Instead of the usual picture day during the school year, you may be getting mail and phone calls from a strange company, saying that your child is scheduled for an appointment for senior portraits. These calls, surprisingly, are not scams! Their school likely scheduled this appointment, and this is your child’s chance to have a unique and special school photo!

But since these photo sessions aren’t your usual picture day cases, there are a few new things to pay attention to. Your kid may be going to a new location, be asked to wear a specific outfit, all sorts of new and exciting things that may throw you and your child off if you’ve never done this before. Well, luckily, I have a few tips to help you get through this strange event!

First, do not disregard any letters or calls you receive from the photographers! It’s their job to work with the school and give your senior a great picture, and one within the guidelines for the yearbook! While you may be able to take personal photos yourself, your kid will need to come in for this session to be in the yearbook, and the bare-minimum photos for it are often free! Make sure you know when the appointment is and there’s time to be there!

Second, plan out exactly what you want from the studio, and what your child wants to do. While the yearbook photos themselves may be free, the studio will also offer other packages so you can have personalized photos for graduation and for your scrapbooks! Take the time to read the packages over, and make sure your child and you find something you'll both enjoy. Happier subjects take better pictures!

Third, don’t be afraid to ask questions! Within the information sent in the mail or the calls you receive, you should be able to find a phone number or website. From there, you can directly talk to the people who work there, and they’ll be happy to answer any questions or even help you find another date! They’re there to make sure your child’s photo is perfect, and communication will help the final product!

Senior pictures are one of a kind, and often the last time you’ll be able to get a professional portrait for your child for free! As well, these pictures may be used for college transfers and school records, and making a good impression helps! Make sure to keep an eye out for letters and calls, and enjoy your child’s graduation next summer!

[Photo was taken by Nik Walz at Prestige Portraits, Vestal. Used with permission.]