I get this question all of the time. And while I can’t answer that question for your family – I can provide some advice, opinions and some things to think about.

First, I would say it’s important to decide if you want your session indoors or outdoors. For this blog post, I will focus on outdoor sessions. (a future post will be dedicated to indoor/studio sessions.)

Chicagoans are very lucky to live in such a beautiful area – with so many spots to choose from for a photo session. Literally, every street corner could be a location! However, I first advise clients to think about what type of family they see themselves as. Are you city-dwellers in the true sense? Does your family love to go downtown, or maybe you live downtown? Are the colors and textures of the city attractive to you and do they fit your style and aesthetic? Especially when you think about the end product in your home.

Or, do you prefer “country in the city” as I like to call it. Chicago also has plenty of that! With all of the green space in this city, it can seem as though your session was far away from the center of the city!

For an urban-type feel, I love to get into the loop. I love the el tracks above and different textures that the city offers. Often, we’ll duck into an alley and find some cool murals or graffiti art. The options are endless here.

For park-type settings, I love Winnemac Park, Women’s Park and Garden, Montrose Bird Sanctuary, Lincoln Park Zoo – just to name a few.

No matter the backdrop to your photoshoot – the most important thing is documenting the connection of your family. Capturing each person just as they are and the love and laughter between your crew – big or small.

I hope this helps you make a decision for your family photos! If I can be of assistance, please don’t hesitate to reach out at shalimar@shalimarbphotography.com

As always, here are some examples of photos from some of my favorite locations:




Park shoot





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