a session prep guide
This guide was created to help you plan for your upcoming session.
What is a session like?
It's much easier to share what a session with me is not: it's not posed, it's not stiff, and it's not what you might expect. The most authentic images come from sessions that flow naturally--your family interacts while I happen to be holding a camera. Every now and then I'll chime in and provide specific direction.
example: Imagine you and your family share a tradition of baking holiday cookies every year. so you're baking & decorating cookies together while I'm photographing it. Some shots are 100% candid and some shots not so much. for the less candid shots you'll be doing another activity, like giving a tickle or putting frosting on someone's nose.
be prepared to go with the flow. when babies & children are involved there's always a chance the session will veer off course. Do your best to let go & embrace whatever comes our way. parent as you normally would gently redirecting as needed. If all else fails, we will take a few moments to reset together or move on to something else.
tips during the session
relax and be actively engaged in each activity. Think happy thoughts and be yourself.
Consider bending the house rules on the day of your session. imagine a world where it's ok to jump on the bed and have ice cream for lunch.
Talk to the kiddos about the session days in advance. Generate excitement on the day of by treating everyone to something special after the session.
Try and make sure the little ones are well rested with full bellies.
Wardrobe & Style
Your clothing should reflect who you are on your best day. Dress it up or be casual--just be you.
think coordinated versus matchy-match & be mindful of the season & location.
Dress in a way that is authentic to the story being telling.
For example, If your session is in home and we're documenting family life, you'll most likely be barefoot and not in high heels.
You should feel beautiful & like the best version of yourself. Professional hair and make up is always a nice treat. If you choose pro hair/makeup, please discuss the look you're aiming for with your stylist.
men should also feel like a million bucks on the day of the session. Whatever look you choose, aim for well groomed while staying true to who you are. t-shirts & jeans are great for super-casual looks.
Infants & children
above all, little ones should be dressed comfortably. Try on items beforehand to check for size, fit, and whether or not they'll actually wear what you've picked. If you kiddos are old enough, let them pick their own outfit based on a few of your selections.
trouble getting started? choose one outfit first plan the other outfits accordingly.
visit these pinterest boards for more inspiration.
in home sessions
In home sessions take place without the use of artificial light or camera flash. Turn off the lights in these rooms for a day or two and let me know what time of day the room is the brightest.
The time of your session is determined by when these rooms are the brightest.
a light cleaning is all it takes to get your home ready for the session. A good rule of thumb is to remove anything you don't want seen in your photographs.
A great way to do that is to Designate an unused room as storage.
Before we begin, pull open the curtains, draw the blinds, and to let in all the beautiful light.
The only props needed are those that are already in your family's everyday environment.
Feel free to bring out any sentimental items you'd like incorporated.
(Special blankets, toys, chairs, etc.)
sessions on location
most public spaces don't have a photography policy. If the location you choose does have a photography policy there may be a required fee. arrive 10-15 minutes early to account for traffic & parking. It's always best to photograph at locations during the least busy/brightest time of day.
Newborns & babies
Newborn sessions typically run longer because of feedings, diaper changes, etc.
If it's ok with you, I'll tastefully photograph through these moments with your baby because they are a very real part of life with a newborn. If you have any reservations about certain things being photographed please let me know.
Generally speaking, babies tend to be the most comfortable when they're warm, fed, dry, & rested. Depending on the weather adjust the thermostat accordingly, especially if baby is only wearing a diaper. Keep some burp cloths nearby and perhaps something extra to wear in case things get messy.
It never hurts to have An extra bottle or paci nearby.