Where are you based?
We are based in Ashford, Kent but are happy to travel anywhere in the South-East, or further afield. A small travel charge might apply for travel outside a 15 mile radius of Ashford – contact us for more details.
Where are we going to have our portraits taken?
There are 2 options for our portrait shoots:
With our outdoor lifestyle photoshoots, we can shoot anywhere you like – in a park, in a forest, at the beach…whatever takes your fancy. If you have a location in mind, that’s great! Please let me know, so I can check its suitability, and all being well we can hold the photoshoot there.
If you are unsure, that’s no problem either – I know plenty of photogenic locations in my local area (Ashford and the surrounding villages), and am happy to do some research about locations in your area if you’d prefer not travel this way. For example, I love to use Orlestone Forest Nature Reserve in Hamstreet or Stelling Minnis Common.
The shoot should capture something of who you are, so picking a location that reflects a hobby or an interest can be a really nice idea. For example, if you love horse riding, we could take some portraits of you at a yard with your horse.
If you prefer the style of indoor studio portraits, then we are pleased to be able to offer you our portable studio service. We can take it anywhere – your home, a commercial space that you own, or even a hired space such as a village hall. Seeing the backdrop and lighting being put together in a familiar environment can be a great way of taking the fear out of a studio environment for children, and we have consistently received feedback that this improves the results.
All we require for this option is 4-5m squared of floor space, and a good power supply. Any other lighting or background factors are irrelevant, as we take care of all of this for you! We also have the choice of a white or black backdrop, so if you’re not sure feel free to discuss which would be better for your needs, or ask to see examples! We use a high-grade, wipe-clean vinyl backdrop, so no need to worry about spills or muddy paw prints!
In the neutral environment of a studio, it can be a nice touch to introduce a few props. We provide fluffy throws, blocks and stools for posing, but including your child’s favourite teddy or blanket for example can be a nice memento for you to keep. Outfit changes can also be interesting, so don’t feel like you have to stick to one look!
How long is a portrait photoshoot?
On average, shoots normally last for 1 – 2 hours, varying according to the number of people and how cooperative any little ones/pets are! We will never rush you and will always shoot until we have captured the images that you want.
For photoshoots with our portable studio, we need an extra 10 – 15 minutes before and after the shoot to set up and deconstruct our equipment.
Can we book you during the week?
Yes you can! Catherine is a full-time photographer, so weekdays are no problem. Ideally I like to schedule shoots in the morning or later afternoon to get the best light for photography. Low light creates stunning photographs! We are also happy to schedule shoots for evenings and weekends to fit around your lifestyle.
What do we wear?
This is obviously a very personal thing to consider, and of course you can wear whatever you like to the shoot, or even bring outfit changes if you wish! However, we regularly get asked for advice, so if you’re a bit stuck, here are a few guidelines for you:
-Most importantly, pick something you feel confident and comfortable in!
-Try to avoid too much black or white, as it can be less flattering for skin tones in the images
-Very bold patterns or fluorescent colours can often be distracting in photographs, so try not to pick anything too striking or your eye will be drawn to it in the images
-Something to bear in mind is that you will be looking back at these images for years to come, and so wearing anything too ‘trendy’ or current can mean the images are likely to age faster
-Lastly, try to pick something appropriate to the location – for example, colourful wellies, hats and scarves would be great for a walk in the woods
Can we bring pets?
Yes – in fact, we encourage you to do so! They can be great ice-breakers for introducing some fun into the images, and we appreciate that they can be as important as any other member of the family. We are happy to work with any animals – horses, dogs, your pet iguana – at no extra charge.
Can we reschedule?
Yes, of course you can – whatever the reason! We know that personal emergencies or miserable weather can get in the way, so as long as you let us know asap we’ll happily rebook at no extra charge. Likewise, if on the day your little ones or pets are not feeling very cooperative then we are happy to try again on another day.
Something worth bearing in mind however, is that embracing the weather can make for some great photographs! Jumping in puddles or standing in a field surrounded by falling snow can create some really stunning pictures, so sometimes it’s worth being brave! We’re not afraid to pull on a pair of wellies and get stuck in!
What happens after the shoot?
Usually, we will schedule a viewing date a couple of days after the shoot. We can meet up in a café or we will visit you at home to show you the photographs of the shoot (Usually about 30 – 60). You can choose your free print and purchase additional products if you’d like! Feel free to invite friends and family to this session, it is usually good fun. We also create an online gallery with your photographs afterwards.
How do we pay?
We accept cheque, cash, bank transfer and paypal payments. It is also possible to order and pay for extra
prints/gifts/downloads directly through our online gallery, but this will only be available for a limited period.
I’m a bit shy, and don’t normally enjoy having my photo taken?
We work with people all the time who are worried about feeling self-conscious or uncomfortable while they’re in front of the camera. This is no problem! I cannot emphasise enough how laid-back we like to keep our shoots. If you want a portrait shoot that is heavily styled and set up, then we will happily give you direction, but if this thought fills you with dread then just let us know. We maintain a fun, relaxed atmosphere and encourage you to interact with one another as if we weren’t even there – chatting and laughing amongst yourselves, and not necessarily making eye-contact with the camera. These images tend to reveal true personality.
Do you shoot in black and white or colour?
We always shoot in colour, to allow us more choice later in post-processing. Generally speaking, we tend to find that some images strongly lend themselves to black and white, and will produce you a mixture of both in the end result. If you would like all or none of your images in black and white, don’t be afraid to discuss this with us.
Can you retouch our images?
Yes, we always carry out a basic level of retouching, such as the removal of blemishes or scratches. If you would like very heavy retouching/reshaping work to be done, this is also possible but can be time consuming, so we do charge a small hourly fee. Talk to us about what you have in mind.
My question hasn’t been answered?
If you still have any questions for us, feel free to get in touch by email (firstname.lastname@example.org) or phone (07593996068) – we’ll be happy to answer them for you.