How to Prepare for a Holiday Shoot with a Toddler

The holiday season is here and as the mother of a toddler with a baby on the way, I am still planning my holiday photos and wanted to get insight on how to prepare my active baby. With help from Ambreia, of Ambreia Artistry based in Mobile, Alabama. Check out her tips below on how to prepare your toddler for a photoshoot and images from her adorable daughter’s holiday photoshoot.

How to Prepare for a Holiday Shoot with a Toddler

Tip #1: Planning! Do not plan your session for a time that your toddler can’t be at their best. If they nap, avoid their nap time at all cost! The last thing you want is a cranky child or one who isn’t refreshed! 

Tip #2: Throw it in the bag! Come prepared with an alternative outfit or accessories that will cover stains if the worst happens. I always recommend that my clients bring “clean eating snacks”. This means no Cheetos! Plain Cheerios, Apple slices, carrots and graham crackers are all great options. Also bring wipes for those runny noses at this time of year! 

Tip #3: Don’t tell them to smile. Talk about sensory overload! Being expected to smile with a new person in the room, plus lights and other equipment with limited time is a bit overwhelming. Part of the reason that I love family and child portrait sessions is the connection and expression that I capture! A single image where your child has a genuine laugh vs a forced smile may be your favorite Christmas portrait this year! Embrace the stage that they are in and enjoy the magic we make as photographers! 

Tip #4: Prepare to print! I can’t stress this enough! Prints matter. Whether you order through your photographer or a service like, Artifact Uprising, the photos we love the most are the ones we can touch! Fall in love with print again. Photos also make wonderful gifts! 

Tip #5: Embrace the crazy! Toddlers freeze up, melt down and fall out. If your tot didn’t have a good go at it, it may be possible to reshoot. As a photographer, I’ve seen it all. I always tell my clients that there’s nothing that their child can do that my children haven’t already done! 

Ambreia Artistry Photography specializes in Maternity, Motherhood, Child and Family portraiture. A full service studio located in Mobile, Alabama. Ambreia, the owner, can be commissioned to travel nationally and internationally for destination maternity. 

Michiel Perry

Michiel is a Black Southern Belle living a lowcountry life. I love all things fashion, home decor and southern! When I am not running around doing fun stuff for Black Southern Belle, I live in antique stores and have a minor obsession with historic homes 🙂

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