Photo Session Preparation

Hi there!

So booking a photo session seems like checking one thing off the list, but then preparing for it becomes a whole different task, am I right??

So I've created this post to help as a task checklist as well as something to keep in mind when planning outfit and makeup choices-from your photographers point of view. 

So Let's get started!

  1. Outfit Choices

Your photo sessions should be about telling your story, so your outfit should be a resemblance of you as well. So if you're not someone who would wear heels, even on the occasion, don't!  It is so easy to go on to Pinterest and find so many beautifully dressed humans and try to recreate that, when in reality it's just something you would not be comfortable in.  Being comfortable in front of the camera is hard for a lot of people, but something you can control is how comfortable you are in your clothing. Just that alone can make your confidence and experience during the session so much better! 

During most shoots, there is an option of adding an outfit change.  I almost always recommend this option because it allows you to maximize your time and money with your photographer because you'll be capturing various different looks while saving a penny or two!

Depending on what type of photo session you're purchasing, the style of outfit may vary. A couple for an engagement session will wear something very different than what a High School Senior or a family may wear.  Remember, this session is for you and your story!  I do recommend varying your outfits not so much by style, because that is apart of who you are, but by type of outfit.  It really helps vary the look of your session if one outfit is a more casual of an outfit while the other is a little dressier.  To what degree you take those terms of casual and dressier differs person to person, but again your photo session is 100% for you and SHOULD vary by each person.  So with that said, vary your outfit by however you would like and however you feel the most beautiful in, because that is what I want to capture! 

These are just a few ideas of a variety of different outfits for the upcoming season!

        2. Make Up & Hair

Let's start with hair!

Typically, most women that I have worked with have their hair down, or at least half down.  Whether you curl or straighten depends on each person again.  I am not sure there is a right or wrong way to have your hair done when it comes to photography.  However there are factors to take into consideration.  Such as, will it be windy? Or rainy? Or humid? All of these uncontrollable factors should be taken into consideration, but weather is something that cannot be controlled so just being aware can help decide how you style your hair.  

If you would not consider yourself to be the next hair stylist, getting it professionally done is always an option.  The most typical clients to have this done will be a bride, or soon-to-be bride.  This does not mean that I have not had Senior Portrait clients that haven't had their hair done professionally, it all just depends on what you're wanting for your photo session!

Here are a couple of different ideas that would look beautiful in any photo session


Next, we will tackle make up!

This is where I have seen clients spend the most amount of time worrying about as well as money spent.  My biggest advice when it comes to make up for any type of photo session is to wear a more than you normally would.  Now don't get this mixed up with wearing makeup similar to that of a clown!  What I mean is, wear more in smaller areas.  Such as lip color, eyeliner or eyeshadow, etc.  I totally get that this goes against pretty much my entire message of this post in regards to be yourself, "if you are someone who doesn't wear a lot of make up, dont!" Except for this, DO!!  With lighting and capturing you through the lens, the essence of color can be lost.  So when a little extra blush is put on, or that lipstick is worn all the difference is made in the photo because that color really comes through as the lively person you are!

So if you're not someone who normally wears a lot of make up, then a make up artist may be someone you want to invest in.  Or if you want to do your own makeup, a trip to Sephora is never a bad idea! Having help finding products as well as showing you the best techniques is always a nice plus :) There are a lot of resources you can look to for inspirations, tutorials or ideas, so utilizing that is always a great option too! 

Top 3 things I would make sure to emphasize when doing makeup for a session:

  1. Highlighter-really play it up! 
  2. Lips- Add some color, even if its a natural shade, wear it!
  3. Eyes - Your eyes and smile say it all, so make sure your eyes pop with some Mascara at the very least!

Here are some ideas for looks ranging from minimal to more of a bold makeup look


         3. Details to Keep in Mind

There are always small things that easily slip everyone's mind prior to a photo session.  Things such as your nails.  If you're doing an engagement shoot, pictures of your ring are a must, which means your hands (and fingers will be shown).  So investing in some TLC for your nails is always a good idea. 

Another thing I remind my clients to keep in mind is the props they choose to use.  The purpose of using props in photography is not to make them the focal point, but to enhance YOU in the image.  It helps makes that photo that illuminated you, even more customized to who you are as a person!  So something as little as a special piece of jewelry or a hat can really change the dynamic of a photo.  A blanket or chair that represents your style or something from your past brings a whole new value to that photo.  Props do not have to be huge, elaborate or expensive things.  Consider props an aid to making a beautiful picture have a special twist, something that doesn't take away an value or distract, but rather enhance. 

Props vary depending not only on individual, but also the type of shoot.  I've included some examples here below!

The purpose of this post is to just get you thinking about things that maybe you haven't thought of, or to maybe give you a start in the right direction.  No matter what type of photo session you're booking, it can be stressful, even when it's not meant to be. At the end of the day I want to serve you with the best photos possible that capture YOU, so whatever you believe tells your story best, wear it or bring it!

Hope this all helps & can't wait to start our session together

With Love,