How to Style for your Photo Session

Are you ready? Camera ready?

Styling Advice for Your Upcoming Photography Session

Once you’ve chosen a professional photographer for your photography session, the real work begins. What should you wear for your photos? How should you style your hair? What makeup is right for the weather, lighting, and background? If you have questions swirling through your head, here’s some photo shoot styling advice.

Hiring a Professional Photography Stylist.

Whether you’re one of my clients seeking photography in Las Vegas or you’re located elsewhere, my goal is to help your photo session be its best. These photos are going to last you a lifetime, so it’s important to pay attention to every detail to ensure you get pictures you’ll treasure for years to come.

I’m often asked whether I recommend hiring a stylist for photo shoots. While this is entirely dependent on your comfort level, expectations, and goals, I do think professional stylists can offer a great deal of positive feedback to a photo shoot. Stylists can give wardrobe suggestions, help with hair styles, and apply makeup on the day of the session if desired. 

Clients who book a session with me will have a professional hair and makeup stylist available at no additional charge. Photography stylists know how to style your hair and apply makeup that looks great on camera. Even if you’re confident in your abilities, you want to be sure your features stand out on film. If you’re working with another photographer, he or she should be able to give you recommendations for professional stylists in your area who can make you look camera-ready on photo shoot day.

What to Wear for Family Pictures or Individual Portraits.

It’s perhaps the number one question I get asked: “What should I wear?” The answer depends on the message you’re trying to convey through your photos. Photography in Las Vegas is filled with a variety of clientele: weddings, portraits, family photos, senior photos, individuals, boudoir, engagement portraits – just about anything goes. The wardrobe should match the tone of the photograph.

My clients who are working with me here in Las Vegas receive professional styling and wardrobe consultation before the shoot. I recommend purchasing new clothing specifically for the photography session: something sexy, sleek, or stylish, depending on the look you’re after. Brand-new clothing will add something extra special to your photographs, giving them a touch of crisp, clean style. Clothing should be comfortable, yet classy. Nothing oversized or too casual, and something that fits your style and personality. You’re already investing in these memories by hiring a professional photographer, so why not make sure everything is flawless and invest in a picture-perfect wardrobe as well?

If you’re taking family or couples photos, it’s best not to try to match exactly. Instead, choose a color palette that can be integrated throughout your wardrobe – something that coordinates without looking identical. My clients doing photography sessions in Las Vegas and the surrounding areas will also want to keep the climate in mind: dress comfortably and wear something that will keep you cool in the desert heat.

Finally, steer clear of busy patterns, bold stripes, words or phrases, or neon colors. Keep in mind; you want the focus of the photos to be on the people and not the clothing.

Hair and Makeup

Just like your wardrobe choice, hair and makeup choices are something you should plan well in advance of your shoot. Play around with several options, have a plan ready, and consider hiring a professional photography stylist to help you look your best on picture day. As mentioned above, stylists know tips and tricks for making you look extra fabulous on camera.

For men, hair should be freshly cut, neatly groomed and styled. I recommend women consider wearing their hair down rather than pulled back. Flowing hairstyles provide more dramatic photographs. Of course, if you’re shooting on location in the Las Vegas desert breeze, it might be necessary to have hair pinned back a bit to keep strands from blowing in your face during your session. 

Once again, clients who hire me as their Las Vegas Photographer receive hair, makeup, and wardrobe styling at no additional charge to ensure your pictures are perfect.

Other Photoshoot Styling Considerations

As your photography session draws nearer, you may want to start making a list of items to bring with you to the studio or location. Bring extra hair product and makeup if you’re planning on doing your own styling (if you’re working with me or have hired your own professional, they’ll have everything available for you). Infants and small children may need a change of clothes, so when you’re out shopping for those new outfits, consider buying duplicates for the smallest members of your group. Ask your photographer if she needs you to bring anything in particular to your session.

