With all of the extreme heat lately, this summer is shaping up to be one of the hottest summers on record! I recently had an outdoor summer portrait session in San Marcos, Texas with Ashley.  You would never guess from looking at the photos how hot it was! I want to share my top 5 tips for staying cool during an outdoor summer portrait session in the Central Texas summer heat:

5. Schedule your shoot in the evening or early morning.

The hottest time of the day in the summer in San Marcos, Texas is from 10:00 A.M. to 6:00 P.M.  If you want to avoid the extreme heat, make sure to schedule your portrait session outside of these hours.  In fact, the best time for any photography session is the first hour after sunrise or the last hour before sunset which is also due to the light being softer and more flattering.  During these early morning or evening hours, you will feel cooler and more comfortable, which will allow us to get the best photos possible!

4. Try to find a spot in the shade.

Even if you can’t book your shoot for the early morning or late afternoon/evening for any reason, and if we do have to shoot during the hottest part of the day, we can definitely look for a nice spot in the shade.  This applies to portrait sessions in nature, parks, or other green spaces, and even urban settings around San Marcos, Texas, where we can find a shady spot between buildings.  Staying out of the direct sun will help keep things cool during our session.

3. Take plenty of breaks throughout the shoot. 

Although I will probably be asking you continuously during the session if  you’re feeling okay, if  you start to get overwhelmed with the heat, just let me know and we’ll take a break! This is extremely important to rest and cool down.

2. Wear comfortable clothing made of light breathable fabrics

I know that you want to look your best in the photos but more importantly, I want you to feel your best.  Both can be accomplished with light and breathable fabrics during your summer portrait session.  Stick to fabrics like cotton, silk, linen, rayon, polyester, nylon.  Short sleeves and shorts can also keep you cooler than wearing long sleeves, and jeans or pants.  Avoid heavier fabrics such as denim, canvas, suede, wool, flannel and tweed during the hot summer months.  Save those for your fall session with me!

1. Drink plenty of water and stay hydrated!

This is the most important and therefore it’s my number one tip!  It’s absolutely essential that you bring plenty of water with you to an outdoor summer shoot.  Even though we probably won’t be doing any rigorous activities, just standing in 90 + temperatures is enough to have you feeling hot and fatigued.  Drinking cold water regularly throughout our shoot will help combat this and will help keep you hydrated, safe, and cool during our shoot!

Below are several photos I shot of my client, Ashley during a particularly hot day in Austin, Texas. We trekked through the forest at McKinney Falls State Park in 98 degree heat! However, we followed the tips above and got some beautiful photos!