Family Photo Trends

Family photos aren’t just for the nuclear family and they aren’t just for when you first have a baby or when you’re celebrating some milestone. There are so many fun reasons to have a family portrait session. And when it comes to this kind of portrait work, we feel like we’ve been a bit ahead of the curve. We’ve been playing with a lot of these family photo trends for some time.

Family photos really should be a more regular part of our lives. You certainly won’t ever regret having them done more frequently. But you might regret saving them for “special” moments.

From the perspective of your photographer, we think a big part of why people don’t have more family photo shoots is that they can seem stressful and overwhelming. We’ve written about that and you can check out all the ways to survive and have fun during a family photo shoot.

Everyone is really busy and it can seem like just another thing to squeeze into your schedule, but capturing these moments over time is worth it. Check this out for a great example.

Now let’s take a look at some family photo trends so you can start dreaming outside of the box.

family photo trends

Multigenerational family portraits

We’ve written a whole post about why you should have a multigenerational photo shoot. It seems like a no brainer, but most people don’t do it. Again, we think it’s in large part due to feelings of overwhelm. And now so many of us have family scattered all over the country, if not the world, which just complicates it more. But it’s worth it in the end.

Interactive and play centered portraits

Another family photo trend is to get outside the studio and outside the standing in a cluster in front of a pretty backdrop. Both of those are still good, for sure, but imagine getting your family together and playing a game they all love and just letting the photo portrait session happen around you. And it doesn’t have to be a competitive game.

You could all meet up at a park and play on the swings together. And with our lake, of course, there are endless possibilities.

Outdoor activities

Speaking of the lake, you could take your family portraits shoot outdoors at a place where you all love to be. This could be the lake or it could be a hike in the gorge. There’s barely a family in Erie that doesn’t have some outdoor spot that they have memories around and love. Go there.

family photo trends

Incorporating pets

More and more, people do not want to leave their pets at home. Whether it’s people carrying their tiny dogs everywhere they go (think Legally Blonde…ha!) or people wanting to make sure to include them in pictures because they’re family too, of course. And around the Mead premises, we are all for dogs in all the photos!

Family photo trends: destination shoots

This has been happening in weddings for a long time now. People are flying all over the place for these big celebrations. But what about something more informal? And it doesn’t have to include flying. You could have a photo shoot at a favorite theme park. Or your favorite part of your favorite city. And we’re so close to Niagara Falls. Really, Erie is within a couple of hours in all directions from so many interesting sights and places. What’s your favorite? What might you turn into a tradition?


Imagine having a family 80s party with everyone dressed up for that time period and then danced to 80s music, played 80s games, and then captured that for family portraits? Or you could do this for any favorite time period. Again, what would be most fun for the whole family? This is about play and capturing time together but it’s also about building and experiencing a memorable moment.

Docu-photos or storytelling

One family portraits trend is using the documentary approach to your shoot. It could be as simple as a “day in the life.” Or there’s something happening — like a child’s graduation or someone’s dance recital or big ball game — and you could capture bits from the whole day.

Seasonal/holiday themes

This is something that’s easy to keep track of, right? Maybe you all have an absolute favorite holiday that you go all out on every year. For a lot of people this would be halloween and that certainly would make for an amazing family photo shoot year after year.

family photo trends

Family photo trends: art

Taking all of this up a couple of notches, you could turn this into a full on art project. Either turning each other into a painting or capturing photos of everyone making art. Finger paints alone are sure to lead to some great photos.

The Comic Con approach

Have you raised your kids well and they all love Star Wars? (That’s a little Gen X joke there.) Seriously, do you all have a favorite sci fi, fantasy, comic, or anime series. How fun to dress up and do a family photo shoot in costume, playing your parts.

Family photo trends: our point

Really, if you’ve read through all of these, we’re betting some idea popped into your head that we didn’t even cover. That’s because every family is unique and there’s something unique waiting to happen for you in a family photo shoot.

If we just allow ourselves to be playful, I am positive that we can make something really magical together.