Getting Ready For Your Senior Portraits

Getting ready for your senior portraits can be exciting & nerve racking. Being thoroughly prepared will make it much easier for everyone involved and will ensure a succesful session. I have designed this guide to help you to become better prepared for the session. If at any time a question or concern arrises, feel free to give me a call.........

Make-up and your complexion:
I highly recommend the use of make-up for your session to hide skin imperfections, blend your skin tones and accentuate eyes and lips.

If you wake up the morning of your session with a new blemish (which is inevitable) don't worry! Blemishes are easily removed and will not appear on your finished portraits. Unfortunately, images in your proof book are not retouched (only one image is retouched for a sample view,which is the cover image on your proof book.) To help you look your best in your portfolio I recommend covering any blemishes by applying both a concealer and powder. "Guys, this pertains to you too!" If your girlfriend or mom doesn't have what you need, don't run to the make-up department and spend your money, I have samples here.
Concealer and powder together work miracles on covering blemishes and lessening eye circles. Ask me for assistance if you have questions about how to use cover up type make-up. "Don't be shy, remember I've been there too!!" "Ladies even if your a diehard natural I recommend a little lip gloss and mascara to accentuate your eyes."

Facial Shine:
If you have a oily complexion, powder is a must. A matte finished powder is recommended as it photographs best. Facial shine is beyond the basic retouching so be sure to bring some powder to eliminate any shine.

Especially for the Guys:
Make sure you have a fresh shave, unless your wanting the five o'clock
shadow look. (the five o'clock shadow is beyond the basic retouch)
If your lips and hands are dry and chapped, don't forget a little chap stick and a hand lotion. A few other tips, If you've been working on your car, remember to check your fingernails for grease and dirt under the nail. If your going fishing a day or two before your session, be careful for raccoon eyes from your sunglasses!

Moles, Beauty Marks ,Scares and Tattoos:
These personal attributes make you who you are. I may remove them inavertently thinking it's a mark or blemish. Please make sure to mention it to me at your session whether or not you would like anything removed or accented.

"This is important!"
If you wear glasses you need to be aware that they may cause distortion and glare from the windows and photographic lights.
Any tint to your lenses will darken in the sunlight and when exposed to the lights.
Substantial glass glare can be removed however, the artwork will be costly as it is beyond the basic retouching. I recommend that you ask your eye doctor to loan a pair of frames like your own. Most doctors are happy to help you with this. If this is not an option, I recommend that you remove your lenses before your session.

If you have braces, please smile naturally. I understand that some people are so self conscious of their braces that when they smile they try not to show their teeth.
With todays technology braces can be removed in your finished portraits. This service is an extra charge, but its so worth it if you prefer to be free of your braces.

Avoid a brand new hairstyle or cut at least two weeks prior to your session. Also don't cut or change your stlyle until you have viewed your proofs. During your session, changes in your hair styles will add more variety to your portraits and are permitted as long as they can be done within 5 - 10 minutes. You may purchase additional timeif your style takes longer than 10 minutes.

In choosing jewelry for your portraits I recommend chain necklaces of a smaller type. Shiny jewelry tend to reflect light.
Pearls are still a great choice with a sweater for traditional poses.
Don't forget earrings. Pick earrings that go with the clothing style you are wearing. Stay clear of overly large earrings, they tend to be overbearing and take the focus away from your face.

Quick Tip - hang your jewelry in a baggie on the hanger of the outfit you have chosen to wear. This helps you to stay organized in the dressing room.

I recommend that you bring a variety of outfits and styles with you. By bringing muliple styles and colors of clothing you will add more variety to your poses. So bring your closet if you like.
For the traditional outfit you want to choose something classic (one that won't be outdated in a few years.) I like to call this the.... "Parent/Grandparent pleaser" It is most likely that a portrait made in this outfit would be chosen as a wall portrait for your home and possibly your year book photo. Solid colors are generally best in meduim to dark tones for head and shoulder shots. Guys, if your aren't into the suit, an alternative would be a sweater in a solid color. If you wear only a dress shirt and tie I recommend not wearing a white shirt. White looks best under a jacket. Black clothing gives a dramatic look to your senior portraits and will never go out of style. Guys remember you can get some great casual shots with the suit and tie look, so don't rule it out!

After the parent pleaser you are ready to "get casual." The other outfits in your session should truely represent the way you are.
This is the time for more bold colors and contempary styles.
Don't forget sweaters. Sweaters photograph well no matter what season.
Sleeveless and cap sleeve clothing:
OK, heres the deal with sleeveless clothing. We all love sleeveless in the summer but it can cause some technical difficulties.
Sleeveless tops tend to make your arms appear larger than they are. They also limit your poses. It's hard to hide the underarm area and attention is drawn away from the face. If you are OK with this..... then I am too.....

"Wrinkles Show" Please make sure your clothes are neatly presseed.
For your convienience, I do have and iron for quick touch-ups, if needed.

Hands & Feet:
Ladies, there is a good possibility your hands or bare feet may be in some of the photographs so make sure your nails are neatly done, and toe nails match Please remove any nail polish that is chipped and worn. A nutrual color is best for nail polish, as it will go with any outfit! I suggest using hand lotion on dry hands and cuticles for a few nights before your session.

Choosing your color style:
The following is a color guide to help give you some suggestions that will enhance and photograph well.

Burgundy,True Red, True Blue or Navy
if your hair color is....
Dark Brown or Black
and your eye color is....
Blue or Gray

Forest Green, Rust, Orange, Teal or True Blue
if your hair color is....
Dark Brown or Black
and your eye color is...
Dark Brown or Green

Teal Green, Orange-Red, Cream, Camel or Peach
if your hairs color is...
Auburn, Strawberry Blonde, Light Brown or Brown
and your eye color is...
Blue, Green or Light Brown

Pastels Colors, Rose, Soft Blue, Soft Aqua
if your hair color is...
Blonde or Ash Blonde
and your eye color is...
Blue, Gray or Green

Outdoor Clothing Colors:
Wear colors you see in nature. Greens, blues, browns, tans, rose, burgundy, and rich violets are perfect. Don't forget to bring shorts, jeans, jackets, sweatshirts, etc.

I encourage you to bring your ideas along with any items you like to personalize your session Creating unique images that portray the "real you" is my main goal. Don't forget to bring your music. "I like to crank it up! " If there is a CD you like please bring it. Music can put you in a great frame of mind and make your session even more enjoyable.

Here are some ideas to get you thinking...

Sports uniforms and equiptment
Hobbies/ Hunting/ Fishing
Collections/ Awards/ Trophies
Instruments / Sheet misic
Jackets / Hats/ Sun glasses
Cars / Motorcycles / 4 Wheelers
Music / Books
Saddles / Blankets / Boots
Paint Ball
Pets / Hourses / Friends

Places to look for ideas , insperation and creative design ideas might be....
Sports posters
CD/ Album covers

I hope you have found this guide to be helpful in preparing for your big day! If you have any questions feel free to call.

See you soon,


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