Preparing for your Family Portrait Session

Preparing for your Family Portrait Session

You’re having your family portraits done! This is the perfect time to pamper yourself. Go have your hair and makeup done if that’s your thing, schedule a massage or have your nails done. Looking super relaxed and at your best will make you feel more comfortable during the session.

WHAT TO WEAR: Simple and timeless clothing is usually the best. Please avoid logos, busy patterns and large designs on your clothing. For example, neutral-colored, earthy or ivory dresses, rompers or outfits are perfect for smaller children. For babies, we suggest that the more skin showing the better. They are so tiny, they can get swallowed right up in loose-fitting outfits. Also, remember that complementing each other is more important than matching.

PARENTS: Make sure you’re comfortable in what you’re wearing! I will have you sitting, standing, cuddling, tickling and walking so you want to be able to move around easily in what you’re wearing.

SNACKS: Bring age-appropriate snacks – there is no way you can get smiles when tummies are growling! Puffs and Cheerios are great. Leave the messy treats that may stain clothing or melt at home today.

PROPS: Children’s books, lovies, toy trains or cars, dolls, bubbles, wagons, or child-sized chairs or other furniture are always welcome.

RESTED: Yes! Please consider your child’s nap schedule when booking your appointment. Well-rested children are always happier and more willing to cooperate.

Empty out those pockets! We don’t want wallets and phones showing up in the photos.

Arrive Early! Planning to arrive 10-15 minutes early will ensure that we get started right on time and maximize all of our scheduled shooting time, plus allow your child a chance to acclimate to their surroundings. This is especially important for morning sessions, when the sun starts to get harsher the further into the session we get.

Try and Relax! None of my clients are professional models and I promise to help you look and feel natural in front of the camera. And I promise it won’t hurt. 😉

9 Fabulous Photography Locations In and Around Bloomington, Indiana

9 Fabulous Photography Locations In and Around Bloomington, Indiana

I’ve lived in Bloomington for almost 11 years now, and while I didn’t grow up here, it certainly feels like home. It’s a beautiful, fun, open-hearted little city, and I’ve spent a lot of time exploring it through photographing my clients. Below are some of my favorite locations to shoot in and around Bloomington. They work for maternity, family, engagement, high school senior or on-location headshot session locations, and they’re not in much of any particular order.

Before you commit to one of these locations for your session, however, I’d love for you to consider if there might be a certain spot that’s special to you and your partner or family. For example, the place you got engaged, or a spot where you’ve spent a lot of time together. I love to shoot in new locations, and would happily try out a space that is unique and special to you!


Sherwood Oaks Park

Sherwood Oaks Park, nestled on the south side in the Sherwood Oaks Neighborhood, has some of the best location variety packed into it. There’s a cute playground for the kids (and humorous newlyweds-to-be!), a creek with a great bridge running over it, beautiful hiking trails in the large woods, and the easier to walk and equally beautiful Clear Creek Trail, a paved trail running along a large open, grassy field with an old red barn at one end. I’ve had so much fun in that field with adventurous clients!

IU Campus

The Indiana University Bloomington Campus is a favorite location for current students, faculty, and tons of alumni, and for good reason. The buildings are beautifully timeless. It’s always impeccably landscaped. But more than anything, it means so much to so many people, myself included. Many of us did a lot of learning and growing up there, and it’s a special place to us–what I believe is most important in choosing a photography session location!

Fountain Square Mall

I’m so thankful for this great indoor location! It’s gotten me through southern Indiana winters and many unexpected rainy days over the years. It has lots of big windows and natural light, beautiful filigree stairs, a glass elevator, gorgous fountain, a super fun Wizard of Oz mural, a skywalk and is so very pretty over the holidays with all the twinkly lights.

Brown County State Park

Brown County isn’t exactly Bloomington, I know, but you really can’t find a more beautiful natural location in the fall than here, and it’s only about a fifteen minute drive from Bloomington! The overlooks are absolutely incredible, there are tons of open, grassy fields, cute cabins and tree lines. Not to mention, an interesting “shore line” type area at Ogle Lake!

Flatwoods Park

Flatwoods Park is another location a little off the Bloomington path, located out near Ellettsville/Gosport, but it’s a really nice, sun-drenched change of scenery. The old, graceful willow trees sway in the breeze in time with the long grass, through which walking paths are cut. It is so dreamy at sunset. Oh, and a sweet little foot bridge!

The B-line Trail

The B-line Trail is a goldmine for urban, artsy backgrounds, and it’s definitely a client favorite. There are lots of murals and sculptures, a few bridges, and some of my favorite urban alleys along the way. It’s a fun walk, and I typically recommend shooting on the B-line or downtown for sessions without small children who are walking on their own, as it is a high traffic area.

Harris Ford Bridge at Clear Creek Trail

The Harris Ford Bridge was originally introduced to me by a client, and I’m so grateful! Chad and Jessica, pictured below with baby Liam both inside and outside the womb, wanted to shoot at the bridge for their maternity session, and then we came back later when Liam was older. The best way to find it is to park at the Church Lane Trailhead and walk up the trail. There’s a creek running under the bridge, too, which is great for families with kiddos who are old enough to know not to go for a swim in the creek!

Kirkwood Avenue

Walk Kirkwood from the square to the Sample Gates, and you’ll get an incredible amount of urban variety, like some really nicely-lit alleyways (Oddfellows is a favorite!), and some great street art. You can take almost any cross street off Kirkwood and find some pretty brick or an interesting door, and of course you’ll end at the Sample Gates for a beautiful shot down Kirkwood!

The Story Inn

The Story Inn is a bit of a drive into the woods of Brown County, but it’s so very much worth it! It’s a treasure trove of rustic simplicity, old barn wood and pretty gardens. And you can grab a delicious lunch or dinner after your shoot at their on-site café!

I am currently booking regular sessions through the winter and spring. Contact me via the form below for more information or if you’re ready to book your session. I’d love to get you on my 2018 calendar! 🙂

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