Family photo tips with kids & dogs

Saturday we had the absolute best time taking family photos with our longtime family photographer Jill Denny-Soto. She has been taking our photos for the last 7 years and we wouldn’t let anyone else take our photos.

But, before I talk about how beautiful the pictures are and how AMAZING our photographer is, let’s get down to the stressful part of taking family photos.


WHAT: as in what to wear?

I am not going to lie, I pinned and repinned outfit ideas for weeks and didn’t decide on anything until a few days before. So how did I decide? I found one picture of the place that was similar to the location we chose (I will get to that next).

I loved the colors and looked in my closet to see if I could cut cost with what clothes we already have. To my surprise, I had a long sleeve maxi dress that was similar to the one I found on Pinterest. Then built from there. My husband has a shirt I loved and I wanted to make sure he stood out this year.

Now for what the kids wear. That was difficult. How large families do it, I don’t know. I was struggling with our family of 4. I had originally picked out a dress for Cami but it didn’t work with the outfit for Cael. Finally, I caved and got her a new dress that went perfectly with mine and a gray sweater for Cael. Here is the final product. Cami added a jean jacket because that was her style and it worked out perfectly! Oh, and the pups wore their favorite bandannas from our friends Hundenfolk.


Where: to take the photos?

This was not difficult for once. This beautiful trail is right behind our house. We walk our dogs here often and I am familiar with the light. We took our photos before sunset and gave us that much sought after golden hour. I loved that is was so close to home and wanted that natural background.

My tip for anyone taking photos with dogs, find a place they are familiar with. It will cut back on their curiosity. Take them for a walk around the location a few minutes before so their scent is already there. Also, pick a spot where there is little distraction to keep their focus on taking photos.


Lastly, HOW: to take photos with your dogs, kids, and husband.

Let’s start with the dogs. We took them to the dog park an hour before photos to get out all their energy. Then we kept walking them around between shots. Another reason we chose this location. Plenty of open space with little distraction. Not to say everything went perfect, there were plenty of pictures of the pups butts, them jumping or just downright not sitting still, but that’s just the joy of taking photos with your pets.

The kids and my husband were much more amicable. My kids are 10 and 9 so taking pictures with them was much easier than when they were toddlers. However, sometimes they had too much personality and we had to give them the side eye. My husband is always the best sport and smiled like he meant it. I love that man!

The last part to HOW. How to get the best pictures? Make sure you have a photographer that you are comfortable with. You don’t have to know your photographer for years, but you do need to make sure their work is the style you like. We love the natural look and semi-posed photos Jill does. She fits our style and knows our story and captures those perfect moments. We just love her and the work she does!

So, now you have it. A few tips on taking pictures with your kids and dogs.




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