ABOUT YOUR SESSION…
We will spend our session chasing the best light, capturing genuine emotions, personalities, and connections, and telling your story through a series of beautiful images. Whether it's a cake smash, family connection session, a birthday party, or having to say goodbye to a loved one, I will be there to guide you, make you laugh, and help you be in the moment with each other. We will try to get the “Chrismas card” posed family photo at the very beginning so that the rest of our session can be more focused on capturing your love and connection with each other in a fun and playful way. I will never ask anyone to say “cheese,” but will, instead, engage with your family as well as ask you questions that will produce real, genuine smiles and help you engage with one another.
Moments, connections, and storytelling…
Moments and connections are more important than poses and perfection. I work best with clients who do not care as much about getting absolutely perfect shots of their family looking at the camera and smiling, as they do about letting the session flow naturally and trusting me to capture great images of their kids playing, having fun, and snuggling together. Of course, my goal is to always come away from the session with some good shots of everyone looking at the camera, BUT I also want you to remember the you had fun! I have a casual, more documentary approach to photography. I enjoy capturing the special moments between families, which are most likely the expressions that you see most in one another every day. You will find me talking to you and your family a lot and trying to engage your children in the moment. Please allow me to keep them focused on me, rather than being firm with them; I have a few tricks to help kids forget the camera is even there, which will help in producing more natural expressions and smiles from them. I know family portraits can be thought of as a stressful time, but I want you to enjoy more than your images, but also the experience of making those images.
What LOCATION is best for our session?
For your one hour session, we will work together to choose a location that best fits your personalities and the occasion, but some of my favorite locations are in Evergreen, Morrison, Golden, Arvada, and the Rino district. We can also do an in-home session, capturing a typical morning in your day. While I will help guide you through the session, I strongly encourage play, affection, and connection with your loved ones. My goal is to create a fun, relaxed environment so that I can best capture the personalities and dynamics of your family in an emotional, thoughtful, storytelling way.
For a cake smash session, this is best done in your home or in your backyard, as your little one will be most comfortable in familiar surroundings. A cake smash doesn’t have to involve cake- some families choose to do alternatives, such as strawberries, watermelon, or whip cream. I will help you figure out decorations, outfits/accessories, and the best spot in your home for photos. We will start the cake smash session with a few family photos, shots of the decorations, and then your little one can “dig in.” Some families like to end their photo session with their little one in the kitchen sink for a bubble bath.
For your newborn session, I will come to your home, where mom and baby will be most comfortable. Newborn sessions are family-centered and lifestyle-focused with very light posing. They usually last anywhere around 1-2 hours. I want it to feel relaxed and not rushed. Also, your newborn’s safety is important to me, so I am up-to-date on my Tdap vaccination.
What time of day do you take photos?
As a natural light photographer, I am always looking for the best natural light, so I suggest indoor sessions take place sometime between 9am-2pm, and outdoor sessions the first 90 minutes of daybreak and the last 90 minutes of sunset. Depending on the time of year, these times can range from 6-8am and 4-7pm. This is how you get that “golden hour” lighting that beautiful and flattering. I am available most weekdays and weekends. I know it can be tough with little ones when the sun sets later, but it is ALWAYS worth shooting late to get that gorgeous light! Remember that my sessions include a lot of fun and playful movement and most kids do really well outdoors when they can explore. If you feel you cannot shoot in the evening, you can opt for an in-home session earlier in the day or we can work together to find a shady location for a late afternoon session. Also, for events, I always bring and use an external flash so timing is not important for those!
Please no ‘cheese’!
My sessions are very play-based and are a mix of posed, lifestyle and documentary styles. It is more about capturing the connection and emotion of your family rather than the perfect pose. While we aim to get nice, posed family shots at the beginning, I will also give your kids a chance to play and be silly. Instead of telling your child that they are going to get pictures taken, tell them that they are going to a park to play/ go on an adventure and a fun lady will be there with a camera. I want your children to be themselves during the sessions, so I won't be asking them to say cheese. I would ask that you would refrain from using those words as well. Let me explain: I strive to capture honest and natural expressions from your child. What a child is asked to ‘say cheese,” they will not give a natural smile, but rather they will be performing and this will be apparent in the images. Please allow me to use my experience as an elementary teacher and get on your child’s level and you will see more natural expressions you know and love in your photos. If your child starts acting up or having a meltdown, it's okay. I love capturing the joys and the struggles of parenthood. It also tends to result in sweet, quiet moments snuggling together. Utilize this family connection photo session to be present and spend time playing, hugging, dancing, and embracing your children.
