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How to Create Standout Senior Pictures in Studio | Backdrop Express

How to Create Standout Senior Pictures in Studio

Written by Backdrop Express Photography Team on . Posted in Photography Tips, Portrait Photography, Studio Photography

How to Create Standout Senior Pictures in Studio | Backdrop ExpressFeaturing: Tulip Seamless Paper | Photo Courtesy of Eldeen Annette Portraiture

Having senior pictures taken is a defining moment in the lives of graduating high school students. While some senior portrait photographers have been gravitating toward outdoor locations, senior portraits in the studio can be just as exciting and energized. With some planning, your studio senior portraits will convey a hip, classy, modern vibe that’s a far cry from the old-school senior portrait.

When it comes to planning for your sessions, seniors can be some of the most fun and creative subjects to work with. For one, they are excited to be graduating soon, they are often excited to model for their senior pictures, and they will love making the most of the shoot. However, there are some things you can do to help ensure a standout senior portrait session in the studio.

Let each senior client know you are very excited to be working with them. Connect with them on Facebook and hit them up with a reminder-post about their upcoming session a few days before. Have them fill out a questionnaire which includes questions like:
  • What are some of your favorite qualities about yourself?
  • What do you love most about this time in your life (senior year)?
  • How would you describe your personal style?
  • What do you plan to wear to your photo shoot?
  • What is your vision for your senior portrait?
From there, you can start to craft and create ideas for your photo shoot. Although seniors are generally on top of the latest styles and fashions, they might need some help in deciding what to wear to the session. Use a Pinterest board to create some specific ideas and looks so that they’ll know what outfits to bring with them. This simple act will help your client and you as the photographer to achieve the look you’re going for in the studio.

How to Create Standout Senior Pictures in Studio | Backdrop ExpressFeaturing: Silver/Gray Damask Fabric Backdrop | Photo Courtesy of Jacob Maes Photography

Senior Portrait Backdrops

While the old-world mottled muslin backdrop look is long out of style for high school seniors, there are endless backdrop possibilities to spice up a senior studio portrait session and make a bold statement. There are now a number of new, trendy photography backdrop styles available that can make any senior portrait pop. Consider these innovative styles for your studio senior portrait shoots:

Vibrant Paper Backdrops

A vibrant-hued paper backdrop is available in bold colors like Tulip, Canary and Orange. The colors of vibrant paper backdrops are sure to amp up the energy in any shoot and help to brighten smiles, skin tones, props and outfits.

How to Create Standout Senior Pictures in Studio | Backdrop ExpressFeaturing: Tangelo Seamless Paper | Photo Courtesy of Courtney Utley Photography

Patterned Backdrops

Patterned backdrops in classy and elegant designs like damask or argyle are a break from the norm and can add edge and style to senior pictures.

Sequined Backdrops

Sequined backdrops in shimmering metallic or bold red can add a new dimension to the senior portrait backdrop. Add shimmer and glamour to your senior pictures with a glimmering sequined backdrop.

During the Shoot

Many seniors have never been to a professional photographer before. Be sure and make them feel comfortable during the process. Praise them and show them sneak peeks of the results through your view finder. Doing so will encourage them and give them confidence in how the shoot is going.

How to Create Standout Senior Pictures in Studio | Backdrop ExpressFeaturing: Red Grunge Printed Backdrop | Photo Courtesy of Tanya Lee Hervey Photography

Keep the conversation lively and flowing. Ask your senior clients questions — find out their hopes for their senior year and their plans for the future. Talking with them in this way will make them feel appreciated, valued and confident, which will enhance their experience and results.

Posing and Props

While you might have go-to poses for use with seniors, every young adult is uniquely different. Be flexible and see what looks best through the lens. You can also make a separate Pinterest board to catalog poses and draw from it for posing ideas in case you fall into a rut. Props can also help your session, but keep it simple; a chair, a cute hat, some books, or something the senior has brought along. Some young people feel awkward in front of a camera, at least at first; props can be the perfect distraction to help them loosen up.

How to Create Standout Senior Pictures in Studio | Backdrop ExpressFeaturing: Teal Fabric Backdrop | Photo Courtesy of Monica George Portraits

Rocking a senior portrait session is not hard to do; all it takes is a bit of pre-planning and the right mindset in the studio to make it happen. Your extra effort will make the client feel special, and this will come through in both the photos and in word of mouth referrals.

Do you shoot senior portraits outdoors only, or offer a studio package as well?

-Backdrop Express Photography Team

Interested in reading more about shooting school pictures? Check out Choosing the Best Backdrops for School Pictures!

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