How do I book a shoot?
It's easy! Please fill out the form on our contact page and within 48 hours I will contact you to set up your shoot. Once you are ready to book, I will email you with finalized info, a booking contract, and link to pay your session fee if you want to do so by credit card.
How far in advance should I schedule my session?
The earlier the better. Weeks if possible.
How long does my session last?
Most sessions like portraits are usually 1.5-2 hours. This gives you plenty of time to try multiple outfits if you want. Please remember, though, that if we are at a location, it is probably rented hourly, so changing quickly is to your benefit :) Pet sessions are short (usually 30-45 mins).
When do I view my pictures?
About 1-2 weeks after your session I will present all of your proofs to you. From those you will select your favorites. I can also show you examples of beautiful products that are available when we professionally print your images, including albums, boxes, books, wall art, etc.
How much does it cost?
See the Services page for specifics. Full payment is required to secure your session date, and although the amount is not refundable, this fee is transferable to another person should something come up and you are unable to attend.
What's the difference between the printed photos & products I offer vs prints and albums from a consumer lab (Walgreens / Costco/ etc)?
There are lots of differences, all having to do with quality of the final image. This isn't about snob appeal---professionally printed images are miles above what your drugstore or mega-market can even offer. The printers at pro labs are meticulously calibrated (usually twice a day or more) for color accuracy. The papers used by professional image bureau companies are also very different, they are amazing in texture, archival qualities, and ability to render the incredible detail that these printing machines are designed to produce. Not only that, but pro labs employ highly skilled, highly experienced print specialists to run these machines. They stake their reputation on consistent results print after print. Google it and you'll see lots of hilarious comparisons and wildly colored results that Snapfish, Walgreens, Target, Costco, and Sam's churn out. Check THIS comparison out and you'll see what I mean! In short, a consumer-level lab or drugstore printer cannot possibly match the detail and accuracy of a quarter-million or half-million dollar printer at a pro lab, using world class quality paper.
What should I wear?
I suggest wearing what makes you feel great! Most people wear something they love or that is meaningful for them. For ladies, gorgeous, creative clothing looks beautiful. Black is always great. A plain, dark shirt with ultra-glam jewelry, paired with jeans and cowboy boots always looks excellent for a horse + owner portraits. Please DON'T wear clothes with patterns on them (checks, stripes, flowers, splotches, etc), DON"T wear logos (unless this is a sponsored headshot type shoot) and DON'T wear day-glo colors (like neons). We'll be going over this in your initial consult, and of course I am always here if you need suggestions and ideas. Please do tell me if you have something specific in mind, like a fairytale shoot, something retro, a theme or costume-type sessions. All photographers love to shoot these so let me know.
Should I get my hair & Makeup done?
The answer is YES--if that is important to you. PLEASE---Ask for 'minimal' and/or "natural" and the makeup artist will know what you mean. Tell the makeup artist you need minimal foundation--thick makeup adds many extra hours of retouching, believe it or not!
I have something specific in mind for my shoot. Or maybe I don't?
Have an idea you want me to capture? Great! I can give you tons of ideas and directions throughout your session to help you feel at ease. Check through sites like Pinterest for ideas if you want to show me what you have in mind.
Can I bring anyone with me to my shoot?
It's not a problem to have one other person with you for your shoot, so feel free to bring mom, dad or a friend if you'd like. Keep in mind, though, that the more people around the more distracting and chaotic it will be, so please don't bring your posse! For that reason, I also have to ask that kids and babies stay at home (unless they will be included in the shoot)--they'll be bored silly.
What if there is bad weather on the day of my outdoor shoot?
No problem, we will reschedule!
Where do I change my clothes?
Many locations I use have a changing room, some will have at least a public restroom to use. If you select somewhere that doesn't have a changing area (like Crockett Street) please keep that in mind as you consider your wardrobe options.
HORSES: How do I get my horse ready for a shoot?
