How to Prepare Your Kids For A Photo Session

I didn’t realize how stressful getting ready for family photos were until my little man entered our family.  The leading up the session can be overwhelming! Deciding on the outfits, worrying about having happy baby/kids, and stressing about getting that “perfect” photo and if everything will fall into place!  I am here to help!

I am a lifestyle photographer.  Although I will try to grab the camera aware photo you are likely drawn to my work because of the real moments you have seen captured.  So the MOST important thing is don’t just focus on the final product; enjoy the experience!


I know photo shoots can be stressful, especially for mom, but instead of worrying if the resulting photos will be perfect, embrace that life IS NOT perfect.  Just have fun and the photos will reflect your life and THAT IS PERFECT.  If your child won’t stop running around, or the baby cries or won’t stop drooling, or the dog won’t sit still – that is OKAY because that chaos is your life, and your life is BEAUTIFUL.  Enjoy the session as a time to fully embrace how crazy, fun, and wonderful family life can be and trust me you will love it.

But to help relieve some stress I am here to help you prepare for the session with these 6 tips!

Babies Cry- if your baby doe, its okay! How cute is this photo to show at her 16th or 21st birthday!? ❤

BEFORE THE SESSION!

1. Prepare your kids, but not too much!

Let your kids know about the session in advance.  Start talking to your them about it a week in advance to get them comfortable with the idea, and remind them a little each day but don’t let them worry about getting their photos done.  You can let them know your expectations of their behavior, but more importantly talk it up to make it sound like a fun and special occasion for the family…because it is! Try not to make it seem so important. Children just want to have fun, and so does your photographer! 🙂

2.  Full tummies and well rested!

Make sure everyone is happily fed, parents too.  Every parent knows the importance of having snacks on hand for the kids.  Have a well rested child/children. You should NEVER schedule a photo shoot near nap time.

3.  What to bring to comfort your child

Bring your child’s favorite toy, blankie or doll.  We may choose to use it in a few photos (which is a great memory for later years) and it will go a long way in comforting your child.  Just don’t bring it out unless necessary or if we definitely want to incorporate it!  4.  What to wear?

Dress for the weather and comfort, this is especially important for the kids!  If y’all look great but are freezing it will make the session less enjoyable Of course we want the children dressed cute, but it is more important that they are warm and comfortable. Sometime it takes kids a little bit to get used to new clothes so if you buy a special outfit for the shoot, make sure to break it in at least once.

Avoid clothing with busy patterns, bold design & stripes

Strong patterns are pretty in real life. However, they are not flattering in a photo. Clothing should not compete for attention with your family/child. The eyes should be drawn y’all, not the clothing. Solid colors work best but subdued patterns would do the job just as well. Stay away from clothing with logos, shiny, sparkly or reflective fabric.  If were photographing the family or more than one child try to not clash patterns.

Love how Lauren (Mom) has chosen a favorite dress then compliments Dad and her daughters clothes with solid colors from her dress.

Two solids and one pattern, love the different textures here and the neutral colors.Colors

Pastels and neutrals photograph great . Avoid black, as it tends to disappear in photos. Try to stay away from neon/bright colors, especially on sunny days.

Rules can always be broken (shown below) That’s why I recommend sharing your outfit ideas with me, I love helping with the planning! 🙂

This sweetie is wearing very bright colors but we were lucky to have a cloudy day!  If it was sunny we would have found a shaded area to avoid a lot of reflection on her skin as these colors were the theme for her cake smash 🙂

This cutie has a strong pattern, but again it went with the theme of her cake smash, and with that smile there is no competition 🙂 

DURING THE SESSION!

5. Don’t coach your child/children to smile!

Don’t do it before the photo-shoot, don’t do it during the photo-shoot. Telling your child to say CHEESE or smile likely will result in a cheesy smile and that is not what you want. Children are very good at expressing emotion and they will smile on their own. It’s our job as adults to be funny and help the child feel relaxed. One shot capturing a pure, genuine smile is more valuable than a hundred grins. If the child is having fun, he/she will smile!

