Frequently Asked Questions

 

What does my session fee cover?

The session fee covers my time, artistic vision, experience and equipment. I will spend considerable time after the session editing and post processing your images, and will then present you with my choice of the very best during our personal viewing session.


What can I expect from my portrait session?

I really want you to enjoy the experience of having your family portrait taken. We’ll have lots of fun, it’ll be very relaxed, and yet we’ll ensure that you get the images you want.


Where are you based?

I live in Chepstow, and also have a base in South Devon. I regularly travel throughout the South and West of England and South Wales, and I’m happy to travel further by arrangement.


Where will the shoot take place?

It’s really up to you- it’s your shoot! For younger children its often best to start off at home where they feel settled and comfortable, and then maybe move out to another location such as a beach, a park or a field. You may have a venue in mind that means something special; we’ll have a chat a few days before the shoot and come up with a plan.


How long will it take?

My family shoots usually last around 2-3 hours. But one of the benefits of custom portrait photography is that we’re not in a rush. My photography depends on the building of a friendly, relaxed atmosphere between us, and so I don’t set a time limit. I am happy to let the children set the pace, and I encourage their spontaneity. Breaks for drinks and snacks and a bit of quiet play are part of the deal!


What equipment do you use?

I use two professional DSLR cameras and a full range of lenses which I will use according to the situation. However I want the technology to be as unobtrusive as possible so I try and keep the gadgets to a minimum- this is why I always prefer to work with natural, available light; it’s far more flattering and less intimidating for you than lots of flash! I may use a reflector to make the most of the light, but the children can often get involved in helping me hold it….


How do I get ready for the shoot?

We’ll do a lot of this together- by chatting on the phone we can agree when and where to meet, and any ideas or concerns you have. Have a think too about what you want to use the images for; it helps me to know whether you want a large piece of wall art or a story book album. But not to worry if you’re undecided at this stage, I can help you with those decisions. On the day itself, if we are meeting away from the house, think about what you’d normally take for a day out. Do you have a favourite blanket or picnic rug? Children’s toys, bikes or a kite? Finally, think about changes of clothes, snacks and drinks and some wet wipes. You know it makes sense!


What should we wear?

Again, it’s your shoot, and I’d love you to feel relaxed and comfortable in what you wear. I would advise against strong patterns, checks and gaudy graphic designs. They don’t photograph well and can look dated quite quickly. For a family group it’s often good to have a bit of continuity across the family members, for example everyone in jeans, or autumnal colours, or white…. speak to me if you’d like to talk it through. There’s usually time for a change of clothes if you want to ring the changes, and accessories such as hats, scarves etc work well too.


Should I bring any props?

Sure, if you play guitar, bring the guitar! If there are any other hobbies that are important to you we can build it into the shoot; it’s all about showing the real YOU after all. Sometimes it’s nice to have a bit more of a stylised shoot (teenagers especially love this) ; maybe a vintage picnic, or a dressing up party on the beach! Again, we can talk through some ideas in advance if you have any thoughts.


Do you offer hair and makeup services?

To be honest, I’d rather you looked ‘naturally you’ than employ a hair and make up artist! But of course, if you wanted to book a hair and makeup artist I do know several who do an amazing job.


What if the weather is bad or my child is ill?

It happens! If the weather is appalling and we don’t have an inside space to shoot in, we will rearrange the shoot. If a child is ill, let me know as soon as possible and we can agree an alternative date, at no extra cost.


Will we have to ‘pose’?

I promise I won’t ask you to pose in the traditional sense and I definitely won’t get you to say ‘cheese’. I may direct things a little bit to make sure I can get you in the right light and a good composition, but it won’t feel awkward and posed. Spontaneity and fun make the best pictures.


I’m worried my children won’t cooperate!

Please don’t worry- I’m a mum too! An important part of my job is to engage with children in a way that suits them and I will try and work out as soon as possible if they are high energy, sensitive, shy…. if you have any concerns let me know beforehand and we can come up with some ideas together. But the main thing is-don’t worry:)


Will you photograph the whole family together? And our pets?

Of course! Pets are part of the family, after all, and I LOVE all animals. The shoot fee covers the immediate family though so if you want to invite uncles, aunties and cousins, please let me know in advance:)


Will you photoshop the images?

I will select only the very best of the many images I take on the day and look at them closely to see how they can be processed to bring out the best in what is already there. I don’t add things in and don’t take things away; unless, of course, there is a spot, scratch or a blemish that can be removed. My chosen method of shooting in the right light removes the need for overzealous use of photoshop; and you have the pleasure of knowing that what you see in your images is indeed the real you.


When do we get to see the photographs?

When you book, or at the shoot itself, we will arrange a time to get together for a viewing session. This is usually a week or two after the shoot itself. If you’re happy, I will often put a few ‘sneak peek’ pictures up on the blog to whet your appetite!


How long does the viewing take?

It’s really important to get this bit right. You will be spoilt for choice and want to make sure you have absolutely the right images and products selected. Viewings often take 2-3 hours, at my home or yours. I will talk you through all the product options, and show you a slideshow of all your edited images.


How many images will I see?

I will show you around 50-75 images from the shoot. These will be a mix of individual portraits, siblings, the family group, and some candid ‘fun and games’ shots that tell the story of the day. You will have more than enough to choose from, I promise!

How much can I expect to spend?

My prices are geared to allow you complete flexibility in your spend. You are not committed to buy anything, and there is no minimum spend. See ‘Prices’ for full, up to date information.


Can I buy the digital negatives?

The digital negatives are available for purchase, with a minimum spend. See ‘Prices’.


Who has copyright to the images?

Please note that I retain the copyright to all the images. I will grant you a licence to reproduce the images for your own use (including family and friends) only. (i.e you can’t use them for commercial purposes or enter them into competitions etc)


What other products are available?

A full range of bespoke, luxury products are available, to suit your needs, from framed prints, gallery wrap canvases; albums, and portrait boxes. Full details and prices are available.


How long will it be before I receive my products?

From the time of ordering it will take roughly 4 weeks, depending on the products you choose..


If you have ANY other questions, please don’t hesitate to phone me on 07966 376490

Thanks, Maz x


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