How to Create Fun and Personalized Senior Photos

Client Experience

So you've booked senior photos with Becks Photography, how exciting! You have taken a great first step in capturing your senior year but we still have some things to consider, and I'm about to give you some great tips on what your next steps are!

first things first

Odds are, you haven't ever experienced having professional photos taken and if you have, they were probably family photos! For your senior photo shoot, all of the attention is on you, and that can be nerve wracking! It is SO normal for you to be nervous! I've got to tell you... I promise that I come to our session with a heart full of love and understanding. I can't wait to get to know you and capture your personality perfectly but I need you to let your guard down! The best way to do this is to bring a friend of family member along with you that will help you be yourself! It may be a little awkward at first but, laugh it off, have fun and be yourself! We are going to have a blast!


Ok next, we need to talk about what to wear to your senior photos. You'll want to choose outfits that you are comfortable and confident in! Believe it or not, the outfits that you choose for you senior pictures have a huge impact on the mood of your photos. Think for a moment about painting on canvas, if your mood is happy while you're painting, you will choose much different colors than if you are angry. The same is true with choosing your outfits for senior photos. If your dream is to create fun and personalized senior photos, consistent to the work you see on my website, follow these tips.

  • Choose outfits that express who you are
  • If you have an hour or hour and a half session, choose a nice outfit and a casual outfit
  • Consider wearing your sport or band uniform
  • Capture a few photos in your cap and gown!

If you have booked a "mini" session, you may choose 2 outfits. If you have booked a "full" session, you may choose 3 outfits. If you have booked an "extended" session, you may choose 4 outfits. If you'd like to include more outfits, please reach out to me about extending your session!

When it comes time to choose your outfit(s), please read my full style guide! It's full of tips on what to wear, hair, and make up. Please reach out to me with any questions or concern and I'd be more than happy to help you!


Second, you need to choose a location. Lucky for you, I've created a huge location guide for you to choose from. Each location on my guide creates a different but beautiful backdrop. You will want to not only choose a location that you love, but also one that suits your personality. It's also important that you consider the season that your photos are in. Check out my season based location guides...

If you're unsure where to go, I would love to help you pick your locations! Are you artsy, boho, edgy? Whoever you are, together we will find the right location for your senior photos. Please keep in mind that in you choose a nature setting, you will be in nature. There may be bugs, dirt, animals, goose poop, etc. We will also be taking photos standing on grass and gravel, which will make it difficult to walk in heals.

Some seniors, like myself in circa 2013, choose to book 2 or 3 separate photo shoots in different season so that they can wear their favorite summer outfit and splash in the creek, and wear a fall sweater and play in the leafs!

Location scouting is a huge part of my job. I have been to all of the locations on my guide multiple times and know all of the perfect spots with the most beautiful lighting! Occasionally I will receive requests to come to a clients yard or a park by their house that they love. Although this location may be beautiful, it may not be the best location for a photo shoot. As a professional photographer, it's important for me to spend time at a location during sunrise and sunset before having a paid session there. Lighting, background, distractions, and the direction of the sun all play a role when choosing the correct location for your session. I want to deliver to you professional senior photos that you can cherish forever. With all of that being said, in order for me to be the best photographer that I can be, please choose one of the locations on my guide for your session. I hope that you can understand that I have your best interest in mind, always.

Rochester local like me? Check out my Rochester Michigan location guide for the best spots right in your town!


Arguably the most important tip I can give you is to be comfortable, have fun, and have a great attitude. Most likely you've never had professional portraits taken before so it will be new to you, but that's ok! Have fun with it, your senior photos only happen once, let's make the most of it! I'll walk you through every single pose and prompt, showing you what to do before asking you to do it yourself. It's so important that we capture your genuine smile and laugh by having a blast taking these photos! When you are looking back at the senior photos that we took together, do you want negative memories of being rushed and uncomfortable or do you want joyful memories of laughing and enjoying this time?

  • bring a friend or family member along with you who will help you to laugh and relax
  • remember that your session is all about having fun
  • have an open mind when it come to poses and prompts that I use
  • be patient
  • consider going out to eat first! You should want to be hangry and going out with loved ones normally relaxes us (check out this list of local weekly deals)

Parents, family members, or FRIENDS

As I just discussed, in order to capture the best photos possible I ask that you bring someone along with you to your session. Typically, this is a parent, family member, or bestie! It's important that you ask someone who you are super comfortable around and who will make you laugh and smile. This person will not only hold you phone for you, but will also touch up your hair or outfit and sometimes do a silly dance behind the camera to get your natural smile! Whoever you decide to bring, this is the role they will play!

  • touching up your hair when it needs it (please bring a brush)
  • checking for wardrobe malfunctions
  • making you laugh when you're feeling a little nervous

Moms, dads, grandparents, siblings, cousins or friends THANK YOU! You're truly the best and will make these photos great.

cap and gown photos

If you booked a cap and gown session first of all, CONGRATULATIONS!!! Graduation sessions are so much fun. They are full of joy and excitement and I hope to capture that with you.

Obviously as far as outfits go, you will want to bring you cap and gown! What you also need to consider is what you wear under your gown. A lot of the poses I use you will have your gown unzipped or even off for. For girls, I suggest a nice dress, typically white or cream. For boys, I suggest nice pants, a button up, and a belt, tie optional!

For cap and gown sessions downtown areas like: Rochester, Birmingham City Hall and the DIA are very popular but again, I want you to choose a location that best expresses who you are! If you are graduating from college and would like to pop a bottle of champagne, will will need to have your session at a location where we will have the space to spray some bubbly like: Cranberry Lake Park, Bear Creek, DE Nature Preserve or Eugene S Nowicki Park. Please let me know if this is something you're planning on doing!


All of my sessions include a free consultation call. This is great if you have any complicated questions or concerns that are easier to discuss over the phone. This is also great if you are wondering what to expect in a session and would like me to run in through with you.


Now it's time for you to fill out your questionnaire! The questionnaire is where the "personalized" comes from in this article. This is where I learn about who you are and how you want to express yourself for you senior photos! I prep myself for every senior session that I have, and each time I prepare differently depending on your answers. It's so important that you are descriptive when answering the questions.

I cannot wait for our session together!

If you follow this guide, I can assure you that we are going to create truly fun and personalized photos!

Have questions before booking?

Please fill out this form with all of your questions and concerns and I will reach out to you as soon as I can!