If you are scheduled and show up late or not ready, you will have less time in the camera room. If you need to get ready here (hair, makeup, etc.) please arrive early enough to be ready by your start time.
First of all AVOID STRIPES AND PLAID!! Solids photograph much better! Also bring a variety of color, don't bring 5 blue outfits even if it is your favorite color. Avoid clothing that has wording on it except for your own school logo. Vary the style, all one look (like tanks) gets boring. Vary the dress level, bring some dressy, some medium and some casual. Remember, it is best to do one or two outfits that mom will like, then we can do the stuff YOU like.
Also remember, as a general rule, light clothes look better on lighter backgrounds and darker clothes look backgrounds and darker clothes look better on darker backgrounds. So if you prefer dark, bring dark, if you prefer some of both, bring some of both.
Some shots are close up, others are full length. Plan outfits completely. It is hard to do a full length formal in your suit if all you brought was big old tennis shoes.
Group your outfits together on hangers. It is amazing how many people come in with clothes stuffed in a plastic bag and wonder why they are wrinkled! Make sure they are ironed.
If you are doing an outdoor session, most locations do not have places to change. But if you wear a layered outfit, you can add or drop a piece for a different look.
If you spend all day in the dressing room, you get less time in front of the camera. Most people can get 2-3 looks per hour. More if you are quick and work easy.
Make sure your clothing flatters you.
If you think you have large arms, be careful of sleeveless styles, they can make your arms look fuller. Our motto is “The larger the arm, the longer the sleeve.” Every outfit does not need to consist of strapless shirts and/or tank tops. We don't really tell you what you can and can not wear. We photograph everything from prom dresses to swimsuits. What one person likes may not be appropriate for the next person. Our philosophy is as long as it is rated PG, we don't care.
Makeup should only be slightly heavier than normal. About like you might wear in the evening. Mascara should be clean and contain no clumps. So if your mascara is old and clumpy, replace it first. Avoid makeup with "sparkles" in it. When you move, it makes a nice shimmer, but in a photo, where you are still, it creates a little white spot that almost looks like a zit. Also avoid makeup with an SPF in it. Although it is good for your skin in the sun, the SPF tends to create a shine. Summer shine can be controlled by using translucent powder that knocks out shine without adding additional color.
Avoid changing your hairstyle or cutting your hair right before your session. Let it be natural. Quick easy hairstyle changes during your session are OK, but make it quick or you loose camera time. Artificially bleached hair is often not best, in 10 years you might say "What was I thinking??" Bring your hair care tools and products with you if need be. It IS ok to show up early in curlers if you need to.
Although our photographer tries to help with hair, it is hard to know what your hair "is supposed to look like". So make sure you like the look or let the photographer know your preferences. Hair style is ultimately your responsibility.
Best tip here, keep it simple. We want the attention on you. Big, shiny jewelry can distract from the real subject, YOU. If you have different jewelry for different outfits, you might put each set of jewelry in a bag and hang it on the hanger with that outfit.
PROPS & ACCESSORIES
Bring them! Bring props that help define who you are. Some popular choices are: Sports equipment (soccer ball, football, hockey stick, hurdle, whatever), sports uniforms, music instruments (from school tuba to rock guitar), activities (dance leotard and shoes, swimming, hobbies, you name it!), vehicles (motorcycles can come in the studio, cars must go to the park, we suggest more than an hour session for car shots).
Feel free to bring in props that represent who you are! Scarves, hats and necklaces, look great in senior portraits. These items won’t be used in every pose, but enough to give you a great variety of choices. Remember its all about representing who you are!
Most glasses glare! Some prescriptions more than others. Your best bet is to check with your optometrist. Most will "loan" you an empty set of frames similar to yours for your photo session.
AVOID SUNBURN! Sunburn and peeling skin DO NOT photograph well! Tan lines are not attractive in portraits. We suggest you vary your swimsuit top or use a tanning bed to minimize any tan marks. However, if using a tanning bed DO NOT overdo your tanning, skin that looks like dark leather is not the most attractive. REMEMBER, when it comes to tanning for portraits - less is better!
We retouch blemishes, so don't worry about minor breakouts.
Pets are OK as long as they are house broken. It is a good idea to have someone bring a pet, then leave with them after. Or bring a pet carrier to contain them while you are being photographed without the pet. Treats can be helpful to hold a dogs attention.
FRIENDS & PARENTS
Friends or parents are welcome. They can be a help. However, if they become a distraction we will kindly request that they wait in the gallery.
WEATHER FOR OUTDOOR PORTRAITS
Let's face it, we are at the mercy of mother nature. If it rains, we simply have to reschedule the outdoor portion of your session only. Don't worry about clouds, they actually HELP! But rain falling IS a problem. If it is raining the morning of your session, come in prepared with all outfits and we will make the decision when its time for your outdoor session. Many times a rainy morning turns into a lovely day within an hour.
TATTOOS, SCARS and BRACES
Just let the photographer know if you want tattoos to show or not. It is that easy. Scars are not automatically retouched, but can be removed or softened at your request. Extensive work may have a slight extra charge. Braces? Don't worry. You could have the tops taken off for your photo session, or we can retouch them out by computer. But don't fight smiling, a braces smile is better than a dorky holding back a smile look.
It is amazing how many times someone will come in wearing flowered underwear and not realize it is a problem until they go to put on their WHITE PANTS! Or come in wearing a white bra and put on a black sleeveless shirt. Please bring appropriate foundation wear for each outfit. Flesh colored is the best you can hope for. Also, if you need a strapless, bring one. Tucking the straps down usually shows and looks bad. With today's thin fabrics, you might want to carefully select these pieces so they do not give unsightly lines.
FINGER & TOE NAILS
NAILS SHOW! If they have the paint all chipped off, it will show. Retouching to remove chipped nail polish is extra and can be costly. Many casual shots are done barefoot, so don't forget about those toes! Avoid real bright colors. Natural or basic work best. We don't want to draw attention to your neon orange toe nails. And they may look really bad with your next outfit!