Yay! You've made the decision to book and I'm so glad you did. Making photos for families is a JOY for me and I'm honored you've selected to work with me. I'll be guiding you each step of the way.
I've put this prep guide together based on the 11 years experience I have working with families and I'm always fine tuning it. It contains everything you need to know to make the most of your session and help me create the photos you're dreaming of for your family. It also answers most of my clients' questions about what happens next: planning to make the most of your session, what to know for the day of your session, after your session, etc. If you have a question that isn't covered in this guide, please email me. I'm happy to answer anything. I promise, NOTHING will surprise me and there likely won't be a scenario that I haven't come across already.
Let's get into it...
There are three things that will make your final images what you want. I call it "setting the scene"
Most families put a lot of planning into their outfits for their session. Photography is an investment and the outfits you select play a very big role in the final look of your photos. I remember reading somewhere that 10% of the price of a home should be spent on landscaping. Meaning, don't neglect a part of the house that impacts the overall look of the home. The same concept is roughly true of wardrobe prep. Putting great planning into the coordination of your outfits is never energy wasted. After all, we are creating art and your clothing is the paint color that we load onto our brush. Here are my best suggestions for putting your outfits together broken down by session type, though many of the tips are universal so be sure to read both sections below.
First and foremost, start with the end in mind. Where will you hang your photos? Most likely these will be on the walls of your home. If you have a certain color with which you love to decorate, be sure to select clothing that will compliment that color and style.
There are some great examples below and you can see a lot more inspiration on my Pinterest board. I also post a monthly style inspiration board on the blog.
My photography style focuses most on the connection between family members and relies less heavily on the location where we shoot, but having a beautiful space to create your photos is a part of the overall final result so it is an important factor. I’m including some photos here of locations around Tallahassee that are “can’t go wrong” spaces that will always work well. I am open to your ideas or desired location as well. I love finding new spaces. Below is a thorough breakdown of these locations and things to consider when selecting them. If you haven't already let me know where you'd like to do your session, this list will help. Once you've taken a look at it, email to let me know where you'd like to create your photos.
MACLAY GARDENS STATE PARK
GOODWOOD MUSEUM AND GARDENS
The day of the session, please block off 2-2.5 hours. Typically we're finished within 60-90 minutes, but I don't charge by the hour, so if there's a wardrobe malfunction or child meltdown, we have flexibility. If a parent has to leave for an important business meeting but the rest of the family is still available, just let me know ahead of time so I can focus on getting that parent in the frame more while they're still available.
Most clients tell me that their session was fun! I'm going to help you with posing and getting your little ones to smile. Your job is to relax and go with the flow! My sessions are about capturing your family interacting with each other naturally with my gentle coaching on setting the scene to make great images. All you have to do is follow my instruction, play with your baby or kids and spouse, focus on them so I can focus on you!
A BIG NOTE:
Please don't worry if your young children are not on their best behavior. Keeping things light and playful is the best way to turn that around. In 11 years of business I've never seen threats of discipline turn an upset child into one that gives us the genuine happiness that you'll want for your photos. Instead, I suggest bringing some snacks (that won't stain) to use throughout the session to encourage good behavior. Remember, you've already booked your session during the time of day that your children are usually at their best, so we've set the stage for their success, however; we all have our days. If we're patient, they will usually warm up and things will turn around. I have 4 children of my own. I PROMISE that your children won't do anything to surprise me. Also, I have a lot of tricks up my sleeve.
Two to three weeks after your session, you'll receive an email from me letting you know that your photos are ready. You'll see a slideshow of your beautiful images set to music. That slideshow is available for 24 hours for you to watch as much as you'd like and to select which collection you'd like to purchase.
Each collection comes with digital files and a print credit. This print credit is like a gift card that you can then use to purchase any print products in your gallery store. You'll have a full month to select the specific digital files and print items you want to use to fill that collection.
NOTE: If you booked your session with me prior to September 30 (even if your session doesn't take place until after that date), and would like to opt to purchase only the full digital gallery at the price in your quote, I'll send you a separate invoice once you've seen your slideshow. If you'd like to take advantage of the collections below, you may do so. During this time of transition, I'm include an additional $100 print credit if you opt to purchase a collection below.
The products in the store have been carefully selected. All are archival printed on Fuji or Hahnemühle professional stock papers. Below are some of our favorites.
Your favorite images are professionally printed on archival quality photo paper with your choice of a fine art or deep matte finish. These full bleed prints (no white border) are available in a variety of sizes, and are perfect for framing and hanging on the wall or giving as a special gift.
size / matte / fine art
4x6 / $50 / $60
5x7 / $50 / $60
8x10 / $50 / $120
11x14 / $80 / $225
Hand-torn prints that are truly unique with a rich and textured finish. Each print is carefully torn to reveal a soft feathered edge that adds a beautiful softness to each image. These archival prints are 100% cotton and acid-free. Perfect for mounting in a matted frame.
5x7 / $80
8x10 / $140
11x14 / $240
These premium albums are printed on high-end matte photo paper with thick, lay flat pages. Layout and design options are limited only by your imagination, and can be further customized with your choice of linen or leather covers and custom foiled letters. 10 spreads (20 pages) are included in the price below. Additional spreads (1 spread = 2 pages) can be added for $25 each.
8x8" / $450
10x10" / $675
Bundle of one main 12x12" & two duplicate 10x10" / $1600 (a great gift for grandparents. holiday gifts... done.)
Made for living room and nursery walls. These frames are stunning and a simple, elegant way to display your beautiful images to enjoy for a lifetime. Custom made frames and 8-ply archival matte carefully hold your photos printed on fine art Hahnemühle Photo Rag paper. Finished with paper backing, sawtooth hangers, and felt bumpers. Ready to install from the moment you receive it.
8x10” (external measurement) / $285
11x14" (external measurement) / $370
16x20" (external measurement) / $450
20x24" (external measurement) / $600