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Orange County Children & Family Portrait Clothing Guide



How does an idea to capture a fleeting moment in time of your family end up being photographic art for your home?

First it Starts with a Conversation: I’d like to get to know how you are, what your style is and what is important to you and your family. We’ll discuss where you’d like your family portrait created, either in our studio, at your home or on location (beach, park etc.) , and what personal objects or props you’d like to include. Second, we’ll discuss what you’d like to do with your art. Where are you considering putting your wall portraits in your home? Or, are you thinking of grouping a series of framed images or using an image box as an heirloom for your family portraits? Your design session can take place in person, by phone or by Skype.

Our family portrait sessions are relaxed and fun, designed to bring out the best in your family and capture those special moments in your life. Sessions are done on location or in our spacious studio. Your family portrait session can last any where from 1 to 2 hours. During your session you should choose clothing and an activity that represents your daily life experience. We’d rather see you, your children and your family playing with your dog in the park, relaxing at the beach, nesting at home or having a blast at Disneyland in your most comfortable clothes. It’s all about being comfortable and letting your personality shine. Its these slices of life that you want to remember. Depending on the location, outdoor children and family sessions are best done about 2 hours before sunset. I pride myself on my ability to create rapport during your session. Moms, Dads, kids and teenagers, tell me that they have fun during their family portrait session and that I put them at ease.

4 Key Ingredients for a Successful Family Portrait

When all 4 Key Ingredients …. Design, clothing location, and light are combined, they create a harmonious, gorgeous and soulful family portrait.

(1) Portrait Design Session & Booking a Time for Your Portrait Session: This is the first step in getting to know each other and what is important to you. Your family portrait design session gives us an opportunity to find out about you and your family and why you have chosen this time to make your family portrait. We’ll also chat where you envision having your family portraits made and if you have a theme in mind? Next, we’ll book a time. If your children are young, its important to consider their happy time. Sessions can last any where from 1 to 2 hours.

(2 ) Clothing: Clothing is a key ingredientthat can make or break your family portrait session. Marc will make specific suggestions on what colors and textures will work best for your family. Proper clothing choice will enhance eye color, make you look slimmer, and compliment your family’s skin tones.

(3) Location: Together we will decide whether it’s best for you to have your family portrait created on location or in the studio. Where your session is done is important. Location sets a tone and evokes a feeling. If we are doing an on location session, pick a place that has meaning to you. If I’m shooting in my studio, I’ll carefully chose a background color to bring out the natural beauty of your family.

(4) Beautiful Flattering Light: Whether natural or studio lighting, light is an essential ingredient. Light illuminates, shapes, and creates the photographic lusciousness that I’m know for.

“I have no idea what we should wear!”

{ This is THE MOST COMMON comment I receive from families. }

After all, WEARING the RIGHT CLOTHING it is pretty important. Over the years photographing many families, I have a pretty good idea of how to help you look your best and how to accomplish it in a very easy way. The main thing to remember when dressing a group for photographs is to coordinate with complimentary colors, but do not under any circumstances dress like twins. Unless of course you go through most of your life all dressing like twins!

clothing guide  newport beach kids/children photographer/photography

outdoor newport beach kids photo-session with cute knit hat

Ladies – MakeUp and Hair

I highly recommend a bit of pampering for your family photo-session. Get your hair professionally blown out or styled. Fingernails: Recommend that you go with clear coat or French tips nails. MakeUp: Have it done professionally. Here’s the thing, unless you are 18 years old and younger, or have near perfect skin, or are a professional makeup artist, having a professional makeup artist apply your makeup for you is a vital part of looking your best for your portrait session.

newport beach, laguna beach family/children

2 families, one dressed in the same blue color tones, the other mix and match funky & stylish

Looking Good

Show us your personality! Simple patterns and bold colors look great in photos. Choosing a bold color that is similar to your eye color is an awesome choice too. Depending on your skin tone the color you chose to wear can make a huge difference. Add LAYERS and TEXTURE. Think knit or silk scarves (light weight or winter weight), hats, jackets, blazers, ties, denim, knits and corduroy. Long sleeves under short sleeves, leggings under skirts/dresses. Fun shoes like tall boots or sassy heels. A variety of textures will give your photos some extra punch. Be a head turner. Wear the blazer that fits just right. Or that dress that makes you feel like a million bucks. It’s a fact; clothes that make you feel good make you LOOK good. Wear something that makes you want to smile and the fits you prefectly.

family/children/teenage photographer/photography pictures

mom wanted her boys in a suit and a casual image too

Avoid ….

Logos, bold patterns and character-wear. Keep your portraits timeless and the focus on your faces, not your clothing, by following the simple rules below….

Pick Clothing that Fits Nicely

Along the same lines, pick clothing that fits nicely. It should be neither too tight {unless you’re a body builder} nor too loose. The clothes should hang on the bodies well, without folding or creasing. And always dress for full-length shots, which means socks and shoes that also match and are in good shape. A lot of times barefoot is best, weather permitting.

the use of a khaki skirt and khaki pants for the boys ties everything together. notice that the pattern is quite small but still works nicely.

