Hey! I'm Amy, a family lifestyle photographer based in Sussex.

If you've found your way over to my blog because you're trying to get a bit more of insight into lifestyle family photography, then WELCOME! I'm so pleased you're here. If you're here because you already have your photoshoot booked with me...I cannot wait to capture your family authentically just as they are right now in this chapter of your family love story. 🤍

Your Family photoshoot will be fun

Let me start out by saying, first of all, that your photoshoot is going to be amazing. 99% of the time the first 10 minutes of any photoshoot can feel a little awkward until you and your family can relax into it and feel confident in front of the camera. I will help you do this!

We’ll go through a few different prompts, so don't worry I'm not going to say "right just go and be yourselves guys!", I will be there to lightly pose and prompt you where needed.

Having said that, there will be lots of room for you to just be yourselves too. It’ll feel like play! I promise it will be fun and by the end of the session you'll be total pros in front of the camera. But my objective isn’t just to take pretty pictures – it’s to capture this exciting stage in your lives, exactly as it is now.

Dad with son and daughter, sat amongst bluebells in Sussex woodland.
Dad looking down at two daughters as they smile up at the camera.
Three young sisters leaning over metal gate in Sussex countryside during family photoshoot.

What to wear

Dressing yourself in the morning is tough enough when you don ’t have to stand in front of a camera. Add having to dress the kids and perhaps even your partner, and things can get a little more stressful! But the number one thing I want you to remember is that being comfortable is everything.

Wear something that’ll keep you cool in summer, or warm in winter, and that’ll make you feel like the beautiful human that you are on the inside. If you have anything in your wardrobe that is textured, sheer, or billowy, these are perfect. As fabrics that flow show up so beautifully in photographs because they capture snapshots of movement.

Pastel colours work really well at both countryside and beach photoshoots and also if you have a photoshoot at home.

If you decide to go for clothing that has a print (for example a dress), have the rest of the family wear plain clothing that compliment the colours in the dress.

When choosing your footwear, think about what’s appropriate for the location. If you are having a beach photoshoot, it might even makes sense to ditch the shoes altogether.

clothes to avoid

  • Clothes that are starchy or stiff that get crumpled, need adjusting and may make you feel uncomfortable.
  • Lots of prints, logos and bright colours as sometimes these detract from the most important parts of the photograph – you!


If you have time the day before the photoshoot, get all of your things ready and have them in the car so that in the morning of the shoot, you and your family have some moments to unwind together doing something that you love.

Give yourself lots of time to get to the location so you don ’t feel frazzled and rushed on arrival. When a family shows up to a photoshoot having had to drive illegal speeds to get there, it sets the tone for a rushed and disorganised session. Give yourself the gift of a relaxed session, allow plenty of time for getting ready and forgetting things.

Father and Son standing on West Sussex beach, looking out to sea.
Three teenage sisters sat on picnic blanket with their dog, smiling up at the camera during photoshoot.
Mum and daughter walking along Littlehampton beach laughing.

How to prepare

Bring snacks! There are lots of variables in family photoshoots that are beyond our control. When photographing kids, every plan is contingent on their mood. But a quick snack is an almost entirely fail safe mood booster for the little ones.

If you can, try not to use the snacks as a bribe for during the photoshoot. This usually leads to the younger (and older!) kids wanting to stop for a snack every few minutes and can lead to a disjointed photoshoot. I have lots of games up my sleeve to keep the photoshoot flowing and keep all family members focused on having fun together!

If the location calls for it, bring some jackets or hats or other items that reflect this time in your life. If your kids want to bring their favourite stuffed toy or wear their favourite rain boots, let them! Authenticity is in the details.

Kids will be kids

If you walk away after reading this and only remember one thing, let it be this: have zero expectations. Embrace what comes – the wind, the rain, the laughter, whatever unfolds.

Every photoshoot is unique. It’ s all about YOU and capturing your life exactly how it is on the day of your photoshoot. We’re not here to mimic the shiny perfect families you see on your social media feed, we're here to tell your unique story as it shows up on the day of the photoshoot – tears, laughter or both!

Throw your checklist out the window and know that magic will naturally unfold. When it does, I’ll be there to capture it. 

Mum and Dad with their two children, standing behind gate in West Sussex countryside.
Mum smiling down at her daughter as she snuggles into her Mum and smiles up at the camera
Mum sat on beach looking out to sea with her two teenage children sat either side of her.

Looking to book a Family Photoshoot?

If you haven't already and would like to book a family photoshoot with me, you can either take a look at my current availability and book directly online or contact me on amyclairebarnes.photography@gmail.com

Become a VIP member

First of all, it's free!

To become a VIP member, all you need to do is apply below and you will instantly be added to my VIP list where you will receive all of the following benefits;

  • 10% off all FULL photoshoots
  • Exclusive access to my Big End of Year Sale for the following year
  • Priority access to seasonal full and mini photoshoots
  • Exclusive offers and discounts only available to VIP members