College Graduation Pictures, What Do I Wear?!

What you wear for your college graduation pictures has a lot to do with how you want to use, display and share your photos.

A graduation ceremony is an event where the commencement speaker tells thousands of students dressed in identical caps and gowns that “individuality” is the key to success.
Robert Orben

Eastern Washington University Graduation pictures in a pretty dress

College graduation photos are awesome! What a great way to let others share with you in your huge accomplishment! Graduation pictures are even better with a bit of attire mixing. Throughout your session I like to include 3 basic looks. For the first look I start by photographing you minus graduation gear. These photos are nice to have for your professional use on social media, resumes, and portfolios. In the second look we add the cap and stole. The cap photos are where we spend the bulk of the time simply because these are the most flattering graduation pictures. This is also a great time to break out any other special items you may have brought. The last look adds the gown over the shoulder. This ‘full attire‘ look keeps you looking amazing and conveys the excitement and joy of graduating.

Bring these essentials to your photo session:

Cords, Cap and stole, Gown, Nice shoes, Pretty dress

Bring these items to add your personal flair of school spirit, celebration, humor, relationship, etc.

Bottle of champagne

School flag (I currently have flags for Washington State University and Eastern Washington University)

Confetti or glitter

Party poppers

Something silly like HUGE glasses or a unicycle

Cheer gear

Text books (have a friend carry them around for you)

Best friend or significant other

About your graduation photo session attire:

Eastern Washington University Graduation pictures with an EWU flag

Ladies, you cannot go wrong with a dress or skirt! Your attire can take your photos in a formal business direction OR take your photos in a fun, free and celebratory direction! Make sure you are comfortable in whatever you select. Choose your favorite flowy sun dress or that killer formal! The important thing to do is make sure the dress length is same as or shorter than the length of your gown and does not add volume to the already bulky school issued apparel. Since these are graduation photos you may want to match your outfit to your schools colors. However I get it if your schools colors are not particularly flattering to your skin. In this case a simple black, white or cream color clothing selection will be perfect! You could always bring in your school color with your shoe and/or jewelry selection.

Guys, your graduation photo clothing is quite simple. Choose your fancy clothes - I know you have some- or what you would wear (or did wear) to impress that girl of your dreams. Are you in slacks and a button down? Iron them. If your clothes are a bit more casual, throw them in a dryer with a damp cloth for a while and then hang them up immediately after they dry. Doing this will keep your clothes from looking too stiff but nice enough to show your grandma - who really wants a printed photo of you to brag about.

In conclusion, have fun! dress like yourself! After all, you already know what you look nice in.

headshot for a Washington State University graduate

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