Golden Hour Family Photos

Why Golden Hour is the best time for your Family Photos

Golden hour family photos are coveted by all, but not everyone understands why shooting at this time of day is so important.  I’m here to help shed some light (hah, light… get it??).

What is golden hour, anyway?  Golden hour is the period of daytime shortly after sunrise or before sunset, during which the sun is low on the horizon and softer than when the sun is higher in the sky, creating that signature warm dreamy glow.  Basically, it’s magic light.  The time that golden hour occurs varies based on the time of year.  In summer, when the days are longest, golden hour can start as late as 8pm.  As the days get shorter, the start time gets earlier.  Even on days when it’s overcast, it’s still important to shoot close to these times, although it can be a bit earlier.  The sun is still in the sky, and the light can still be harsh if the session is mid-day.

I get it, golden hour feels really late for your family and you’re wondering how you could possibly swing it with your little ones whose bedtime is 7:30pm.  As a mama myself, I’ve been there.  But I’m going to let you in on a little secret: it always works out.  Really, it does!  My sessions are fun, interactive, and I keep things moving.  Getting that pretty light is worth adjusting your routine for a day, and since you are already investing in a professional photography session, you might as well go all the way.

parents with 2 boys snuggling on a blanket during golden hour

Do you still need convincing?  If not, let’s book your session!  If so, I have a few tips on how to make it work for your family:

  • Adjust naps the day of the session as needed.  Plan on having a relaxed day without too many plans, if possible.
  • Bring PJs in the car for your littles to change into after the session.  Not only does this knock off one thing on the bedtime to-do list, but kids think its fun – something to look forward to!
  • Turn it into a fun event- grab a Happy Meal for the ride there, or something that they don’t get all the time, and a treat for them to look forward to afterwards.  If you are getting food for them to eat in the car, change them into their photo outfit clothes once you arrive at the location.
  • Along those same lines, make sure they hydrated, have full tummys and don’t need to potty before we start!
  • Bring treats for during the session.  And by treats, I mean bribes.  I recommend mini marshmallows or gummy bears/gummy snacks.  Don’t bring chocolate or anything that has crumbs.
  • And possibly one of the most important tips is for you, parent: relax.  Don’t be stressed, because kids pick up on your stress and that kills the vibe.  Just go with the flow, keep in smiling, and remember – this is just an hour of your day and the result is beautiful, dreamy photos of your family that will last a lifetime.

 

This session below happened in late August and the start time was 7pm.  We started in an area of the location that had some taller trees to filter the sunlight as it was still pretty high.  From there, we moved toward the open field where the session ended, and the sun was just starting to hit the horizon.  Notice how the edges of their hair and skin is glowing, and their skin is warm and creamy.  The background is creamy as well.  If this same session took place in the middle of the day, there would be harsh shadows, squinting eyes, and unflattering skin tones.  And nobody wants that!

family of four snuggling on a blanket in a field family of four playing in a field with boy running under blanket family of four in golden hour light family of four swinging boy in field family of four snuggling during golden hour family session family of four snuggling during golden hour family session family of four snuggling during golden hour family session family of four snuggling during golden hour family session family of four snuggling on a log during golden hour family session mother and son during golden hour family session family of four snuggling during golden hour family session family of four snuggling during golden hour family session mama kissing sun in a field father snuggling infant in a field family of four snuggling during golden hour family session family of four playing and cuddling during outdoor family sessiontoddler boy smiling at camera in a fieldmom and dad dancing in a field during golden hour

 

If you’re ready to book your golden hour family photos, let’s connect!

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