Paying attention to details can transform your portraits into amazing memories you’ll cherish forever. If you have questions along the way, reach out to your photographer. We’d be happy to answer your questions ahead of time to make sure everything runs smoothly on the day of your session. When everything comes together in that perfect picture, it will be worth the effort.

Why YOU should be in photographs

Why it is important for YOU (yes, YOU) to be in the photograph.

Why You Need to Be in Your Family Pictures

“You never realize how important pictures are until they are all you have” -Unknown

If you’ve ever clung to the picture of someone you’ve loved and lost, this post is for you.

Imagine, for a moment, your loved ones remembering you after you’re gone. They flip through photos of family gatherings, family pictures, vacation memories, and so on. In them, you’re smiling and laughing, and your loved ones smile too, in spite of the heartache of losing you. Those memories—the fact that you still exist there in those photographs—brings them comfort.

Did you notice what your family members didn’t say in that scenario? They didn’t say, “Woah, she put on some weight that year! I wish she wouldn’t have been in this picture!” or “man, his hair was a mess. It’s too bad he ruined this fun family memory with his disastrous style.”

All your loved ones will care about is the ability to see you, smiling back at them, from that photograph.

It’s tempting to see the worst in ourselves, to feel self-conscious, and to say, “no, I don’t want my picture taken.” But when you take a step back and realize these pictures are ultimately about the memories you create with your family and friends, suddenly you realize how important it is to be in those photographs.

Photos matter before you’re gone, too

Family photographs aren’t just important once a loved one is gone; they are also important reminders of our lives as we grow older.

Ask anyone over the age of 60, and they will tell you that photos are invaluable when recalling moments from the past. Family pictures allow us to reminisce about our lives, our kids, our loved ones: they will enable us to relive moments in our lives that define who we are, where we’ve been, and how far we’ve come.

Photos allow us to look back on our children when they were newborns, then in their school years, at graduation, and at their weddings. They evoke emotions of wonderful times in our lives—and sometimes of the difficult times, too. Photographs are a lifeline to the past.

By refusing to appear in photos, you’re taking yourself out of those memories. Next time you want to wiggle your way out of a picture, get in the frame instead and smile wide for the camera. It’s going to be a great memory someday.

Professional photography preserves the best of you

Local photographers are trained to see your portraits from an artistic point of view, meaning your family pictures will be flawless and beautiful. Whether you’re hiring someone to do newborn photography, family photography, or portrait photography, you’re preserving memories that will be captured in the best possible light.

Chances are, you’re going to be in your best outfits, everyone’s hair will be brushed (hopefully), and you’ll find a location that makes an ideal backdrop. Add in your photographer’s expert editing abilities, and you’re almost guaranteed to get family photos that will be treasured for years to come.

Hiring a professional photographer is an investment in your future memories. It’s worth the cost.

Have authentic moments

Posed and professional photos are great, but it’s also important to have authentic photographs in your collection: memories of spontaneous moments in life of your family. And it’s crucial that you are in those photographs so you and others can remember that moment forever.

Maybe you’re the one who usually takes the pictures. If that’s the case, make a conscious effort to hand off the camera to someone else, engage in the moment, and exist in the photographs. These memories will be invaluable to you and your family and friends.

Leave your insecurities at the door

We are our own harshest critics. We look in the mirror and see the worst, and that mindset makes it tempting to bow out of family photography sessions. 


Your loved ones do not care about how you look, if your makeup is just right, or if you’re balding. They care about you. In the end, that picture will be a treasured keepsake, no matter how you looked or felt on the day it was taken.

Our memories and our cherished moments exist in photographs. Over the years, we can look back at those moments and appreciate their importance in our lives. When we are gone, we will still exist in those photographs, leaving behind a legacy of smiles and laughs for our loved ones to treasure. 

So get out of the shadows, get in front of the camera, and create memories your loved ones can keep forever.

Finding The RIGHT photographer

Finding the RIGHT photographer in Las Vegas or anywhere in the world.

