How to Pose for Family Photos: My Top 3 Tips




How to Pose for Family Photos: My Top 3 Tips


You’ve found the perfect outfits and an available date with no activities – now you just need to figure out how to pose for those family photos. Don’t fret! I’m sharing my top three posing tips for authentic, genuine family pictures. 


Having family pictures taken can feel like a lot! You’ve got to get everyone clean, dressed, and well behaved(ish) at one time. It makes me tired just thinking about it! 


But having timeless, authentic family photos is so worth it! Capturing your family at specific moments in time is one of the best ways to preserve those fleeting memories and childhood experiences. 


But how do you pose for family photos without looking ridiculous? 


Follow my top three tips for posing to get relaxed, authentic photos that you’ll treasure forever.


1. Get up close and personal


If you leave gaps when you’re all standing next to each other, it’ll look awkward and kind of like you don’t like each other. Regardless of any sibling squabbles, make sure everyone gets up close and personal. Your body should be touching the bodies next to you. (You may have to keep a close eye on teenage boys for this one… they like to keep their distance.)


The only time it’s okay to have some distance is if it’s intentional. If everyone is evenly spread out and holding hands across the gaps, that’ll work just fine. 


I know it might be hot and posing all snuggly close may feel awkward, but I promise you’ll love the result. 

Family Posing tips by Nashville photographer Grace Paul Photography.

2. No Barbie Hands


Whenever I’m helping clients figure out how to pose for family photos, the number one question I get is: “But what do I do with my hands?!” 


Here’s the thing. If you leave your hands just hanging in space, they’ll look weird. So make sure your hand has somewhere to land! You can hold hands with your spouse or put your hands on your kids’ shoulders or the side of their arms. If you’ve got littles, physically holding their hands can help prevent “fly aways” (when little kids just throw their hands up in the air) and help them stay in place. 


When everyone’s hands are connected in some way, you’ll look unified. 

Family Posing tips by Nashville photographer Grace Paul Photography.

3. Incorporate Movement


It doesn’t matter if you have small children or teenagers… families are very rarely still. And that is a good thing! Each and every family is unique. Let it show! If some people are more bubbly then be bubbly, if you are quiet by nature then that’s okay, too. Part of family photography is showcasing how all of the unique individuals come together to fit into a beautiful puzzle.

Family Posing Tips by Grace Paul Photography.

Some of my favorite ways to incorporate movement in family photos:


  • Dad tossing baby in the air

  • Mom running hands through child’s hair

  • Dad twirling daughter

  • Siblings walking next to each other


A little movement will help you feel more comfortable and allows your photographer to capture the genuine interaction between your family members that actually resemble real life.


 Figuring out how to pose for family photos doesn’t need to be complicated. Just remember to stay close together, give your hands somewhere to rest, and include some natural movement. You’ll love the results!


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