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5 Tips for a Great Morning Session!

Many of our customers, when they’re booking, ask me “do you prefer morning or evening times for sessions?" I would say that evening is my favorite, but morning can be great too! Let’s look at it a little closer…


In the morning you can get the ocean in the background of your photos while still keeping sun out of your eyes. Because of the position of the sun, we tend to do most of our evening sessions’ photos with the dune in the background. Then we do some fun photos with the ocean. (Of course we always defer to what's the most important to you.) In the morning you can have all your photos with the ocean and not worry about looking directly into the sun. But the light is harsher in the morning, due to the sun reflecting off the water. If anyone in your group has light-sensitive eyes, schedule for an evening session!


All that being said, there are things you can do to make your morning session the best it can be. And sometimes morning sessions can be absolutely magical!



1. Make sure everyone eats breakfast! Seriously, it sounds like it’s not that big a deal. But after a couple years of shooting morning session on the beach, I realized that a big factor in people’s moods was whether or not they had breakfast. Especially children and teens! I know I'm grouchy whenever I have an empty stomach!

2. If you can, bring bottled water. Another underlying cause of bad moods, especially with young children, during a morning photo session, is thirst. It gets hot out there and taking a break for a sip of water can change the fate of a portrait session!

3. Book your session as early in the morning as you can! This goes back to number one. The sun is really harsh and the later the session, the harsher the sun. Being fully clothed with the sun right on you can be intense. We always recommend having your session end by 10 if you can, 10:30 at the latest. My favorite time for a morning session is 8am-9am!

4. If anyone in your group has light-sensitive eyes, evening sessions are best. It’s so bright on the beach in the morning that we have had some groups have trouble keeping their eyes open for photos. I am one of those people who has really light sensitive eyes (but it’s not a problem for me because I can wear my sunglasses while I’m shooting). I always feel so bad for the families who are having a hard time keeping their eyes open. I completely understand and I’m right there with them. We usually end up having to reschedule to the evening.

5. As far as what to wear, don’t mix up your color brightness. If you have some people wearing white shirts and some people wearing navy blue shirts, it’s going to make those white shirts really white. Like disappear-white! This is especially true if only one person is wearing white. I think medium tones look the best on skin tones anyway!



Morning sessions can be absolutely wonderful. We hope these tips have helped in your planning for your portrait session. If you ever have questions about your session, feel free to call or email us anytime!



If you're looking for Outer Banks family portraits, give us a call! We are Corolla family portrait photographers and we love what we do! We also capture family portraits in Duck and all the way to Nags Head! We're excited to help make this a fun vacation experience for your family! Book your OBX photo session today! 

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© 2020 12th Street Portraits, Outer Banks North Carolina

Audra: 252.489.7078     Katie: 252.305.3179