Your Photo Session & How It All Works

Help Choosing A Photographer | Photography Client Questions

(To see what clients have to say check out reviews here)
When you’re looking for a photographer, be it for senior pictures, your wedding, family portraits, newborn photos, a lot of questions are bound to come up about the process. How does a photo session work? How do I book a photographer? Where can I have my senior pictures taken? Here’s the basic flow of what your photography experience with Canal Town Photo will be like and tips and advice on what to ask…

Choosing & hiring your wedding or portrait photographer…

First off and most obviously, you have to like a photographer’s work & style!  All of us photographers are graced with the luxury of having our portfolio & galleries on-line for clients to see. So that’s a given in my book. Secondly, and not to be underestimated, you have to like me too. I’m going to have a camera in your face for at least an hour. If I’m shooting your wedding photos, we’ll be together all day, talking/joking and hopefully having a lot of fun together. how to hire a photographerSo don’t underestimate the importance of your photographer’s personality. You need to feel comfortable and relaxed with them…

Next: Communication. I’m big on it! I’m always available by email or cell, so if you have a question, ask! Get it off your chest. We’ll be talking multiple times prior to your session anyway; discussing locations and ideas, photo books, how long open bar will last 😉


Questions to ask a photographer

A few of the basics; How long have they been a photographer? Are they using professional grade photo equipment? Education? Do they have references or reviews for you to see? I tend to rely on reviews when shopping online, so photographer reviews or references are big in my book. Another favorite, why do they do it? Also, what type of extras do they offer to clients; photo albums, photo books, canvas prints, “save the date” cards, etc.


How does a photo session work? 

newborn photography poses
The Shoot | Portraits: For portrait sessions (family, senior portraits, bands) have an idea of where you’d like to shoot them; home, the park, your favorite hang-out, the baby’s nursery. I always have plenty of ideas to share as well. One advantage of having me as your photographer is that YOU can choose the location. Pick somewhere you feel relaxed or near your favorite view. Wherever you’d like. Some of the best shoots happen on the fly, picking a location and just working with it. I’ll take it from there & do my best to get those kids (& adults) to give me a genuine smile and catch some real emotion as well.

What should I wear for my photo session?

As far as how to dress for portraits, I like to keep it simple. Go for the classic plain colors, nothing too loud or with a lot of graphics. Black is always slimming. But really, it’s up to you. If there’s an outfit you look and feel your best in, wear that! We’re going to be capturing “you” at this point in time of your life, I say be yourself!

And then there are the weddings…

The Shoot | Weddings: Weddings are a whole different animal! I like to map out the day ahead of time with clients, that way everyone has a rough idea of what the flow of the day will be like. I get to know when the big moments will be, aside from the ceremony, like the first dance, cake cutting, father-daughter dance, etc. We can also discuss anything, from how early you’d like me to show up, to bridal party photo locations, and engagement photo sessions. I also like to have clients give me a list of photos they want to make sure we get (with certain relatives, etc.) so we don’t miss anything. photography photographer questions and answers FAQBottom line, I want you to just enjoy your wedding day and not have to worry about anything, photography-wise anyway. How the cake makes it there is up to you…

Okay, so when do I get my photos?

Delivery & The Follow Up: After our time together is through there’s still more to do…I get started on the processing of your photos; basic editing & color correction, & artistic touches. Typical turn-around time for portraits is 2-4 weeks, for wedding photos, 5-8 weeks. It really depends on the time of year and the amount of sessions/clients ahead of you. Your photos are delivered to you on DVD. Client-teaser photo galleries (some faves as I process your photos) are usually live on the site anywhere from a few days to a week(ish) after your session. You or your family can order prints of any of the photos in your gallery right from the site. Some clients like me to post teaser pics on our Facebook Page too, which is great. There are a lot of options. If you’ve decided to order an heirloom photo-book or a printing package, we’ll be discussing which photos you’d like to include in it too…Be sure to read some reviews written by clients here

Check out the PhotoBlog or Book a photo session…


Patrick Castania is a Santa Clarita CA photographer specializing in Wedding, Engagement, & Family Portrait Photography.

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