What precautions are you taking during COVID?
Although I am fully vaccinated, it is still important that everyone feels good about their session. I will approach each photo shoot with an empathetic ear and be mindful of each family's comfort levels.
Prior to sessions, a wellness check and COVID waiver release will be filled out by all families. If anyone's health is questionable, we'll reschedule accordingly, without penalty. During indoor sessions, I will be wearing a mask and sanitizing my hands. For indoor sessions exceeding 2 hours, I ask that everyone (including myself) rapid test right before our session.
What is your approach to family photos and films?
I want to capture meaningful moments of you where we'll witness the whole gamut of emotions that make life. Our time together isn't about your connection with my camera; it's more about your connection with your family. Be in the moment. Play with your kids. Love on your people. Allow yourself to be a kid again and enjoy this intentional time together as a family.
Sessions are activity-based, but an activity does not mean to be grand and will usually happen at the most meaningful places for your family (e.g., home, backyard, local stomping grounds). This is what we'll call a documentary-style session. No posing. No props. All love and connection.
I welcome all LGBTQ+, BIPOC, differently-abled, and non-traditionally structured families. If this offends you, I am not the right photographer for you.
Can you describe a family photo session? Are there any posed portraits? Does your non-directed approach mean you don't give any direction?
A typical session lasts about 1.5–2 hours, goes with the flow (without props), and is casual and fun. Together, we'll choose a time where everyone is most happy and a place that reflects your family. I usually recommend shooting in the mornings when everyone is fresh and well-rested. With older children, a favorite activity or outing is usually established before the shoot. Otherwise, staying close to home is typically favored by most children under the age of one year old.
Though I value posed portraits, I feel that they should not dominate a photo session. That said, Grandparents love them—mine do! Please let me know ahead of time, and we can spend a few minutes on them. Otherwise, the rest of the time will be more unscripted fun.
I do not call out direction throughout the session, but I will give gentle guidance if I see an opportunity that could easily be made in better lighting. I may also help facilitate the kind of fun that makes for good candid photographs.
How long will it take to receive my photos?
Editing photos carefully is just as important to me as taking them. It's also where I spend 90% of my time with them. The average processing time for photos is 2-3 weeks and perhaps longer during my busiest season in the fall. If you would like prints during the busy holiday season for cards, I recommend that you schedule your session 2-3 months in advance.
How much do you edit the images?
I apply a light hand in editing. I try to keep the integrity of the original photos, but I may adjust the lighting, crop images, or remove boogers if need be.
DITL film sessions are typically 4 hour sessions. It may sound overwhelming at first, but I swear that they're not—scout's honor. Through these sessions, I capture the beauty and chaos of your family's ordinary day. This is where the simple, honest moments shine. Like the moment she reaches out to touch your cheek. The way he cracks up when you say that one word. The way he looks at your when you don't know he's looking at you.
Please think of me as a friend that tags along with your family as I follow you through your routines (snuggling, laughing, cooking, playing) that are meaningful for your family.
Each package includes a consultation, 4 hour session coverage, 20+ high-resolution images delivered by digital download, and a highly edited 3–4 minute film set to thoughtfully selected licensed music.
What can I expect from a typical Day in the Life film/video session?
What is the difference between Day in the Life and Portrait films/videos?
Portrait films celebrate everyday milestones, 1-2 minutes at a time—like little intimate time capsules that you'll want to revisit. They focus on one person and a specific time in their life. These abbreviated films are perfect for newborns, graduates, birthdays...basically any finite time you would like to memorialize. The same basic description of a Day in the Life film applies here. No scripts, no props, no posing
What's involved in editing family films/videos? Why does it cost more than photos?
Editing family videos is more labor-intensive than editing photos, but it is so worth it! After our session, I cull, edit, and arrange video clips in a way that is cohesive and best narrates your story. I also fine-tune audio for each clip (e.g., I may enhance soft, little voices or remove distracting background noise). My favorite part of the editing process is finding the perfect song to reflect your family. That can sometimes take an entire day or two. And I may have to edit the song if it's too long or repetitive. Another factor that accounts for its price is that licensed music can be as much as $200 for a single-use, which means that I will not be reusing that song for anyone else without repurchasing it (which I usually don't do).
I encourage you to wear what is comfortable and something that you can move in while playing with your children. As a general rule of thumb, I recommend you wear what would make the most sense to the location we'll be shooting in. For example, if we're at a beach, wear something that would reflect your family on any given day at the beach, not high-heeled shoes—that's not that type of session. Also, be mindful of colors and prints so that they complement other family members. Lastly, logos and distracting text should be avoided, as they do not lend themselves to timeless photos. More detailed information will be provided with your session information.
What should I wear for the session?
I check in with all my families a week before the session to discuss details and answer any questions. In case of illness, I appreciate a two days notice, and I will do my best to accommodate your plans when rescheduling. Likewise, if I or any member of my family falls ill, I expect the same courtesy from my client-families. Outdoor shoots are weather permitting; if the weather is questionable, I will be in close contact the days before and on the morning of the shoot. Please note that retainers to secure a session are non-refundable.
Is there a cancellation policy?
No one is more awkward than I am in front of the camera, so I can completely relate! Most people tell me that I make them feel comfortable right away, which is precisely why I make sure to get to know as much about you before our sessions and find out what's important to you. The beauty of a photojournalistic approach is that it is inherently unscripted and genuine—you don't have to pose or be anything other than yourself. And, if you plan on a family session, you can take comfort knowing that children are great at chasing away photo jitters.
What if I'm not photogenic or am completely uncomfortable in front of the camera?
What is your policy about sharing photos and films/videos online?
I don't want you to hold anything back during our time together because you're concerned about the images' usage. This session is about you and your family.
That said, my business is a visual one. New families can find me from the work I post publicly. Not being able to do so impacts me financially. I, however, am also a parent and take steps to ensure privacy by not using identifiable features such as names, tags, street signs, etc. I also keep things G-rated and don't share images that would make anyone uncomfortable without explicit permission (breastfeeding, nudity, politics). I understand that each family is different, and I offer 2 levels of enhanced privacy. If complete privacy is vital to your family and you decide to decline altogether, an additional fee of $250 will apply to photos ($500 to films) will be billed separately. This is determined on a case-by-case basis.
Otherwise, photos are for marketing and promotional purposes (social media, website, and occasional magazine publications) directly related to my photography business.
Bay Area Family Photographer & Filmmaker
Frequently Asked Questions