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11 Inspiring Family Photo Ideas (Family Photoshoot Tips)

Last updated: April 22, 2024 - 9 min read
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Family photoshoots are an excellent way to create memories with your loved ones. They make brilliant holiday cards, or you can use the photoshoots to decorate your house. Whether they exist in family albums or out on the shelf, it is a good idea to do regular family photoshoots.

Today, we will give you a number of ideas to consider when conducting a family photoshoot. We will look at different styles and approaches you can take. We will also cover ways to take advantage of family events. By the end of this article, you will have plenty of ideas for your next family photoshoot.

Family Photoshoot Ideas

Family photoshoot ideas span from formal family photoshoots to candid events. Between these two extremes, there is a lot of room for experimentation. One point we will briefly cover is generational family photography. You can come up with fun ways to show the different generations of your family.

Family photoshoots can be a great way to spend some time together. The added excitement of putting on nice clothes and setting up props can make memorable moments. Make sure you take behind-the-scenes shots because the setup can often be a great time for candid shots.

We will now guide you through a range of different family photoshoots. Read the full article in each section if you want more ideas!



Let’s take a look at some family portrait ideas you can make your own. You can group your subjects into triangles to create a strong composition that works for families of all sizes. You could also experiment with depth of field by placing family members at different distances from the camera to highlight certain people or family dynamics.

Don’t forget to include the family pets! Bring along their favorite treats and use burst mode to capture the perfect shot. Encourage interaction and play by having the family walk, picnic, or toss a ball around together.

Get creative with simple props like signs or seasonal items. Shoot during golden hour for soft, warm light that’s gorgeous in family photos. Lifestyle photography captures candid moments at home, like the family laughing and chatting together in their own environment.

Looking for more family portrait ideas? This article dives deeper into each tip so you can create treasured photographs of any family.

family portrait ideas


Lifestyle photography captures real-life events and candid interactions. It’s somewhere between documentary photography and classic portraiture. To improve your lifestyle photography, give your clients clear directions on what you want, but let them decide how to get there.

Capture the in-between moments to show your clients’ true personalities. Focus on details that are important to the story you’re telling. And use your technical skills to read the scene and find the right camera settings, as things can move fast.

Lifestyle photography works well for travel, weddings, and even fashion shoots. The key is to capture images that reflect who your subjects really are, not just what they’re wearing or where they are. To learn more about capturing amazing lifestyle photography, we have a detailed guide that covers all the essentials.

lifestyle photography


Capturing photos of multiple generations is a heartwarming way to save memories of your loved ones. There are a few creative ideas you can use in your next family photoshoot.

The frame method involves each generation holding an empty frame, then editing the photos together to create a spiraling timeline effect. Holding hands is a simple yet powerful way to show the connection between generations.

Black and white photos give a timeless, elegant look to family portraits. You can also recreate old family photos to bring a wave of nostalgia. These generation photo ideas are a great way to connect family members across many decades while practicing your photography skills.

generation photo ideas


When planning family beach pictures, coordinate outfits instead of matching them. Choose a color palette like navy, white, and khaki for a nautical feel. Pastels and whites fit beach settings well, while dark colors can feel heavy and formal.

Avoid heavy patterns that distract from faces. Solid colors are a safer bet, and knits in light tones add nice texture. Clothing should be comfortable for walking, sitting, and playing in the sand.

Open shoes or sandals continue the casual beach vibe. If your family wants more ideas for beach photo outfits, our family beach pictures article can provide plenty of inspiration.

family beach pictures


Let’s now look at some vacation ideas. Find the best photo spots at your destination by asking local photographers, friends who have visited, or searching photography websites. Don’t overpack camera gear – bring a camera body, wide-angle lens, prime lens, tripod, and flash. Wake up early to avoid crowds and capture sunrise light or local life.

Try to make the most of available light, even harsh midday sun or low light. Avoid cliche vacation photos by trying creative techniques like jumping shots, forced perspective, or silhouettes. Balance portraits and landscapes to tell the whole story of your trip.

