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What is the best season for family photos?

January 19, 2024

Filed in: Tips

This week, I launched my 2024 booking calendar to my VIP list subscribers. There’s something so fun about having the whole year laid out in front of me. I’m looking forward to seeing returning and new clients for spring wildflowers, summer evenings in the field, and cozy fall photos as we wrap up the year. Some clients have mentioned that they aren’t quite sure when to book their photos. Many wait until they need it: a few weeks before they send out holiday cards, for example. Which means they end up with fall photos, whether they really love fall  or not. But what if there was a better way? That’s why I created this blog post, to help you find out what season is best for family photos…for your family. At the end of the post, don’t forget to take the quiz to really help you nail down your perfect fit season for family photos!


Spring Family Photos

Springtime is a great season for family photos, especially if you have blooms on your mind! Spring is peak wildflower season, which means you can have fields of purple lupines or yellow balsamroot in the background of your photo. In general, spring photos are the most lush, green, and floral of all the seasons.

What season is best for family photos? Spring means wildflower photos.

Why Spring is the Best Season for Family Photos

Some people truly dislike being outdoors when it’s warm out. Opt for a cooler session in the shoulder seasons of spring or fall instead. Spring is almost guaranteed to be comfortable enough to be outdoors in the evenings, and you’ll have lush greenery in the background of your photos at almost any of our locations.

When Spring May Not Be Right for Your Family

If you’re not able to be flexible with scheduling, a spring session in the PNW may not be the best fit for you. This is especially true if you have your heart set on wildflowers in your photos. We are at the mercy of whatever Mother Nature has up her sleeve. An unseasonably cold year may delay blooms by a few weeks, or vice versa. I keep plenty of room on my schedule to accommodate reschedules, but it does require clients to be willing to move their session up a few weeks if needed to really hit peak blooms.

Looking for more posts about Spring Family Photos? Check out these:

Wildflower Fields Near Portland, Oregon

Best Locations for Spring Family Photos near Portland

Flower Fields Near Portland

Maternity Photos in the Wildflowers at Columbia River Gorge


Summer Family Photos

What season is best for family photos? In summer, enjoy fields, lavender, and take advantage of weekday evenings and early mornings.

Why Summer is the Best Season for Family Photos

It’s no secret that summer is my personal favorite season for family photos. There’s less rescheduling for rain. The fields are are warm, glowing, and a perfect neutral backdrop for light, airy family pictures. For clients who prefer more greenery in their photos, the edges of the forests around Portland are bathed in sunlight in the late afternoon. And July is peak lavender season, a favorite for my clients! Lastly, early mornings are a great option for families with small children, and summer is the best season for morning photos. In fact, I love summer pictures so much that I wrote the Ultimate Guide to Summer Family Photos here!

When Summer May Not Be Right for Your Family

If you are especially sensitive to heat, you’ll want to be sure to book an early morning session before the heat of the day. Clients whose schedules are already booked solid with vacations or kid’s sports in the summer might be better suited to a more relaxed time of year.

Looking for more Summer Family Photo Inspo? Check out these posts:

Summer Morning Family Photo Session

Summer Family Photos in the Meadow


Fall Family Photos

What season is best for family photos? In fall, take advantage of fall colors and cooler temperatures.

Why Fall is the Best Season for Family Photos

Some people really, truly, love fall. As soon as the first leaf starts to change, the fall decorations go up and the pumpkin spiced lattes come out. If that’s you–a fall portrait session might be just the right fit! Fall is one of the busiest times of year for family photographers for a reason: it’s beautiful! Fall family photos means cozy knits, chunky blankets, and warm earth tones.

When Fall May Not Be Right for Your Family

Fall is another season that requires some flexibility for outdoor photo sessions. In the PNW, once rainy season starts–it STARTS! (PS: see how we handle rain at your session here). October is the perfect month for fall family photos. The leaves are turning, but there are still enough sunny hours to squeeze in dry sessions.

Need More Info on Fall Family Photos?

Everything to Know About Outdoor Fall Family Photos in Oregon

What to Wear for Fall Family Photos

Early Fall Family Photos in the Orchard

Still not sure what season to do your family photos in? Take the quiz!

Don’t see the quiz on this page? Get the quiz here.


Was this post helpful? Save it for later by pinning one of the images below!

What's the best season for family photos? Find out the best choice for your family with this quiz!


PS: This week I’m sharing another installment of work from some of my favorite photographers nationwide. My friend Vanessa wrote this great article on doing a bridesmaids’ first look that I thought was just such an incredible idea!

comments +

  1. Vanessa says:

    You did it again..such an informative article! Definitely pining this to come back to!

  2. Karla Vacek says:

    This is a great post… I love that you can do outdoor pictures in the summer. It’s way too hot in Houston for outdoor pictures!

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