6. Let your kid(s) have fun!

The beautiful moments will come on their own. Constantly reminding the kid that someone is taking pictures will NOT help.  If we want your child to look at the camera, getting behind the photographer and do something you know would cause a reaction, but don’t abuse this technique as he/she will start to ignore you!

To sum everything up; come ready to have fun, let your children have fun, let us help with outfits if you are having difficulty, and trust your photographer and we will document your family, your PERFECT family, the way you are! Let your kids be themselves! ❤ How beautiful is this moment?  Pure, real, THEM! So don’t worry about the camera aware, perfect, smiling photo. THIS. IS. LIFE ❤

Thank you for visiting! 😀

Cylinda B ❤

A Hayloft on the Arch Wedding | Vernon Center, NY | Pat & Amanda

Although it was five months ago, it feels like yesterday we entered Hayloft on the Arch to a room full of girls excitedly getting ready for Pat & Amanda’s wedding day.  I still remember all the special touches and thoughtful surprises that brought tears to Amanda.  The windmill added to her bouquet in remembrance of her grandmother, the moment she saw people so special to her heart arrived and filled her heart, and the moment she saw her soon to be husband the first time that day- smiles so so big.

Its amazing how it was five months ago but going through the moments captured it feels like yesterday, the power of photography and its ability to evoke the emotions felt at the moment in time it was captured.

Enjoy the moments captured! Thanks for visiting ❤ Cylinda

I am obsessed with the first look!! Being married, I wish we did this, it is truly the most amount of one on one time you get with your groom on your wedding day! I always joke that I barely saw my husband on our wedding day (but its so true!) with the craziness of the day it is hard to stop and really spend time with one another!

Also you get a true reaction of seeing each other for the first time without worrying about everyone else around you and your reactions are in the same frame in the camera rather than separate photos.  Just love these moments captured during Pat & Amanda’s first look ❤ 

When its raining and your bride is totally on board with sitting down! ❤ #MYKINDOFBRIDE 🙂 hahaha I think someone stepped on his toe! 😀 LOVE kids in weddings! ❤ This outtake is a favorite! In love with the charm of Hayloft on the Arch! Such a gorgeous venue with owners truly committed and passionate about giving each bride  and groom a perfect wedding day.  Was so happy to be back at this venue!  ❤ ❤ ❤  The MOST amazing donuts!!! From Glazed and Confused ! We have never seen a line so long for deserts 🙂 

Ceremony & Reception Venue: Hayloft on the Arch

Hair & Make-Up: Ashley Hanson at Beauty Nation

DJ: The Great Music Company

Caterer: Carnegie Catering

Desert: Glazed and Confused

Bridal Gown: USA Bridal

Groomsmen: JC Penney Suits

A Traditions at the Links Wedding | Syracuse, NY | Jamie & Mike

It was a perfect fall day a few weeks ago when Jamie & Mike became husband and wife at the beautiful Dewitt Community Church!  They celebrated with family and friends at Traditions at the Links.  Tearful vows, great dance moves, & their beautiful daughters there to witness their parents love and marriage just made this day perfect.

Thank you so much for having us document your love and marriage!! We had so much fun!! So much love and appreciation!

Jamie’s grandmothers ring (now her wedding ring) inside the wings of a butterfly that came from her mothers wedding bouquet ❤ Two cute Momma’s!
A gorgeous group of girls!!! I am just in love with these moments of Jamie with her beautiful daughters….couldn’t just pick one.   Jamie’s daughter and niece playing with Jamie’s accessories ❤  I just loved witnessing Jamie be a beautiful Mom today.  Comforting her sweet girl.  Just loved Poppop!!priceless reactions of seeing Jamie all ready!! Mike is a huge Lord of the Ring fan, all the guys wore gold rings on chains today! I have never seen the movie so figured making a ring around me would work for a pic! Sisters ❤  They have the cutest kids in this family. O M G I choked up watching Mike trying to hold it together when Jamie entered the aisle.. Sweetest family picture.Cutest photo bomber 🙂  Loved the alternating colors!
Chelsea picked out when I showed her this picture that it looks like a lovebird flying up!!!! Beautiful! That moment Mike stopped and yelled to the DJ no this isn’t the right song….I was like OH NO not again! Then a upbeat song came on and they rocked the floor! ❤ Jamie shared the dance floor with her Poppop and Mother who were not able to dance on her Mom’s wedding day together to share the father daughter dance….Tears flowing behind this lens! So sweet! Sweet, beautiful and fun toasts! Happy Birthday Poppop!! ❤  Mike ROCKING the floor! Michael Jackson style! God certainly painted the sky beautifully for these two tonight.

