Choosing an Outdoor Location (if You Must) | Boston Family Photographer + Videographer

By now, it’s no secret that your home is my favorite location. Here are the characteristics that make other locations second best—and advice for choosing an outdoor location (if you must).

I have this not-so-quiet conviction that your memories in 20 years won’t crave images of your family frolicking backlit in a field. Some field I choose isn’t your story, and with video, I’m equipped to do better for you…and your memories.

You might not share my convictions for a hundred reasons (“my house is too messy,” “our projects aren’t finished,” “this isn’t our forever home”), so I’ll try my darndest to change your mind—but in the end…it’s not about me. If an on-location outdoor session is what your heart craves, I’m here for it. I’ll recommend a gorgeous location from a long list of favorite places. I’ll show up just as enamored with your people and your session. Here are the characteristics I’m looking for in our location…

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Audio does more to advance a story than all the visuals in the world, and I need clean audio to tell yours. If a location is crowded with tourists and other photographers, the background noise will mask your kids’ sweet voices and I will have a mini-tantrum as I edit your film. 😉

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Off the Beaten Path

I don’t want you to feel watched. Video requires a level of comfort with yourself and with your family. Don’t expect to show up with it…it’s MY job to provide you that comfort. I will have you at ease in minutes, but the surest way for all my hard work to be scuttled is for other people to arrive and linger on our “set.” I prefer a closed set…so will you.

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I’ve had many sessions on trails in the woods I’ve regretted. Heavy tree canopies block the light and force my camera settings higher. This can introduce unwanted artifacts in your photos that I can usually address, but video is another story. We’ll play at the edge of the woods instead. Open meadows and fields on the edge of a forest are best.

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My creative heart soars when a location has a variety of colors and textures. I’m looking for wildflowers, grasses, rock walls, stockyard fencing…anything that will add depth and dimension to our location. Green grass and green trees dominate summer backdrops but are one-dimensional. We can do better.

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Almost any outdoor location has inherent risks (open water, large boulders every kid wants to climb, makeshift bridges, poison ivy, tick-infested grasses…the list goes on). I’m keenly aware of those risks and will never ask for a shot that would put you or your littles in harm’s way. We’ll stick to mowed trails and solid ground.

love amy xo


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