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GENERAL SESSION TIPS

As you look through our website gallery, pay special attention to images that appeal to your taste or style. Are you drawn to the image because of the location or background, or is it the lighting, mood or clothing? Keep in mind that clothing will generally determine background or location choice and mood of an image.

ARRIVE EARLY      Please arrive fifteen minutes early for your appointment. This will give you time to get your outfits organized or to touch up your makeup.  If you show up late or not ready, you may have less time in front of the camera. If you need more time to get ready and would like to come earlier, just call the studio to see if the dressing room will be available.  Sessions are relaxed and will not be rushed.

COMPLEXION        We retouch blemishes and will make you look your best, so don’t worry about minor breakouts.

HAIR & FACIAL HAIR        Avoid changing your hairstyle or cutting your hair right before your session. Let it be natural. Although our photographer tries to help with hair, it is hard to know what your hair “is supposed to look like.” So make sure you like the look or let the photographer know your preferences. Hair style is ultimately your responsibility. Guys should be clean shaven if you don’t want any whiskers to show. The camera will not hide anything.

CLOTHING FOR CHILDREN       Try to keep it simple. We realize that a lot of children’s clothing has pattern or print on it, but most of the time it just doesn’t photograph very well. If you really like an outfit that has a pattern or print, go ahead and bring it. We would also like you to bring another outfit and we can try to use both.

CLOTHING FOR FAMILIES AND GROUPS     If there is more than one person in the photo, PLEASE coordinate your outfits so that everyone in the photo matches!!! I cannot stress this enough! A different color tone or higher contrast will distract by standing out and drawing your eye to the outfit and not the faces. If possible, lay the outfits out on floor and if something stands out more than the rest, try to pick something different to wear. If you aren’t sure, bring extras and we will help you decide.

GLASSES     Most glasses glare, but some lenses glare more than others (anti-reflective coating has less glare). Your best bet is to check with your optometrist to see if they will loan you an empty set of frames for your photo session (if your lenses are dark, frames without lenses may not look right). If that isn’t an option, we can usually correct glass glare on your final photos for an additional cost.

MAKEUP      Girls… your makeup should not be heavier than normal, but natural. Excess shine can be controlled by using translucent powder that tones down shine without adding additional color. Do not wear glitter or shimmery makeup or powder because it can look like specks of sweat in the photographs.  Heavy eyeliner is also not recommended because it can make your eyes appear darker.

SUNBURN / TANNING      Tan lines are not attractive in photographs. We suggest you vary your swimsuit top or use a self-tanner. Do not over tan and try to avoid getting sunburn right before your session. Sunburn and peeling skin DO NOT photograph well and may cost extra if we have to retouch it.

PIERCINGS / TATTOOS / SCARS / BRACES       Just let the photographer know if you want tattoos or piercings to show or not. They can also be retouched out of portraits for an extra charge. Scars are not automatically retouched, but can be removed or softened at your request. If you have braces, we can retouch them out of the final portraits (or you could have them removed for your session). But don’t fight smiling. A braces smile is better than an awkward, holding-back-a-smile look.

WEATHER      If it is raining, we will need to reschedule. If it happens to be cloudy, don’t worry about it. Clouds are fine and some people even tend to squint less if it is overcast. If the weather is questionable, feel free to call the studio. Please understand that we may wait until and hour or two before the session to decide upon rescheduling as weather can change quickly.

315 SW WALNUT STREET  ANKENY, IOWA 50023                   515-963-8119                LON@MONAHANPHOTOGRAPHICARTIST.COM