Senior picture ideas is the most searched for so I thought I’d give some of my top ideas after being a senior portrait photographer for over a decade in Portland! Plus Portland, Oregon has it’s own style for senior pictures!
Portland Weather Factor
When looking for senior picture ideas, consider the weather. In Portland, we have about four months of good weather and each offers its own features! June and July are great for green grass and flowers. The Rose Garden is the most beautiful at the end of June and early July but also has beautiful blooms into August. And did you know there are other rose gardens around town? The image below isn’t in the big touristy rose garden, this is on the east side and there are several to choose from!
August is the prime month for weather with golden light and literally no chance of being rained out. But it will be hot. Though in years past, July was just as hot as August! September still has good weather but I always have at least one senior session rained out that month. And it isn’t ideal because you are back in school and we only have 2 days a week to hope for good weather unless you are going to skip out on school.
One of the first questions I will ask you is how you want your images to feel. Are they modern and stylish, are they relaxed and casual or are they a bit of both? Do you want more nature or more hardscapes? We are so lucky that our city offers a huge variety of backdrops from a modern Pearl District with glass and concrete buildings and a nature park on the next block, or we can cross the river and explore a very cool graffiti building and capture the sunset over the city. We can use our amazing bridges or drive 10mins up to Hoyt Arboretum to be in nature. It’s all possible and there are so many amazing spots for senior pictures in Portland!
Portland Studio Pictures
Now hear me out, studio pictures don’t have to be cheesy! I love playing in the studio with light, using the natural large windows or using my strobes for something more dramatic. A photo studio is a blank slate and I love getting creative with my senior clients! Are you a dancer and have wanted amazing dance portraits? Did you find a gorgeous dress that you don’t want to risk getting ruined outside? Or maybe you have a ton of props you want to use but packing them around to locations won’t work? My photo studio is the perfect spot for so many senior picture ideas!
Portland Senior Style
Style is subjective and you should always go with what YOU like. Be sure that the photographer you hire shares your vision. Talk to them in advance, on the phone, over zoom, in person if you can! Each photographer has their own style for creating images and editing. My style of portraits is focused on a variety of expressions, making you feel beautiful and confident and always seeing yourself in the images.
Biggest Tip for Senior Picture Ideas
Once you hire a photographer, talk to them! I like my seniors to feel that their portraits are a collaboration where we work together to create your dream senior pictures. If you aren’t sure where to start, that is normal! It’s my job to ask questions to start to build our plan for your shoot day. All the details and specifics are what I want to know. Do you want to include your dog? Maybe have your bff’s meet up at a park cause you’ve been best friends since grade school? Do you only want nature but no wheat field? Maybe you really want to be on a bridge? Do you want flowers but it’s the wrong time of year? All of those details will help me create the plan for your photoshoot day!
When To Book Senior Pictures
Senior portraits in Portland are taken June-September the year BEFORE you graduate. Most high schools have a yearbook deadline in the Fall of your senior year. It’s best to start looking for your photographer in the Spring of your Junior year as many of us are fully booked for the season before summer starts.