Whether you're hiring a professional photographer or taking your own family pictures, fall is a great time to create some beautiful images. You can play up the autumn theme with gorgeous backgrounds, fun props, and the perfect outfits.
All it takes is a little preparation and some great fall family photo ideas, and you'll have pictures you'll treasure for years to come — and want to share everywhere!
Gorgeous Autumn Photoshoot Outfit Ideas
It's always a good idea to consider what you should wear for family photos, but when it comes to fall pictures, your outfit choices are really important for the theme. A coordinated fall look will make your pictures super beautiful, we promise.
When I take fall family photos of people, I remind them to dress in something warm and comfy. If kids are cold, they don't tolerate the whole picture-taking thing for as long. Plus everyone looks uncomfortable in the photos if they aren't ... well, comfortable.
Play With Pops of Yellow
Yellow is one of the best colors to wear for fall photos because it has a distinctly fall feel and isn't so flashy that it detracts from the people in the picture. It also coordinates beautifully with most fall backgrounds.
Consider adding a yellow clothing item or accessory for each person in the family, or simply choose to have one or two people in yellow and keep the rest of the clothing neutral. Yellow pairs especially well with grey, denim, and navy.
Add Fur Accessories
Faux fur accessories can give your fall photos a cozy feeling, and they pair well with classic fall colors like burgundy, orange, and Earth tones. Look for faux fur vests, fur pom-poms for hats, fur boots, or hoods lined in fur.
Avoid giving everyone in the family a fur accessory, but it's fun to include two or three items. This looks especially gorgeous when the photo is shot with the light behind the family, letting the sun light up the fluffy fur.
Bring in Orange and Earth Tones
Earth tones are a natural choice for fall pictures, since they look beautiful with fall backgrounds. Choose varying shades of tan and brown so the look isn't too matchy, and add some pops of orange to make it fun. A little bright color with the earth tones helps the people stand out from the background too, so keep that in mind when choosing accessories for an earth-tone theme.
Choose Plaid and Bright Color Pops
Another fun look is to bring in a colorful plaid clothing item and build the rest of the family's outfits around that. Consider a plaid scarf, skirt, or shirt. Look at the colors in the plaid and then add accessories like colorful hats or boots to match.
Keep the rest of the clothing neutral and light. Ivory and earth tones can be great when you want the color pops to show up.
Fall Family Photo Ideas for Beautiful Backgrounds
The location you choose for your fall family pictures can have an incredibly dramatic effect on the final images. If you've ever seen one of those gorgeous leaf-filled forests as a backdrop, you know what we mean. Find a location with a great background that has lots of fall color or mood and you'll end up with pictures that really embrace the season.
The time of day matters almost as much as the place when it comes to your photo location. If there's a place I'm thinking about taking photos, I always stop by there at different times of day to find out when the light is best. Chances are it will be early morning or the hour before sunset, but take a few minutes to see what you think before you schedule your fall photoshoot.
Go for the Gold
Look for a great location with gold leaves or goldenrod to use as a background. Yellow tones will always help to give your autumn family photoshoot a distinctive fall feel. You can choose different outfit colors to go with a yellow background, but it's best to avoid wearing shades of yellow if you choose this tone. Otherwise, you risk blending in. Great options include navy, burgundy, and earth tones.
Stop by the Pumpkin Patch
Nothing says fall like a pumpkin patch, and it can also be a great location for fall family photos. The key with this kind of shot is avoiding a cluttered background. Shoot just as the patch is closing or when there aren't a lot of other people around. Angle the camera so the pumpkin field is in the background but other items, like vehicles or buildings, are out of the shot.
Don't Forget the Flowers
Fall leaves tend to take center stage for autumn photos, but there are also lots of fall-colored flowers that can give your pictures a unique and gorgeous look. If you have an arboretum or public garden in your area, this can be a great place to look for colorful flowers. Choose blooms in fall shades like yellow, orange, and red.
