Preparing for your Session
Getting ready for a photo session can be stressful- and stress does not make pretty pictures! Therefore, we'd like to help you to minimize your stress so that you can feel relaxed on your session day and create images you will love.
Take a look around your home- where will you put your images? Do you already have frames that you will be using? Think about the exact sizes and layouts you need so that we can ensure that those shots are captured. (For example, do you have an 8x10 vertical frame in which you'd like to put a family picture? Then be sure to let us know that you need a vertical family pose! Do you have a special pose that you want- perhaps Dad with the boys or all of the kids together? Tell us so that it can be a priority shot!)
How to Prepare
1. Choose outfits for your family. Remember that truly beautiful images start with truly beautiful wardrobes- so consider dressing up! Leave your casual clothes at home or save them for your everyday snapshots. Consider flowing dresses (so figure-flattering!), sports jackets and/or dress pants for the guys, and nice shoes (saving flip-flops or athletic shoes for other occasions will create more beautiful images for you to display in your home). Accessories can add that finishing touch to your image that will really pop in your photos! Try to avoid a black and white color palette, or harsh reds and greens- these tend to add unflattering color casts to your images. (Feel free to incorporate them as accents or as accessories, however!) Outfits that coordinate rather than match always look better, so think in terms of color palettes rather than choosing one color. (Check out my Pinterest board for inspiration!)
2. Are there any problem areas or concerns that you are worried about? Some cosmetic issues can be retouched- but it's always best to know what YOU want out of your pictures.
3. Be sure to complete the forms in the New Client Package you were sent and bring them with you to the session, including the Family Questionnaire (which should be emailed to us before your session). This helps us to know more about your family and how best to serve you!
What to Expect
When we do a photo session with a family- especially a family with small kids- we expect to take the time necessary to get beautiful pictures. This is why we don't put a time limit on our sessions. Have you ever gone to a 30-minute session, dealt with cranky kids, ran out of time, and left the session with images you paid for but didn't love? That is definitely what we want to avoid! We will take our time (and many, many shots) to ensure that everyone is natural and happy in their images. This is why we charge a session fee that is separate from the prices you will pay for images.
1. Bring snacks! Hungry children are cranky children- and that will cause you more stress! Avoid sticky foods, chocolate, or anything that stains.
2. Bring coats if the weather is iffy. That way, kids who aren't having their picture taken can stay bundled up!
3. Be prepared to do a bit of light-chasing. It's amazing how light changes from minute to minute, so in a longer session, we may move our location a bit to ensure beautiful lighting in all of your images.
4. Consider letting a favorite stuffed animal or toy tag along to help amuse the little ones while they are waiting. (Sometimes these loveys can make cute pictures!)
5. Bring a hair brush and lipstick! You may find that you want to touch up hair and makeup during the session.
How to Prepare
1. Outfits! Consider picking up a special outfit for your little one to wear in his or her pictures. Amazon has some fun and inexpensive outfits available for newborn photo shoots. You can also find cute stuff on Etsy.
2. Take a look around your house and pay special attention to the light. Find a nice sunny spot near a window- this will be the best spot for your pictures. Be sure to have Dad clear away any furniture to make room for the backdrop stand and props we will use.
3. Consider who will be in the pictures: just your newborn? Your newborn and you? Will Dad or siblings be included? We need to know this ahead of time.
4. About an hour before your session, crank up your heat. Yep, turn that thermostat up! Your sweet baby has a hard time regulating temperature and gets cold easily- and an uncomfortable baby is a crying baby. We adults can sweat for a little while if it ensures a toasty environment for your little one.
5. Timing: Newborn sessions are best when done in the first week or two of life. Further, the indoor ambient light is better in morning to early afternoon.
What to Expect
1. There is a lot that goes into a newborn session.We will be bringing props, backgrounds and stand, lights, and more- so there needs to be room.
2. Realize that many of the newborn images you see online are composite images (meaning several images are put together to create one). This is to ensure your baby's safety. Some poses just aren't possible unless two extra adults are present to help with secure posing. Those images are super sweet, but if we can't do them safely, we won't be doing them at all.
3. A newborn session takes time- your baby will need to be fed multiple times, changed, and held to make sure that he/she is drowsy and content. Don't plan a session when you have errands to run or doctor's appointments to make.
4. Realize that reality is a lot different than images you see of perfectly happy babies sleeping contentedly in baskets! Newborn sessions are a lot of work and require patience and a sense of humor to capture those perfect images. Expect fussiness, unexpected urinating (always fun!), and sweating (because you turned up the heat, right?).
After Your Session
Every image you receive will have been carefully edited and enhanced to bring out the beauty of the light, color, skin tones, and other small details. This is a time-consuming process- we truly want your images to be something you treasure forever. This process can take up to two weeks- just like with our sessions, we don't want to rush through it and leave things undone. If you are using your hard-earned money to pay for these special pictures, we want to honor that. This is why we don't include prints or digital images in our session fee: the price of the image accurately reflects the time spent on each and every one to make sure that the images you receive are ones you will be proud to display in your home.
Once your images have been edited, you will receive a link to a special password-protected gallery featuring your session. We will also sit down at the Image Reveal we scheduled when you booked your session, watch a special slideshow, and then you can choose which pictures you'd like to purchase in print or digital form.
We use a highly-rated professional printing company that caters only to professional photographers to ensure that your prints are true-to-life. All printing companies use different inks and formulas for printing- this is why the same photo that looks great on your computer can have blue color cast when printed at one place while another will give your image a yellow cast. (True story: I once had professional portraits made of my family, and I was so excited to have them printed out for my wall. I sent my image to Walgreens to take advantage of a coupon deal... and got back a picture where every single one of us looked like we had blue skin. Yikes! It was so disappointing to have paid that money and received pictures that made us look a little Smurf-y.) It's not that there is something wrong with the image- it's just that it hasn't been calibrated for that specific printer. We use a special software to carefully calibrate our images for our printing company so that, when printed, they will be as gorgeous as they were in your gallery. Your images are printed on luscious thick paper with a lovely luster (as opposed to thin one-hour high-gloss prints)- they are truly keepsake-worthy. Prints arrive in about 3-5 days after you place your order, and will arrive in special packaging to protect them. If you don't want prints, you can order just the digital images- these come on flash drive with a Print Release so that you can print at your printer of choice. Please note: Once you have ordered your digital images, your purchase is final and no further edits can be made to correct color casts caused by your printing company.
Haven't booked your session yet? Take a look at the Pricing page and then email us at firstname.lastname@example.org to set one up! Once we receive your email, we will send you a special gift with even more information about Memories Boutique Photography and our sessions.