3 Family Photography Posing Prompts

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Do you ever struggle while photographing families? Ever arrive at the session with a clear vision, but the results are disappointing? Do you feel that working with kids can be stressful & unpredictable? Do you often feel like you have little to no control over how your sessions go? Are you longing to create joyful, effortless, candid photography and instead just getting awkward stiff poses? 

I see you and I get it. Because I have been there too!

What if I told you that I have a few tricks that will make your life as a family photographer a little easier?

I’ve always been obsessed with capturing authentic joyful images for my clients. As a photographer, I thrive by capturing images infused with happiness…but do these moments always just happen? The answer is no! Sometimes these moments need to be created by us the photographers, and if you don’t come prepared it can get a little challenging.

That is why I always make sure to have plenty of game prompts up my sleeve. These little prompts help clients loosen up and typically create a reaction from them that is worth capturing. That is how i am always able to achieve organic, raw, beautiful images in my final galleries.

There are several things I do every session in order to ensure I get joyful natural-looking photos every time, and I actually talk about my entire posing process detail in my MB family posing guide. 

But for today I would love to share with you just three of my prompts that make my life so easy while photographing families. These are going to make your next family session A- LOT easier! 

Prompt Number 1: Walking photos 

I start every family session with walking photos. Walking photos are the easiest. They always look very natural, and I consider them to be the session “warm-up”. Giving my clients an easy task creates an immediate “win” that helps them open up and feel more comfortable! Also- it is MUCH easier to get kiddos to move around than to get them to stand still. 

Family  photography walking  photos
Family  photography walking  photos
Family  photography walking  photos
Family  photography walking  photos

A few rules I give my clients for walking photos: 

  • Everybody must be touching at all times.
  • Walk slower than usual.
  • Look at each other and giggle the entire time.
  • Give your hands something to do if there’s no one to touch (Dad: hand in pocket/Mom:hand slightly holding the dress)

Prompt number 2: Kneel and snuggle 

This is one of my favorite prompts to get sweet moments that showcase the connection and love between my clients and their kids. I simply instruct mom or dad to kneel next to or behind one of the kids and simply snuggle them. Kisses, giggles, snuggles, hugs – anything works! (I try to take that shot from several angles close up and far away).  

mom hugging toddler
mom and daughter photos

Prompt number 3: Kneel and tickle 

This is actually a transition from prompt #2. After we got some snuggle shots I make sure to say something like

 “ and now…on the count to 3, mommy is going to tickle you!! 1…2….3!!” 

Or I might say…

“I sure hope mommy is NOT going to tickle you….” (and hope that the parent is getting the hint haha) 

I typically get these tickle shots with my 35mm and get super close up. 

These simple prompts will allow you to create some real laughs & sweet moments in your next session! 

mom and daughter photos
mom and daughter photos
Father daughter photos

Keep in mind that every client is different. What works with one client is not necessarily going to work with another. It’s okay to try something that doesn’t work, but you want to be able to switch it up quickly. In order to ensure authentic & joyfull images you need to have lots of tricks up your sleeve. 

If you want more family photography prompts ideas and all of my rules for an effortless posing experience make sure to check out The MB family posing guide

Hopefully this helps! 



June 30, 2021

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