helpful tips and reminders

Thank you so much for booking your Portrait Session with me! I am looking forward to our time together. Below is some information that I believe will be very helpful for you and your family as you prepare in the days leading up to your session, and also for the day of. Please take the time to read through the information and if you have any questions or concerns, feel free to email me.

BE WELL RESTED AND WELL FED.  Hungry and tired = cranky and impatient.  DON’T eat/drink anything that will discolor your lips/tongue such as various candies and fruit/sports drinks (this has happened). If necessary, water and non-sticky/non-coloring/non-juicy snacks are okay to bring (eg. cut up apples, crackers).


  • You want to be comfortable. There will be sitting, hugging, lying down, climbing, etc., so be sure your outfits and shoes will allow you to be mobile and comfortable. Make sure the clothing fits well. You don’t want to worry about pulling down, bunching or crawling up, showing too much, “wardrobe malfunctions”, etc.
  • Coordinate your outfits. This doesn’t have to be “matchy-matchy.” Pick a theme color or a combination of complimentary colors. The idea is to bring cohesion to the group.  Also, the men can have one theme color and the women another, as long as these colors coordinate nicely. Pastel and earth tones work well, with minimal to no patterns.  Layering is a good idea too, and feel free to bring “add-ons” if you want to change up the look, such as jackets/cover ups, scarves, boots/shoes, items that can be easily changed, etc. 
  • I strongly advise AGAINST very bright/vibrate colors for your clothing such as hot pink/fuchsia, neon colors, etc. These are great for small pops of color such as shoes or a belt, but not for a large garment such as shirt, pants, or skirt. This causes a distraction to the entire image and it may result in a “color cast” over your face. Please try to avoid sequins or too much “bling” on blouses/jackets. This may cause bright spots if the sun hits just right.  Remember, the focus is to be on you not the clothing.
  • Please avoid clothing with large logos/wording, images, or too much of a pattern. This is also distracting. HOWEVER, it is okay to add personality. If your family is a fan of sports, Super Heroes, Star Wars, etc., feel free to bring along clothing/props to express this as a group. 
  • Be aware of clothing that is see-through, bra straps slipping out, tan lines, etc.  No more than 5 images will be edited to attempt to fix these, as part of the initial fee.  **Any additional images will require a $25/image surcharge, if requested AND agreed to. 
  • Footwear. We will likely be shooting at a beach, park or field and this means grass, dirt and sand. Please keep this in mind when choosing your shoes. If you want to wear heels, make it a wedge type heel or something that won’t sink into the grass. You can also take sandals or slip-ons for initial arrival and switch shoes once we start the shoot. 
  • TRANSITION LENSES. **THIS IS VERY IMPORTANT!!**  Since we will be outside, your lenses will darken. If you decide to wear glasses during the shoot, you need to be OKAY with the dark lenses. These WILL NOT be photoshopped.

GROOMING:  It’s the little details that we forget


  • NAILS: Either freshly painted or completely nude and tended to. Chipped polish/chipped nails can be an eyesore (this will NOT be photoshopped). Pastel polish color is a fresh look, but most colors, if nicely applied, will work.
  • MAKE-UP:  Be yourself and feel pretty. If you usually go natural, keep it that way if you so choose. Or wear minimal make-up. You want to be comfortable and confident - be you! If you typically use make-up, go for that. However, please do not use glitter eye shadow. Also, don’t forget to bring lipstick/lip gloss/chapstick for touch-ups. *If you use false eyelashes, be conservative in length as the eyes may become ‘lost’ in the lashes. Remember: When we smile/laugh we tend to squint our eyes. 
  • HAIR: Same as make-up, be yourself.  Now is NOT the time to try out a new hairdo. Be aware that it will likely be windy - this is okay, don’t worry about it. Feel free to bring any clips, ties, headbands, whatever you feel is necessary to keep your hair as you wish, or if you just want to change it up a little during the shoot.   


  • FINGERNAILS: You need to tend to your nails as well. Trimmed and clean.
  • SHAVING (if applicable).  Shave early enough before the shoot if you have a tendency to experience bumps/redness after shaving. This will allow time for it to resolve before the shoot.  
  • DON’T FORGET any belts, ties, cufflinks etc.   


  • Lotion and lip balm. These are good to bring as it gets dry in California, especially if it's windy. 
  • Give yourself plenty of time to get ready. You don’t want to be frazzled and anxious at the shoot. 
  • Don’t worry about perfection. The idea is to express the essence and personality of you/your family through these images. 
  • Make a day of it.  Plan to go out to lunch/dinner or some other treat afterward.