As we are getting closer to this year's Autumn mini sessions, I thought it might be helpful to put together some information to help you get the most out of your photo shoot.
What is a mini session?
A mini session is just like a normal session but shorter! It's like a taster of what my full sessions are like but because of the way they are run, I am able to offer them at a much more affordable rate. Mini sessions are booked in blocks, limited to one location and last 15 minutes. It will still be jam packed with different shots and you will still get a great variety of images to choose from, including those all important ones that you can frame and give as Christmas pressies.
If you would like to have more control over where and when your shoot takes place, then a full session may better for you.
What to Expect
You may have had shoots with me before, or this could be your very first time in front of the camera. Either way, relax and be yourself and the rest will work itself out. I will meet you at our agreed location at the time your session is agreed to start. Please aim to be a few minutes early so that we can get started promptly. Don't panic if I'm not there, I will likely already be in the park photographing another family - there is no need to come and find me, I will come to the meeting point. We will then go to the area where I will photograph you. We will move around a bit to get different background and capture different interactions, but I will help you the whole time.
You will be given as much or as little guidance as necessary to get those beautiful, natural images and I may give you little prompts every now and again to encourage those connections. Try not to look at me - look at each other and enjoy your surroundings. Feel free to engage in anything that is going to result in smiles and laughter (tickles and jokes are always a winner).
You are welcome to request specific poses and combinations of family members but please remember that time is limited. If you have a long list of ideas, it may be a better idea to book a full session so that I can meet your expectations.
Once the session is finished, I will take you back to the meeting point so that you are able to find your way back. It is likely that my next client will be waiting for me so as much as I'd love to stop and chat, please don't be offended if I'm not able to.
How to prepare
There's not really a lot you need to do but it's a good idea to have a think about what to wear as that will have one of the biggest visual impacts on your images. I have a whole other blog post about how to dress for a family shoot, which you can see here, but as this is specifically for Autumn then you may want to choose warmer tones. Mustard, burgundy and khaki always look fantastic against an autumnal backdrop, but then again I absolutely love bright, bold colours, so it really is up to you . As always I would aim to co-ordinate rather than match, but most of all, make sure you're comfortable and warm!
If you will be bringing children to the shoot then talk to them in advance. Tell them that you will be going for a walk and play and that I will be there to take pictures of them having fun. Please don't tell them to say cheese though - this can result in forced smiles, whereas we want really natural, genuine happy faces. It would be good if you have some tricks up your sleeves that you know will result in natural laughter from them.
Consider if you would like to bring any props - a little chalk board to write a message can be cute, or a nice big blanket to sit on. Please feel free to contact me to discuss any of this in advance.
What happens next?
As soon as I get back from my sessions I will upload all the images to my computer where I will then start to select the best images to be edited. You can expect to receive your password protected gallery within 2 weeks, which will remain active for 7/14 days depending on which package you have chosen to book. You can expect to receive around 10-15 images in your gallery.
If you have paid for 1 image, you can download this and then choose to purchase other digital files and/or prints if you wish. All unpurchased files will be watermarked and you are strictly forbidden from taking screenshots. Sorry, I know this sounds mega grumpy - but it is theft from my small business, which isn't nice so please don't. If you love the images enough to do that, then please buy them.
If you have paid for the full collection, these will all be available to download immediately. You can then order your 5 free prints as well as any others that you wish to purchase. I would also politely request you not to screenshot as there is no need - you can download the files to your phone and they will be MUCH higher quality than a screenshot.
Please feel free to share your images on social media (and even better if you can tag me!).
Lastly, and most importantly, please take this as an opportunity to spend some time as a family. If you are enjoying each other's company and having fun, you are guaranteed to have some wonderful, happy photos to cherish.