Cape Shores Real Estate

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508 349-1000

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IF EVERY DECEMBER YOU FIND YOURSELF IN A PANIC, scrambling through snapshots on your phone to find a family photo worthy of your holiday cards, now is the time to take a deep breath — and take charge — by booking a professional photo shoot during your Cape Cod summer vacation.

Photographer Susan Clemence Crowley, owner of Monomoy Photography (formerly Clemence Photography) in East Harwich on Cape Cod, does more than 50 outdoor family photo sessions every summer. “Beach portraits present a unique challenge,” she says. “I start shooting about an hour before sunset, which is the ideal time for light and lower winds.” Here are her words of wisdom for getting the prettiest smiles whether you’re wrangling a group of two or 72.

Plan the outfits. “What to wear is very important,” Susan says, “because if everyone is left to wear what they want, that distracts from the portrait. The best portraits have color harmony.” Best bets for beachside wear: neutrals such as khaki, white, light blue, and denim. Skip the busy prints and stripes.

Beautiful summer weather equals a beautiful family photo.
This one was taken on Cape Cod by Clemence Photography.

Be flexible. Weather is always an issue when shooting outdoors, so Susan tries to book family photo shoots on the first few days of a family’s vacation. That way there’s still time to reschedule if it rains or the weather is otherwise uncooperative.

Bring bug spray. Especially if you’ll be near the water after July 4th, make sure everyone is coated in insect repellent. After all, you want people smiling — not scratching and swatting — in your photos.

Shoot at your favorite location. Take your photographs at your most-loved Cape spot, whether that’s at the ocean, near a pond, or on the bayside. Need some ideas? These are the top picks of three Prudential Cape Shore Real Estate agents:

  • Lieutenant Island bridge in Wellfleet. Just be sure to check the tide charts, reminds Sue, so you are able to get to the bridge, which is surrounded by water at high tide.
  • Long Pond in Wellfleet. “My first time there some 40 years ago I was reminded of girlhood summers at our camp on Lake Titusin in the Adirondacks,” says Broker Penny Newman.

Get the whole gang together! This large group photo
was taken at the beach at Chatham Bars Inn by Clemence Photography.

Monomoy Photography is booking summer sessions now; packages start at $215. Visit or call 508-432-9799.

What’s your favorite picturesque spot on Cape Cod? Let us know in the comments! And for all your Cape Cod rental, sales, and buying needs, please contact one of the experts from Prudential Cape Shores Real Estate. Our friendly staff knows the beautiful Lower Cape/National Seashore area of Old Cape Cod. Visit or call 508-349-1000.