Thank you for visiting! ❤

A Ventosa Vineyard Wedding | Suzanne & Mike

The sun shined bright on this summer-like fall day at the stunning Ventosa Vineyards a few weeks ago where Suzanne & Mike said their vows in front of their closest family and friends.  Their day was filled with love, TONS of laughter, and joy! Suzanne hanging out with her best friend and daughters all morning getting ready for the walk down the isle and Mike tasting beer and playing corn hole at the local brewery everything about today was relaxed, fun and laid back, just how they envisioned.   From practical jokes, Mike’s goofy poses, and awesome dance floor moves Chelsea and I couldn’t stop smiling and laughing all day!

We couldn’t be happier for y’all and hope you had an AMAZING honeymoon!! Thank you so much for having us document today, we hope you love some of the moments captured!

Suzanne was absolutely stunning in her Pnina Tornai gown from Kleinfelds in NYC. ❤ You couldn’t ask for a better ceremony backdrop! 
Such a sweet moment when Mike started tearing up as his daughter and soon to be wife walked down the isle ceremony, made me tear up! ❤ So beautiful! The moment that made my heart drop, Mike says “I can’t do this, emotionally, its too much and started to walk away…I thought he was so overwhelmed with emotion he needed a minute (totally forgetting they told me about this!)  He comes back with this stool for their friend, Dennis, who was marrying them to stand on! 😀 Much Better 🙂
In love with these colors and dresses!!Beautiful kids these two have!!
These two are the cutest! We couldn’t have asked for a better sunset for their takeaway photo!   Thank you so much to everyone who helped make their day so special.

Ceremony & Reception Venue : Ventosa Vineyards

Florists: Stunning flowers by Whistlestop Florist

Bakery: Half Moon Bakery

Hair & Make-up: McKenzie Elizabeth Salon

DJ:  Black Tie Entertainment

Videographer: Black Tie Entertainment

Bridal Gown: Pnina TornaiKleinfeld Bridal, NYC

Bridesmaids Gowns: Spybaby Bridal

 

A Highland Forest Wedding | Sean & Brianna

The sun shined bright a few weeks ago creating a perfect day for Sean & Brianna’s wedding at The Skyline Lodge at Highland Forest in Fabius, NY.    From the first look, to the ceremony, and throughout their wedding day Sean kept Brianna laughing and smiling, they both just enjoyed every moment today!  We loved the details they put in to make their wedding day special to them, and the fall colors.  It had a relaxed feel that I know Sean & Brianna were hoping for and everyone just enjoyed the evening, full of cheer, love, and some Irish Dancing!

Thank you so much for having us document your wedding day!  We hope you love some of the moments captured!

Love & Appreciation ~Cylinda & Chelsea

Handsome Guy & Sweet Pea inside their rings! So sweet! ❤ Loving these fall colors!  Beautiful custom jewelry box Sean had made for Brianna!Cuff Links from Brianna in remembrance of Sean’s Father. ❤   Brianna absolutely adores her nephews! So happy to have captured a few photos with them before she headed off to become Mrs. Murphy! 
When your wedding party is all your brothers but one. #thelonegroomsmen haha these guys had us laughing all day!LOVED the colors!! Fall is near! First Look!!! So sweet.I don’t know what it is but these two are the sweetest huggers!!! So many hugs throughout their day and I swear they just feel and look so sweet and genuine each time!  I swear you can feel their love and joy by seeing them hug.  Does anyone else who knows them understand what I am saying or am I just crazy? 🙂

