Client prep guide
Life At Home
Photographer & Filmmaker | Adelaide
Firstly THANKYOU for booking a Life At Home session with me, I can completely understand how daunting it can be to open up your home to someone and capture your real life moments, BUT these types of sessions are my absolute favorite, I love how you will have your kids true little personalities captured and I know how much they will love them to look back on in years to come.
My style and approach to each session is natural, authentic and simple. I won't be posing you at all. What you normally do at home is exactly what I want you to do during your session. If you aren't a mum who loves to get down on the floor and build puzzles with the kids, don't do it. Pick something to do that is true to your own family.
It won't be awkward, these sessions are not about pretending to be perfect, but instead about embracing who you all are. Your children won't have to be on their best behaviour, all I want for you is to enjoy your time together - put your phones down and fully involve yourself in your family. Hug each other, tickle each other and play with each other - just be you. I want to capture all those moments that make YOU as a family special. All those moments your children will look back on and remember how much they were loved throughout their childhood.
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Getting to know you
First off, if you’ve never had a photo session before - It’s going to be waaaay easier and more fun than you probably expect!
The first step is for me to get to know you and your family. A few weeks before your session, I'll send you a questionnaire which will help me get to know a bit about you and your family's story. The answers to your questionnaire will help me to prepare for your session, to please take some time to really give me as many details as possible when filling it out.
My job as an artist is to create work that is meaningful to you, and my best chance of doing that is if you open up to me about the things that matter the most to you.
By getting to know you better, I'll be able to create work that feels like stepping into a memory of your family's story as you are right now. This is the part of my process that sets my work apart from others.
In this guide, I'm going to provide you with a bit of an overview of what happens before, during and after your session, and some tips to help you best prepare.
Getting to know you
I like to have you pick 2 or 3 "activities" that you all love to do together. These can be real simple things, even the real "boring stuff" like planting vegetables, washing the car or making pancakes. Don't overthink or plan it and it doesn't need to be extravagant. The questionnaire will help you when it comes to deciding what to plan.
I won't be posing or telling you all what to do, these sessions are very much documenting your family as you all are. I may gentle guide with some ideas on the best place to do an activity if I can see some beautiful light in your home, or to make use of some great space, but otherwise the more you all forget I am there, the better!
How to prepare
Kids will be kids and I know how easily they get bored.
I actually LOVE it when kids just do their own thing during your session. It shows that they are comfortable and relaxed. I'm also very used to tantrums, sibling arguments and chaos. I have 3 of my own kids, so don't ever feel like I'm judging anything (trust me, I have been there), and don't worry about how the photos will turn out if your kids aren't behaving as you wish. Kids are totally unpredictable, and that's ok.
Know that I am always looking for the beautiful moments and I often always find it within the hard stuff. I always aim to capture it there. Chances are, they will have moments, because they are tiny humans with big feelings! I will be capturing it all, but I'm also respectful and know when to stop shooting.
Most importantly, just go with the flow and try not to stress if things don't go the way you planned. There is no right or wrong way to go about your session and this is what makes them so beautifully unique.
how to prepare
Firstly, make sure your partner also knows what to expect...
From experience, our partners usually have different visions and expectations when they hear the words "photography session"
Have your partner look at my website or social media so they have an idea of what a session will look like, or show them this guide
I find that showing your partner my work helps them to see that they won't need to stand and smile in awkward poses for the camera, but instead be themselves, and sets the tone for the types of genuine parent/child connections that we want to capture.
What to wear
As far as clothing, keep it simple. Wear what you would usually wear around the home. So if you aren't the type of mum to wear a fancy top and flowy skirt, then don't. Chuck on some shorts and a comfy top instead!
Your kids think they are batman, or, like mine, seem to forget to put pants on? then that's totally fine too! It all represents who you are as a family in this stage of your life.
If your still stuck on what to wear, I do have a guide I've put together with some pointers and what to avoid here.
A few extra tips
Your home doesn't need to be magazine worthy. I won't be judging you on the cleanliness of your home (I know what life with kids is like!) But if you want to clean beforehand, then go for it! However, I do suggest just clearing any clutter or objects that you don't want photographed.
If you have chosen an activity that requires a bit of prep beforehand (like baking, bike riding etc) please make sure that you have everything you need ready to go, such as ingredients purchased, and helmets close by etc.
On the day of the session
A typical session will start off inside, with a couple of the "activities" we have planned. We'll spend as long as we need on an activity, to get the shots we need, but if the kids get bored we'll move on to another.
After these activities (or whenever the kids want to) we'll move outside.
If you've chosen to have your session in the afternoon, we'll aim to be outside in the hour or so before sunset, to make the most of the beautiful evening light.
To make this easier, make sure you have what you need ready to go before I get there. If things don't quite go so smoothly, or the kids aren't happy with their choice of shoes and decide to change, don't stress, it's all part of the story!
After your session
After your session, I'll begin working on your photos. I usually like to post a sneak peek or 2 in the couple of days following your session on my social media (if you are comfortable with that)
Generally my turnaround time for your complete photos is about 3 - 4 weeks although sometimes during school holidays it might take a little longer.
The high res images will be delivered online for you to view, then once you've chosen a package that suits you best, they will be available to download and print at your leisure.
If you’d like help with printing, I’m more than happy to chat with you about that and can order prints/albums through my preferred pro lab. Your gallery also contains an online store where you can print straight from your gallery and your prints will be delivered straight to your door.
Rescheduling for weather or illness
We all know how unpredictable the weather can be, even in summer. If the weather looks to be very wet, windy or very hot, I'll be in touch throughout the week before and the day of your session to decide together what to do.
As I live in a high fire danger area, I will also check throughout the week before and day of your session and reschedule in the event of a catastrophic fire danger rating day.
As for Illness, please let me know as soon as possible if anyone in your family is sick, or showing signs of COVID19, and I will do the same.
I am always prepared to reschedule just in case, and I can always prepare to fit your session in as close as possible in any case.
Thanks so much again for booking a session with me! I'm so excited to work with you and your family. Please know that I'm here and happy to answer any questions you may have between now and your session, so don't hesitate to get in touch.
You can reach me at email@example.com or 0417889657.
My office hours are Tuesdays and Thursdays between 9:00am - 2:30pm.
I am also available on the day or your sessions if need be