The Session Guide

Headshot of Emma smiling at the camera | Minnesota Family Photographer

Hey there! I’m Emma & I’m all about capturing the details of life & love with an affinity for authentic connection over artificial perfection. It’s an honor for me to be invited into your life to document some of the moments that mean the most to you.

I’ve been lucky enough to have many of my most precious life-events photographed, so I know first-hand what treasures the images we receive from our trusted photographers are. Thank you for your confidence in me to be the one to give you such an experience!

Alright well, if we’re already friends you know I can’t wait to spend time with you for your session! If we haven’t had the chance to meet in person yet, I’m so looking forward to connecting & sharing this time with you!

Inside the Guide

Styling Tips

Family of six all beautifully dressed & snuggling together in front of a golden field | Minnesota family photographer
Close up of a daughter being hugged from behind by her mother | Minnesota family photographer

I think it’s important to remember that having photographs taken is somewhat of a special occasion. A photoshoot takes place because there’s something worth documenting; another year watching your children grow, the pregnancy or birth of a new baby, graduating from high school, or any other time that carries meaning for you.

Though your wardrobe is certainly not the most consequential detail of your photo session (authenticity & connection are the highest priority), approaching it with careful consideration will help to represent your session as the valued event you want it to be. I’ll be there to help you through the whole process – I love to create wardrobes with my clients! I have an ever-growing Client Closet, virtual styling tool & Pinterest collection we can use as needed to make the planning as simple as possible for you!

Things to Consider:

  • When coordinating multiple outfits, try incorporating several complimentary colors rather than just matching with one or two – neutral colors in earth tones are timeless, flattering to all skin tones, cohesive with natural surroundings & always photograph well
  • Include different color values to create separation between family members – utilize both light & dark shades between your outfits to prevent you from fusing together in your images
  • Look for clothing pieces that can add visual interest, items that have unique textures, show movement & catch light
  • Layers & accessories add texture, detail & variety as they can be added or removed – jackets, sweaters, dusters, hats, jewelry, cardigans…
  • Well-planned patterns, like florals, plaids, or stripes, can be an intriguing element – keep them simple & limit to one or two
  • Try to avoid solid-colored T-shirts & button ups as they can become a stark focal point in photos – opt for fades, heathers, or knits to soften & give variation
  • Be mindful of a proper fit – all attire should be tried on before session day to ensure it’s comfortable, flattering & allows unrestricted movement
  • I recommend shoes be relaxed & understated – easy to walk in on uneven ground
  • For indoor sessions, bare feet are best
  • If you are a nursing momma & would like breastfeeding images, be sure you have an outfit that will allow for this
  • Have back up options available in case of spills, spit up or snags

Family Sessions

Family of four standing in front of green trees as the light floods through | Minnesota family photographer
A mother sitting with her son in her lap as she hands him a wildflower | Minnesota family photographer

Documenting your family each year with a photo session is a powerful gift. The images we create together will be your keepsakes to cherish & your legacy to pass on for years to come. That being said, please believe me that on your session day I want you to take a deep breath, relax & trust that we’re going to have a lot of fun!

Remember, you are welcome & encouraged to come as you are & to be true to that the entire session. This time will be all about your authentic connections & natural affection. The love that you & your family share is what will breathe life into the still frames of your finished gallery. I will absolutely prompt certain interactions when needed to keep the session flowing, but only as an extension to what I’ve already witnessed is present.

So hug your children, kiss your spouse, hold on tight to each other & don’t fuss over perfection because that’s certainly not what I’m expecting.

Quick Tips for an Easy Breezy Session

  • Let your whole family know ahead of time they’re off the hook for staring at the camera & saying “cheese!”
  • Arrive a little early so everyone has some time to warm up & settle in
  • Bring water & snacks to ward off thirst & hangry-ness
  • If you have little ones, a stroller can be handy in case one of them needs a break, when we want to capture some parent-only images & to carry essentials like diaper bags, extra clothes, blankets, food & drinks, etc.
  • Relax, I expect your children to act like children & I welcome it – if they’re naturally shy, playful, sweet, wild, or otherwise, that’s just how I want to capture them
  • Be ready to go with the flow – things don’t always go as planned & that’s okay!

Maternity Sessions

Pregnant woman on a hillside at sunset | Minnesota maternity photographer

What a truly exciting event that is happening in your life right now – I’m honored to be the one to capture it for you! You deserve to have beautiful, timeless images that will bring you back to these days over & over again, reliving the wonderful moments & remembering all of the details that made it remarkable.

Maternity sessions are intimate & focused on you. I know, that may feel a little intimidating, especially if you’re not used to being in front of the camera. But I promise it’s going to be easy, fun & so rewarding.

You & I will work together from beginning to end to create the experience & the images you really want. Here are just a few super simple things you can do to help make our time together great:

  • Trust me – I’m not going to claim to know it all, but I will guide you with experience & the one goal of making you feel comfortable & look wonderful
  • Try new things – maybe you’re not used to having your photograph taken (not many are!), but be brave & just go for it! Relax, smile, laugh, move & go with the flow
  • Talk to me – if you have an idea, share it! If you’re not feeling something, let me know! This time is all about you & I don’t want to miss a thing

It’s best that you have 2-3 outfits to work through & I encourage that you take the opportunity to make them distinctly different. Sticking with the same color scheme will keep your gallery cohesive & flowing, but switching up styles, patterns, & accessories will add diversity.

