Ellie’s Summer Senior Session: Senior Portrait Ideas + Inspiration

May 14, 2021


Ellie and I had SO much fun doing her senior session in Springfield over the summer! Check out this post if you want fun senior portrait ideas + more!


high school graduate standing in field


Ellie’s senior session


This cutie had her senior shoot on her BIRTHDAY! I couldn’t even handle how amazing it all was and how dreamy the light was! We got the most magical sunset ever! 


high school graduate


Ellie, you’re the sweetest and most beautiful ever, I’m SOOOO beyond happy I got to take your senior photos! 


Why choose summertime for your senior photos?


Not sure what season to pick for your photos?! Summer is easily the most popular!! It’s full of golden nights, perfect weather, wildflowers, and tall golden grass!


high school senior portrait on a road


  • Golden summer light


This is an obvious one – I seriously will neer get over the epic summer shoots I do when we get the dreamiest summer light ever! Golden hour during the summertime is the most magical time to shoot and will bring the softest lighting into your senior photos. 


high school senior portrait in a field


The light hits differently at different types of locations, and you can’t always guarantee a sunny day – but bright sun is obviously much more likely in the summer than in the spring or fall seasons!!


  • Warm weather


I mean you can’t ask for better weather than evenings in the summertime, can you?! Senior sessions on summer evenings are the best because it’s warm outside but isn’t hot – the sun is going down and the hottest part of the day is over. No sweating through your clothes like you might if your session is in the middle of a hot summer day!


senior portrait on the waters edge


  • Wildflowers everywhere


This is a fave of mine – wildflowers are everywhere in the summertime in Oregon!! There are sunflowers and tons of little wildflowers all around. These can make your shoot feel so unique and whimsical no matter where you are!


high school senior portrait in a field


  • Tall golden grass


And finally, in the summertime you get beautiful tall golden grass! Especially at places like Smith Rock that are more of a desert environment. Tall golden wheat + grass fields are stunning for senior photos and make you look amazing when you slowly walk through them!


high school senior portrait in a field

Summer senior portrait outfit inspiration + ideas


high school graduate


Now I want to give you some senior portrait outfit ideas if you’re struggling to decide what to wear!! I’ve got a whole Pinterest board of senior photo outfit inspo too, but wanted to give you a place to start + to help get you brainstorming. Here’s a list of the most common outfits my seniors wear that ALWAYS look bomb for photos!!


  • Long/flowy dresses


high school senior portrait in a field


Long, flowy dresses are alwayssss a good way to go if you want whimsical, summery senior photos. Especially if we’re shooting somewhere that has some wind, because the movement of long dresses adds a super pretty touch to photos! It’s also just fun twirling around in a long dress and makes you feel beautiful!


  • Short dresses/rompers


high school senior portrait in a field


If you want to go a little more casual, opt for a short dress or a romper! These are fun and playful, while still being a little dressed up. I love a good floral romper or patterned dress!


  • Tees & blouses


high school graduate with her family


If you’re more of a t-shirt and shorts kinda person, freaking wear that!! Pair some cute black denim shorts with a simple graphic/floral/patterned tee or blouse. Wear some sandals or flats and you’ll be good to go!


  • Shorts & skirts


high school graduate with her family


Bottoms are usually easier to figure out, since they won’t have as many patterns or designs that tops do (except skirts might!). Wear shorts or skirts that make you feel comfy + aren’t too tight or loose. This isn’t the time to try and squeeze yourself into something smaller – we want you to be able to move freely and feel amazing!!


  • Patterns vs. solids


high school senior portrait on a road


I LOVE patterns in senior photos! I always tell my seniors to keep patterns to a minimum because we don’t want them to be distracting in the photos, or clash with the background. Don’t wear any patterns that are too tiny because we won’t be able to see them in the photos!! Feel free to always ask me about patterns and for help with choosing what patterns will be good for your photos!


  • Accessories


Accessories are such a fun way to spice up your photos! I love the idea of bringing your own accessories, flowers, blankets, hats, vintage trucks! Anything to make it YOU!


high school senior sitting on a truck


Here are some accessories you can bring along to your shoot to add some variety + personalize your photos:

  • Hats (here’s a fun video showing off my seniors with their cute Gigi Pip hats!)
  • Jewelry
  • Blankets
  • Flowers
  • Jackets
  • Other props/outfit pieces that are meaningful to you

high school senior in a field with her dog


Summer senior photo location ideas


Need help finding the perf location for your photos?! I got you!! Here are some places I love to take my seniors for adventurous, outdoor senior photos!


senior portrait on the waters edge

General location types

high school senior in a field

Specific senior portrait locations in Oregon

A fun senior photo idea


high school graduate with her friends


A fun + unique senior photo idea: bring friends to your session!! It’s SO much fun getting senior photos taken with your best friends and to have them to look back on. I’m always obsessed with friend photos!!


high school senior with her friends portrait in a field


Click here to check out a full senior gallery from a 2021 senior!

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