Stock Photo Shoot Planning for September

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Photo by Anna Ivanova

Welcome to our monthly photo shoot planning guide where we share themes, special dates, and suggested tags to help guide you in creating and preparing your stock images for submission to Noun Project.

The month of September heralds in the Start of Autumn, the gateway to the fall holidays, providing an opportunity to create beautiful stock photos celebrating the changing of the season and cooler days. September is also Back to School for students and teachers who return to the classroom after Labor Day. Hispanic Heritage Month begins on September 15th and runs through October 15th in the US, an observance celebrating the rich history, cultures, achievements and contributions of American citizens whose ancestors came from Spain, Mexico, the Caribbean and Central and South America.

Use these themes as suggestions and expand with your own ideas on what types of photos best say “September!” and let these amazing photos from Noun Project help inspire creative direction on your shoots.

Hispanic Heritage Month

To honor Hispanic Heritage Month, Noun Project has curated a photo collection celebrating the histories, cultures and contributions of American citizens whose ancestors came from Spain, Mexico, the Caribbean and Central and South America with historical images from GPA, US National Archives, NASA, Library of Congress along with contemporary photos celebrating Hispanic culture and leadership.

Des Moines, Iowa, USA – September 26, 2015: An Aztec heritage dancer wears traditional regalia from Department of Defense News

Back to School

After a summer break, many schools start back up for the school year in September. Back-to-school time is exciting for both students and teachers in anticipation of a new year. Many of Noun Project’s customers are educators and seek stock photos that represent education, school, and learning.

One way to capture the thrill of a new school year is to create images of kids walking together with their backpacks and hanging out with friends that they haven’t seen over the summer.

Photo (L) by Jacob Lund Photography // Photo (R) from Scopio

Photos of students playing at recess or working on projects together is a great way to illustrate the concept of “collaboration.”

Photo (L) from Scopio // Photo (R) from Scopio

Classroom images are popular with Noun Project’s educational customers. As part of Noun Project’s diversity and inclusion mission, we strive to provide stock photos of people from underrepresented communities. These images of a Black male and an Asian male teacher with a diverse group of students are great examples of inclusive representation in this sector.

Photo (L) by Winnie Vinzence // Photo (R) by Winnie Vinzence

Not all students attend school in person. Images of kids in a home school environment help fill a niche that is not always represented in stock photos.

Photo (L) by Flamingo Images // Photo (R) by Flamingo Images

Images without people of school supplies and classrooms can illustrate a back-to-school themes in stock photos.

Photo (L) by Atlas Studio // Photo (R) by Zamurovic Brothers

Photo from Scopio

Suggested tags: back to school, education, teach, classroom, student, teacher, learn, school supplies

The Start of Autumn

With summer wrapping up, we begin to look forward to to a new, cooler season. September holds the Autumn Equinox on September 22nd. With the arrival of autumn, there is a great opportunity to capture stock images of cozy sweaters, soups and hot beverages in anticipation of cooler weather.

Photo by Jacob Lund Photography

Photo (L) by Anna Ivanova // Photo (R) by AtlasStudio

Photo by Stefy Gutovska

Photo (L) by Stefy Gutovska // Photo (R) by Stefy Gutovska

Suggested tags: fall, autumn, cozy, sweater, tea, September

More Inspiration:

September’s major themes, dates and observances include National Suicide Prevention Month; National Fruit & Veggies Month; National Waffle Week from September 3rd – 9th; National Historically Black Colleges and Universities Week from September 15th – 19th; Labor Day on the first Monday of the month; Cheese Pizza Day on September 5th; Mexican Independence Day on September 16th; and Mid-Autum Festival, celebrated in many Asian countries on September 17th.


Interested in joining our community of photographers and contributing to Noun Project? Submit your photos and explore our guide to creating authentic, inclusive images.

Click here to download FREE photo shoot production document templates.

Plan your photo shoots out for the year with our free monthly photo shoot guide.

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Suzanne Strong
Suzanne Strong

VP of Content & Creators at Noun Project and Photographer

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