Best portrait accessory – styling tips for a successful session

Go ahead…  ask me…  what’s my number one, most, all time favorite accessory for styling portraits?  It’s so simple and yet, still has some… er, complications…  So, my best portrait accessory:

A hat.  Yep, a well styled hat adds so much to a portrait.  It’s truly the best accessory for portraits.  You can tilt it, pull it low, peek out from under, look silly or sophisticated.  And, after all, in addition to adding to our outfit, a good accessory should go with our personality, too.  A hat is so versatile.  Whether it’s a fedora or a wide brim, please bring your favorite with you to your portrait session!

And, yes, I did mention some complications… (pay close attention to this how to) there’s just one rule with wearing a hat for a professional portrait:  baseball caps are strongly discouraged.  Yes, they have their time and place, and if you can actually convince me that it would add to your personality shining through in your pictures, well, then I might reconsider.

This little one found her big brother’s old hat one day and decided it was her new favorite.  So, she brought it along to her portrait session and it was magic!

What do you think?  What is your favorite accessory for a professional portrait?

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child picture in photo backdrop


natural smile young girl in hat

heirloom portraits

young girl in formal portrait wearing hat


You can also check out how some of the high school seniors have used hats to add originality to their senior picture here.

Located in Williamson County, TN, Misty Carter Photography is a professional portrait photographer that specializes in children’s portrait,s as well as high school senior pictures and family pictures. MCP provides heirloom quality wall art for clients that only get better with time.   Serving Franklin, TN, Brentwood, TN, Spring Hill, TN, Murfreesboro, TN, Nolensville, TN, Leipers Fork, TN and all surrounding areas.



Now on Flickr

I may be a little late to the game, but better late than never, right?!  Misty Carter Photography can now also be found on Flickr.  Pop on over to check out a cool photo stream of my favorite images.  I’ll be posting highlights from recent session soon as well.  Kids, families and high school senior pictures…  all ready for viewing.

Check it out now:


Country Senior Portraits – Franklin, TN Photographer

There is something so simple and charming about the country.  Getting outside, into God’s creation,  being surrounded by the humbling vast beauty…  it’s enough to leave me speechless…

country girl in cowboy boots

When you add in a stunning senior, and a gorgeous, glowing sunset…  well, it really takes my breath away.

country cowboy boots and flannel senior girl pictures

natural senior portraits

I photographed these senior pictures at the beginning of the fall season.  They leaves hadn’t really started to turn yet, but the tall grasses were showing the wear of a long, hot summer.  The clouds and the sun danced together to create a perfect backdrop for these images.  Of all of the moments we captured today, my favorite were the ones with the wind blowing freely through her hair.  The light strands couldn’t be tamed and I believe were a perfect expression of her own free spirit.  This girl is one to watch.

country sunset senior girl serene wind blown hair on girl in flowers

For senior pictures in Nashville, TN or Williamson County (including Franklin, Brentwood, Spring Hill and the surrounding areas), contact Misty Carter Photography today.

sun flare natural wind blown hair country picture

Misty Carter is a portrait photographer in Franklin, TN.  Best known for her masterful use of color and light to create rich, emotive images, MCP is now serving the greater Nashville, TN area, including Brentwood, Spring Hill and Murfreesboro.

Ultimate Secret For High School Senior Portraits – Franklin, TN Photographer

So it’s Senior year…  You are finally ready for the cap and gown.  Graduation is around the corner.  You’ve sent all the college applications and said your prayers.  And now you are ready for one of the best senior traditions: high school senior portraits.  Like everything else, you want your senior portraits to stand out. You want them to be the best.  Unique but timeless.  Classy but edgy.  Modern but traditional.  And the beauty of high school senior portraits is the variety.  Senior sessions include a few wardrobe changes, different locations, they are by nature varied.  But the one true secret to ultimate senior portraits is…

old fashioned jeans and white t-shirt senior picture

Be YOU!  Yeah, yeah, I know.  You may be thinking, this is so cliche.  Everyone says it.  But does everyone actually do it?  No.  And that’s where you can create the edge you really desire in your senior session.


So, here are a few simple steps to showing the real, authentic you in your senior portraits:

vintage black and white picture of teen boy

Step 1:  Be honest.  With both your photographer and yourself.  Don’t say you want a trendy location if you are actually more comfortable in a secluded area.  This goes for everything from locations to wardrobe.  You need to be comfortable.  If you are uncomfortable, the awkwardness will show in your senior pictures. No one wants that.

moody portrait by river

Step 2: Be daring.  Ok, I know, this kinda goes against step 1, but bear with me here…  You should be comfortable, but that doesn’t mean you should be curled up on a couch in your sweats!  Be willing to try something different.  If it reaches outside your comfort zone, then refer back to step 1 and speak up.  But otherwise, be ready to get a little creative.

country sunset senior girl

Step 3: Trust your photographer.  Funny story:  A few years ago I needed a new headshot.  Ok, no problem.  I set up the camera in the backyard, set all of the settings according to the light, etc., and then I went to work posing for the camera as my husband snapped away.  He’s not a photographer and he loves me no matter what, so it never occurred to him to tell me that the poses were painfully awkward.  After I looked at the pictures I realized they were unflattering at the best.  I finally understood the weird looks I had been getting from high school seniors.  You see, I like to demonstrate poses for the sessions.  And I always got weird looks that kinda said You want me to lean how?  You want my arm where?  But here’s the difference- on me it looks awkward.  On you it’s amazing.  How do I know? Because this is my gig.  This is my thing.  It’s what I do.  Trust me.  How can you trust me?  Well, just check it out.  You can see example after example of stunning senior portraits right here on the website.  Each one trusted me.  You should, too.

beautiful girl surrounded by purple flowers at sunset

So?  Are you ready for the ultimate senior portrait experience?  Are you ready to really be YOU?  Are you ready to risk a little?  Trust your photographer?  Create epic portraits?  Ok, let’s go.


Misty Carter is a portrait artist in Williamson County, TN.  Best known for her masterful use of color and light, Misty specializes in high school senior pictures, fine art children’s portraits and family portraits.  Now serving Franklin, Spring Hill, Thompsons Station, Brentwood and the greater Nashville area.


Franklin, TN – family photographer, Thompsons Station family pictures

What do you get when you mix an adorable family, a great wardrobe and a stunning fall sunset?  A perfect family session!

fall family portrait Nashville TN

This stunning family met me in Thompson’s Station for their annual portraits.  Young kids keep things exciting in portrait sessions.  I love to work with little ones and see how they light up and play in natural spaces.
These sweet hearts may have been a little hesitant at first, but by the end we were best buds laughing and playing.  Watching them interact with their parents and each other, their hugs, kisses and laughter, made my heart soar.

Family pictures spring hill tn

The number one question you may have when prepping for family portraits is “what to wear?”  This mom knocked it out of the park.  These beautiful outfits mix layers, patterns and coordinate so well, it’s a beautiful harmony.  Still have questions?  Let’s chat.  This is my specialty 🙂

Family pictures Brentwood TN

Family pictures Nashville TN   Father and kid pictures Franklin TN     Mother son pictures Brentwood TN   Mother daughter pictures Franklin TN

Misty Carter is a portrait photographer in Williamson County, TN, serving Franklin, Brentwood, Thompsons Station, Spring Hill and the greater Nashville area.  Click here to schedule a personal consultation.

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