Sessions are what you make them.
I absolutely LOVE when clients get enthused about their sessions. I’m talking about the kind of bubbly excitement that you have before your favorite holiday. Or the kind of happiness that happens when you finally have the chance to sit down to coffee with a really good friend that you haven’t seen in forever.
It’s truly is something amazing to see when you can tell that a client is really, truly eager to help plan their session. When everyone involved is excited before the session even begins, you can’t help but have a wonderful session when it’s time to pick up the actual camera.
So! Why did I love the Pershing family session?
From our first session planning and design conversation, Andrea took my advice and went above and beyond to make sure that her family had the perfect outfits and to make sure that everyone had plenty of snacks. So not only did everyone look phenomenal because of her careful attention to wardrobe detail, but the kiddos were also happy and content to play and explore together during their session with full tummies. She even remembered to bring a potty chair to the session! (Which even though we didn’t end up using it, it was a phenomenal idea. Ten points for Hufflepuff, Andrea! 🙂 )
During the session, we had plenty of time together to relax with one another and to let the magic happen naturally. And truthfully, that is the key to any great session:
Imagine the feeling that you have when you’re crunched for time, ready to head out the door and your child asks you to read a book to them. Yes, perhaps you sit down to quickly read through the story, but how much of that moment do you truly absorb? Probably not much, right? You may feel the need to rush through or to skip around pages. You aren’t truly in the moment and you feel it and your child likely does too.
It’s the same with a photo shoot.
When people feel rushed, it’s hard to express the genuine emotion. And while you can absolutely still do a photo shoot without it, the genuine expression of emotion and feelings is what elevates images into something truly unforgettable. When sessions are rushed, smiles that would have otherwise come naturally begin to feel forced and the tension is evident on everyone’s faces.
But with enough time to relax, the expressions and emotions are authentic and beautiful. The photoshoot transforms into an experience or a memory. And at the end of the day, isn’t that what’s most important? Creating beautiful experiences and moments with the people that we love the most.
Is it possible to show up to a photo shoot without any planning and it still turns out wonderful? Absolutely. But in the past several years of my career, I’ve noticed that the folks who are actively engaged in their pre-session planning usually end up having the most relaxed and effortless time during their session. And really, shouldn’t that what pictures should be all about? Remember, it’s not necessarily the picture that counts most. It’s the memories attached to them that make it all worthwhile.