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Photo Day Tips

Timeless Portraits

Memorable portraits will be in your family for many years, and a classic, simple look will stand the test of time. The goal of any fine portrait is to direct the viewer's eye to the face(s) in the portrait. All other elements should be secondary. Keep in mind bold stripes, plaids, checks, and prints can be visually confusing in a timeless portrait.

Seniors

There are several options for you to choose how much variety you want in your portraits.

  • Home, studio, and/or on location.
  • Casual and formal outfits.
  • Letter jackets, uniforms, pets, cars and props that reflect who you are.
  • Friends and parents.
  • Add-on one or more special event - for example: sporting event, prom, graduation, etc.
  • Black and white, color, brown tone, or other creative techniques that fit your style.
  • From the Basic Package to the Unlimited Package

Your senior session is all about you. Your photos should reflect your individuality and unique personality. Wear clothes that you feel good in - that represent who you are at this precise moment in your life. Remember though, it is best to do one or two outfits that mom will like... I won't really tell you what you can and can not wear. What one person likes may not be right for the next person. Solids photograph much better than stripes and plaids. Bring a variety of color - don't bring 6 black outfits even if it is your favorite color. Vary the style; all one look (like tanks) gets boring. Vary the dress level, bring some dressy, some medium and some casual. You may do as many looks within your time period, so if you are prepared you can get 4 to 5 looks per hour. Bring double what you think you need! Some shots are close up, others are full length. Plan outfits completely. Bring light and dark colors. Group clothes on hangers and as wrinkle free as possible.

Make sure your clothing flatters you. Black and white photos are best with black clothing. Avoid changing your hairstyle or cutting your hair right before your session. Let it be natural. Quick and easy hairstyle changes during your session are ok. Bring your hair accessories, brushes, combs and curlers if need be. Hair style is the way you like it!

Girls... makeup should only be slightly heavier than normal. Mascara should contain no clumps. Avoid makeup with sparkles in it. When you move, it makes a nice shimmer, but in a photo, it creates a little white spot. Also bring a translucent powder that knocks out shine without adding additional color. And undergarments - should be appropriate for each outfit!

Props - bring them! Props help define who you are. Popular choices are volleyball, football, soccer ball - whatever; sports uniforms, musical instruments, dance, cheerleading, swimming, and anything else for other activities and hobbies. Vehicles will be during an outdoor session. Sunglasses and hats are great!

Glasses - most glasses glare. Your optometrist will probably loan you an empty set of frames similar to yours for your photo session.

Remember - sunburn and peeling skin do not photograph well. Do not overdo your tanning!

Blemishes - don't worry about minor breakouts. Your final prints will be retouched.

Friends and parents are welcome and you can have a few shots with a boyfriend, girlfriend, best friend, sibling or parent at no extra charge. However, if they distract you, it is best to have them wait in the studio or come towards the end of your session.

Overcast is actually great portrait weather. Rain - reschedule. If questionable - call the studio!

Scars are not automatically retouched, but can be removed or softened at your request. Let me know if you want tattoos to show or not. Nails and toes will show - natural or basic work the best, especially when changing outfits.

Family

In a family group, proper clothing coordination is critical. Choose clothing in the same tonal ranges so that no single member of the family stands out because the clothing is too light or bright as compared to the rest of the group. Proper clothing selection makes the difference between a portrait that appears to be a group of seemingly unrelated individuals and one in which every member of the family belongs to the group.

Maternity, Newborns, & Children

Pregnant women are beautiful and photograph very well in their 7th or 8th month. There are many options for maternity sessions so please do not hesitate to express what you want.

Newborns are better when photographed within the first 2 weeks - they are much more pliable! Please call as soon as your baby arrives to schedule an appointment. Great milestones to photograph your baby might be: Newborn - this is a great time to focus on all the little details - the hands, fingers, toes, and the special bond between a baby and parent; around 3 months - to capture those first smiles; 6-9 months - to show off the beginning of your baby's independence - when the baby can sit up; and of course around one year to capture the essence of your baby's personality, including the first steps.

I will always work at the baby's pace, and this often times means we will break for feeding. Please bring your child's favorite toy or other item to entertain him if need be or to become a part of the prop!

For bigger kids, anytime is a good time! Studio or outdoors, and parents - be prepared to become a part of the prop!

Headshots & Portfolios

As an actor, model, or business person - whatever your purpose - you never get a second chance to make a first impression. Your headshot plays a huge role because it is your first point of contact with the people who decide whether or not to gamble some of their valuable time and money on you. For better or worse, your headshot makes your first impression for you. No matter what happens afterward, that impression is going to be reinforced every time they look at your picture. I work very hard during your session to capture your confidence and appeal. Your headshot should look exactly like you. Your photo has to sell your looks and personality. Let me know what kind of look you want. Do a dress rehearsal at home. Practice poses and expressions. Wear solid colors, black is good. Dark clothes attract less attention and put the attention on your face and eyes. Avoid busy patterns and lines/stripes. Suits or a jacket are great for men as an additional look. Clothes should be neatly pressed and should look new or like new. Wear clothes you feel you look great in! For multiple looks, bring a variety of clothing that emphasizes different roles/looks (professional, intellectual, athletic, etc...)

Bring your previous headshot, samples from magazines or other headshots to communicate the look you want. Bring lip balm, hair brush/comb, and makeup products you prefer.

Portfolios are very extensive and thorough and something I take great pride in. They have the greatest of impacts, leave great impressions and start careers. Please call for your personal consultation.

Weddings

Your wedding is YOUR wedding, so it needs to be done your way. Old tradition or jumping outside of the box is just fine. You choose what is right for you. Your free consultation is for us to go over your needs and expectations and for you to simply get to know your photographer - the person photographing one of the most important events in your life. I will also help you determine the appropriate level of coverage based on the length of your wedding, events planned and number of guests. You will receive a complimentary engagement session with any package and a complimentary black and white image for the newspaper. Before the wedding I like to work with both the bride and groom to help break the ice so everyone is comfortable and all questions are answered before the wedding day! Please do not hesitate to call with your questions and/or set up your pre-booking free consultation.