Frequently Asked Questions
What does a session look like?
Every family is different, but I promise it wont’ be scary. It’s actually pretty fun. I’ll meet you at the prearranged location and we can spend a couple minutes chatting so I can get to know you as a family and what kind of pictures you are looking for. I’ll have everyone sign the obligatory liability waivers and such, then we can start shooting. I like to go with the flow of things, so I’ll say lots of things like “ooo! Let’s try this… Go stand over there and look at me.” And, “this spot doesn’t work, lets try moving you a little to the right” Don’t panic, it’s all part of the process. I take a LOT of pictures. :) I sometimes bring along a “cheat sheet” of picture ideas to inspire me, but please don't be afraid to speak up! If you want a certain picture and I’m leaving it out, just ask! I’m happy to work with you however I can during your shoot. Once the time is up or everybody’s happy with the pictures we’ve gotten, we’ll call it a wrap. I’ll connect with you again when the editing process is completed.
How long will it take to see the images from my session?
Unless there is some unforeseeable disaster, I will have your photos to you within two weeks. My typical turnaround time is much closer to one week. I love editing, and I am typically giddy with excitement to show you your finished photos.
What does ordering look like?
It depends on what you are comfortable with. I would be delighted to meet with you in your home to personally go through your images and walk you through the fabulous print/wall art/album options. If you can’t make that work or that’s just not your preference, I can make all your images available to you on a secure online gallery and your order can be processed directly from there.
Do I really need to order my prints and wall art through you?
I certainly would like you to! Here are the major reasons why:
- Pictures are made to be printed! I hate to give you the digital files until I know that you will have SOMETHING tangible from your session with me. As someone who puts their heart and soul into making your images something worth treasuring, it really matters to me that you walk away with a quality product in your hands.
- I want to assure you get top quality products. Yes, I know, Walgreens is cheaper. They also produce a junky product. You have already invested time, energy, and money into capturing these portraits. Cutting corners on the last step and walking away with a sub-par product is no service to you. 10 years from now you will not regret the slightly larger investment, but you will regret it if your wall art is cheaply made and poorly rendered. That is why I will not release a print release for any grocery store or drug store printing lab. I use the same top of the line printing labs as high-end photographers, but I work make my products affordable for my clients.
- It is vital to maintain a healthy business. I LOVE taking photos. I find this to be satisfying and exciting work. I enjoy my clients immensely. But in order to maintain a business, the costs are significant. Between cost of equipment, software, taxes, gas, hours of editing time, hours of research and professional development, time spent scouting potential locations, etc, no millions are being made here. When browsing my product offerings, please understand that prices reflect much more than the cost of paper and ink. I have invested many many hours into learning how to capture what is important to you in a way that is worth displaying proudly. I continue to invest more hours daily. Those hours have value, and so does the work they produce. I choose to respect my craft by charging accordingly.
What should I wear?
Whatever makes you comfortable! Try to pick something that reflects the vibe of your family. If you are a super sporty crew that likes to keep it casual, don’t feel like you have to run out and buy a bunch of dress slacks and uncomfortable shoes. But if you like to look snazzy, go for it!
- Don’t dress matchy-matchy. Shoot for a similar color palette, but stay away from everyone wearing the same outfit.
- If you’re not in love with your arms, avoid sleeveless/strapless tops. Long sleeves tend to photograph best.
- Ladies, be careful with those low cut tops/bra straps. When people get dressed for the day, they tend to look at themselves standing up and looking straight at the mirror. That is not how I take your pictures. As you get ready, keep in mind I’m going to be shooting from lots of angles, including the side and from slightly above. Make sure I’m not going to be capturing more than you want displayed your living room wall! Trust me, it’s not always something I can just “photoshop out”.
- Avoid busy patterns
- Avoid logos or things that will make the pictures look dated. Remember, you want to enjoy these images for decades!
With all this said, fashion consultation is just not my specialty. But there are a million wonderful articles that can point you in the right direction. Here is a fantastic example. Or perhaps this:
seriously, just Google “what to wear for a photo session” and you’ll have all the reading material you could ask for.
I hate the way I look in pictures!
I can help! Many many clients feel awkward in front of a camera, and almost everyone knows the pain of seeing an unflattering photograph of themselves. I certainly don't love being in front of a camera myself! But I've got your back. Part of my job is to make sure your pictures are taken in a flattering way. I will give you tips and tricks all throughout the process. I am very selective about only choosing pictures that you would want seen. I'll give you a tip right now. If you tend to photograph awkwardly, watching this video is the best 10 minutes you will ever spend on fixing it. Watch "It's all About the Jaw" before your session. Consider it your homework. I promise you, it will help. ;)
Where will the photo shoot take place?
I’m flexible! I do strictly natural light photography so of course outdoors is a must. I love beautiful parks with lots of greenery, and I also love downtown El Paso. I have a few great spots up my sleeve, but if you have any suggestions or requests, I’m happy to scout it out for you and see if it will be a good fit.
When is my session fee due? Will I need to sign any sort of contract?
Your full session fee is due at the time of the shoot. I can’t start shooting until I am paid in full. I accept payment in cash or check. Any prints you order will be paid for separately either by cash or check if you choose to order with me personally, or with a credit card if you choose to order online through my gallery on pixieset.com.
I will possibly ask you to sign a liability waver and a model release for you and your children. The liability waiver basically states that you are responsible for the safety of you and your children during the shoot. Obviously I will make safety top priority, but accidents happen. If you don’t feel comfortable with something I’m asking you or your child to do, it is your responsibility to speak up. The model release gives me the rights to use your image and your child’s image for publicity/portfolio uses and allows me to post the pictures on social media. If you have special concerns about this, please let me know before hand! I can work with you, but I want to know before hand so I can change the contract accordingly.