Family picture season is here!!! This year, with three session options, over a dozen available dates, FAQs and an updated style guide…booking your Fall session should be easy peasy! Below you’ll find everything you need to know to sign your family up for the Julie Griffin Photography experience: Session Options, How to Request a Session, Dates, and Frequently Asked Questions. If you still have questions after looking this over, or would like to inquire about another type of session or other date options than what is listed below, feel free to shoot me an email here. If you would like to submit a private property location for consideration, you can do that here.
Abridged Session $300
15-20 minutes / location and time determined by Julie / always back-to-back with another family / sessions move quickly / not recommended for families of 6+ / one household // approx. 30-50 images / $100 retainer
Full: Family Anecdote $600
45-90 minutes / custom experience with flexible location / recommended for families of 5+ or with super-shy kids or very young babies / one household // approximately 50-75 images + complimentary printed item / $100 retainer
Full: Family Story $900
1-3 hours / custom experience with flexible location / for extended families or recommended for households with 9+ people // approximately 100-150 images + complimentary printed item / $100 retainer
Determine which session option will be best for your desired session experience. Remember, abridged sessions are quick and cannot accommodate outfit changes or exploring a location, and are not recommended for groups of more than five people or kiddos who may be slower to connect with a stranger in a new place.
Look at the dates and times available (BELOW) and make note of which date(s) would work for your schedule. The time slots listed are for two abridged sessions, but for Full Sessions you can simply request both time slots listed on any given date and you will have me all to yourself for that time. Keep in mind that additional dates and times are available for in-home sessions!
Request your desired date and time using this form. Providing a first, second and even third choice will help me to accommodate the most families possible!
Requests will be processed in the order they are received. If your requested time is indeed available, I will mark it as reserved for you, and send you instructions so you can pay a $100 [nonrefundable] retainer and complete your client agreement form. Don’t worry, you have five days to pay your retainer and confirm your time before the spot will be opened back up to others.
[time slots available are in bold]:
*On dates marked with an asterisk, I have secured access to a private property location in the east valley — these sessions require an additional $35 toward the location fee, per timeslot, to enjoy the this setting. Location fees will likely apply to other private locations on other dates as well, but will be discussed by email and decided together after you book, if not indicated above!
I get it. Coordinating Family Pictures can be stressful, especially in the busy Fall.
I want it to be easy for you — your experience should be fun and memorable as we capture the season of life that you are in with your family. Hopefully the answers to frequently asked questions below will be helpful as you prepare for your session this year!
If you have any questions that are not addressed below that you need answered before booking your session, contact me right away and we can chat!
What should we wear? Once your session is booked, I’ll send you a link to a style guide I’ve put together with all kinds of tips and inspiration to help you piece together clothing for your entire crew! Choosing clothing is the hardest part for a lot of people, so you are not alone if this task stresses you out! I am happy to help or give you input as you are putting it all together — I want this to be as easy as possible for you!
Will we need to bring anything? I try to keep it pretty simple! I recommend you bring a blanket or quilt that coordinates with your attire or is neutral because you will sit on the ground for some of our session. Other than that, just the usual necessities for you and your kiddos, and a great attitude!
I’m nervous about how my kids are going to behave, what should I do to prepare them? Sessions with me are fun and engaging. I love photographing families with kids because I love connecting with kids. You do not need to do anything particular to prepare your kids other than: don’t forget to feed them, make sure they get some sleep, and try to have a low-stress day getting ready. I have worked with children of all ages, from infants to teens, and I love them all — shy kids, outgoing kids, sweet kids, naughty kids, serious kids, silly kids. I truly believe that all children are wonderful and kids can literally do no wrong at my sessions. I will do my thing to engage with them, prompt them, make them giggle — the best thing you can do is set the tone and show them that you trust me and that you’re having fun too, and the energy will be perfect! And no need to teach them to “say cheese” — I promise I will do my best to get real smiles and giggles, no cheese necessary!
What’s included with the session fee? The session fee includes photographer’s time planning, shooting and processing (and often an assistant). Includes high-resolution digital image files with a print release for sharing on personal social media accounts and printing for personal use. Includes simple editing treatment of the images; with special-request retouching and creative editing services, and a full catalog of the highest quality printed products available for purchase. Full sessions also include a complimentary printed item to be selected/ordered within 30 days of gallery delivery (the most popular is a book). Session fees do not include sales tax.
Does the retainer apply to the session fee? Yep! The nonrefundable $100 retainer books your spot and will be subtracted from the session balance due on your session day.
How are locations determined? Some session locations are already set, which are indicated above. In general, I use a variety of public and private property locations for Fall sessions, with a strong preference for private property locations to give my clients the personal attention they deserve when the public locations can be crowded with photography groups. I will consider input from everyone being photographed that day regarding clothing colors and desired setting, and choose a location where I will be able to provide the absolute best session experience possible! If you have a great idea for a private property location, I’d love to hear about it here.
