Q: What do we wear for our family session?
A: I always tell my customers to strive for color. I understand that this is easier said than done. First, you can never go wrong with white or black with denim or khakis. But for those of you who seek a bit of color, think about what your backdrop will be. What colors will be in your backdrop? Will it be more casual or formal? Think about coordinating colors – blues/browns/creams or oranges/reds/golds, etc. Next, consider what your goals are from the session. Will you be framing a large print of the family? Maybe consider the decor in your home. Do you tend to decorate more with cooler or warmer colors? Consider these things when picking your clothing. I also think you will find it a help to have mom select her outfit first. Once mom is comfortable with her decision, you can then figure out the kids. Dad most likely has something in his closet that will work with what you’ve chosen.
Q: How far in advance to do I need to book an appointment?
A: For a family session, book 4-6 weeks prior to your desired session date. Weekend appointments do book up fast. Please keep in mind my holiday season is from September through the first part of December. If you want to ensure yourself a weekend date during this time frame, you need to have booked your session no later than August 15.
Q: What time of day or day of the week should I book my photo session?
A: I prefer to work with evening light whenever possible when photographing outdoors. I usually book an outdoor child or family session about an hour and a half before sunset. Depending on the time of year, this time of day may interfere with nap times, sports commitments, etc. In such instances, I work with the early morning light around 9 a.m. I ONLY book beach sessions in the evening for the time being.
I currently work 1-2 weekends each month, with the exception of the holiday season (September through mid-December), where I work every weekend. During the months of September through May, I only shoot outdoor family sessions on weekends, with few exceptions. During the summer months of June through August, I do book family sessions mid-week in addition to weekends, as the days are longer.
Q: Where should I go to take my family photos?
A: I have a variety of locations that I can suggest based on the type of photos and backdrop you are seeking. I, of course, have my favorite locations and can usually help you make the decision based on the type of photos you want, the time of day of the session, and just by generally laying out the pros and cons of the location(s) you may be considering.
I am always up for trying new places. I do not charge for travel time within reason, i.e., within a 30-minute drive of my studio.
Q: Do you have the adorable props shown in your sample galleries to choose from, or do I have to supply my own?
A: Yes. 95% of what you see in my sample galleries I have in studio to choose from during your session. I have a ton of additional items that are not shown in my sample galleries, and my collection is growing all the time. I am a prop junkie! Please let me know if you see something you definitely want to use during your session to ensure I have it in the studio, available that day. I encourage parents to bring anything in of their own that they would like to have their newborn photographed in/with. But if you are on board with my selection, you need not bring anything extra to the session.
Q: Do you have props for twins or older babies?
A: Yes. I have several coordinating sets for newborn twins, many of which are gender neutral. Although the majority of my props cater to the 0-10-week age group, I do have a very extensive (and constantly growing) selection of props for babies ranging in age from 12 weeks to one year of age. I try to select props that will appeal to all types of personalities, from soft, organic types, to cuddly animals, and bright animal prints. I also have a large selection of holiday props.
Q: I can't wait to see my photos from my session! How long do I have to wait?
A: Most final galleries are available for viewing within 2 weeks from the session date. There are a few circumstances that lengthen this time frame, i.e., if I am on vacation, or certain holidays. I will let you know at the time you book your session if you can expect a delay beyond the typical 2 weeks. Additionally, I do offer an option to expedite your post work for an additional fee.
Q: Is it possible to have some pictures made with the parents and/or older siblings during a newborn session?
A: Absolutely. Please keep in mind that the session is for your newborn. The amount of poses including the parents and/or siblings is limited. Also, please don't ask me to photograph siblings by themselves. Although my studio is a child-friendly environment, a 3-hour newborn session can be a LONG time for a toddler or young child. I always encourage parents to have a helper, such as another parent, grandparent, nanny, etc., to help with entertaining young children, or take them home as soon as their portion of the session is complete.
Q: I can't decide what props I want. I want them ALL! What can I expect when selecting props for my session?
A: I do a brief consult at the beginning of every session. We go through the props and some other important session information. At this time I allow parents to choose 3-4 props that they definitely want to see their little one photographed in. Please do not think I am limiting you to just 3-4 poses. Throughout the session I will ask the parents to choose additional items, or I will add items on my own. However, I've found that if I do not limit the amount of props chosen in the beginning, some parents tend to select the entire prop room, causing unrealistic expectations from me and baby.
Q: What is a digital image?
A: A digital image is not the same thing as a photo print. A digital image is a high-res JPEG of your choice from your final gallery. You can use digital images to make prints, photo books, cards and announcements, and have them for unlimited use as you please. I release all copyrights with my digital images. Digital images can be emailed and/or put on a disc for you. Digital images can be purchased individually from your final gallery, or you have the option of purchasing ALL of the images from your final gallery on a disc.
Q: What is a Copyright Release?
A: As the photographer, I am the owner of the images that you pay me to take during your session. Most printers who print photos for the general public and through online websites know that professional photographers own copyrights on the images they take. If they suspect that you are using images without permission from the photographer, they will not print the images or allow you to use them on photo products, etc. If you receive a digital image from me, I provide you with a copyright release allowing you permission to use my images without any restrictions.
Q: Will you use my pictures on your website or in marketing materials?
A: Not without your permission. I love what I do and love the opportunity to show off my work whenever possible. While most customers are flattered by the idea, some people prefer their privacy and I totally respect that.
Q: I love my pictures and the different color finishes. Is it possible for me to see a specific image in a color image not shown in my gallery?
A: Absolutely. That is one of the many advantages of working with a professional photographer. With that being said, please don't request more than 5-7 edits or ask to see all of the final images in each color finish. Each image goes through several different software applications. It is not as easy as a click of a button to turn an image to black-and-white, for example.
Q: I have family and friends out of state. Can they place an order too?
A: Absolutely. Friends and family members are welcome to contact me directly by phone or email with their personal orders.
Q: Can I place an additional order beyond what is included with my session? How long will it take to get my order in?
A: Absolutely. You have the option of purchasing any additional prints, images, products and services with any session I offer. Depending on what the additional order consists of, it takes me approximately 10-14 days to process an order. I place all print orders on Mondays and Thursdays.
Q: My session includes prints. Do they have to be of the same pose?
A: Not at all. Whenever prints are included with a session, you have the choice of ordering different poses or multiple copies of the same pose.
Q: What is metallic paper?
A: Just as it sounds, metallic paper has a slight metallic shimmer and can be used to print all color finishes, even black-and-white. It especially stands out on images that include a lot of color. The metallic paper enhances color and makes it appear more vibrant. It is my favorite, and I use it on all of my personal prints. I will be happy to show you samples and discuss with you whether or not I believe metallic paper will enhance an image you are considering. There is a 12% additional charge for prints on this paper.
Q: What payment types do you accept, and how do I pay for my order?
A: At location shoots I accept cash and checks only. I do accept credit cards online via PayPal and by phone or in person via SQUARE. If you would like to pay by credit card, please let me know and I will set up the payment and send you payment instructions. Please keep in mind that all session fees are due at the time of booking. If you order anything additional beyond what is included with your session, the payment is due in advance before your order can be processed.
Q: Do you allow dogs to be photographed in the studio with newborns?
A: No. I do not allow any animals in my studio. I keep the studio very clean for obvious reasons and cannot risk bringing in an animal that may shed or have an "accident," causing problems for future sessions and customers who may be allergic.
Q: How much editing do you do to each photo?
A: I limit the amount of cosmetic editing that I do in photos to airbrushing and "fixes" to the backdrop, clothing, etc. I do not typically switch heads around or shed weight from customers. You will look like you when you see your pictures! :)