Getting family photos with teens and older children is so worth it.

Photographing teenagers and older children is a whole different ball game. With little ones, they laugh easily through tickles, fart noises, songs and movement. With older ones, this isn't always the case. Sometimes they feel like they're too cool for games. Sometimes they feel self-conscious in front of a strangers camera. And sometimes, they just don't want to participate period. No matter what, I have a game plan in place when doing family photos with teenagers and older children. Because photos with your children in every stage of life is worth it.

Mother daughter embracing at Marymoor park at sunset
Candid photo of mother and daughter at sunset in Redmond
Bellevue family photographer capturing a detail photo of mother daughter holding hands

Family photos with teens and older children is all about building trust and connections.

Before the actual session, parents fill out a detailed questionnaire. I get to know everyone's personality and interests (sports, clubs, music, etc). That way, throughout the session, we can chat and start building rapport. We can discuss interests while walking from one location to the next. We can laugh about hobbies while everyone is taking a break. Our session doesn't have to be stiff. It can be fun even without the songs and games usually played with younger children.

Mother holding daughter lovingly, backlit in Redmond
Mother playing with daughter's hair during golden hour in Marymoor Park
Photographer capturing mother hugging daughter while seated on a blanket during golden hour in Redmond.
Summer family photos in Redmond

If teens and older children aren't ready to be photographed, I don't push it.

Everyone wants some autonomy. If your teen or older child is not ready to be photographed, I will give them some space. I start with family members that are ready to be in front of my camera and work through these poses first. When your family member is ready, they can come to me. Sometimes, a pep talk, telling them about how much these photos mean to mom and dad also works wonders!

Black and white photo of mother hugging teenage daughter in Redmond.
Teenage daughters posing with parents in family portrait in Redmond.
Teenage daughter laughing with father during golden hour on the Eastside.

Everyone is given a break during the session.

Being in front of my camera for 60 minutes is a LONG time so everyone gets a break during our session together! I take a few moments to photograph just mom and dad. I might give your teens and older children a job like making mom and dad smile! By taking the focus off of your teens and older children, it'll help them relax more.

Black and white photo of mother hugging daughter in Marymoor park at sunset.
Mother and daughters hugging in family portrait backlit in Redmond.
Husband wife laughing during golden hour with teenage daughters watching.

Incorporating movement isn't just for families with younger children.

We might not play the games I usually do with younger children (like ring around the rosie) but we will still incorporate movement! Casually walking around, something sillier like butt bumping each other or even a more active dance party will help make everyone more relaxed and bring out those candid smiles. Again, it's all about your family's comfort...if your teens and older children are up for any or all of these activities, we'll do it!

Family photographer captured dance party in a field at sunset.
Family holding hands and walking together in Redmond.
Family portrait in a grassy field with clouds during sunset.
Silhouette photo of husband and wife in Marymoor Park.

I thank your teenagers and older children for participating.

Family photos with teens and older children is so rewarding. It seems like time goes faster and faster, the older your children get so I know how much it means to you (mom and dad) to get everyone in the frame. Marymoor Park is a fantastic spot for family photos. It has wide open spaces for privacy, plenty of parking and photoshoot locations are within minutes of each other and the parking lot.