Newborn Sessions
A newborn baby wrapped in brown & rust laying in a crate with a patterned blanket underneath | Minnesota newborn photographer
A father holding his newborn son up on his chest under his chin looking down at him while he sleeps | Minnesota newborn photographer

First, I want to congratulate you on the arrival of your new baby & thank you for choosing me to photograph this incredibly special time! I have a deep love & appreciation for newborns & I’m honored to have the opportunity to capture this occasion for you.

Your session will take place in the comfort of your own home, preferably in the areas that offer the best natural light as I will turn off all overhead & ambient lighting. Areas of the home to consider are the master bedroom, the nursery & living spaces where you spend most of your time. If you’d prefer to have your chosen areas prepared to your liking before the session, such as clearing clutter & removing things you wouldn’t want in your photographs, that would be helpful. I can always assist with this when I arrive as well!

Also, please trust that I come into your home completely judgement-free. I expect there to be mess & meltdowns, so I welcome them with no issue!

For baby’s outfit I recommend gentle, neutral colors & materials – items like knotted gowns, buttoned one-pieces & soft two-piece sets. We can have a couple changes during the session if desired & I have many things I will bring as well, such as wraps, hats or headbands & props for baby’s solo images.

My goals are that of comfort & connection – I want everyone involved to enjoy their time together while I simply document & I will help to guide & direct whenever needed. Sessions can take up to 3 hours because I want to allow plenty of extra time for feeding, changing, etc. without rush or expectation.

Lastly, rest assured that the safety & wellbeing of your baby is my highest priority & will be my main focus throughout your photoshoot.

Studio Mini Sessions
Beautiful mother with red hair in a blue dress sitting on the floor nursing her baby boy | Minnesota motherhood photographer
Toddler boy sitting in a tiny chair with baby's breath in the foreground | Minnesota milestone photographer

Hosting these mini sessions with my little in-home studio set up has been a desire of mine for a long time & I am so excited to be able to offer them to you now! 

These short & sweet sessions are a great opportunity to capture some truly wonderful moments in a modern space. We don’t have all the time we would during a full session, but we will absolutely have enough for you to receive a petite gallery of priceless images.

Here’s a few helpful hints to make the most of your 20 minute time slot: 

  • Arrive on time – these sessions run tightly together & I want you to get your full time! Make sure you factor in traffic, outfit & hair/makeup checks, bathroom trips, etc. into your travel time.
  • Be intentional with wardrobe – if you’re coming in solo we can definitely squeeze in 2 outfits, but if you’re bringing your littles with you there won’t be enough time to change everyone during your session time. We’ll work together beforehand to pick just the right pieces for everyone!
  • Take it nice & easy – once your session has started, act natural & go with the flow! I will guide & direct you as I normally would to make the most of our time together & capture all the images you will want!

I aim to make these mini sessions as easy & rewarding for you as possible & I am just can’t wait to see what we will create together!

After Your Session
Married couple on the edge of a river, the wife in the husband's lap as they are forehead-to-forhead | Minnesota couples photographer
Married couple standing closely together on a river bank at sunset | Minnesota couples photographer

We’ve now had our time together & I already know I can’t wait to dive into editing your precious images, curating a beautiful, emotive gallery for you to fall in love with.

Delivery of your gallery can take 4-6 weeks, especially during busy season. I select all of the best images from your session & I hand edit each one, so I give myself a comfortable amount of time to complete that labor of love.

As soon as they are finished, your images will be uploaded to an. online gallery presentation site where you will have the convenience of viewing, downloading & sharing them, as well as ordering prints, wall art & additional photo books (more on that on the next page). Your gallery will remain active for 30 days after delivery to you, so make sure you download & save all your images before its expiration.

Finally, please know that I am always happy to re-open a gallery after it has expired for additional print & product orders – I understand that life happens & it can be easy to forget to place them! Many people appreciate the access to the professional print lab to order holiday gifts as well, which is so lovely.

Prints & Products
Mother & father sitting on the couch with their new baby in their arms | Minnesota newborn photographer

In an effort to provide as much convenience & service to you as possible, I am so excited to offer the ability to order prints, canvas wall art, custom holiday, graduation & baby announcement cards, as well as additional copies of your photo book right from your online gallery!

I partnered with the White House Custom Color print lab for several reasons, not one of the least being that they are based here in Minnesota. I love supporting local businesses whenever possible, plus their proximity means super-fast shipping! Their numerous print options & obvious high-quality products give you every opportunity to get exactly what you want for your images.

Because I love nothing more than when clients are able to hold their beautiful photographs in their own hands, I made sure the pricing was kept very reasonable. I also created a few print collections which allow you to receive a variety of sizes & products at a discount. Please check out all that is available to you for purchase on the next page & I can bring examples of every type of print to your session for you to experience in person if you’d like.

Of course, if you already have a favorite print lab, you will absolutely receive a print release from me so you can have your images printed wherever you prefer.

Print Options
Lustre: A semi-gloss paper with vivid colors & excellent skin tones
Deep Matte: A true, non-reflective paper providing a rich, matte finish

Fine Art Options
Smooth Matte: 100% cotton hot press paper. It has the smoothest surface of the fine art papers
Torchon: A pure cellulose watercolor paper with a distinct textured surface – this is the highest quality fine art paper

Print & Product Pricing
Pregnant woman in a blue dress sitting on a rock in the water in front of a waterfall | Minnesota maternity photographer
Thank You!
Married couple sitting together on a rock with the sunset light streaming in behind them as they kiss | Minnesota couples photographer

“In the end, we’ll all become stories…” I am so grateful to participate in visually telling your story, to be a part of freezing time & space, holding you exactly as you are in this moment & preserving the details of your life that our minds can so easily misplace.

Thank you, friend.