My husband hates having photos taken. any tips?
In my experience (my husband included), a lot of husbands feel this way. I think telling your husband beforehand that this is really important to you and why, helps a lot. If you cannot convince him to come to a photo session, come with just your kids! Do not miss a chance to be in the photo with your children. You will treasure those memories, as will your kids.
What kind of payment is preferred? When is payment due? What is included in the price?
I prefer Venmo, PayPalcheck or cash. I also accept ApplePay and have a card reader to accept credit or debit cards.
A non-refundable retainer of $100 is due to hold your session. The rest of your payment is due at the time of the shoot.
My packages are all-inclusive. This means you get the session fee, digital downloads, and printing rights in the packaged price.
Inclement Weather and Sick Kiddos
If for some reason, it is raining or snowing heavily (or is below 30 degrees), we will work together to find another date/time that works. If your child is sick or not feeling well, please call me to reschedule. I’m a mother myself, and I understand that sometimes children get sick. I want your child to enjoy the photo session and a sick child won’t be up for pictures. I would appreciate if you could call to reschedule as soon as you know you will be unable to make it.
What should we bring to our session?
Please feel free to bring along any snacks or toys that will help your children feel comfortable and relaxed. I also like to encourage families to bring something that you enjoy doing together to your session or “props” and we will do our best to include them (reading on a blanket, playing with bubbles, throwing a football, flying a kite, balloons, etc.) I will always bring a blanket to sit on, but I do not bring any other props. Your dog is welcome to come to your family session, but tend to do better at an in-home session.
What should we wear?
The outfits you and your family wear for your session can make a big difference to the look of your images. The MOST important thing for you to remember when picking out clothes is to feel comfortable. If it is supposed to be a cooler day, make sure to layer your family with thermals. Trust me, warm kids = happy kids. Have a patterned dress that you love to wear? Great, take colors from within the pattern and bring those colors into your family members' outfits. Layers and textures look great and ccessories are also good for adding little splashes of color. You and your kids don't have to be too matchy-matchy to produce a great photo! Instead, just choose a basic color palette and go from there! Make sure you don't wear neon or super bright colors, as these can cast colors on the skin and are hard to remove in editing. Here are some ideas for outfit inspirations: https://pin.it/eawsz5la4wzoa2
HOW do you select the images to edit?
After the session, I will choose the best images from your session and then edit them individually to give them the best possible finish. I take a TON of photos during a session- some that you will never see because someone is blinking, the exposure is not perfect, or someone has a weird expression on their face. I give ALL the best photos and do not keep good photos from you. All images will be edited in color and some will also be edited in black and white.
How long does it take to get our photos back?
This can vary by the season and the session, but expect it to take a couple of weeks. I edit each photo individually and am known to over-deliver on my galleries. If there is a rush to get the photos, please let me know in advance.
I got my photos back and I don’t like how I look. Can you fix them?
My branding is about embracing authenticity. Light retouching (such as blemishes or scratches) that doesn’t interfere with major lines or features of the face, I have no problem removing, but anything else stays. I never edit out anything that will still be there in a week (wrinkles, scars, birthmarks, etc). Women are especially hard on themselves when it comes to body image (myself included)! I am always dreading a shot that shows my post-baby belly in an unflattering way or some other part of my body that I don’t love. So I know how you feel! But, here’s the thing… One, I will do my best to make sure you look your best. When you look back at photos that you have taken in the past, especially ones with your children in them, you are probably happy to be in the photo with them and it brings back a flood of memories- how little they were and how fast time has flown. And guess who else will be happy to have photos of you? Your kids. They don’t care what you look like- you are beautiful in their eyes… they don’t see the flaws that you do… they love you for who you are and how you make them feel. With a photo of you in it, they remember the songs you sang to them, the adventures you went on together, the quiet moments you had, how you made them feel and most of all, how you loved them.