Syracuse NY Family Photographer | What to wear and the color wheel

So you scheduled your family or children photo session, now you freak a little.. What am I going to wear!? 

Without a doubt this is one of the first questions asked by my customers once they schedule their photo session.  Answering this question became much easier and more fun once I learned the basics on how to read the color wheel.

Color wheel by:
Color wheel by:

I am going to share basic information on how to use the color wheel, from what I have learned. There is definitely more to it than what I am about to explain here. However, this will be enough for you to come up with great color combinations for your photo session and beyond.    Let’s start with some basic information. Then I will share how I use it.


Complementary Colors: Those colors located opposite to each other on a color wheel.

Analogous Colors: Those colors located next to each other on a color wheel.

Monochromatic  Colors that are shade or tint variations of the same color.

Neutrals:  Black, white, grey, browns, etc.

Here is how I use the color wheel applying the basic color rules above.

I will start with monochromatic since I love how the same family of color looks together. My color scheme is yellow.

– Say it is a nice Summer day and I am feeling very happy.

I would wear: Warm yellow shorts, a cool yellow top. Accessories: I would complement with a red belt since it is at 90 degrees from yellow (this extra information is on my what to wear guide – email us to get the full guide). depending on the top I am wearing, I may or may not wear a necklace, if I do, it would be a long necklace with a touch of red, my sandals would probably have some brown and red as well.  I know, I know.. very happy cheery.. but that is my personality, and we have to dress to reflect who we are right?

Say it is a  nice Fall day: I would wear jeans and a burgundy top. Accessories: Directly across from burgundy is green so I would compliment it with a green scarf and brown boots.  I say this is a super cute  and comfy outfit!

Say I am going out to a dressy party: Now I have to think of an outfit for myself and the husband.  – I would wear a red dress, nude stalkings, beige shoes, beige purse (it is a neutral color so we are good) and a gold necklace.

Now my husband: Neutral color – Black suit with either a red shirt and beige tie or a white shirt and a red tie or bow-tie, black shoes.

It is super fun to accessorize and compliment a color once you choose your color scheme.  Try it out!

  1. Choose a color, from the color wheel.
  2. Decide whether you want to go monochromatic, or analogous (more info on our what to wear guide)
  3. Compliment that color.
  4. email us/comment with your combinations; we would love to see/read them!

Remember to get on our email list to receive our full “what to wear guide” with more details and to receive more information on our Fall and Christmas mini sessions!

Interested in a photography session? send us a email here 

Thanks for reading! Have fun!!


ana gil-taylor | Photographer
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Published by anagilphotography

Central New York portrait photographer, specializing in headshots and events well as high school senior and family portraits. Call me.

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