Can we bring our dog? Well-behaved pets are always welcome at full family sessions, provided our location permits animals on the premises. I cannot hold a leash while making beautiful pictures for you, so it helps if you arrange to bring a “handler” along, someone who can attend to your pup as needed so that the rest of us can be fully engaged during the “humans-only” photos.
What if the weather disrupts our plans? If the sky’s forecast will greatly affect the natural light that I like to shoot in, there is a small chance that I might nudge our session time by 10-20 minutes, but I can make beautiful images in almost any weather! If we have a forecasted dreadful downpour, we may choose to reschedule and can cross that bridge if we get there!
I want to do our session at my home, what should I do? I love at-home sessions! We can do a full session at your home any of the dates listed — and on top of that, indoor home sessions can often be done during the midday, so we can talk about dates and times beyond what I’ve listed as options for outdoor sessions. You can contact me using the booking form, or simply send me a note here.
The time slot I want is already reserved/booked, what should I do? If you would like to be put on a waiting list for a time slot that is currently marked as booked, in the event that someone cancels or does not pay their retainer, or if you would like to be added to my email list for first dibs on special days like this one in the future, still send me a note or a request form!
None of these dates work for me, what should I do? If none of these dates work for you, contact me to book a full session another date! I especially have flexibility for other dates and times for a session at your own home.
When will we get our pictures? Approximately one month from session date. I do my best to process sessions and deliver beautiful and thorough galleries faster than promised, but please plan ahead for ordering and sending your holiday cards, knowing that you will not receive your full gallery overnight. Since I do take some time away from the computer for Thanksgiving and a couple weeks in December to enjoy the holidays with my family: for clients photographed after November 10th, I will send you a variety of favorites from our session that can be used for your holiday cards, and your full gallery may be delivered in January.
We are expecting a new baby this Fall, should I book our newborn session on one of these dates? Hooray!! First, congratulations! To answer this question: No — because I do not photograph newborns outdoors (especially during flu season!) and we will have all kinds of other things to talk about to plan your newborn session! So please contact me separately so I can send you some info and check my availability for a birth or newborn session around your approximate due date!
I am on the fence between an Abridged and a Full session, can you elaborate / help me decide? You bet! I will speak candidly here and share some benefits and my thoughts on both session options. Full sessions are longer, and you have me all to yourself. It might seem like a whole hour would feel like a long session, but it goes by quickly when everyone is having fun and connecting as a family! Full sessions give us much more time and thus an opportunity for me to capture all the candid in-between moments and a much greater variety of images for your gallery. We can set a nice pace, explore a location, and even have time for an outfit change. Full sessions are always my preference for getting to thoroughly and deeply capture families — and are truly necessary for larger family units simply because of time and my session flow. Full sessions are definitely recommended for: kids who might take a long time to respond well to somebody new or an unfamiliar setting; for babies with a fussier temperament; for any clients with special needs or considerations; and of course for anyone who has a specific location in mind. It is also very special to me for my clients to have something from me that they can hold in their hands, which is why I love making books or prints for them that are included in the Full session experience. You can read more of my thoughts on full-service photography here. Full sessions are the real deal Julie Griffin Photography Experience that I have built my business and my loyal clientele on. All that said…. I wouldn’t offer Abridged sessions if I didn’t know that I can provide a fantastic experience and great images in a short amount of time too! Abridged sessions move quickly and we pretty much stay put, but are a great option for so many families, are cost-effective, and they allow me to serve a larger client base during the Fall! You’ll notice that I do not ever do a full day of “mini sessions” — my abridged sessions are simply two clients back-to-back — still allowing me to make sure that all my outdoor sessions are shot in great light that will let me produce images consistent with what you’ve seen in my portfolio and expect when you invest in a session with me. I simply could not produce quality work for every single client if I shot a marathon of outdoor mini sessions all throughout the day; so photographing two clients back-to-back works perfect for me and my style. Abridged sessions are great for kids who love picture day, especially kiddos who already know me! They are especially fantastic for kiddos who are quick to make new friends, play around, and can follow directions well. Abridged sessions are great for families of four or fewer; and can work for families of five or even six if everybody shows up ready to have fun and trust me and my session flow! Abridged sessions fit the bill for “one for the holiday card” or simply updating a portrait wall in your home. They are also a nice opportunity to ease stubborn dads or teenagers into the idea that photo shoots don’t have to take forever and can be quick and painless! There is no right or wrong session to choose, you should do whatever is best for your family! I hope this all was helpful! If you are still on the fence, let’s chat!