Frequently Asked Questions
How does booking work? What if it rains or the weather is bad on the date I book?
Typically once you contact me with your needs or questions or the target dates you have in mind (check out my availability calendar for a starting place!), we will settle on a date and I will send you my invoice and contract. For full portrait sessions, my contract must be signed and full payment provided at time of our session; I accept online payment through the invoice link I send, or I can take cash and checks when we meet to begin. In some instances, such as holiday mini sessions and other themed mini sessions, I open an online reservation system and require prepayment via that system in order for you to claim your reservation—booking links and instructions will be posted on my offerings page when those types of sessions are offered. For all types of portrait sessions, I ask that you provide any cancellation notices within 72 hours of the session or as early as possible as a courtesy so that I may re-release available times to my other clients. In the event of poor weather, I will stay in touch with you to reschedule if you wish to try for another time.
How far ahead should I book?
Typically I can add sessions to my schedule on fairly short notice, and if you are available on some weeknights or in the mornings around sunrise any time of the week, I have even more options to fit you in even when my weekends are booked up during the busiest times. You can usually contact me a couple day to a couple weeks ahead of your ideal date so that we can work out a good time. However, fall tends to fill quickly compared to other times of the year and I may not have many slots available if you contact me in the midst of that season, so contacting me as early as possible is best if you’d like to hold a fall date. If you’d like to book something far in advance, feel free to ask!
What does "X or more digital images" mean in the description of the packages? What about prints?
While your collection may include more than this number of images, I always include the promised number at minimum. If you book me, I sort through your images to select the best, and I then edit those and provide them to you--since you receive a printing release, you can decide which images to print or share, in addition to any professional-quality prints you order from me through your package or a la carte. I put many hours of care into creating each finished photo collection for you!
How do I choose a location?
If you have one in mind, that's where we can go! If you're not sure, I can help identify one. Please note that some venues charge fees for use, which you will be responsible for covering if you prefer one of these spots. Some locations do not require a permit/fee, and some also allow pets. There are lots of great spots and parks around Richmond and the surrounding counties, and I’ve shot sessions at a number of them, so once I know your goals and needs, we can come up with plan. I am more than happy to travel outside of this region for sessions, but do be mindful that I must account for extra costs for any locations further than 60 miles round-trip from my location in Amelia, VA.
Are pets allowed?
I love including pets in sessions! Be aware that we can only take pets to shooting locations where they are permitted, and you will be responsible for handling your animal in a safe manner and abiding by any venue rules. You must clean up after your pet and keep your dog leashed. It is sometimes helpful to bring a treat or toy to help me grab your dog's attention while I shoot!
What about outfit changes and personal items?
I generally do not set any limits on outfit changes, but just be mindful of the available time for our session, as changes will take up a portion of the overall session length. Incorporating special items into your session is a great idea. My past clients have included blankets, photos, jewelry, and other items of significance. Feel free to notify me in advance if you have something particular you want to incorporate or need ideas.
I don't know how to pose. What do I do?
Don't worry--I provide direction! Furthermore, as you can see from my portfolio, I tend to take a collection of both candid and directed shots that fit your style and personality.
What is a "lifestyle" session?
The general idea of a lifestyle session is to candidly capture the essence of a subject working through their everyday activities (ex: I can shoot lifestyle sessions while you play with your children, work with your horse, hold your new baby during a nap, do farm chores, or other real-life moments). For newborns, I generally shoot these indoors in a nursery or elsewhere in your home. Of course, there is an element of posing that we can bring into lifestyle sessions--for example, if you have a newborn, I might capture holding your child and enjoying special moments, but I might also direct you into some poses along the way to catch some meaningful family photos. If you're getting senior portraits with me and you have a hobby, I can capture some images of you doing what you love.
What should I wear to my session?
You can't go too wrong with neutrals, classic solids, or even pastels. Patterns can work too. Be aware that neons can cast some colors onto your face and skin, but don't let that keep you from trying something bold! Consider accessorizing with a jacket, scarf, or jewelry. I am happy to provide some guidance. For maternity sessions, a maternity dress or tighter-fitting outfit can help show off your bump.
I'm doing an equine session. What should I do to get my horse ready? Can we add dogs/husbands/families to my horse session? Can we do some “black background” horse images?
It is hard to go wrong with a clean bridle or a leather halter. We may take bridleless images in some situations, but I prefer to do these inside of a pasture just in case your horse decides to walk off on a detour. Many people get their horses groomed and leave manes and tails natural for more casual sessions, but you can certainly braid, clip, or do more to match your style, outfit, and setting. It is best to feed your horse before the session, if our time slot is near dinner or breakfast for your horse, and I will probably use a few of your horse's favorite treats to get pleasant expressions while we shoot. If you book a full portrait session, we typically do have time during the hour for a variety of shots, including some family images. Black background images are available in certain venues (I need certain levels of light and an appropriate barn entrance or aisle) and they require detailed editing for a finished appearance; contact me to discuss your needs if you are interested in adding black background portraits. .
How do unicorn sessions work?
Though most of my sessions are natural-feeling portraits with few props, I do offer “unicorn sessions” with horses. In most cases, you provide the "unicorn" and a bridle. I have one unicorn horn sized for ponies and one that fits horses. They attach to a bridle. If you want something more elaborate, we can discuss options for fresh florals and garlands.
Do you offer other types of sessions?
Yup! While I specialize in portraits, I've shot many sessions beyond what you might see here--outdoor community events, horse shows, animal shelter pet images, farms, and even a dog birthday party. I also have some recurring seasonal specials, such as farm sessions at Richlands Dairy and sunflower sessions in mid to late summer. If you have something in mind or want to be put on a “notify me when this special is available” list, just ask!