Your photo session can be as formal or informal as you like, but you will need to clean and carefully groom your horse immediately before your photo session. I can't stress this enough. If you bring a dirty horse to a shoot, you will be very disappointed in the resulting photos. The camera sees everything. Clean and gloss hooves, and use Show Sheen or Cowboy Magic if you have it to make the coat shiny and smooth. It is very important to trim all stray hairs around the eyes as they will be unattractive distractions in a close-up portrait, and the same goes for muzzle hairs.
Look over any tack you are going to use in the photo session and clean if necessary. If you will be using a nylon halter please use a new one; an ‘everyday’ type halter will look junky in a portrait of a nice clean horse. Saddle pads need to be clean and free of hairs. Borrow or purchase an attractive halter or bridle if you would like tack in a headshot.
Try to arrive at the barn at least an hour before your scheduled session to make sure you have enough time do any final preparation (such as braiding) or last minute grooming touchups.
Horse will need to be dry to photograph. PLEASE DO NOT USE OIL ON THE FACE OR MUZZLE (it is too shiny and creates a white spot on the picture)
Have a towel handy during your photo session to keep the horse’s mouth clean. Treats can only be used if they are small ones! Chewing takes up a lot of time and I can’t photograph him with his mouth messy or in funny positions, so it’s best to give treats at the end of the session rather than throughout. Watch that he doesn’t sneak a mouthful of grass and end up with green slobber.
If you are going to be in the photo with your horse, wear a color that won’t compete with the color of your horse’s coat. Even if it’s your grand prize winning Western Pleasure outfit, loud colors and crazy patters will look distracting on the photograph. Please: No plain white shirts, yellow, plaids, checkered patterns, or pastel colors. Better choices: solid colors like gray, black, red, blue, or earth tones.
What looks great? Try a plain dark shirt + glam jewelry over blue jeans and boots. Awesome! Want to shoot with your horse and a ball gown? I'm game if you are!
If you have children, please leave them home unless they are joining you in the photo. Otherwise they can be distracting to you or the horse and will impede the process of getting the good photos that you want.
What an Equine session is like:
Usually I will start with the head shots of the horse and any body pictures while he is clean and dry. I will move about and probably take pictures from many different angles and we may try moving to different backgrounds to get the right look. I am an ‘available light’ photographer, which means I will be watching how the light hits the horse, and so he may need positioning often.
Afterwards we can take liberty and / or riding shots if you have an appropriate space: we need a small, dry, fenced pasture or open arena where grass isn't too high. You will need to be able to keep the horse moving and enjoying himself, but NOT looking panicky or unsure. That expression looks terrible for the camera. If you are in the riding shots, keep in mind that your own facial expression is important too. Usually after having to stand still for the headshots, horses will play and move around on their own. The one thing to remember is that he isn't allowed to roll until the very end.
I will take many factors into consideration when I locate the best places for the horse to be photographed. For liberty shots, you will need to direct the horse to these areas but keep out of the shot as much as possible. After the liberty session, if time permits, I will likely grab candid, un-posed shots. These can sometimes be the most rewarding pictures in the shoot!
The session will be easygoing. I try to be as quick as possible and keep the horse and handler relaxed throughout. If you have anything in particular in mind that you would like to have in a photo, please don’t hesitate to mention it. The most important thing to remember about the session is to keep it fun!
The importance of the light when shooting horses:
Time of day is a huge factor in equine photography. Light is all important, so the best time for your session will be late afternoon or the evening of a clear, sunny day. Early morning is also good if the sky is mostly clear. A cloudy day with no sun is not recommended for shooting. I do not shoot on overcast, gray days.
Photographing the Black Horse
Black horses as a rule are extremely difficult to shoot and can take a lot of extra time. Often what gets you good results with any other horse will be disappointing if a black horse is the subject. It sometimes helps to photograph them during late morning through early afternoon hours, when the sun is higher and shadows are more pronounced.