As a senior entering into your last year of school, you have a lot to be proud of — your grades, your accomplishments, your relationships, and, this year, your senior photo.
Of course you want the “Wow! factor” when you hold the photo in your hand, but to get that takes some preparation and investigation well before you actually arrive at the shoot.
To make things easier, we’ve put together four tips to help you get those picture-perfect shot — ones that are timeless and celebrate your spirit and personality.
* Know before you go. Reviewing a photographer’s online portfolio will allow you to see if their images reflect the style you’re looking for, and mesh with your personality, be it black and white, natural, candid with minimal posing, formal, or classic. Whatever your style, find a photographer whose existing work reflects your vision, instead of hoping the photographer will intuitively understand. You’ll save yourself (and your photographer) time and energy by doing your homework ahead of time.
* Establish a connection. Most photographers perform better when they are at ease with their subject (in this case, you), which ultimately translates to better photos. In this way, it’s important to meet your photographer beforehand to see if you feel comfortable with him or her. “Feeling comfortable during your photo session is the number-one most important thing if you want to have great, relaxed photographs,” says Michelle Moore of Michelle Moore Photography in Seattle, Wash., who is a member of the Professional Photographers of America (PPA), a non-profit association.
* Ensure that your photographer is a pro. The last thing you want to worry about is whether the person you’re hiring is actually a professional. To ease your mind, consider hiring a PPA photographer (www.FindaPhotographer.com
) is a website from the non-profit that allows you to search, sort by specialty, locate, browse through portfolios, and even contact qualified photographers in your area). Photographers who are a part of this association have the artistic and technical knowledge and experience to capture and preserve your unique personality while making you feel comfortable.
* Let your parents have a say. While your folks may have different tastes, remember that they are in control of the purse strings, that is, they are (usually) the ones paying. This should be a combined effort, one that involves both parents and teens. “You’ll want to find a compromise in terms of style and budget; but ultimately, it should be a decision that both you and your parents make,” says Moore.
For more information, please visit PPA.com/SeniorTips.com.