Thank you for choosing Handcraft Films for your family photos. I am so excited to get started and can't wait to get to know you and your family even better. This digital package was created to give you some extra details about what you can expect in the next few weeks. I will be in touch via phone or email within the next few days to discuss a few of these details even further. If you have any additional questions or concerns, please don't hesitate to ask!
Before the session.
DATE & TIME
Our first steps will be to decide on a date and time for your session. All family sessions are shot outdoors, typically an hour or so before sunset. This is the absolute best time for light and will yield the best photos. The exact timing will vary depending on the season. Sometimes small kiddos have trouble with this timing being so close to bedtime, especially in the summertime. If this is the case, I will do all I can to move the timing earlier. This may mean a change of location, so please let me know if that's the case for your family. Ultimately, it's most important to have a happy child!
There are a number of great locations right around Athens. These options include open fields/farmlands, gardens, and a few urban locations. I'm happy to choose a location for you, or if you have a preference for the type of location, I will give you some more specific options. If you have a certain place already in mind, I am happy to check it out and see if it will be a good fit for our session! Here are a few great locations that are always available to choose from:
UGA FOUNDER'S GARDEN
BEN BURTON PARK
In the case that it's raining on the day of your session, we will reschedule for the next available date. I always keep a close eye on the weather and will stay in touch if it's looking like we may need to postpone. I typically wait until a few hours before the session before officially cancelling, just in case.
WHAT TO WEAR
Deciding what to wear can be very stressful, but I don't want it to be! I am more than happy to offer some ideas and to take a look at what you have in mind beforehand. If you'd like more details in the meantime, here's a blog post all about it to get you started.
The day of your session.
I know it's not always possible, but within reason, I want to encourage you to plan for a fun and relaxed day before your session. Make sure you have plenty of time to pamper yourself and get everyone ready ahead of time. Make sure everyone is well fed and well rested throughout the day. Aim to arrive a few minutes early to avoid any unnecessary traffic or stress.
WHAT TO BRING
Bring plenty of snacks and water for your kids. If possible, try not to bring anything too messy. We will likely do several shots sitting on the ground. I have some blankets that I will bring, but if you have one that is special to you, please bring it along as well. I don't typically incorporate props, but if you have something that is meaningful or special that you'd like to bring, let me know about it. I'm happy to take a look and see if we can make it work!
MY SHOOTING STYLE
Above all, I want your photos to truly reflect your family. The best photos always happen when you can relax and be yourselves. If you have an active 2.5 year old, this may mean that the majority of your pictures involve moving around and playing. I do try to grab a handful of traditional, posed shots along the way, but I also love capturing your family interacting and having fun in natural ways. If you have some specific ideas in mind (holiday cards, for example), let's chat ahead of time so I can make sure we get all you're looking for. Don't worry about what to do during the session. I have plenty of activities and ideas to make sure we get some great interaction between your family. I will guide you and give you things to do along the way. Just relax, be ready to have fun, and I'll take care of the rest.
WORKING WITH CHILDREN/BABIES
I have learned that children are not always fond of being told to pose or smile, especially toddlers. It's best if we just give the children time to relax and try to capture their natural selves. Don't worry if your child is running around and active. I can get some great shots of your child being busy playing and exploring. We can take breaks during the shoot, and I will probably continue to shoot the natural interactions that happen during those breaks. Prepare your child for the session by telling them that a friend will be taking some photos of them. I find it best not to surprise them. If you have any concerns about how your child may do during the session, please let me know when we chat beforehand.
After the session.
I hope that after your session you'll feel excitement and relief. You did it! And it was actually kinda fun! Now it's time to celebrate. Take your family out for dinner or dessert. Or maybe just plan a quiet evening at home with your spouse, put the kids to bed, watch a movie, eat some ice cream.
I absolutely love to share a few images within a day or so of your session via Instagram and Facebook. I find that many families are really excited to see a few of the best pictures and love to share them with their family and friends. This is, however, entirely up to you. If you're not comfortable with me sharing your photos, that's totally ok! There will be an option in your official contract where you can let me know what you prefer.
Within the next two weeks, I'll be working hard to edit each and every photo and curate your gallery. You'll have access to a private online gallery where you can see and download all your images. I am happy to simply email you this link when your photos are ready, or I'd love to invite you to visit my studio in person. If you are thinking about hanging any of your gorgeous pictures on your walls (which I highly encourage) or even if you'd like a second opinion on frames, albums, etc. I'd love to help.
Thanks so much for taking the time to read through all this information. I hope it helps prepare you and put you at ease for your session. I'll be in touch within the next few days so we can schedule the date, time, and location of your session. Feel free to jot down any questions or concerns you may have so we can be sure to discuss them. Thanks again and I look forward to catching up soon!