Portrait Session FAQ’s….

Since we have SO many portrait sessions coming up soon, I thought I’d compile an FAQ list for our clients. Hope this helps! 🙂

Q: Do you have any hair & make-up tips?

A: Use a little more make-up and hairspray than you normally would, you’ll want your make-up to show up a little bit more in your photos and it can get windy outside so the hairspray will help keep your hair in place. Ladies, when applying lipstick, avoid red lipstick. The red pigments in the lipstick turn black in black & white photos, making your lips appear black. Do not go to the tanning bed and overly tan before your shoot…sometimes fake skin tones appear more orange than brown which is not flattering. Natural bronzers are the way to go. 😉 If you worry about the appearance of a double chin in photos, rub a little bit of bronzer or bronzer powder that is 1 shade darker than your natural skin tone under your chin and around your neck to create the appearance of a shadow on your neck. (We use this shading technique sometimes in retouching too) If you’d like to book a professional hair stylist and/or make-up artist to come to you the day of your photo shoot, check out Something Blue Stylists. They use airbrush make-up that looks amazing in photos! We will have our emergency kit in our trunk that day (which has hairspray, beauty 911 items, etc.) so let us know if you need anything before or during your photo shoot.

Q: Should we worry about bugs when shooting outside? 

A: YES! A thin layer of bug spray should keep them off of you for an hour or two during your shoot. Also, an unscented dryer sheet (like Bounce) kept in your pockets during the shoot will keep the bees at bay.

Q: What should we wear for our session?

A: Try to coordinate clothing as much as possible, avoid busy-looking prints and clothing logos that will distract your eyes in photos. Solid colors like khakis, black skirts, blue jeans and shirts of similar, solid colors photograph well together. Avoid white shirts if possible, if it’s sunny outside, solid white shirts can become very “contrasty” in sunlight making it harder to meter for properly exposed faces. Pinterest is great for clothing ideas too!!

Q: Can we bring our pet(s)?

A: ABSOLUTELY! We LOVE pets and since they are a part of your life, they should be in your photos! Just remember to keep your pet on a leash during your shoot and remember to bring something with you to clean up after them. Feel free to bring treats with you too, they tend to cooperate much more when they have an enticing reward in front of them. 😉

Q: Since we’re shooting outside, what do we do if it rains or if it looks like it might rain?

A: In the event of bad weather, or if you have an emergency and need to reschedule, please call us ASAP! We will e-mail you our cell phone number before the shoot, feel free to e-mail us back with a number where we can reach you that day too in case anything comes up on our end….we will check the extended forecast about a week before your shoot and e-mail you to confirm and then we’ll check the radar again 24-48 hours out and re-confirm via e-mail. Indiana weather is very unpredictable though and if it looks like it might rain the morning of your shoot, we will most likely reschedule. We don’t want you walking through mud or laying in it for photos if we can avoid it. 😉

Q: How do we get to Holcomb Gardens?

A: If your shoot is scheduled for Holcomb Gardens, here are the directions & parking info you’ll need to know: From the north side, take Meridian Street south to 49th street. Turn right on 49th. You’ll pass a series of stoplights and stop signs…Hinkle Fieldhouse will be on your right. Turn right on Lake Road, just past Hinkle Fieldhouse. It’ll wind around until you come to Robertson Hall, at that point, make a right and continue going straight through the gates to Holcomb Gardens. We’ll meet you at the bottom of the hill at the round-about at your scheduled date & time.

Q: Where should we meet you at Monument Circle?

A: If your shoot is scheduled for the Monument, we recommend parking on the side streets if you can find parking, but if not, there are plenty of parking garages along the side streets. (Remember to bring extra money for parking!) We will meet you on the north side steps of the Monument at your scheduled date & time.

Q: How do we get to the Village of West Clay?

A: Take I-465 North to Meridian Street, turn left on 116th Street. Continue west on 116th (for about 3.5 miles) until you get to Towne Road. Turn right (north) on Towne Road. Continue north on Towne, turn right on 131st Street then turn right on Broad Street. (This is the main entrance to West Clay) You’ll see a large white meetinghouse in front of you…continue driving toward the meetinghouse and park along the side streets. We’ll meet you in the gazebo in front of the meetinghouse at your scheduled date & time.

Q: Where should we meet you at the Canal?

A: If your shoot is scheduled for the canal area, we recommend parking at the Indiana State Museum at 650 West Washington Street Indy 46204. They have an underground parking garage (remember to bring extra money for parking though….if there is an event going on downtown, we’ve seen $10-$20 for parking in downtown Indy parking garages, just FYI) then take the elevator upstairs to the ISM or walk in from the garage level. We will meet you directly behind the museum, on the canal, at your scheduled date & time.

Q: We want to go somewhere other than the above listed locations, is that ok?

A: ABSOLUTELY! Those are just our most requested locations that our clients have asked about in the past. If you have a favorite location, restaurant, hang-out spot, or another place that has more meaning to you, we’ll want to go there because you’ll be more relaxed in that environment. Just call the location before booking your shoot and make sure that you get permission for us to shoot there (get the person’s name that you talked to also!) and see if they charge location fees for photo shoots. Some parks and museums will charge photographers and/or their clients an extra fee just to shoot at a particular location. (Upwards of $500+ so make sure you ask!) We offer free travel within an hour of our Carmel office location so if you have another location in mind, just let us know.

Q: How long is our photo shoot?

A: We usually allow a little over an hour for each session although most clients only take about 45-60 minutes unless there are children or pets involved. Children & pets take more time to get acquainted with us and feel comfortable in front of the camera so plan on about 90 minutes if you have any children or pets coming with you. Please just let us know when you book your session if any children or pets will be with you though so that we can allow for plenty of time between photo shoots with other clients.

