Worcester MA – One of the common questions that photographers doing senior portraits often face is what outfits to wear. This is such a personal decision, and I’ve seen some fantastic senior portraits in a wide variety of attire from casual jeans and t-shirts to football uniforms and pads, t0 elegant ball gowns. The question is what reflects your personality?
Often the key is to choose a variety of outfits. It’s a good idea to include both casual and more formal outfits in your senior portraits. You choose a couple and let Mom choose one or two, that way everyone is happy.
Also use a variety of colors… for example, if you bring a black, gray and white outfits for a 3 outfit session. You’re previews will be really drab and boring. These are all good choices, but include some items of color too!
Stay clear of stripes! (large bold ones of 5+” are tolerable. Small thin ones will not photograph well. It’s best to not use any stripes or solids with 1-2 stripes or lines.
Your face should be the focal point of your senior portraits. Long sleeve solids or very subtle prints are usually the most flattering in portraits.
The most common problem we see is sunburn! and tan lines from the tanning salons! Everyone please keep out of the sun a week or two before your session. We often see uneven sunburn from guys who wear ball caps, peeling skin on noses from recent burns, raccoon eyes from those who were burned while wearing sunglasses. Or strap lines on the shoulders of gals who wish to be photographed in a strapless formal dress or top. Sunburn, uneven tanning and tan lines can not be retouched. Your session will need to be rescheduled.
Second biggest problem is clothes that are wrinkled or don’t fit. Gals, don’t bring your clothes rolled up in a ball in a backpack. They’ll be a winkled mess and they will photograph that way. Guys! we see over and over that their shirt collar and sleeves do not fit. Often due to a bad fitting or borrowed suit items. It is imperative that your your shirt and tie are properly fitted and that your suit/sport coat is the proper size.
Medium to dark clothes look the best on dark backgrounds. So if you like these more dramatic looks, use darker more subdued colors.
Medium to light colors look the best on lighter colored backgrounds. So if you like the lighter sets and backgrounds, bring lighter clothes that will go good with the backgrounds you prefer.
For outdoor portraits. Be careful of bright greens as they often clash with the greens of the leaves and grass. Black, Khaki, pink, orange, navy, tan, gold, burgundy, dark yellow are good outdoors. We recommend staying away from white, light/pale yellow or other very light/pale colors outdoors.
Traditional styles will stand the test of time and keep your portrait looking fresh for years to come. So try and use styles and looks that will be in style “next year” as well as this summer. Otherwise you’re portrait will look dated and out of style in a year or two.
Classic solid sweaters will always be in style. Trendy summer tops will look out of place next summer.
Some poses will show your shoes so don’t forget to bring shoes & socks for each outfit that you plan to wear. Barefoot and sandals! No problem for your casual clothes. And though white socks are in, they don’t photograph well. So bring darker ones too. Guys don’t forget those belts and Gals, don’t forget your jewelry,
Busy patterns and loud colors can be very distracting in your portraits. Avoid large & bold patterns that might tend to draw attention away from your face.