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  • Writer's pictureAileen Rueda-DaCosta

What to know before you come to your session.

A couple of tips to help you have the best experience possible.

Fees, expectations, and more!

I'm beyond excited that we've scheduled your session! Here are a couple things I want to refresh your memory on in case you haven't heard them before.

I want you to understand any extra fees or expectations that you perhaps weren't aware of.

Tip #1 - Arrive on time!

I know this sounds like common sense, but we're all human and we could use a little grace sometimes.

When we schedule your session know that I'll arrive a few minutes early to get my gear ready and prepared to make the most of your time. I know the pressure and anxiety of having to doll yourself up, feeling a bit insecure about your outfit, and STILL having to get everyone out the door in a decent mood.

I always allow a few minutes for you to arrive. And I don't charge any late or rescheduling fees, but remember that the timer starts at our agreed upon time and will run for the agreed upon length, regardless of how late you are. After all, I do have a 2 year old waiting for me at home who doesn't like it if I'm even a minute late. So please be mindful and plan for a bit of traffic!

For example, if you have purchased 'The Micro' you have 45 minutes with me. If we agree to meet at 6pm and you're running 20 minutes late, I will happily stay until 6:45pm but no longer than that. We can still get some beautiful images done in that amount of time!

Tip #2 - Read the contract!

More likely than not, you've signed the contract and didn't think twice about it. I encourage you to go back into our email exchange and read through the contract I sent you. I pride myself on being transparent and honest, and I want to help you manage the expectations you have.

My contracts are short and straightforward, but it's helpful to read through it thoroughly to understand what you can and can't do with your photos.

For example, you can (and should!) share on social media as much as you'd like. But one thing you shouldn't do is alter the photos after I have edited and delivered your gallery to you. Examples of this would include slapping an Instagram filter on it, or asking someone else to photoshop it. While these photos are yours to share and appreciate, it is still artwork that I have poured my time and experience into.

Another thing that is in most photographer's contracts is credit, give credit to the photographer when it is due! Not just me, but all photographers love to see their hard work on social media and beyond. Be sure to tag my page or refer to me personally when sharing. So many of my referrals are word of mouth, and because of this I am so very thankful!

Lastly, don't submit your photos to any publications without first asking the photographer. Unless the session is specifically for commercial purposes (like headshots, real estate, etc) your photos are for home use and printing only. Submitting to a magazine for a contest, a local festival where you might win prize money, or sharing your images with venues or vendors, those are things that require a separate release and agreement.

Tip #3 - You can always consult your photographer on what to wear.

Feel free to ask me for style guides or inspiration. You have full autonomy over what you and your friends or family will wear, but I am more than happy to share some ideas! I do this a lot and I am never offended if you don't like what I share.

Tip #4 - Trust the process, and embrace yourself.

My turn around time varies between packages due to amount of images you'll receive and the time it will take to edit. Trust my process, and when I post or send you a sneak peek that is when you can let me know of any changes you might need!

I am happy to edit small blemishes, like a pimple that popped up the day before due to stress. But I will not alter your body in anyway. On principle, I do not change body shapes to accommodate anyone. You are worthy of love and appreciation from YOURSELF more than anything. I have been asked before if I can make someone 'look skinnier' and I refuse to do it. You do not need to spend your life trying to shrink your body. You are perfect, and your photos will be gorgeous simply because YOU are in them.

Let me know if you have any questions!

This may just be a family session (or headshots or events or birth etc) but I am completely here for you. Text me (during working hours, please!) if you need clarification or to double check location. I am so thankful to have you trust me with your time and money.

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