Do you ever feel like all of the graduation announcements you’re seeing in the mail and on Facebook look eerily similar? Same location, similar posing, similar lighting, similar outfits? If you’re looking to make your senior session unique, here are some of my top tips for you!

1.  Choose a location that reflects your personality.

Are you a history buff who’s in love with old architecture (Hartwood Acres might be perfect for you!)? Or maybe a sports fanatic who never misses a Pittsburgh sports event (the North Shore could be a great fit!)? Or maybe you love studying with friends in quaint coffee shops in small towns (have you heard of Wunderbar Café?!). The possibilities for a unique location are endless, and really (as cliché as it might sound) can only be limited by your imagination! I’ve had seniors choose…

…a coffee shop they’ve visited every day after school during their senior year.

…a family friend’s farm they grew up visiting on the weekend.

 …a bright and colorful garden to match their joyful personality!


2.   Find a location that’s off-limits to most people – but maybe not to you!

This tip might take a bit of extra thought, but every person has their own personal connections that can open up a completely different option for photos! Do you have a family friend who owns a farm with an old barn? Or a parent who works for a sweet looking country club (like Sara’s mom?)? Or maybe your best friend has a super cool backyard. The takeaway from this point is: you never know what location you might be able to use until you ask!

3.   Choose outfits, colors, and/or accessories that reflect YOU!

Are you obsessed with hats? Do you love keeping up with the latest fashion trends? Thinking about incorporating pieces unique to you is a great way to set yourself apart in your senior photos! For example…

Angelica wanted to incorporate her love of fashion into her senior photos, so she brought maroon hat and some chic outfits to match her chosen session location of downtown Pittsburgh!


Sharon brought an authentic Indian dress along with her for her senior session and it was the perfect way to incorporate her heritage!


For one of her outfits, Caileigh chose navy and yellow colors to reflect her school’s colors (navy and yellow)!


Sara wore CROCS to her senior session, just because she loves them. And I love her!


4.   Bring a prop or two!

Have you been dancing since you could walk? Did you make your varsity volleyball team? Are you obsessed with Disney (let’s be friends!!)? Is your dog your best friend? These are ALL things that can potentially be incorporated into your senior photos! For a few examples, I’ve had seniors bring…

… a whole backpack full of dance shoes. (As a nod to their background in dance!)

 …a violin. (But any instrument will do!)

…sports equipment. (Field hockey sticks, volleyballs, ice skates, oh my!)

 …their favorite books. (Book worms are always welcome!)

 …sheet music. (Love to sing? Have an instrument that’s too big to bring to your session? This could be a great option for you!)

And there you have it – four tips for making your senior session unique to YOU! For more tips, tricks, and advice be sure to check out the JHP insta page here