Interior Design and Lifestyle Photography

If you’ve ever felt nervous about the idea of bringing a photographer (me!) into your home, this post is for you! Of course, there’s no need to do a full house remodel before a shoot, but sometimes it can be nice to spruce things up and have your home looking its best. Check out these tips to relieve any home anxiety before your lifestyle session. After that head over to my contact page to book your own in-home shoot!



Your bed is usually a great spot to do photos- typically nice light and a soft surface to lay your little one. Plus this is a place you probably spend a lot of time together, and it’s wonderful to document your little family all hanging out here. Honestly, these are some of my very favorite baby shots. To prepare your bedroom for a shoot make the bed, and clear off your nightstands. (pile it all up somewhere in the room, I promise you won’t see it in the photos!) If you have a busy patterned comforter it might be a good idea to invest in a solid blanket to drape over top to give a more subdued backdrop for baby photos.



You don’t want your photos to show a Pinterest-perfect styled house, you want them to reflect your real home. To avoid this, think about using your home decor to inject your family’s personality into your photos. Displaying some sentimental memorabilia or updating your framed photos are easy ways to make your home feel unique to you. DIY projects are another way to have one-of-a-kind decor. Personalized wall art in a nursery can make for an especially sweet photo.



I love to know and highlight favorite places and rooms in client’s homes. Sometimes that’s a beautifully decorated nursery, and sometimes it’s a light-filled stairway where the kids play all sorts of games. I think it’s important to document favorite places in a growing family’s home- because they will constantly change over time. Please let me know if you have any favorite rooms or meaningful decor that you want to make sure is captured so I can do my best. It’s amazing what tiny home details can trigger powerful memories when you’re looking at these photos twenty years down the road.


If you have kids, you likely have clutter. It’s inevitable and difficult to avoid. You don’t need to shove everything in a closet or a spare bedroom, but be aware that busy backgrounds can take away the focus from the family itself. So pick a few favorite toys and books to keep out, and move the rest to the side. I’m still trying to document real life- and no one lives in a perfectly clean house with a toddler. Havenly has a blog post on stylish toy storage solutions that might be worth checking out before a shoot. Their interior designers suggest using furniture like ottomans or benches that can store toys out of sight and would definitely come in handy for a last minute sweep before a photo session.


I can, of course, use flash and other lighting techniques, but nothing flatters more than natural light. So open those blinds and curtains and let the sunshine stream in. To get an idea of what rooms in your home get the best light spend some time in your house with the lights off and pay attention to how the light comes in. Taking note of the best times and location of the light in your home will help us schedule the shoot accordingly to get the absolute best shots. Of course, don’t panic if your favorite room of the house doesn’t get great light, I can always get creative and find a solution.



If a room is feeling a bit bland an easy way to elevate your decor before a shoot is to introduce some texture. Woven rugs, knit blankets or fuzzy pillows are just a few ways you can add visual interest to a room and will end up photographing beautifully. Additionally, textured surfaces can potentially become an interesting background to rest baby against for close up shots.

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    If you'd like to book a project or have questions, you can reach me by email or phone. I respond to messages within 1 business day.

    About Mary Kate

    Mary Kate McKenna Photography is located in Downtown Frederick, Maryland. MK specializes in documenting families, business and events. This could mean a lifestyle session with your newborn, documenting a birthday party, or editorial photos of your business, including custom stock imagery or headshots. Our strength is in highlighting people and places in a natural, unposed way. Send a note to chat about how we can help with your photography needs.