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high school male senior portrait leaning on post

Prepare for Your Senior Portrait Session

February 8, 2021

I’m always excited to capture a high school or college senior’s last year! So I wanted to write a blog on how to prepare for your senior portrait session! The following tips will hopefully have you ready to go!

For the Senior Girls

senior girls headshot portraitait

Say Yes To The Dress

I strongly encourage you to have at least a couple of outfits and I suggest one be dressed up and one more casual! However, if you want both to be dressed up, I’m all for it! Rocking a romantic gown or tulle skirt is the perfect way to start your session and there is no such thing as “too dressed up” when it comes to your senior portrait session, so don’t be afraid to have some fun! Dresses and skirts look stunning because they really flatter every female body, especially on camera!

High School Senior portrait on lake
senior portrait on bridge
Senior portrait female leaning on tree
senior female portrait leaning on fence
Senior female portrait on dock of lake

Choosing Colors

I recommend selecting softer, lighter tones and more muted shades. Avoiding patterned clothing will help bring all the attention to your face. The camera loves shades of soft pink and muted blues, mixed with sophisticated light neutrals like heather gray, creams and white. That softer color palette fits spectacularly into almost all natural outdoor environments.

senior portrait headshot female
senior portrait of girl in prom dress

Accesorize your outfit

Bring some extra dimension to your outfit by pairing it with an accessory or two! Add pop to your outfit with a big statement necklace. You can also add visual interest by adding belts, bracelets, and earrings. A cute hat or a fresh floral crown can add that final touch as well and give you something to use as a prop during your session.

prom portrait headshot of female
senior portrait prom dress in front of beautiful door
senior prom portrait

Hair and Makeup

On the top of my list is professional hair and makeup because it looks amazing on camera and removes the stress of doing both on your own. Professional hair and makeup give you an extra boost of confidence in front of the camera and it always photographs beautifully! Good makeup artists know how to apply just the right amount for the camera so don’t worry that it will be too much! Make sure to book your appointment in advance.

hair and makeup for senior portrait
college senior on dock at lake
headshot of college senior
college senior portrait

For the Senior Guys

college senior male portrait

The Best Fit

The most sophisticated and masculine look for men are long fitted pants, dark or matching socks, and closed-toed shoes. It is best to leave the shorts and sandals at home. Fitted pants work best on camera so leave the baggy or loose fit at home.

college senior male on dock at lake

Mix it Up

Mix a suit coat, blazer, or sport coat with a different pant color. Mixing it up adds visual interest and breaks up the color tones. Men look great on camera with layers like blazers and vests. Brown or black dress shoes compliment almost every look whether it be a full suit or blazer and colored pants. You can sharpen up your outfit with ties, bowties, pocket squares, belts, tie clips, suspenders, vests, and watches.

senior on dock at lake
senior portrait in suit

Prep for your session

If you need a haircut before your session, be sure to get it done a week before your session. Also, be sure to use a new razor for your shave to help avoid bumps or redness. Trim up your beard, sideburns, and mustache or goatee. And be sure to look for wiry stray hairs.

high school male senior portrait on stairs
senior portrait sitting on stairs
high school senior leaning on door
senior portrait leaning on fence

Preparing for your senior portrait session is a lot to think about but hopefully, this will make it a little easier to prepare! And when you book with me you will get a session prep guide with even more tips on how to prepare for your session. To see more of my senior sessions, check out the senior gallery on my website: https://kimforbesphotography.com/

high school senior male portrait
senior prom portrait
senior headshot

For more ideas for men’s outfits go here: https://www.jcrew.com/mens

  1. Heather says:

    Gahhhh fantastic love this!

  2. Sara says:

    Such great tips for senior photo sessions

  3. Stacey says:

    This was super informative! I also love the reds in your photos! Amazing!

  4. Ashley says:

    I love this! What a great resource for your clients.

  5. Stacie Struble says:

    Great tips to help seniors feel prepared and confident for their photo session!

  6. Great tips to help seniors prepare for their session! You covered all the bases so they’ll feel prepared and excited for their session.

  7. […] to learn how to prepare for your senior session? Check out my blog on how to prepare. Check out more of my work here: […]

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