Tips to Make Your Portrait Session Great.

You don't do this everyday... we get it.

Don't worry, we are here to help you, every step of the way. From helping you decide on clothes, to selecting the frames to perfectly accent your finished portraits, we are a full service studio that will offer you help and guidance from beginning to end.

Basic Clothing Recommendations:
Most Important Rule: No Stripes, Strong Patterns, or Plaids!


Please consider outfits with long sleeves...even in the middle of July! Unless you want to feature your armpits and elbows, long sleeves are always a better choice. Short sleeves or sleeveless clothing eliminate many options for poses, plus they tend to add weight and pull attention away from your face!
When dressing multiple people for a family portrait, there is no need to wear identical clothes! But, the clothes should all coordinate with each other and not fight. Here's a tip: Lay everyone's clothes out on a bed. If you could mix and match different parts of the outfit with each other and they would still look good, then your clothes will blend nicely in the portrait. If you would never put mom's top with daughter's pants, or junior's jeans with dad's sport coat, then the clothes are going to "fight" each other. Think not just of color, but style too. You wouldn't want one person in a formal dress next to someone in jeans and a sweater. Likewise you don't want three people in shades of blue and one person in yellow. Coordinate!

* Darker clothing, especially pants. And keep the contrast to a minimum.
* A little tan is great, but too tan makes faces look rounder and heavier, and peeling skin is nearly impossible to fix. Our lighting techniques will make you look healthy and warm toned. No need to overdo it with tanning.
* AVOID HORIZONTAL STRIPES!! - always a bad idea!!!
* Long sleeve clothing in soft “forgiving” fabrics are always more flattering than tight, “clingy” clothes.
* Shoes with heels will lift and slim.
* Putting something of light color next to something dark on the part of the body you DON’T want emphasized (for example, white shirt with black pants brings attention to your waistline!
* Shirts that are very thin in material need to be worn slightly larger, or they will show every bump.
* Short sleeves and sleeveless emphasize the upper arm and can make them look larger.
* Shorts are a cute style, but NOT good for photography. It will show too much leg.
* Plaid - can create lots of lines and add bulk.

Have a Dress Rehearsal.
The night before your session, have a clothing run through in your own home. Put your entire outfit together from undergarments, to leggings, to jewelry and accessories. Make sure to dress from head to toe! The time to discover the red bra isn’t going to work with the white top is not 5 minutes before your shoot time! Plan ahead.

If you just can't decide.
Bring along 1 or 2 extra choices and we will be happy to help you decide which ones will photograph the best.

Makeup is such a personal choice but we find that even if you don’t normally wear much, good makeup is really vital to the success of your shoot. We recommend having your makeup done professionally for the very best results. We can recommend great places to go. If you can’t have it professionally done, we suggest applying your makeup like you were going on a dressy evening out… heavier than normal but not so much that you feel uncomfortable. The photographic process actually decreases the contrast and saturation in your makeup so it will photograph like “less” than it looks in person! Don’t forget about your nails as they will show in many shots! Really important… don’t overdo it in the sun or tanning salon!

Hairstyles are a personal preference. Make sure your hair is exactly the way you wish it to appear in the finished photographs. GIRLS, BANGS HANGING IN YOUR FACE WILL CAUSE UNFLATTERING SHADOWS. USE HAIRSPRAY TO HOLD IT BACK. It’s generally not a good idea to plan a brand new hairstyle or color right before your session. You may not like it, or it just may not “work” for you. The time to try a new “look” is at least several weeks BEFORE your session so you have time to let it “grow” on you and you get comfortable with your appearance.

Personal Preferences.
Make sure to tell us anything you had in mind or anything that is concerning you about your portraits... before your session!  The more you tell us about your ideas, styles and concerns, the more we can create images that reflect who you really are!

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