Preparing for Your Senior Session

  • If you have any special props like a hat, sunglasses, a toy, scarves, an instrument, sports gear, dance costumes, a car, a stuffed animal, etc... Make sure to bring them.
  • Weather is an important part of any Outdoor Portrait Session, including yours. Rain could present tricky problems during a portrait session and if it does rain on your scheduled session date, we’ll reschedule. If you are unsure, just give me a call the day before or the day of the appointment.
  • Parents and teens don't always agree on their definition of the perfect portrait. For example: parents like to see lots of smiles and close-ups while teens like more serious expressions and full lengths. Don’t fret! We can take portraits of each idea you have. Smiles for families + relaxed for teens = everyone happy. Just let me know what you want.

Details about Clothing, Grooming, and Timing

SeniorClothing Selection - The goal of any portrait is to direct the viewer’s attention to the face. Everything else in the portrait-clothing, hair, background, and props- should be secondary to the face. When a face dominates the portrait, you will never tire of it as time goes by. Improperly selected clothing can overpower the face and ruin an otherwise excellent portrait. While it’s our job to choose the proper portrait lighting and pose for you, we must rely on your help in selecting clothing that will create the visual effect you wish to achieve.

Clothing Color - For an outdoor portrait dark colors like burgundy, navy, purple, brown, denim, evergreen, rust, and black always photograph well. Dark colors are more flattering and slimming to the wearer while light colors such as beige, tan, peach, pink, white, and yellow add bulk and mass to the subject wearing them. Keeping this in mind, lighter colors work better if a lighter backdrop is chosen in the studio. Especially bright colors, such as orange or red, will ruin a portrait, and bold stripes, checks, plaids, busy prints, and logos never photograph well. While solid colors and denim always work best, small gingham and small simple floral prints are ok too.

Clothing Style - Very simple garments always photograph best. Turtle necks or V-necks are flattering, provided that neither is exaggerated in style. Avoid very wide or particularly deep V-neck garments as well as bulky cowl neck sweaters that completely hide the neck. Long sleeves are essential since in a portrait, bare arms will overpower the face. Please do not wear short shorts, short skirts, or tight fitting skirts. This makes posing more difficult. Long flowing dresses, jeans, or khakis make better selection. If feet are to show, make certain shoes and stockings - preferably both in dark colors - are in keeping with the overall intent of the portrait.

Hair, Makeup, & Glasses - Many young ladies have their hair and makeup professionally done the day of their portrait session and we highly recommend this. Young men should have their hair cut about one week before the session. Neither young men nor women should radically change hair style before a portrait session. We cannot hide "five-o-clock shadow" so make sure you shave before-hand. If you normally wear glasses, plan to wear them for your portrait or people won’t recognize you. For the nicest possible portraits, it is worth your trouble to borrow a pair of empty frames from your optometrist. Please note that it is impossible to correct lenses which darken in sunlight.