"What should I wear for my senior session?" It's the most asked question I get, and after almost 10 years of doing high school senior photography, it's something I know a thing or two about. Today I'm going to talk about how to chose a color scheme for your session, and why it's important.
During a typical senior session we have time to do 4 or 5 different outfits. Typically, seniors want to show as much range as they can with those outfits, choosing bold colors for one outfit and soft, romantic colors for another. I totally get it: they have a ton of clothes and look great in all of them, and it can't be a bad idea to show as many different looks as possible, right?
Well, yes and no.
Almost every senior wants grad cards, albums and wall galleries with multiple images to show off all the different looks that we captured. This means that it's important for all of the outfits to blend with each other, giving a cohesive look to anything we create from the session images. I've found that the best way to do this is to choose a color intensity, just one, and apply it to your entire session.
So what do I mean by "color intensity?" Basically, go soft, go bold, or go somewhere in the middle.
"Soft" colors would be pastels, creams, light gray, small floral prints, intricate details, flirty skirts:
"Bold" can mean strong, bright or primary colors, jewel tones, saturated inks, outfits with strong lines and high contrast.
"Something in the middle" is harder to define, but it seems that many more outfits fit in this category. Basically if it doesn't fit perfectly in either of the first two categories, it's probably a mid-tone:
What you DON'T want to do it mix it up. It's hard, I know! But your gallery of images will "flow" better if all of the outfits are of the same color intensity.
Now, how do you know which one to choose for an ENTIRE session? Most of the time, it's pretty easy to choose because we can base it on personality or even skin tone and hair color. Are you a hopeless romantic or the life of the party? What colors do you wear most often? Where is your session taking place, city streets or country lane?
However, this doesn't mean you can't have a ton of variety in your outfits! You still want to show off a range of styles, so now you can mix up the styles of each outfit, while staying within the color tone you choose. So if you're sticking with pastels, you might choose a mint green sundress with wedge heels, a pair of faded denim shorts with a light gray woven knit top and boots, and a dressy silver bodice paired with a long organza skirt and strappy heels.
Going bold? Easy! Just follow the same steps, choose something dressy, something casual and flirty and something comfy and relaxed, all while sticking to a similar color scheme. You gallery of images will look more put-together and cohesive, while allowing you so show off all of your different looks.
Now, have fun shopping!