10 Tips for Choosing the Perfect Photographer

When hiring a professional photographer, you want the final results to be perfect. After all, these are the memories that will be forever frozen in time, images that represent a moment in the life of your child, family, or loved one. 

Choosing the perfect photographer ensures the finished product is exactly what you had in mind. Here are ten tips to help you select the best person for the job.

  1. Do your research. If your method for finding the most talented photographer in your area is to type “photographer” into Google and hope for the best, you’re likely going to be disappointed. Ask your friends and family for recommendations, scour websites, and find reviews. The more photographers you compare, the better chance you’ll have of finding a gem.
  2. Hire a true professional. We all know someone who “takes photos.” But taking great pictures on vacation and actually understanding how to set up a great shot, engage with clients, provide perfect lighting, and edit the photos is a skill that requires training and experience. Don’t just hire someone who thinks they are a photographer: hire a professional photographer who has an established track record. 
  3. Check credentials. Along the same lines, check the photographer’s background, credentials, education, and experience. Everyone has to start somewhere, but for the best results, it’s important to have someone with experience in the field. Ask if the perspective photographer has education in art, photography, or photo editing as this can make a huge difference in the quality of the finished product.
  4. Read reviews and talk to former clients. If you can find reviews online, be sure the read through them thoroughly. You may also consider contacting former clients if they are available to ask about the experience. Satisfied clients will be able to tell you exactly what they liked about working with the photographer, giving you insight into her creative process. You can learn a lot about a professional photographer from talking to former customers.
  5. Find someone whose style you love. Visit the photographer’s website and social media pages and scour her portfolio. Does the photography style match your vision for your family portraits or newborn photos? If the style is completely different than your own, you’re not going to be pleased with the results. Make sure you pick a photographer whose photos you think are absolutely stunning: that way, you’re more likely to love your photos as well.
  6. Interview the photographer and test your comfort level. Once you’ve narrowed down your search to a few prospects, ask for an interview. You should be able to communicate freely and easily with your photographer, so speaking to candidates in person or over the phone will give you a feel for how your personalities mix. If you’re comfortable chatting over the phone, you’re more likely to be completely at ease during the shoot. Be sure the photographer is relaxed with you as well: explain what kind of photos you would like and be sure the photographer is comfortable with kids and babies if they’ll be in the shots.
  7. Focus on the photographer’s specialty. Just like other professions, photographers tend to specialize in one or two areas of photography: weddings, maternity, newborns, families, portraits, landscapes, nature, etc. Wedding photographers, for instance, might not be the best choice to take your newborn’s photos. Likewise, someone who specializes in nature photography might not be an ideal match to shoot your wedding. Find a photographer who specializes in the kind of pictures you want.
  8. Ask about the editing process. The best photographers also know how to edit photos to perfection. However, not all editors are created equal. Ask about the photographer’s editing software and skill level, and make known your expectations: do you want black and white photos? Are you looking for minimal editing, lots of editing, or somewhere in between? You want to ensure that the photographer you choose can meet your needs both behind the lens and in front of the computer. 
  9. Check the fees. It might be tempting to choose the photographer who charges the least, but often this lower price reflects a lack of skill and experience. Photographers charge what they’re worth, and you get what you pay for. Also, be sure to ask about any hidden fees: does the upfront cost include editing, prints, and other services, or are each of those extra? You don’t need to break the bank to afford a quality photographer, but you should be willing to invest a fair amount to ensure you get the best possible result.
  10. Find the perfect location. Particularly if you’re hiring a portrait photographer, location is everything. Ask the photographer about her favorite shooting locations, or if you have somewhere specific in mind, see if that location will work for your project. Make sure the location is close to home and that any travel time is already included in your agreed-upon fee. 

Taking the time to research your chosen photographer can make all the difference. By following these tips, you can be sure that the person you hire is professional, qualified, and will provide you with the best memories money can buy.