For Your Kids

Think personality. Cheerful, fun prints, polka dots, stripes, camo; whatever showcases who they really are. Add some layers and texture {maybe even a tutu, pettiskirt or tie} and voila! Instant photographic art. Most kids aren’t comfortable in formal dress and occasionally it can show in their pictures. So, if you have your heart set on your little angel in a suit and tie or an elaborate party dress, make sure to bring a second outfit that is more casual and comfortable.

casual family photography newport beach kids/children photographer/photography pictures

all brothers are essentially dressed, the plaids are the tie-in, and they differ sufficiently

casual family photography newport beach kids/children photographer/photography pictures

A simple hair band and flower mirrors the pattern on babies sweater. Blue jeans, a white henley under a blue plaid shirt ties in with the blue jeans and blue and white sneakers.

casual family photography newport beach kids/children photographer/photography pictures


laguna beach kids/children photographer/photography pictures

simple use of color and clothes that fit perfectly. notice how subtle the young girls yellow flower ties in with the yellow polka dots on her skirt.

Toys & Props for your Kids

We dont’ keep much in the way of toys and props in our studio. My suggestions is to bring along their favorite toys, their favorite stuffed animal or some building blocks, with the alphabet on them, so they can be used to spell out their name. As for the toys, this is a last resort to keep them occupied incase they are clinging for mommy or feel sad. Once they get their hands on their toys, they’ll get very attached to them and it will be hard for them to give them up. I’ve had parents bring in big toy tin airplanes too for their little boys and a tea set for their little girl.

Little Girls

I’m McLov’n tutu’s of all colors. They add just the right amount of girlishness and happiness to any girl’s portrait session. Plus, tutu’s come in all sorts of varieties, and a rainbow of colors.

newport beach, laguna beach family/children/teenage photographer/photography pictures

newport beach, laguna beach family/children/teenage photographer/photography pictures

For this Victoria Beach kids photo-session, a great knit cap that matches color swatches of a colorful ribbed sweater. Bring along your child’s fur baby. Complete the look be layering with a jean jacket and a funky hat.

newport beach, laguna beach family/children/teenage photographer/photography pictures

A newport beach kids/children photo-session with a knit sweater vest, long sleve, cuffed white shirt, tails out, dark blue jeans bare foot. randomly running and sailing through the house bare chested.



Families & Couples

Coordinating but not matching. Don’t over-match! The whole group does not have to wear black t’s and denim. Why not shake it up a bit and show some of who each person is as an individual within the whole? Mom should be the belle of the ball in a dress/skirt or fashionable jeans. Make sure everyone dresses at the same level of formality; either all dressy or all casual, in similar or complimentary color tones. Examples could be earth tones, jewel tones, sky blue and chocolate brown, etc.

candid lifestyle orange county newport beach family/children photographer/photography

A candid lifestyle family and child portrait session in one of my favorite Orange County parks.

Maternity Sessions

Be who you are. For maternity, we suggest some simple basics: jeans with a real waist, tight tops that hug the belly, a beautiful dress or flowing skirt and a flattering, comfortable, yet attractive, bra/cropped top/sweater, possibly with a beautiful print. After all, most of this session will be all about the belly.

clothing guide orange county family/maternity photographer/photography pictures

For maternity photo-sessions, its all about the belly and sharing the intimacy and love during the precious times as you both bring new life into this world.

Newborn Photo-Sessions

For your precious newborn, au naturale is best. We want to capture those beautiful bellies, tiny toes and bottoms. Its best to come to us before 2 weeks of age. After 2 weeks of age, baby is often more fussy and it’s much harder for them to settle down and fall asleep.

clothing guide orange county newborn photographer/photography pictures

Newborn baby photo-session. Notice how her pink headband ties in just perfectly with the ping of the knit blanket.

2 Week Old Newborns

Your newborn MUST be well fed, preferably under 2 weeks of age, we keep the studio extra warm for them. It’s crazy how their little bodies work and even the smell or sound of their Mom can make them restless and want to wake!

newborn baby photographer/photography studio sessions with ink pictures

For something completely different and original we included dad and his gorgeous body-art. No one else on the planet has a newborn baby portrait like this.

Special Props or Outfits for Newborns

If you have a special outfit be sure to have that ready to go. Knit caps, a few knit or textured blankets with vibrant color without busy patterns can be a great addition and are a must to personalize your newborn session. During a photo session its common for baby to have “little accidents” during a session please do bring more than one, ideally three. Please do not bring loosely crocheted blankets. Only tightly weaved blankets, soft cuddly ones are the best. If you must use a knit blanket make sure that it is a tightly woven one. Blankets sizes must be at least 2’x2′. Props work well with newborns too, so if you have something in mind, a baseball mitt, a fireman’s hat or a family heirloom please let us know. Important! : Also, bring lots of baby wipes, a couple diapers, a bottle or two, and a pacifier should be ample to keep baby clean, occupied and well fed. We tend to keep the studio very warm when we are photographing newborns, so please dress appropriately. We suggest colors and textures to coordinate and compliment your baby’s skin tone and eye color. The best time of day is your baby’s happy time. Under 2 weeks old, newborns tend to sleep allot. If you notice that there is a fussy time for them let’s schedule around it.

orange county newborn baby photographer/photography pictures

There is nothing like having your precious newborn baby photographed in the warmth of our studio, pretty much just as they came into this world. Each newborn is photographed at 2 weeks of age.

**Please note….due to the frequency of “little accidents,” we do not keep newborn blankets on hand for props in the studio.**

Marc Weisberg is an Orange County based photographer specializing in Children-Family and Commercial Photography. He’s fun to work with, has a great eye for capturing special family moments and produces commercial images that help sell your product. Contact Marc by phone 800.943.0414…. or email.