Extended Family Photos on Croatan Beach, Virginia | Family Photographer in Virginia Beach
Croatan Beach is just across the Rudee Inlet from the Virginia Beach Oceanfront, nestled in a neighborhood. Its a great, safe area that’s quiet and homey but just a short drive over the bridge from food and nightlife. There aren’t many vacation rentals in the neighborhood but its a fabulous area so snag it if you can!
Most vacation rentals in Virginia Beach are in Sandbridge Beach, a full 45 minute drive from the Ocean Front. North End (streets 42nd and higher) have a large number of rentals too, also close proximity to restaurants and bars.
The difference between Croatan and the North End is simple: Parking and people. Most of Croatan’s beach accesses are private residential areas, and the few public accesses have no parking – not even on the street. There is a large public beach parking lot with beach access that is not quite as frequented.
The North End is littered with street parking, cross walks and the like and are filled with people. But watch your signs! It can get tricky.
This family scored a beach rental in Croatan neighborhood with just a one block walk to public beach access. We had just one other family doing photos and a few beach walkers and that was IT! Almost no one! A far cry from Sandbridge Beach & North End – which are my usual shooting locations.
The light this evening was magical. You can tell there was a pink/orange glow that light up the place.
Can you see it in the water?!
Tips for Extended Family Photos
Nothing is easy about extended family photos, but its always worth it and I’m here to support you every step! But the hardest part is done: Everyone will be in one place at the same time!
Date: I always start as early in the week as possible – before anyone gets a sunburn, and several options for weather back ups.
What to wear: Use Style & Select for a custom curated idea list (All my clients get free access!)
- When in doubt, pinks and blues are easy and look good on everyone at the beach
Photographer: There’s so many to choose from! Tick of these basic requirements:
- Has experience with families – a wedding photog will not work here bc bridal parties are not the same as a gaggle of kids.
- Is FAST This can make or break your experience! A slow photog will make for a painful session with kids begging to be done. I’ve experienced it myself!
- Is flexible in your travel dates. You have a short window and weather is real. Make sure there’s a back up plan if the first date doesn’t work.
- Will come to you. Make it easy on yourself and make sure you don’t have to transport your crowd further than absolutely necessary. Less stress!
The Value of Extended Family Photos
Extended family photo sessions are really several family sessions in one. In addition to the large group, all the cousins, and adult children shots we also get:
- Each nuclear family solo
- Each couple solo
- Each set of siblings
- Grandparents alone
And that’s for every nuclear family in group, which means no need for fall family sessions and your Christmas card photo is complete!Alison is the chaos-commanding family photographer in Virginia Beach, VA thriving in the loud & messy offering in home lifestyle, outdoor, and extended family sessions.
Owner & Photographer of Alison Bell, Photographer, she is also the circus ring leader of four boys, half-homeschooling USMC family.
Alison offers full-contact family photo sessions with wardrobe styling, sessions that feel like a party and custom print shopping. Even Dad has a good time!
She's on a mission to get your images in your hand, rather than gathering digital dust! Get an album and print dozens of shots in one place!
If you can't remember last time your family did photos, its time to chat asap!
Clients rave about how easy and enjoyable their session is and how their kids wanting to do it again!
Alison Bell, Photographer serves VA Beach, Chesapeake, Norfolk, Suffolk, Cape Charles, and Hampton in Hampton Roads area of Virginia.
Find her on Insta @alisonbellphotog!