Include your family in photos and capture candid moments. Photograph the local culture through food, using natural light or a flash. Get out at night to take long exposures or do light painting. Review your images daily to find the best shots from your vacation photography.

Read our dedicated article to learn more about vacation photography.

vacation photography


Picnic photoshoots are a fun and creative way to capture memories with family and friends. When planning your picnic photoshoot, choose a scenic location like a forest, beach, or park. Pay attention to the background and avoid any distracting elements.

Shoot during the golden hour around sunrise or sunset for soft, flattering light. Help your models choose comfortable outfits that fit the surroundings. Add props like a picnic basket, blanket, and decorations to enhance your images.

Picnic photoshoots work well for family photos, engagement sessions, and group shots. Capture close-up details of the food, decorations, and surroundings to help tell the story. Most importantly, have fun and be spontaneous – the best pictures often come from unplanned moments. For more tips on capturing the perfect picnic photoshoot, check out our in-depth guide.

picnic photoshoot

Birthday Party

Birthday party photography can be challenging, but it’s a great time to capture memorable shots. Get detail photos of the cake, presents, and decorations to set the atmosphere. Candid shots of kids laughing and playing help build a narrative.

Don’t miss traditional moments like blowing out candles, hitting the piñata, or opening gifts. Use flash to fill in shadows or brighten dark rooms, but diffuse it to avoid harsh light. Change perspectives by getting low for kids’ eye level or shooting from above.

Take lots of photos to ensure you get a few good ones of each moment. Capture guests too, especially family members. Birthday party photography is rewarding when you learn these birthday party photography tips to tell the story of the special day.

birthday party photography


Graduation photography captures one of life’s most important milestones. To take great graduation photos, you need the right camera and lens. A professional camera will let you take sharp photos in any lighting situation.

Use a wide aperture to blur the background and make your subject stand out. Take photos of the venue beforehand to find the best angles and lighting. Use burst mode to catch candid moments throughout the ceremony.

After the ceremony, take portraits of the graduate with friends and family in a well-lit outdoor location. Adjust your camera settings, like using a high ISO, to get the best results indoors. For more tips to improve your graduation photography you can read our our in-depth guide.

graduation photography


The holidays are a great time to take memorable family photos. Capture candid moments of your loved ones as they open gifts, bake cookies, or decorate the tree. These heartwarming shots will be cherished for years to come.

You don’t need a professional studio to take great Christmas photos. Set up a simple DIY studio by having your subject sit in front of a Christmas tree or string lights. Use a lamp or window light to create a warm atmosphere.

Don’t forget to document the festive spirit around your neighborhood too. Head outside and photograph the beautiful decorations, lights, and displays that catch your eye. With a little creativity, you can capture the magic of the season in your own unique way. Check out our in-depth guide to learn more about christmas photography.


Thanksgiving is the perfect time to capture special moments with your camera. Plan your photography shoot in advance by deciding on equipment, setting up scenes, and considering post-processing. A zoom lens like a 24-105mm is ideal for capturing wide-angle shots and close-ups of food.

When posing family members for group photos, create interest by staggering people throughout the frame at different heights. Take your time and shoot multiple frames to ensure everyone looks their best. You can use a timer to include yourself in some photos too.

If you’re shooting with available light, set your camera to handle the challenges of low light. Shoot in Shutter Priority or Manual mode with a low F-stop number and the highest ISO your camera can handle without excessive noise. A Speedlite can help fill in ambient light, but avoid using the pop-up flash.

Focus on details like autumnal decor and food close-ups, and try shooting from different angles and focal lengths. Candid shots and behind-the-scenes moments can add variety to your collection. Read our dedicated article for more thanksgiving photography tips.

thanksgiving photography


Funeral photography requires extra care and respect. Talk to the family beforehand to understand their wishes and make them feel comfortable. Visit the venue early to get familiar with the lighting and setup.

During the funeral, wear dark clothes and blend in. Use a silent shutter and avoid flash photography. Focus on capturing special moments and details that celebrate the person’s life.

Never post the photos on social media without permission. If you’d like to learn more about  funeral photography, our article has helpful tips for taking meaningful and respectful photos.

funeral photography