Creative Family Portrait Ideas For Every Season

When taking photos of your family you will want to capture the essence of what makes them special to you. This means no stiff, staged photos where everyone looks like they’d rather be just about anywhere else. 

Creative Family Portrait Ideas For Every Season

Instead you want your photos to be natural, relaxed and realistic. You want to capture the fun, the humor and most importantly, the memories of great times together.

We have found some creative family portrait ideas (see also: 10 Best Family Portrait Photography Ideas)for every season so that you never miss a moment. 

1. Beach

Where better to take great summer pictures than at the beach? There are so many choices, taking pictures in the water, jumping waves, building sandcastles or burying dad in the sand. 

Wear silly floppy sunhats and fun sunglasses. At the end of the day take a great sunset shot or a silhouette against the sky. 

2. Picnic

You could combine your trip to the beach with a picnic for some fun family shots. Or take a trip to a lake, into the mountains or the local park with your picnic hamper and your camera. 

This is the perfect time to capture some natural poses and great memories. Don’t forget to include the dog too. 

3. Camping

Camping trips give you some of the best memories so take advantage and snap some great pics on your next outdoor adventure. Capture your kids toasting marshmallows around the campfire or fishing in the river. 

You’ll get some great action shots and plenty of natural poses as the whole family takes on the great outdoors. 

4. Fairs

Summer fairs are the ideal spot for some creative family portraits. Capture the fun with everyone on the fairground rides or with a face full of cotton candy. 

There are plenty of great backdrops to be found at a carnival or fair and lots of inspiration for action shots. No boring photos to be found at the fair!

5. Vacation

We all take photos on vacation, but you can make a point of getting some great family shots and take advantage of your location. 

Whether you’re on a road trip taking in some historical sights or at a cabin in the mountains, get the family together and create some great memories. Use lots of props for added fun. 

6. Summer Silhouettes

Some of the best family pictures convey a feeling rather than a replica of a moment. You can do this really well with silhouettes against a summer evening sky. Get everyone sitting on a fence watching the sunset or strolling down the beach holding hands. 

Pictures speak louder than words so capture those emotions forever. 

7. Forest Walk

When the leaves start to fall, pick up your camera and head into the forest for some beautiful, natural shots. Get the kids wrapped up in warm clothes, and snap some great photos of them all kicking up leaves or climbing trees. 

Have everyone peek out from behind a tree at different heights. Don’t forget to include the dog!

8. Apple Picking

Apple picking is a great family activity so don’t pass up this opportunity to create some wonderful photos. Mix it up with some action shots and a nice post-picking group photo with the fruits of your labor in front of you. 

As a follow-up, take a picture of everyone enjoying a warm apple pie at home. 

9. Halloween

Halloween is perhaps one of the most fun times to take a creative family portrait. With all the costumes you can choose from and the great outdoor decorations as backdrops you’ll be spoiled for choice. 

Recreate your favorite scary movie with all the family playing different characters and in original poses. Don’t hold back on the props and make up for a unique family photo. 

10. Harvest Time

Fall is also harvest time so why not head out to the countryside with your family and a camera. Barns make a great backdrop for autumnal pictures and if you’re all dressed appropriately this can look fantastic. 

Of course, you should always ask permission before taking photos of barns and never stand in someone’s crop field. But if you know someone with a farm this could work for you. 

11. Pumpkin Pics

Of course, fall is also pumpkin season and these make excellent props and backdrops. If you have small children dressing them up in pumpkin costumes looks very cute. 

Capture some great moments in the pumpkin patch, maybe recreating the scene from the story of The Enormous Turnip. Everyone lines up behind each other and pretends to pull an enormous pumpkin out of the ground. 

12. Game Time

When it’s too cold to take photos outside, why not use indoor activities to create some memorable family moments. An hilarious game of Twister or Jenga can make fun action shots. 

Or for something more sedate a jigsaw puzzle or board game can make a lovely portrait. You can even include the cat or other indoor pets. 

13. Snow

There is no more perfect backdrop for family portraits than snow. From snow angels to sledding, snowmen to snowball fights there’s no limit to the fun to be had or the memories to be made. 

Some post snow fun pics can include everyone wrapped in blankets and drinking hot cocoa. Make a collage of portraits to remember your snow day!

14. Christmas Card

Family portraits for Christmas cards are a fantastic opportunity to have fun or get serious. You can either put on your ugliest Christmas sweater or dress up as Christmas characters for some fun shots. 

Alternatively you can use this time of year to create a beautiful, natural family portrait full of love, peace and harmony. 

15. Holiday Pics

For those who don’t do Christmas cards, holiday pictures are a wonderful way to celebrate this time of year. These will keep the memory of happy times alive for years to come and also make great gifts for grandparents or other family members. 

This may be the only time of the year when your entire extended family are in the same place, so take advantage and get snapping. 

16. Cozy At Home

When it’s cold and wet outside the last thing you want to do is go out and take photos. Instead get creative inside with some family time. Why not cook a meal together or bake a cake and create some wonderful memories at the same time. 

As the heart of the home, the kitchen is the ideal setting for a family portrait. 

17. Winter Outings

Winter outings are a wonderful time to catch all the family together having fun. Whether that’s a day out shopping or going ice skating, take the camera along and get some candid and natural shots. 

Family portraits against stunning outdoor scenery will look great on your wall.  

18. City Lights

If you’re heading to the big city make it an opportunity to get creative with photos of the family. In the winter most towns and cities are ablaze with colorful lights, Christmas markets and trimmed trees. 

Make the most of it and take some great family shots. If you’re all feeling glamorous, dress up for your photo shoot to add some glitz. 

19. Wild Flowers

One of the first signs of spring is the appearance of wild flowers such as snowdrops and crocuses. These make a beautiful backdrop for a spring family portrait. 

Take natural and candid shots of your kids making daisy chains or using buttercups to see who likes butter. 

20. Blossom Time

Apple and cherry blossoms are some of the most beautiful things you can photograph so use them as a backdrop for your family portrait. 

The soft pink and white blossoms make a carpet of flowers for your family to sit among for a wonderfully natural photo. This is a lovely setting to include the family dog too. 

21. By The River

One of the loveliest settings for a family portrait is by the river. In spring, depending on where you live you may also be able to capture the melting snow along the banks. 

The backdrop of the water, trees and flowers will make a really beautiful photo. Have everyone dress in casual clothes for a more relaxed feel. 

22. Golden Hour

Using the natural light that is present in the golden hour can produce a stunning photo. Golden hour is the hour before the sun sets and when it is low in the sky, giving great color and contrast to the photo.

If done right it can be very effective so experiment a little before setting up for your family portrait. 

Final Thoughts

The days of stiff, posed family portraits are long gone. Today, we prefer to see people in natural positions that don’t look forced or in action shots that tell a story. 

Whichever style you prefer for your family portrait there are lots of ways to get creative with backgrounds, props and clothing. 

We hope you’ve enjoyed our guide to creative family portraits for every season. 

Laura McNeill
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