February 24, 2021

Senior Photo Ideas | Who To Bring

Senior photos are such a big part of your senior year! They are also one of my favorite things to photograph because I love the energy each senior brings to their session and their unique senior photo ideas!

But one question that often pops-up when seniors book their session with me is who all should I bring with me?

First, for legal reasons, you’ll have to have a legal guardian with you because you’re mostly likely still a minor. Usually just one parent or guardian attends. Most of the time, its Mom – who is your biggest cheerleader!

After we get all the shots that we need for your senior session, I always love taking a few quick photos of you with whoever you brought! Sometimes, these are the photos that end up in dorm room frames! You know, the ones you look at when you get a little homesick! (It happens to the best of us!)

It’s no secret that I’m a huge animal lover! So including your pet(s) always makes for some unique senior photo ideas!

If you decide you want to include an animal as part of your senior session, it’s super important that you bring someone with you that can help you handle your pet while pictures aren’t being taken of them.

Girl cuddling with dog on valentine's day senior photo ideas

Tips for bringing dogs:

If your dog is young or gets easily wound up, make sure they get a good amount of exercise before they come! Getting them a little tuckered out usually makes them easier to work with! It also tends to get them to stick that big happy tongue out! Always bring a leash and if you have one, bring a favorite toy! Someone can squeak it or show it to your pooch while you’re focusing on smiling!

Tips for photographing horses:

Same as with dogs, having them get some exercise before the session can help tucker them out and make them a little easier to work with! I always recommend a trusted barn friend lunge your horse a bit (or you could do this earlier) and give them a good groom and walk them over to you when we’re ready. Mint wrappers or squeaky toys can help get those ears up! Especially when a helper can make the noise behind the camera. And most importantly, keep them in a safe area. Horses are flight animals and spook easily! We definitely don’t want to be chasing them down if they get loose! I promise I can make your photos look amazing, even at your barn!

Usually pictures with your fur babies (or not so furry babies) only take about 15-20 minutes.

Phoenix Arizona senior session with horse senior photo ideas

Third, don’t bring your whole crew! Having too many people at your session can get overwhelming quickly! Stick with your legal guardian(s) and you’ll be good to go! If you’re wanting some pictures with your siblings, have them show up at the end after we get all the shots we need!

Now that you’ve established who to bring with you to your session, here are some quick ways they can help you during your session:

  • Assist with any outfit changes
  • Hold props such as hats, sports gear, pets, etc.
  • Be your cheerleader and hype person!
  • Make you laugh! The most genuine smiles come from laughter (siblings can often be the best at this!)
  • Take you out for a one-on-one dinner or treat afterwards!

One of my favorite “after” senior photo ideas is to go get some ice cream after your session! Some of my favorite spots in the valley for ice cream are:

ice cream senior session idea by Black Mountain Photography senior photo ideas

The Sugar Bowl in Scottsdale (I actually did a senior shoot here!)

Churn in Phoenix

The Screamery (They have ice cream flights!)

The Creek Cookies & Cream (They have awesome ice cream sandwiches!)

Check out some of Black Mountain’s past senior sessions:

Sunflower Senior Session

Cave Creek Senior Session

Get the details on senior sessions!



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