomfortable, don’t include them in your senior portrait wardrobe! If something doesn’t fit you quite right, it may not be something you want to bring either. I will most likely have you sitting on the ground, walking, spinning around, laying down, or doing other things that would be difficult if your clothing is uncomfortable. So – when you go in search of the perfect outfits, be sure to look for fun pieces that you will wear even after senior pictures are taken. You will be much more comfy, and you will look like YOU in your images!
OUTFIT TIP #2
play with textures + colors
Of course, I do my best to select the perfect locations for your session, however as pretty as the scenery is, YOU are the star of this show – I want you to stand out! One way to do this is to avoid pieces that are too plain or solid in color. Wearing prints, patterns and textures is a great way to add a little pop and interest to your images. I shoot images with a beautiful blurry background, with you as the subject, and this will help make you POP! Nothing looks better against a smooth, blurred background than a pretty floral dress or a fun textured sweater. A graphic tee is also a fun way to add a little detail if you aren’t into patterns. Adding textured materials to your wardrobe also helps if you do truly love solid color pieces.
There is a lot to be said for classic black, and I’m not going to tell you to avoid it when choosing your outfits. However, I will tell you to keep the plain black to a minimum, especially if it has no texture to it. We live in a beautiful place, and there are so many location options…. from the woods, to a pond or river, city lights, or a flower field…. and everyone of those places is a perfect location to bring in some color! Color not only looks great in your images, it makes YOU look great in your images too! Very few of us can truly pull off full white or black without it washing us out. Pure black often times looks a little more grey in my style of images, since they are lighter, so they are safer to skip – unless its just a little here and there. Grey is trendy but can sometimes get lost amount the greens in a field or the concrete grey of a city sidewalk. I love shooting lighter colors, as well as greens, peaches, blush, yellow, and any colors that really POP! Color just takes everything up a notch, so be sure to add a little into your outfits, either with your clothes or your accessories. Sometimes, color combinations that may seem off or “too much” in-person end up photographing PERFECTLY on camera!
OUTFIT TIP #3
don’t forget top layer + accessorize
Details are arguably the most important part of your wardrobe. They add interest and depth, and are the perfect finishing touch to an outfit. It’s that little bit of icing on top of an already beautiful outfit! A statement necklace, rings, bracelets. A trendy hat (LOVE HATS. A scarf. ALL THE THINGS YA’LL!) There are so many ways to accessorize, so the combinations are endless. Do you still love your solid colors? Are you a plain t-shirt kinda person? GREAT! Wear those things, but then add a little touch of detail by adding a super cute necklace and a fun hat. Accessories are a great way to change something up a bit that is more on the simple side. And it just adds more layers to your outfit, thus adding the perfect pop to your photos.
We live in a state that can get VERY warm in the summer, and your session could be just plain HOT. BUT – layering does not mean heavy. It just means… ya know, layers. Summertime layering with kimonos, dusters, and light scarves is a great way to add detail, depth and color. Fall/Winter layering with boots, cardigans, and knit scarves keeps you warm during your shoot, but also takes your outfit up a notch! Layering can take a simple outfit from blah to WOW, AND you can always just take a cardigan or jacket off in a few shots for a variety in your look. 2 outfits in 1 – HECK YES! Not sure what to do with your hands in photos? Well, I will worry about that, but layers are a great way to give your hands something to hold, play with to add movement, or wrap up in when posing!
why you should get professional hair & makeup
The Full Senior package includes professional hair and makeup, and this section below explains a lot of why I include this service in your session. If you did not purchase the full senior session, and it is in your budget, I would love to set you up with one of my partners – just ask at the time of booking!
I highly recommend that all of my seniors invest in professional hair and makeup for their senior session, and here is why! If it is in your budget, it will drastically improve the quality of your images and your senior portrait experience. You are already making a large investment here, so why not make it the best it can be? The answer is DUH! So why exactly is it so important?
Here are reasons why…
my go-to gals for hair + makeup
Amber Leitner Beauty
Amber is my main hair & makeup, and if you’ve booked a full session with me, you’ll most likely get to meet her!
Styled by Kenzie
Jenny – Makeup Artist
Made up by jenny
More Hair Recommendations
Megan – Instagram @beautymarked.bymegan
Kinsey – Instagram @_hairthatsparks
Julia – Instagram @craftedbeautybyjulia
Alli – Instagram @thesaltyblonde
shoot day checklist!
some of my fav places to shop!
frequently asked questions