Q: Should we bring props?

A: YES! Anything that you’d like to use in your photos that defines your style, personality, etc. is a great way to make your photo shoot more personalized. For children and babies, that may mean their favorite blankets, toys, stuffed animals, etc.  For maternity shoots, you could bring baby-related items that you received at your baby shower. For boudoir photos, you could use feather boas, sexy shoes, or anything that makes you feel more confident in front of the camera.

Q: How much are your portrait sessions and how do we pay for our it?

A: To reserve your photo shoot date and time, we’ll need you to call us with your credit or debit card number. Payment is due in full when booking your shoot. Our portrait session prices & packages depend on the type of session you want done…you can add a high res image CD with copyright to any of these for an extra $300:

* Boudoir portraits: Our boudoir sessions are $399 and include myself (Erin) as your photographer and another one of my female staff members as my assistant at your shoot. We can do your shoot at your home or at a nice hotel (hotel fees are extra, we can recommend some great Indy hotels if you’re in need of a recommendation though) and we allow an unlimited number of outfit changes during your 2-3 hour photo shoot. We shoot an unlimited number of images during your shoot too and then post all of them on a password protected website so that you can view and order images afterwards. The boudoir package also includes 20 retouched 5×7’s of your favorite shots in a small black album, perfect for wrapping up for your hubby! We will typically arrive a few minutes early for boudoir sessions so that we can decide on where we’ll actually shoot and take a look at your clothing choices. It’s better to start with a soft look and go more dramatic with clothing, hair & make-up as the shoot progresses so we’ll help you determine the order of “looks” with your various outfits.

* Standard Portrait Sessions $299
(Engagements, Families, Pets, Maternity & Headshots)
Our fun portrait sessions usually take place at either Holcomb Gardens at Butler University, Monument Circle downtown, the Village of West Clay or downtown on the canal. (Depending on whether you enjoy more environmental photos or city scenes, but we can go anywhere you’d like if you have a favorite hang out spot, restaurant, etc.) The session is typically 45-60 minutes in length and can be rescheduled if the weather does not cooperate. The $299 fee includes all images posted online for at least 60 days, a black designer folio with eight 4×5’s and a complimentary 5×7.

* Senior Portrait Package – $299 Our senior portrait sessions usually take place at either Holcomb Gardens at Butler University, Monument Circle downtown, the Village of West Clay or downtown on the canal. (Depending on whether you enjoy environmental photos or city scenes) We offer free travel within one hour of our Carmel office location so if you have another environmental location in mind, let us know! The sessions are typically 45 minutes to an hour in length and can be rescheduled if the weather does not cooperate on the day of your scheduled photo shoot. We encourage our seniors to bring 2-3 outfits, props, pets, friends or anything that defines their personality and style so that it is reflected in the photos. All of your images will be placed on a password-protected website for at least 60 days where friends and family can go online to order additional reprints and enlargements. The package also includes a black designer folio with eight 4×5’s, a complimentary 5×7 of your favorite image and 10 wallets of the same pose.

Optional Extras:

  • Get the Hollywood Star treatment and add our preferred hairstylist & make-up artist (Something Blue Stylists) to your photo shoot! (Contact them for pricing)
  • Engraved brag book (album) with 40 4×6’s $320
  • Engraved brag book (album) with 20 5×7’s $240
  • High resolution image CD with all of your website images $300
  • Mini signature album for seniors – perfect for holding your friends wallet-sized pictures and signatures. Comes with gel pens! $50


Wallets 2 for $5, 3 ½ x 5’s $6 each, 4×6 $8 each, 5×7 $12 each, 8×10 $25 each, 11×14 $45 each, 16×20 $150 each (Custom canvas prints are also available and quoted on a custom basis depending on the size you need)

Additional folios with eight 4×5 prints $99

* Modeling shoots are currently priced on a custom basis depending on what you need for your portfolio/agency, please inquire for details.

* Trash the Dress Sessions $499

Our TTD photo shoots include a 3-4 hour photo shoot at up to 3 locations with an unlimited number of images taken during your photo shoot. All images will be posted on a password-protected website for online viewing & ordering. We also include 1 11×14 and 2 8×10 enlargements as well as a small black album of 20 retouched 5×7’s of your favorite images! (Drycleaning, preservation and floral fees extra) To view an article and samples of our work featured in the national photography magazine, Studio Photography and Design, click here!

* Bridal Portrait Sessions $599 

Bridal portrait sessions are usually photographed at the location of your choice in or around Indianapolis. The session gives you the chance to do a trial run of your hair, make-up and flowers, to give you the complete picture of how you will look on your wedding day. After seeing the resulting images, you’ll have the opportunity to make any necessary beauty or floral changes as you see fit. It also gives you an opportunity to work with us before the wedding on a live photo shoot, allowing you to get comfortable with our style and with being in front of the camera. You may have envisioned going somewhere outside on your wedding day for additional portraits but sometimes inclement weather or time constraints can make that dream an impossible task on your wedding day…all of these reasons are why we encourage our clients to book their session before the wedding. Sessions are generally 1-2 hours in length and include up to 2 locations. All images will be posted online for at least 60 days. A black designer folio with 8 4×5’s is included as well as a custom 11×14 retouched print suitable for framing. Allow plenty of time after your photo shoot to dryclean and press your dress before the wedding.
(Drycleaning, trial run & floral fees not included)

If you have any additional questions that are not answered here, please e-mail us anytime! 🙂



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