Family Portrait FAQs

Greenville NC Fall family session beautiful late lightFamily Session Questions

  • "How does your pricing work?"  

My pricing, in case you haven't noticed, is not exactly standard in the industry.  In fact, I'm guessing you have never paid a session fee, only to have your photographer give it back.  Well, welcome to Blended Light Photography's Family Session!  

How it works is really actually simple.  If you book a full session (option #2), your session is a prepaid credit towards the purchase of work from your session.  The entire $200 fee is credited against your account for ordering prints, canvases, files or canvas collections.  You buy what you want or need!

If you choose the Mini-session, the sitting fee is just that, a sitting fee.  You'll receive 3 files of your choosing from the session and have the opportunity to purchase more, but there is no credit towards purchasing.

  • "What is the pricing for your products?"

Click HERE to see current pricing for prints, files and packages.  Yes, it is higher than the local drug or big box store.  However, it is lower than industry average and the quality of the delivered products will beat your drug or big box store soundly.  I use only the highest quality and most well-regarded printers in the photography industry to ensure that you receive the best quality products available.  If fact, my printers of choice require that you be a professional photographer before you can even print through them.

  • "Why can't we just get all the files?"

As a photographer, I've taken the time to ask my clients a simple question - "Did you print any of the images?".  What I found is that well over 50% of my clients never printed a single image.  In fact, 6 months after their session, most of my clients realized they didn't know where the files were from their session.  That's sad!  

You spend a lot time organizing calendars, arranging outfits and making sure things are just right for your photography session.  You have an investment in your session, just as I do.

Make your investment worth something and have some of those images printed beautifully to display in your home or office. And that's why I give back your session fee - to help you afford those prints!  Of course, files are available for purchase if that's what you want, but you'll be much happier in the end picking out a single print or canvas collection to display proudly! 

  • "Do You offer mini sessions during the year?"

Currently, I do not offer mini-sessions.  There's pros and cons to offering them and, in my opinion, the cons to my clients far outweigh the pros.  I prefer to spend time getting to know my families and doing their session in a location that has some sort of meaning or draw to them.  Minis take the personalization out of the session, which is exactly what I don't want for my clients.

  • "What is the best thing to wear?" 

A lot of people worry about colors and patterns matching. Don't let that be a stressor for you. 

Dress for comfort, dress for style, dress for the location - but most importantly, dress to be yourself. Everyone doesn't have to match and wear the same thing. 

Choice of clothing reflects personality and that's what we want out of the session - personality.  That said, also dress for the weather.  If you are doing family images in Raleigh in early December, don't wear shorts and flip flops as you'll likely be cold and uncomfortable.  

This is especially important for young children as they will really dislike being cold.  If it's cold, wear a coat.  That's what you'd normally do and it will look completely natural.

  • "Where should we go?"

Locations abound in the Raleigh and Wake County areas.  I've shot the Seminary in Wake Forest, numerous parks in the area, even the pick boardwalk in the back of my neighborhood.  Locations in the area vary, pick something that fits your family or fits the season.  

Fall pictures start in very late October and run through late December, but that can be driven by the weather.  Heavy rains and strong winds can strip the trees of their leaves earlier or lack of either could have them through late December.  When in doubt, one of my favorites is Umstead Park off of Glenwood Avenue.  It has trees, it has water, it has stone work, it has a great rustic appeal and, if it's raining, it has cover!

  • "Have you worked with very young children?  Any tips for getting them to behave?"  
As the father of a 2 year old boy and 6 year old daughter, children rarely do what you want them to do when the camera is on them.  
I like to start any session with children by getting on their level and introducing myself.  A lot of times I take a quick picture and let them look at it on the back of the camera.  I find this helps calm them down and makes them a little more comfortable with me.  
Also, try to plan the session around nap times as tired kids don't make for great photography subjects!  Also, try to limit their sugar intake before the shoot - replace the M&Ms with fruit and water, but keep the M&Ms as a reward for behaving during the pictures.

All of that aside, as good as I am with kids, I can't guarantee they will look at the camera or smile or behave.  I can only do so much and being new to them, sometimes that isn't enough for a family picture.  My goal is to either get or be able to create with the use of Photoshop at least one family image where everyone is looking and smiling.

  • "What time of day is best?"

Time of day, to me, is less important than the location.  

Because I make use of a lot of flash work (bet you couldn't tell!), I control a great deal of the lighting.  Natural light in the morning and late afternoon is easiest to control and blend, but midday can be done easily too.  

Time really comes down to what works best for your schedule and family.  Winter months tend to be better in afternoon if you have young children because the sun has warmed things up a bit.  Vice versa for the summer, where the morning is better as it's not as steamy as the afternoon.  

The only exception to this rule is beach images.  Beach images, to me, are always better in the early morning as the sun is coming over the horizon and no one else is on the beach.  Early morning also allows you to use the sun to rim light you with the ocean in the back ground.  In the afternoon, you get the houses and no ocean (otherwise the sun is right in your eyes).  Beach images are an extra fee for travel.

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