I am so excited for your upcoming session! I just wanted to go over a few details so that you have a better idea of what to expect and how to prepare.
The most important thing to remember is….have fun! This is a time to be yourselves, enjoy each other, and forget about the real world for a bit.
You can expect that for the first 15 minutes, you’ll feel totally awkward! During this time we’ll take it slow, and I’ll show you what to expect for the rest of the session. I’ll take some practice shots, and I promise the awkwardness will go away eventually!
Embrace the awkward, go with it!
My #1 rule is: DON’T LOOK AT THE CAMERA. This is also probably the most difficult thing to do! We’re conditioned from an early age to look and smile when someone is taking our picture. Unless I ask you to, just try to ignore the camera, and pay attention to each other. It can feel awkward at first, trying to ignore the urge to do that- but I promise it gets easier! We’ll be moving around a lot and I’ll help you if you need it!
My #2 rule is: DON’T BRING ANYTHING WITH YOU. If you bring anything that needs to be carried, it’ll have to be left behind. You’re going to need your hands free, and I’ll be taking photos “in-between” moments, so it’s best to not have anything with you. If it’s absolutely necessary, I can always pack smaller items (water bottles and smaller) in my camera bag and bring them along.
My #3 (and most important) rule is: TRUST ME. I absolutely love capturing these images, and I like to think I’m pretty good at it. A lot of the time, I see things in a completely different way- and I love to experiment! You might question some of my ideas (like if I’m like “Oh wow! That’s an awesome pile of dead sticks right there! Let’s use it for a background”) but trust me- it usually turns out amazing!
I’ll direct you throughout the session, provide ideas, talk to you, answer any questions you might have, and just have a great time hanging out with you. :)
Wear whatever you feel good in!
I suggest wearing outfits that are seasonally and location appropriate. Layers are always nice and allow quick changes to looks. Pay attention to how the clothing fits- it should be comfortable, not too loose or too tight. Colors that coordinate but don’t match are best. Darker colors and neutral colors photograph best, but don’t be afraid to bring in a pop of color, floral print, plaid, or something like that. I would rather have you wear something that you LOVE than worry about looking perfect. Try not to wear clothing items that have logos on them. Unless the logo is awesome (like a Black Sabbath t-shirt).
Guys: stay away from shorts/sandals.
Girls: I highly recommend staying away from sleeveless tops/dresses if you don’t like the way your arms look. :)
Your outfits can really impact your photos, so put some thought into what you’re going to wear. If you need help or suggestions, I’d be happy to help you!
If you normally wear glasses, wear them. If you’re a guy, don’t shave right before the session (to avoid redness and spots).
What to Wear Inspiration:
LIGHTING IS KEY TO HAVING BEAUTIFUL PHOTOS!
When planning your session location, it’s easy to get caught up in the location and views and disregard the lighting, but the lighting will play the biggest role in how your photos will turn out!
You might have your heart set on a certain location or backdrop for your photos. However, sometimes the light doesn’t want to cooperate with your intentions, bringing harsh shadows streaming across your faces, spotty light coming from trees, or blinding light coming in your eyes causing you to squint constantly. If the quality of light isn’t good, then your photos won’t be good, and I will move you to a better spot. Trust me, and don’t be disheartened! Try to remember that it isn’t just the location or the background that makes a good photo. :)
Sunset is best: With few exceptions, I plan portrait sessions right before sunset because the lighting is most beautiful that time of day! It’s softer, golden and straight up gorgeous. Because the sun is lower in the sky, there are more shadows and the light is more forgiving.
Here are 6 tips to help you prepare for the session:
- SHARE IT ALL WITH ME. Honesty is mandatory. Be yourselves. I can only capture your true dynamic if you allow me into your space. Remember how you interact when you’re alone, and don’t hide it. Embrace both the goofy laughter and the quiet moments. I will, of course, guide you through all this as we shoot.
- DON’T HOLD BACK. Just be you! This seems obvious, but sometimes it’s tough to really commit to it. I want your dynamic to set the tone and mood of the shoot, not what you think a session should look like. Are you goofballs? Are you introverted? I want to experience all those little moments you might otherwise consider the “outtakes”. Don’t act like you think you should, I want to capture you as you are. The truest emotion is in the outtakes!
- DRESS LIKE YOURSELF. Dress comfortably, don’t feel like you need to “dress up” because it’s an occasion. Wear something you feel confident and comfortable in. Whether that’s ripped up jeans or a flowing dress, you do you!
- FORGET THE “PHOTOSHOOT” PART. You’re not there for me. I’m there for you: to document you. The objective isn’t just to take pretty pictures. It’s to capture this stage in your life, while spending time together. It’s very likely that the last time you got your picture taken “professionally” was for a high school photo or for super awkward portraits. I promise you, it will be nothing like that. So forget the photos, and focus on enjoying the evening!
- EMBRACE THE SPONTANEOUS ELEMENTS. And I don’t just mean the weather. I want you to embrace the rocks, the dirt, the paths less traveled, the wind messing up your hair, and all the other spontaneous and “imperfect” elements. I want to keep it natural and honest, so just let go!
- HAVE FUN. I mean like, let all the stress and responsibility of life go away for a while and just embrace the moment! This should be a time to enjoy each other without worry. Laugh, hold hands, explore, and forget about work!
If you have any questions or need help with anything, just let me know! I’m looking forward to our adventure!