Frequently Asked Questions
How do I book a shoot with you?
Call me on 01279 843050 and we'll find a time for your shoot. Shoots are undertaken Monday to Friday between 9.00am and 5.00pm, or Saturday mornings between 9.00am and 12.00 midday. Payment of the sitting fee will secure your shoot date/time. Sorry, but I cannot 'pencil in' dates, and all times are subject to availability.
Please note that certain days - such as Saturdays and dates during school holidays are normally booked up several weeks in advance - so book as soon as you can!
What style of clothes should we wear?
My style of portraiture has an informal and casual feel, so your choice of clothing should reflect this.
For best results, plain soft coloured tops (such as blues, pinks, creams, whites etc) will work best. Jeans/chinos look great too. Avoid clothes with bold patterns/graphics. If you are part of a group, please ensure that the colours and shades you all wear complement each other. Don't worry too much about footwear for your children. Bare feet look much better than clumpy shoes!
If your shoot is scheduled to take place outdoors, please get everyone to bring appropriate outdoor footwear.
If you can, also bring along some plain dark or black tops too - especially for your children. Darker tops look great in low-key portraits. If your children like to wear cool looking hats or have vintage style clothes - bring them along too!
If you are self-conscious about your figure, avoid short sleeves and short skirts. Try to avoid wearing large distracting jewellery/accessories. Please also bring a hair brush and hair clips with you.
When I photograph babies on their own, I recommend that they are just in their nappies or birthday suit. If you prefer your baby to be clothed, keep clothes simple and choose items that won’t ride over their face when they are lying down (like collars and dungarees). Bring a couple of spare outfits - just in case they have a little accident!
How should we prepare our children for the shoot?
With babies and toddlers, make sure they are well rested prior to the shoot. Avoid booking shoots at the same time your child has a nap.
Feel free to bring their favourite cuddly toys with you. They can often look great in their photos.
Whilst I’m photographing your children, try to keep as quiet and as still as possible. Avoid telling your children to ‘smile!’ or ‘say cheese!’ etc. Doing this will only distract them from the camera and will also result in unnatural looking expressions - like the dreaded cheesy grin!
With babies, please bring your usual supply of nappies and milk. With all other children, please do not give them sugary drinks, snacks or sweets just before or during the shoot. Doing this keeps faces clean and free of food colouring stains (our sharp lenses will show up everything!). In addition, having no sugar in their system helps to keep everything nice and calm!
What kind of photos do you take during a family photoshoot?
On a typical family portrait shoot, I will take photos of all of your family together, plus some group shots of your children. I also like to take individual portraits of the children too. To give some variety to the mood and feel of your portraits, light and dark backgrounds can be used. All images are taken using electronic flash.
Have a look at my family portrait gallery to see my style of work and the type of shots I've taken for past clients.
How long does a shoot take? / Does it matter if we are late?
A typical family photoshoot takes about 60-90 minutes to do.
Please ensure that you arrive promptly at the stated time. Arriving late will result in a shortened shoot, or your shoot being cancelled without a refund of any fees.
What if someone is ill? Should we still go ahead with the shoot?
If it looks like someone in your group will be ill on the day of the shoot, please let me know as soon as you can and I’ll do my best to reschedule the shoot to another day (dates/times subject to availability), as illness and tiredness can greatly affect a child’s willingness to be photographed.
If anyone coming to the viewing has had symptoms such as a new, continuous cough, high temperature, loss or change to your sense of smell / taste or has knowingly been in contact with anyone displaying Covid-19 symptoms, suspected of having Covid-19 or has had a Covid-19 positive test result at least 24 hours, please DO NOT come to the studio. Instead, call me and I will reschedule. Likewise, if I have any symptoms, I will contact you straight away.
When and where do we view our portraits?
I will contact you about ten days after your shoot to arrange your viewing. All first viewings take place at my studio. However, due to the current Covid-19 situation, it is possible to have your viewing via Zoom, but wherever possible, I would advise that you have your viewing at the studio.
