What should I wear, what should I bring and how should I prepare ?
If you're nervous, don't be. I'm here to answer any questions and the only time I'll rush you is when we are on our way to the next location. At any time during your session, if you need a break, have an idea or feel uncomfortable then please let me know.
- Hair and skin: About a week or two before, touch up dye and trim ends if necessary. Freshly dyed hair is often visible along the scalp and fresh haircuts tend to look a bit chunky. Allowing just a short time ensures a more natural appearance and softness. Remember to shave legs, underarms and groom eyebrows, but be cautious to avoid razor burn. Exfoliate, shave and moisturize avoiding harsh treatments that may not heal in time. If you prefer a tan, be cautious that you don't Oompa Loompa. :)
- Makeup: It's up to you if you want to have a professional do your makeup. If not, your makeup should reflect what you typically wear, but a bit more refined and slightly more than usual so that it will show up on camera. My camera is capable of capturing even the delicate hairs on your face. Waterproof makeup is recommended for water related sessions or for sessions during hot summer days. If possible, obtain translucent mineral powder and bring it along to reduce shine from oil or sweat during the session. If you don't normally wear makeup, consider it and feel free to ask me for advice, to shop with you or to apply for you. Whiten and brush your teeth! Take the time to pamper/groom yourself like you're going to prom with the hottest guy/girl in school and you'll be more confident of your gorgeousness/manliness. Having fun during your session rather than worrying about your appearance.
- Wardrobe: Plan out outfits and accessories. Have fun shopping! Don't forget shoes, jewelry and even details such as nail polish and makeup. Trim and manicure your nails and toenails. Ensure your chosen polish will go with all your outfits. Makeup too. It's far easier during a session to change clothes and jewelry than to worry about makeup. Bring both your polish and makeup so we can touch-up as needed. It is also a good idea to bring a hand-towel. Most clients sweat a bit, even during the winter. Avoid clothes with logos and try to wear items with layers and texture. Avoid wearing baggy, thin or see-thru tops or overly tight clothes. Above all, be yourself! Please don't wear narrow stripes. Small stripes are not camera friendly and can also create weight if worn improperly. You are welcome to wear them if you wish. You don't have to spend a ton of money. Experiment by layering what you have with something new. Try your local consignment store for vintage finds and browse stores such as TJ Maxx or Burkes Outlet for savings on name brand fashion. You could also borrow from a family member or friend.
- Shoes: Heels will elongate short legs, but be mindful of the location. Sinking heels do nothing for height. Bring something comfortable for walking and boots for hiking. Socks too!
- Dietary: Eat healthy, avoiding excess sodium (bloating!), greasy fried foods and artificial ingredients. Organic is best! Sleep 7-8hrs nightly and drink lots of water for glowing skin! Avoid extreme diets prior to a session. You'll only make yourself tired and could capture that on camera. If you're worried about losing or gaining weight, you owe it to yourself to do it naturally with proper dietician advice and physical fitness. Prolong your session until you are comfortable OR realize life is short and love who you are at this moment in your life. How sad it would be to have no photographic memories to leave behind to loved ones. Trust me, they won't be looking for perfection. They'll just want photos of YOU.
- Rugged and Urban locations: For your safety, please be aware that on-location photography has risks that does not exist in studios. Bees, snakes, glass and nails are common hazards as are unexpected hazards of tripping over a rock or encountering a dangerous person during an urban session. I am a trained spotter so will be monitoring the weather. Your safety is my top priority, so please follow my directions and stay close. Let's work together to keep each other safe. Also, there is always the issue of bugs, heat, dehydration and sunburn during the summer and frostbite or cold lowering your immune system and encouraging illness during the winter. I shoot in any weather, so please dress for the season and ensure your needs are considered. Unrefined coconut oil makes a great bug repellant. Bring an insulated water bottle and a few low sugar, high protein snacks such as peanut butter or portable tuna pouches with fresh veggies. Regardless of the season, you will be thirsty and if we must walk a great distance, you will need your energy.
- Valuables: It's a good idea to leave everything valuable at home the day of your session. Condense your session needs into a comfortable backpack with room for your outfits and to hold your ID, money, snacks and other session needs. Pack lightly. I will help you carry what I can, but I will have my camera bag, tripod and water.
- Props: Accessories such as hats, personal items, jewelry and props are all encouraged. You are welcome to bring your favorite music to sessions for background ambiance to 'set the mood'. Whether it's a firetruck, your new motorcycle, a vintage piece of furniture, photo of deceased family member, an adorable kitten or even your pet goldfish: I'm open to anything that is sentimental to you!
- For Children and Families: Children should be free to express themselves with a favorite outfit or accessory. You want to capture the innocence and unique personality of the child and not force them into a box of unrealistic expectations. Families look best in complimentary wardrobes. Avoid being boring by only wearing jeans & a t-shirt or having everyone match. Embrace a color palette. Pinterest has SO many ideas and is a great resource for session planning! Allow one person (typically the main female) to be the fashionista and then use that unique outfit to inspire coordination among the rest of the family. It's OK to match accessories such as sibling's hat or headband and tie or dress shirt. Anyone can be the lead inspiration for the session, but ensure they are the primary focus. Basically, if one wears a floral print dress then the remaining subjects should be more simplistic in their choices while still coordinating.
Session Day Checklist
I've created this checklist to help ensure you don't forget anything you'll need for your session. Adjust as needed.
- Water and snacks
- shoes for hiking (may get wet!)
- outfits, shoes and jewelry
- props, toys etc.
- makeup (eyes, skin and lips)
- brush and floss teeth
- glue & tweezers if using false lashes
- nail-polish for touch-ups
- hairbrush and spray
- hair pins or accessories
- phone and charger
- List of ideas and requests
- deodorant & lotion
- shark week products ;)
- sunscreen & bug repellant
- sunglasses and a towel
- lint-roller or tape
- toilet paper and diapers/pullups
- I'll be bringing my solar powered radio. Music helps! :)