Tips for Stunning Fall Family Photos in Minnesota
As the days grow shorter and the air turns crisp, Minnesota's autumn scenery sets the stage for stunning family photos. Capture the golden hour magic, choose picturesque locations, coordinate wardrobe wisely, and embrace candid moments. Let a seasoned family photographer in Minnesota create beautiful memories for your family.
Tips for Stunning Fall Family Photos in Minnesota cover

As the days shorten and the air turns crisp, Minnesota’s scenery begins to work its autumn magic. Fiery hues of orange, red, and gold adorn the trees, painting a perfect backdrop for those treasured family photos. As a family photographer who has spent years capturing the love and warmth of families amidst this seasonal splendor, I believe fall is one of the most vibrant and picturesque times to schedule a family photography session.

The Golden Hour Magic

As a seasoned family photographer, I cannot stress enough the transformative power of the golden hour. During fall in Minnesota, the sun casts a golden, almost honey-like light that infuses your family portraits with warmth and depth. It’s a time when the world seems to pause briefly, where your family is basked in a soft, golden glow that naturally brings out the love and connection you share. Imagine your children's hair illuminated by this golden light as they play amongst the leaves—a family photographer's dream! To harness this magic, I typically recommend scheduling your shoot for late afternoon to early evening. This is when the sun is low in the sky, casting that enchanting, soft light that will give your photos an almost dreamlike quality.

Location, Location, Location

In Minnesota, we're spoiled for choice when it comes to picturesque locations. One of my personal favorites is the serene ambiance of the Mississippi River pathways, where the trees form a vibrant archway over the trails, creating a natural frame for your family. Or perhaps you prefer the rustic charm of a countryside apple orchard, like the Aamodt’s Apple Farm in Stillwater, offering a quintessential fall backdrop with rows of apple trees and rustic barns. As your family photographer, part of my role is to guide you to a location that not only complements the autumn season but also feels like you. It’s about capturing your family’s essence in a setting that is equally meaningful.

Wardrobe Wisdom

Oh, the joys of coordinating outfits for the whole family without making it look like you’re all members of a matching club! It’s a delicate balance, but when done right, your family’s attire can elevate your photos to a whole new level. My advice? Start with a base color palette—perhaps drawing inspiration from the rich fall foliage of Minnesota. Think deep maroons, rich navy blues, and golden yellows. From there, mix and match. Maybe Mom wears a maroon dress, Dad dons a navy shirt, and the kids are in a mix of coordinating patterns and solids. But above all, comfort is paramount. I’ve found that when families wear clothes they feel good in, they look relaxed and natural in their photos, which is always the goal.

Getting the Kids (and Pets!) Ready

As any parent knows, kids can be wonderfully unpredictable. As a family photographer, some of my most cherished shots have been the spontaneous moments—like when a toddler bursts into giggles or a dog decides it’s time to photobomb! To set the stage for a fun and relaxed photo session, consider bringing along a favorite toy or treat. For pets, a familiar blanket or a beloved toy can help them feel at ease in a new environment. Remember, this is a joyful occasion—a chance to capture your family in all its beautiful, dynamic glory, pets included!

Posing but not “Posing”

True family moments aren't captured through rigid poses; they’re found in the laughter, the hugs, the stolen kisses, and the playful chaos that makes your family unique. As your photographer, I aim to guide rather than dictate your session. Instead of asking you to “place your hand here” or “stand like so,” I might ask you to whisper a joke in your partner's ear or ask your kids to show you how high they can jump. It’s about creating natural interactions that lead to authentic expressions.

Handling the Unpredictable Minnesota Weather

Minnesota, with its vibrant fall colors, is a fantastic canvas, but let’s be honest—it’s also known for its sudden weather shifts. One day it’s sunny and crisp; the next could bring a surprise snow flurry! As your family photographer, I always have a Plan B. I scout locations that offer indoor and outdoor options and keep an eye on weather forecasts. I’ve had sessions where a sudden drizzle turned into an impromptu dance-in-the-rain photo, which the family adored. It’s about embracing what comes our way and turning it into something beautiful and memorable.

Embracing the Candid Moments

The planned shots are wonderful, but often it's the unplanned moments that steal the show. Imagine your little one picking up a bright red maple leaf, or your spouse pulling you into an unexpected embrace. These candid shots—full of genuine emotion and connection—are where the magic truly lies. As a seasoned family photographer, I am always on the lookout for these fleeting, precious moments, capturing the authentic spirit of your family in the heart of Minnesota's stunning autumn landscape.

A Family Photographer’s Perspective

From my years as a family photographer in Minnesota, I've learned that every family is wonderfully unique, and that’s exactly what I aim to capture. It’s about more than just clicking a camera; it’s about connecting with you and your loved ones, understanding your personalities, and reflecting those in your photographs. It’s making sure the shy toddler feels safe and the energetic teen feels heard. It’s about finding the balance between offering guidance and stepping back to let your family’s story unfold naturally through the lens.


Capturing your family's love and warmth amidst the vibrant hues of a Minnesota autumn isn’t just about the photographs—it’s about the experience, the memories made during that golden afternoon, the little moments that you’ll look back on for years to come. Choosing a seasoned family photographer is an investment not just in beautiful photos, but in capturing the essence of your family at this precious moment in time.

Your Guide to Perfect Fall Family Photos

Ready to embrace the autumn glow with your loved ones? To ensure that your family’s unique personality shines through in every shot, I’ve created a comprehensive Style and Planning Guide tailored for fall photo sessions. This guide includes more in-depth tips on wardrobe choices, preparing your family for the session, and what to expect when working with a professional family photographer. Download it today and take the first step toward a memorable and magical family photography experience in Minnesota.


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