Preparing for Portrait Session- Time

When preparing for a session, time is a big factor to consider. We’ll discuss 3 things to consider when booking a session to get the best photos!

Considering Time For Photography

The following content applies to couples engagement sessions. Weddings can apply some of these principles but there are many more things to consider when it comes to time at weddings so I’ll write a separate article for that later.
Time is a major factor when it comes to photography. What day you choose, what time of day, and how long of a session are all huge factors in how many photos, and what kind of photos you’ll get in return. So let’s discuss a few points to keep in mind when selecting the time of your session.

1. Which day?

When looking in your calendar for when you would like to schedule your photo session it’s important of course to take the weather into account. If you need to schedule more than 2 weeks in advance it would be good to be prepared to change your date in the case of bad weather.
Also keep in mind the time of year. If you’re in the spring you’ll have flowering trees, lots of green colors, and a bright sun which gives more vibrant colors. The fall however, will have more orange colors. Keep these things in mind when scheduling a session.

Notice the difference between spring:




and winter:


2. Time of day

Time of day has a huge impact on your photo. Usually I suggest finishing just after sunset. This is because from sunset to 15 mins after is the best lighting you can get. Leading up to sunset we’ll have some beautiful directional light that will make your photos really pop!
Sunset light is better than the light at noon for a few reasons. First it has direction. This can be used in so many techniques to make you look slimmer, more dramatic, and graceful.
Also the sunset will cast colors across the sky which will add color to everything. This light is a warmer light than at noon. Noon time light is white which isn’t very flattering, but evening light is more orange which keeps your skin tones warm.

Here’s an example from one of my first couple’s photos.

We can achieve this same lighting in the morning, but lets face it… who wants to wake up early and get ready for a photo shoot. I’m considering charging extra for morning shoots because I don’t want to wake up for them! Ok I’m kind of kidding…
Seriously though, getting up early for a shoot you’ll be tired and may not be able to fully express yourself so take that into consideration.

3. Time of week

Also considering the day of the week you choose when working with me. Some photographers shoot every day of the week. Personally I don’t shoot Thursdays. I also don’t schedule couples engagement sessions on weekends far in advance to leave those days open for a wedding. If you’d like to book a couples engagement session on a weekend you’ll have to do so up to just a few weeks in advance.
These are just a few things to consider when booking a portrait session. Time is a simple subject but it plays a huge part in how your photos will turn out.

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