dressing for outdoor photos | mid tone colors

Dressing for outdoor photos- solving the confusion

Your bed is covered with clothes. You have a bazillion tabs open on your computer. But you still don’t have any idea what your family is wearing for your photo session. Or rather, you have lots of ideas, and don’t know what the best combination is. Outfit overload is here. Dressing for outdoor photos so that you look like a pulled-together, effortlessly stylish group can seem overwhelming. With a few simple strategies, though, it’s easier than you think.

Strategy one for dressing for outdoor photos

Choose a color palette (blues, pastels, earth tones, etc.- see examples below), and stick to the middle of the color road. Avoid anything very light or very dark- choose midtones. They’ll be in visual harmony with the background of the outdoors.

Here’s a handy visual ‘cheat sheet’ of midtones:

Mid-tone paint colors

Strategy two for dressing for outdoor photos

Once you’ve chosen the general color palette, find colors that harmonize. Remember the color wheel? It’s a huge help in coming up with colors that go well together. And here’s my favorite way to use the color wheel- the Adobe color picker. You can pick any base color, and it will come up with combinations for you- genius!

Adobe color scheme generator

And another secret weapon for finding color combinations you like-

Design Seeds

Their motto is ‘for those who love color’, and it’s heaven for color lovers. They feature hundreds of color palettes, so you’re sure to find a combination you love.

Strategy three for dressing for outdoor photos

Once you’ve decided on your colors, find clothing in those color families that doesn’t match, but goes together. You can use patterns or solids, but you’ll find if you stick to the color scheme, it will flow. It helps to think of everyone’s outfits as one big outfit- lay them out together and see if anything jumps out at you.

Here are a few examples- first, a midtone color scheme of coral and blues:

dressing-for-outdoor-photos- midtones

next, a set with muted midtones:

dressing-for-outdoor-photos-muted-midtonesnow a combination of bright midtones:

dressing-for-outdoor-photos-bright-midtonesand finally, a midtone group of outfits in action:



If you’d like to talk more about an outdoor photo session for your family or your kids, click here to send me a message so we can chat about it!

I’ll help you prepare every step of the way for your photo shoot, including what to wear. Clients often text me pictures while they’re shopping for a second opinion, and I love it!


Serving Kalamazoo & Portage Mi
will travel throughout southwest Michigan
1920 Brentwood Ave, Kalamazoo MI 49008
Phone: (269) 267 - 7083Email: ellendykstraphotography@gmail.com

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