How Much Does Family Photography Cost?

Family photography sessions are an incredible way to create a visual story and legacy for your family. They are an important reminder of the time that has passed, and the joyful moments we experienced along the way. But when beginning your search, you may find yourself wondering, “How much does family photography cost anyway?”

When searching the internet (or Facebook moms’ groups) for average cost of a family, maternity, or newborn photo session, you will likely get one of two answers: either a wide range of prices, or even worse, an answer that every photographer charges next to nothing for a session. Neither of these answers are particularly helpful, because they leave out some key details. Details like, what is included in the process, the photographer’s experience and skill level, and the quality of photos delivered.

So, let’s dive deeper into average costs based on a photographer’s experience and skill level. Then, what you can expect to receive from each of these levels.

Family of three in Fairmount Park while featured in blog post answering the question how much does family photography cost

So, how much does family photography cost?

Average Starting Price Based on Experience Level

  • Brand New/Beginner: $0 – $350
  • Professional: $400 – $1000
  • Specialized: $1000 – $3000
  • Luxury: $3000+

What to Expect at Each Level

Brand New/Beginner

At this price point, the photographer is probably someone who is just diving in to taking photos, or someone who doesn’t have a legal business setup. It can be risky to hire at this level because the equipment is more than likely not high quality, and final photos not consistent. You might get lucky and get someone who was just born to do this job, but in my experience, this typically is not the case.


This photographer is more experienced, and has probably invested in their gear and education. The full photo session experience is probably simple, but you should be able to count on them to deliver images consistent with their portfolio. At this range, the photographer either has their business set up for part time work, hasn’t decided on a specialty, or does a high volume of sessions throughout the year.


The specialized photographer works in their business full time, with high quality gear and systems for a seamless experience. They have narrowed down their focus to one or two specialties and can be counted on to provide a high level of service and quality. You can expect to be guided through the planning process from start to finish, and to feel comfortable and cared for before, during, and after your session. This photographer can problem solve for less than ideal conditions, changes in weather, and can confidently guide and pose families for high quality and consistent images and print products every time.


The luxury photographer is very well established with high quality gear and solid, consistent photos. You can usually expect to have hair and makeup, styling for the whole family, and luxury settings included in your session. This photographer will probably have extras built in to their pricing and collections, such as albums, framed prints, etc. Typically, the luxury photography experience includes an in-person viewing and ordering appointment, and possibly installation of framed prints and canvases in your home.

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Why Does All of This Matter?

When searching for a photographer for your photo session, it is important to remember that these photos will be a part of your family’s legacy. Your children, friends, and family will look at these photos through the years as a reminder of the moments and connections you all shared through each stage of your journey.

What to Consider When Choosing Your Photographer

  • Skill Level: This does not just mean how long they have been photographing or their understanding of lighting, posing, and technical skills, but also includes their ability to make you feel comfortable before, during, and after your session
  • Portfolio Consistency: You want a photographer with a clear photographic style that is consistent throughout their website (ex: natural, joyful, unposed moments)
  • Editing Style: These photos will hang on your walls and adorn your coffee tables for years to come, so be sure that the photographer you choose has a consistent editing style that fits your personal aesthetic
  • Planning: You want to ensure that the photographer you choose will be able to guide you through the process from booking, to styling and location selection, during your session, and beyond

How Much Does Family Photography Cost

I hope this has been helpful in clearing some of the clutter found on the internet surrounding the topic. There are so many answers to the question, “How much does family photography cost?”. It is important to find what is included in that answer! No matter what level photographer you decide on, I want to ensure that you have an idea of what to expect along the way, and what you should look for in the process.

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