Loving this view outside Highland Forest! Eskimo Kisses! ❤  ❤ ❤ ❤ What a gorgeous backdrop for a wedding!   Sean is an owner of Murphy’s Specialized Pastry and all of their family and friends are very familiar with his bakery so he and Colleen wanted to create something unique, so they came up with Wine flavored cupcakes!!! How FUN is that!!?   Beautiful and fun speeches!!  Love these two! We have done a few weddings that they have been at and each one they rock the dance floor and we happily love documenting it!!  We wish y’all a lifetime of love, laughter, and happiness!! Thank you to those who helped make their day special!

Ceremony & Reception Venue : Skyline Lodge at Highland Forest

Bakery: Murphy’s Specialized Pastry

Florist: St. Agnes Florist

DJ: Digital Sound Entertainment

Hair & Makeup: Head’s Up Salon

Photography : Cylinda B Photography

 

A Dibbles Inn Wedding | Vernon, NY | Amy & Matt

Amy and Matt got married!! They celebrated at the beautiful, new, Cannary Building at Dibbles Inn in Vernon, NY with their family and friends.  Who knew that getting pulled over could lead to a lifetime of happiness!  ❤ 🙂 Seriously, sounds like something out of a movie but Matt pulling Amy over was honestly the start of their relationship a few years ago.

The day was filled with love, joy and laughter.  Their vintage/rustic theme was just beautiful.  Many laughs and some tears from speeches, and so much fun on the dance floor.  Today turned out to be better then they could have imagined and we are so grateful to have been a part of it.

Thank you so much for choosing us to be a part of your beautiful day. We hope you love some of the moments captured. ❤ Cylinda & Chelsea

Such a sweet surprise on Amy’s bouquet from her cousin(aka sister), Kara, in remembrance of her father so he was with her all day.  
Beautiful bride….So excited to see her groom!

Now this is a ride to a wedding!!
“I love that Matt is a very caring & thoughtful person” Amy “I love that Amy will go out of her way so that i can have the best day possible and knows just how to cheer me up” Matt

I think thinks holds true for many people in Amy’s life.  Her smile and laugh can make anyone happy!  She had us smiling all day! ❤ The Cannery Building at Dibbles in was just breathtaking!   ❤ ❤ ❤ Such a sweet Mother & Son dance.  Chelsea and I looked at each other and teared when Matts Mom handed her sons hand to Amys to finish out the song together.  So sweet.
❤ ❤ 

Big thank you to everyone that helped make their day so wonderful!

Reception Venue: Cannary Building at Dibbles Inn

Ceremony Venue: St. Pauls Church

Hairstylist & Make-up: Stephanie from www.teaseandmakeup.com

DJ: Ryan from Performance DJs CNY He got the dance floor full in minutes! We didn’t even want to leave!

Invitations: Jordan Marcel Designs

Bridal Gown: Maggie Sottero

Groom/groomsmen: A Vittulo

 

Tailwater Lodge Wedding | Altmar, NY | David & Ashley

They first met in high school, they had the same 10th grade Biology and Gym class but they were just acquaintances.  It was their first month of college when a camping trip would amazingly change their lives almost 8 years ago.  In September of 2015 they went on a hike and David asked Ashley to spend the rest of their lives together ❤

Chelsea & I were giddy all day about this wedding day, their families, their wedding party, the BEAUTIFUL venue, Tailwater Lodge  in Altmar, NY, great/sweet speeches and mostly the love and joy these two have for one another.

I hope you love these moments captured from your wedding day! Thank you so much for having us be a part of this amazing moment in your lives, so much love and appreciation.  ❤ Cylinda & Chelsea

  1. Stunning florals by Creative Florist LOVED the groom and groomsmen attire! Purchased from Macy’s for about the same amount as a rental!