Are all the pictures candid?

For the most part yes, however, if a family requests to have a quick portrait done (and the kids are willing) I will absolutely grab a picture to keep the grandparents happy for you! I won't spend very long on it because I don't want it to take away from the rest of the session but a quick one in the beginning before we get started is fine. I also offer holiday mini sessions (great for holiday cards) that are exclusively for families that have had a documentary family session with me in the same year. This is a great time to get dressed up and have a quick portrait done.

What should we wear?

Since this is not a portrait session you don't need to stress over the perfect outfits. However, there are certain colors that don't photograph well and some other tips I will provide to you in my wardrobe guide. This will be emailed to after you book, along with other information on preparing for your session. But really all you need to do is be comfortable and be yourselves. I love when kids wear the rainboots they never take off or their super hero cape! Babies in diapers are pretty awesome as well! I love when kids get dirty and are able to be themselves!

What if my child isn’t in a good mood?

At some point during the session I'm sure your kids will act out, they're kids! It's totally ok. As I've said before I try to capture the happy, silly and sweet moments. Sometimes it's cute when your kids get mad, especially toddlers, that's what they do and it's part of your story so I might snap a quick picture. But, I can take a hint when it's not a good time to be taking pictures and I will step outside the room and grab some detail shots while you work things out with your kiddos. Also, having the session at your home helps to avoid any major issues. If your kid gets their shirt dirty and wants to change, they can. If they're hungry, they can have a snack. If they want to do something else, they can! You have everything you need to make your kids happy at your finger tips!

How do I convince my husband?

These sessions are not like anything he's thinking. He doesn't have to get dressed up into a stiff oufit and feel awkward smiling at the camera. And he doesn't have to hear about you worrying about what to wear or making sure the kids are on their best behavior, because it doesn't matter! Tell him he can just go about his day, wear what he wants and just play with the kids and I promise I will get great pictures! He can even do something he loves to do. Maybe it's washing the car with the kids or doing a woodworking project with his little guy. Maybe it's grilling while the kids run around the yard. Let him choose!

Is my house big enough? Nice enough?

Yes! You DO NOT need a home that looks like it's out of a magazine. I actually prefer them to be more lived in looking. Your home is not the focus of the session, your family is, but it is where you live and it will be awesome for your kids to look back on their childhood home. Plus kids are just happier and more relaxed at home. I shoot with a wide angle lens so it's ok if you have small rooms, I can make it work. My home is tiny, so I am used to making it work. It doesn't matter what your home looks like!


Do I have to clean my house?

No! Don't worry about actually cleaning, you will not be able to see the dust on your shelves or the crumbs on your counter! It is helpful to tidy up before the session, put things away that you don't want out, such as that diaper box that's been hanging out in the hallway because you've been too lazy to bring it to the recycle bin, or is that just me? Toys on the floor and laundry in the basket are all part of your story so don't stress over that stuff! Hey even sticky finger prints on your window show this time in your life. We've all heard it, someday we'll miss those finger prints and stepping on those legos! If a session in your home is still too stressful for you we can always do another location such as your favorite playground, farm or ice cream place!

Are we too boring?

No! I don't even need to know anything about you to know your life is not boring. I will find the beauty in the ordinary, that's my job and what I LOVE to do. Just your family hanging out is good enough. I can help you come up with some ideas if you would feel better with a little structure, but I'm sure your kids will find something to do either way. They can show me their favorite things and the session will evolve from there. I promise you'll be surprised at the pictures and the memories you'll get from doing "nothing". These are the little things that someday you'll look back on and realize they were the big things.

Do I have to be in the pictures?

No, but you should be. I can do your session highlighting the kids, which is honestly what I end up doing anyways, but kids are not all that independent (even if they think they are) so when they run to you to kiss their boo boo or to help them get something down, or to read them a story, etc. you will be in some of the pictures. And you should be in the pictures for your children's sake. These are your kid's memories and they're going to want to look back and see their Mommy loving on them. If you are not confident with how you look (I mean who really is) I have someone who can help you choose an outfit you will feel great in! Beacon Style has a special "Picture Perfect" package just for my clients, meant to help Moms feel great in front of the camera! This is not about finding an expensive perfectly styled outfit but more about finding one that flatters your body! Ask more for more information!

If you still have questions please don't hesitate to ask! carleekettell@gmail.com