So today my daughter had her second ever school picture taken. For those of you who have younger children, I beg you to please, please, listen to some advice I have. Whether you know it or not, these photo days require some of the most important decisions you will ever make. This, my friends, is where soooo many of us go wrong.
Think back to your old school pictures or maybe your friends’. For the most part, we all have a picture or two, maybe more, that we absolutely hate. Why? Because not enough planning and thought went into what the outfit or style should be. Personally, I have two photos that come to mind for myself. One year my mom and I thought it would look nice to have a shiny button-up shirt on, but then to leave about 2 or 3 buttons undone. This resulted in me looking like some sort of underage gigolo. The second photo that comes to mind is one where I was wearing my glasses. Now when I was younger one of the worst things my mother could have done was to let me pick out my own reading glasses. I remember looking on the shelf at many, many pairs until finally settling on a pair of brown marble looking frames. My mother, who will support me no matter what, proceeds to tell me how great they look and how I can get them if that is the pair I want. So, with frames in hand, I am then faced with another decision. What type of lens tint, if any, I should get. During this time in my youth tinted glasses were somewhat in style. My thinking as a kid? Why not get a cool brown tint to go with the brown marble? Hotness!!!!!! I then go to school, take my picture, and in a couple months i get an awesome picture of some kid whose eyes are pretty much browned out. Oh and by the way, the glasses went roughly from my eyebrows to my cheek. Bad pic number 2.
So…On to some advice.
Let’s talk about backgrounds. I ask you again to look back at these bad pictures. This will be all the proof you need to keep it simple. I mean really. Just how awesome does that laser background look now? Or how about the double image? You know the one I mean. It’s the one with the sideways mug shot photo and then the forward facing deer in headlights look? When I was in school they even gave us an option for a space like background at one point. Yup, that’s right. If I wanted I could have been sitting in space just like Flash Gordon. In my opinion just go with a solid color. If anything maybe a gradient type background but please, I beg you, don’t do a theme unless you are ready to commit.
Now let’s talk about clothes and hair.
This, of course, is the most important. For the most part we all have some type of Photoshop skills in case the background doesn’t work out. But, if you look like a hot mess then that’s it, game over, you have failed. The number one thing I can suggest for clothes is to not go with fads. When I was in junior high overalls were in style. Hip-Hop stars like LL Cool J were wearing them and undoing the one side so it would hang down. I’m sure you can already imagine what this ended up looking like. If someone today was to look at our yearbook from those days they would think we were all farmers or had some type of strange school overall uniforms. Again, not good. Keep the clothes simple. Pick outfits that are not going to clash with your background and compliment the natural features of your child. And by the way, if you’re doing jewelry, make it classy. This is really important once they are older. Big earrings and necklaces with names were huge for a little while. It made it look like none of us knew who we were.
When all else fails just remember KISS. Keep It Simple Stupid. Don’t over think the picture and remember to just treat it like any other day. Your kids will love you for it in the future. Otherwise, get ready for the utter embarrassment they will go through later in life when the picture surface. Facebook, birthday cake, or who knows what else.