Ways to Capture High School Student Athlete Portraits.

upside down portrait of high school senior boy in swimming pool with googles on forehead floating on back towards edge of deck where danielle jacqueline photography camera is near memphis tennessee

Students preparing to graduate from school and sports usually want senior photo sessions to include something from their athletic career. But you don’t have to limit yourself to standard poses with props and a letter jacket! There are plenty of ways to highlight your personality and the things you love to do! So, I thought I’d share my approach to taking high school student athlete portraits.

The demands of graduation can be taxing. Many students and their parents totally forget about taking pictures! Planning and creativity can seem tedious. This is why I always encourage people to find a professional to help. It may cost a little more, but the relief and end product is always worth it. I love getting to know the interests, passions, hobbies, activities and future plans of soon-to-be graduates!

Graduation Portraits Start With Personality

After meeting this senior, I had plenty of ideas! But his personality was a little shy and kind of laid back. So I didn’t want to pull him too far outside of his comfort zone. It’s my job to help people come out of their shell a little bit – but I have to respect boundaries. He was pretty nervous about the whole thing.

close up hero image of high school senior at edge of swimming pool for graduation session for athletes near memphis tenn black and white looking right arms folded on deck eye level
angle from left looking down pool deck at high school swimmer hands on edge smiling with goggles on head for graduation photo session with danielle jacqueline near memphis tennessee

Besides being an excellent swimmer, I couldn’t help but notice how intelligent and genuine he was. He had a plan after graduation and worked really hard to keep himself on track. The more we talked, the more I realized he also had quite the sense of humor. All of this played a role in the way we took his high school student athlete portraits.

Structuring the Photo Shoot for Comfort.

Photographing young people is so much easier when they’re comfortable. Because of this, I decided to kick off this photo session with a few formal shots in front of the swimming pool. His mom wanted to use these for open-house invites. So we kept it pretty simple and didn’t force him into any awkward positions. This really helped him loosen up and warm up to the camera.

When we were planning the shoot, he talked a lot about his truck. So I thought it would be a good idea to move to this setting next. The driver’s seat is a part of his lifestyle and a place he’s really familiar with. You can tell by his eyes that he was proud of his wheels – and a lot more comfortable! This is why I pry about interests and passions! From here, he began to open up more.

formal student athlete poses with sport reference in background black polo arms crossed glasses smiling in front of pool for graduation by danielle jacqueline olive branch ms
high school senior with hand on the wheel of graduation vehicle during photo session with danielle jacqueline photography near memphis tennessee

The Little Details of High School Matter.

High school student athlete portraits like these are the ones that bless parents. Many hours are spent going back and forth to practices and games. Time flies. Getting their license will soon seem like a distant memory. So try to find a way to cherish the little things and unique moments. What defines a child in high school changes quickly as their life goes on.

Photographing Passion for Graduation

As a mother of 6, I know how hard it can be to keep up with the activities of a student athlete. Once they get to high school, the commitment is even more demanding. A lot of people don’t realize how much time and effort many of these kids dedicate to practicing and developing their skill.

This doesn’t just apply to sports. But unlike other activities and hobbies, most athletes won’t have the opportunity to pursue their passion after high school. This leaves a big void to be filled in everyone’s schedule. Since finding another passion can be tough, I do my best to help families remember everything about this season of their lives. I really like the way things turned out for these high school student athlete portraits.

center of attention in swimming pool 5 ft water level black and white high school senior portrait goggles on forehead athletic theme near memphis tn
serious high school senior photography ripples of water covering half face student athlete swimmer portraits black and white near memphis tn

Don’t Graduate the Memories

Every high school student has different experiences, perspectives, interests and accomplishments. This is why I’m so passionate about communicating with my clients and parents prior to their sessions. High school is a short time compared to the rest of our lives, but it only happens once. It’s where our children have the most freedom to grow – as they prepare for the responsibilities of adulthood.

Every high school senior has a unique story that can never be duplicated. Every student athlete will have memories of playing the sport they love – and I take pride in capturing them in their element one last time. If you live near Memphis, I’d love to help you remember graduation with creative and meaningful photography that’ll last a lifetime.

I have a studio and outdoor venue available in Olive Branch, Mississippi.

swimming stroke in motion student athlete action shots in water by graduation photographer in desoto county mississippi blue water taking breath while splashing
butterfly swimmer coming towards camera in large outdoor pool with lawn chairs in background splashes of water googles on from distance danielle jacqueline olive branch ms
danielle jacqueline photography company logo with typography by prefocus solutions

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