Is there anything we need to do before we come to the viewing?
Yes - and this is really important! Before you come to the viewing, you need to consider where you want to display your portraits and how much available wall space you have. Take a few measurements and bring them to the studio. This will really help you when it comes to choosing the right print size and finish.
Also, think about friends and relatives who you may want to give prints to. Remember, portraits of your family make great gifts!
Please note that your choice and purchase of prints will be made at your viewing, so its very important that everyone involved in the decision making process are present, as you will find it much harder if they are not there.
How long does a viewing take? / Should we bring our children?
You should allow at least 60-90 minutes for your viewing.
From doing around two thousand viewings, I know that young children will get very bored and restless during viewings! To make your viewing much easier and stress-free, I advise that you try not to bring them with you.
What will happen at the viewing?
You will be shown up to 50 images, which will be projected on a very large screen in high definition, so you can see all the detail within your images.
A small selection of your portraits will be pre-prepared and fully edited to give you a good idea on how the finished result could look like. This is because the way you edit an image can often make a dramatic change to its appearance. We will discuss the best possible way the final images will be edited, printed and presented. You will also be able to see samples of our beautiful range of bespoke made wall art products.
Are my portraits 'airbrushed'?
Yes! I use the very latest in professional digital imaging software to edit/retouch the final images you purchase. Your portraits can be produced in colour, black & white and literally hundreds of different effects. I can remove/minimise spots, skin flaws, baby dribble, stretch marks, small cuts/bruises, whiten teeth etc. All of these are included in the print price.
If there is something specific that you would like done - such as teeth brace removal etc, please don't hesitate to ask and I'll see if its possible. Any specialist retouching may be subject to additional charges.
What range of products do you sell?
I have a wide range of products to suit everyone's tastes and to compliment the environment they will be displayed in. These include; traditional framed prints and contemporary acrylic panels that are professionally printed by some of the UK's finest photographic and fine art printers.
All of our wall display products are made by hand using only high quality materials. I do not use cheap ready made frames.
Small sized unframed prints are also available too - ideal as gifts for family and friends!
Do you sell digital files?
Yes I do - but I will always advise that you purchase prints from me, as I can then guarantee the prints will look perfect. I cannot guarantee the quality of prints/products made by other parties, as I have no control over their production processes.
If you prefer a digital option, I can provide fully edited high resolution digital files that you can make unlimited copies for personal and non-commercial purposes.
Please note that I will not provide unedited or raw files.
How can we pay for our order?
Payment can be made by most credit/debit cards or bank transfer. Payment is required with your order.
Due to the bespoke nature of our products, orders cannot be cancelled or changed and all payments are non-refundable, so please choose and order carefully.
How long will it take to process our order?
On mounted and framed prints, the turnaround time is approximately 5 weeks from the date of order. Loose prints and digital media take approximately 10-14 days.
what measures have you put in place regarding covid-19?
On top of our normal cleaning procedures, additional measures have been put into place to make your visit to the studio as safe as possible.
Prior to your shoot, you will be informed of other safety measures that you will need to do.
What are your opening hours?
Our studio hours are Monday - Friday 9.00am - 5.00pm and Saturdays 9.00am - 12.00 midday. All visits to our studio are by appointment only.
Where can we park?
We are a home-based studio and we have a driveway big enough for 3 cars. Go to the Information section of our website to get directions.
Will you put our portraits on public display?
Who owns the copyright on our photographs? Can we copy them?
By law, we own the copyright on all the photographs we take. This means it is illegal for you or anyone else to scan, copy, save, or print the photographs in any way. Different licensing terms apply for our digital packages. Please ask for details.
If you wish to use the photographs for commercial purposes, please contact us for licensing options and costings.
How long do you keep your photographs?
All images that are shown to you at the viewing are retained for a minimum of 6 months. However, I reserve the right to delete the images if no purchases are made within six weeks of your shoot, or if no purchases are made at your viewing.