Check Out an Apple Orchard
An apple orchard can be a beautiful location for fall family pictures. Just like with the pumpkin patch, you should choose a time of day when there aren't a lot of other people there and try to angle the camera to avoid any clutter in the background. Dress in shades of red to coordinate with the apples and give your photo a colorful and fun autumn vibe.
Try a Pile of Leaves
Your own backyard can be the perfect place to take family pictures in the fall, especially if you have some trees that drop their leaves. Rake all the colorful leaves into a big pile and then have everyone lie down together.
You can wear anything for this type of photo, but it's good if your clothing doesn't blend in with the color of the leaves. Shoot the photo from above so you can see all the gorgeous leaves and everyone's smiling faces too.
Show Off Where You Live
If you live in a beautiful location, fall is the perfect time to show that off with your family photos. Choose a field with a great view and shoot in the golden light of evening. Ask the photographer to allow some of the background to be in focus so you'll be able to recognize the beauty of your area in the final images. This is a special way to show how your family is connected to your surroundings in the autumn.
Find a Bridge to Frame You
A footbridge makes a natural frame for your family pictures, so it's a no-fail option. Bonus points if there are pretty fall colors on the trees or bushes near the bridge. Even if there aren't, you can add in some great fall tones in your clothing.
Head to the Nearest Lake or River
Water makes a wonderful backdrop for fall family pictures, especially if you shoot the photos at a time when it's not super bright (that glare off the water can be a bit much if you take pictures at noon). You'll love how timeless and classic a lake or river feels behind you in the photos.
More Fun Ideas for Fall Family Photos
Your outfits and background are important, but there are some other fun ways to give your family photos that autumn vibe. Try one of these ideas too.
Add a Sun Flare
A sun flare or ring created by the light reflecting inside the camera can have a beautiful effect on the mood of your fall photos. It can take what might otherwise be an ordinary leafy background and turn it into a magical moment captured on camera.
Ask your photographer to create some sun flares, or if you're handy with a camera, point your lens at the spot where the sun is shining between leaves. It takes a little practice, but it can take your fall photos to the next level.
Try Throwing Some Leaves
In general, any family photo pose can work when you're shooting in the fall, but there's one special pose that's reserved only for this season: throwing leaves. To get this type of photo, you need the photographer to be shooting continuously. That way, as the leaves fall, you'll get lots of images.
Have everyone gather up handfuls of leaves and throw them over and over. You'll end up with a gorgeous and dynamic shot that is all about autumn.
Shoot in the Golden Hour
The hour before the sunset is known as the "golden hour" to photographers because the light turns a warm gold color. This is perfect for fall photos because it adds that yellow tint that makes them feel like they belong in the autumn. Shoot with the golden light behind the family for the best glow. You can also wear shades of blue to contrast with the warm orangey-yellow light.
Choose a Cozy Embrace
Family photos always look best when the people are standing close together, but you can really play this up in the fall. The weather is chilly, and cozy elements are especially important in fall pictures. This is also a great way to do fall photos with a baby, since parents can cuddle the little one and keep them warm.
Show Some Autumn Action
Family photos that show action are fun any time of the year, but they're especially great in the fall when you can show people running through leaves. This is a good option if you have a large family too, since it's an easy way to get everyone in the shot. This is another situation where the photographer should shoot continuously to capture the action of everyone running.
Get Candid With Some Unposed Photos
Ask your photographer to capture some moments that aren't posed, as well as your classic posed family photos. These real-life moments may end up being even more precious to you than other pictures, and they're fun to get. The key is to have something you can all do together, like fishing, hiking, or even just blowing bubbles. Make sure you get some fall leaves in the background.
Preserve Your Memories of a Beautiful Time of Year
Fall is a great time to get some truly special family photos. You can photograph Thanksgiving and other special holidays or simply choose colors and background that give your photos an autumn feel. Either way, this is the perfect way to preserve your memories of a beautiful time of year.