Let's get in to it.
When you choose to hire me as your photographer, you’re getting a uniquely tailored experience to ensure I properly tell your story. I’m not going to just show up the day off, snap some photos and then send them to you a few weeks later. We’re building a partnership to create something you want to frame and hang on your walls. Imagery has so much power to capture a feeling, but I can’t do it alone.
I want to work together to make the entire session feel true to who you are, but in the most elevated way. Part of creating such meaningful imagery comes from the emphasis put on styling, and that’s where you come in! When you curate outfits that are true to you, while incorporating some of these key tips and tricks, it has the power to transform the entire vision.
So, where to begin? I want to make this as enjoyable as possible for you, so I created this page as a starting point. Browse below for some tips and tricks that I have learned along the way. If you’re still unsure after reading these recommendations, please feel free to reach out. I am here to help every step of the way.
WEATHER & LOCATION
PLAN FOR THE Environment
Always keep in mind where our session will be and what the weather might be like when planning outfits.
Session on the beach? Ladies, consider if you want to wear a long dress and have its blow with the wind or be ok with it getting a little wet and sandy. Guys, rolled up pants and barefoot is a killer beach combo. Or maybe you just want to do an outfit change into bathing suites!
Cooler on the day of your session? Add that cute oversized jacket, or scarf to wrap around your shoulders. Layers can be a great way to add dimension to your look, and it makes for really organic photos when I catch a shot of your scarf blowing in the wind or you adjusting your collar on your jacket.
At home session? Feel free to keep it casual. I want to see how you live, like I’m just catching you on any given day. There’s no need for shoes or anything fancy. Show up in your sweats if you want, but let’s make them cute sweats please! Think Free People loungewear ensemble and not the sweats you wear when you’re deep cleaning your home/going to the gym.
Don’t let the weather deter you either. It ends up snowing on the day of your session? Perfect, bring your cute hat and boots and lets get a shot of that snowflake landing on your eyelashes or maybe add your winter get up and let's go sledding and end our time with some hot chocolate.
Rain can also make for beautiful shots. Bring an umbrella or old newspaper and let me capture you two dancing in that rain. Or just all out ditching the umbrella to get soaked— steamy session in the rain, why not?
It’s important to be practical when planning outfits. Try to match the setting we will be in. I always ask for access to your Pinterest board so I can get a visualization of what's in your head and how I can help get you there.
SELECTING YOUR COLOR PALETTE
neutrals | bold | muted tones
This can be the hardest part of styling, but picking a color palette is key to achieving the look you want for your photos. Think about how you want your photos to feel, how they will look hanging on the walls of your home. Are you drawn toward a calming color palette? Then doing a mix of muted blues, greens, and browns, might be perfect for you.
Neutrals keep all of the outfits in the same color family making for a timeless look that is super easy to do. The best part? You don’t have to perfectly match! Wear a range of creams, whites, and light tans, and you’ve got a winning look. It’s really hard to go wrong when you choose a neutral color palette, and it goes well in any location we choose to shoot at.
If a bold color palette is more your style, all I have to say is go for it! This can make for really unique photos that give more of a playful vibe. Just be careful to avoid doing too many loud prints or clashing colors. One or two prints within the same range of colors is best. I love a bold look when shooting at eclectic locations like an old ice cream parlor, dive bar, outdoor theater, diner, or wondering the city. This is a perfect time to bring out your wide leg pants or your funky sunglasses to really make a statement.
If you fall somewhere in between neutrals and a bold color palette, then doing a combination of muted tones is the perfect option. Choose 3-4 colors for your palette. I suggest choosing one color as your foundation and then layering complimentary tones around it. This palette looks good in any outdoor location.
HOW TO INCORPORATE PATTERNS
MIX AND MATCH WITHOUT BEING MATCHY-MATCHY
I touched on this in the last section, but I know prints can be tricky, so let’s talk more. There’s a way to tie your outfits together that isn’t wearing matching plaid shirts. As cute as that may be, let’s mix it up a bit. Pattern mixing can be done seamlessly by following a few general rules:
Keep the patterns smaller and more intricate. Bigger patterns draw the eye’s attention and doesn’t let go. They take away from the beauty of the photo as a whole. Plus, they are really hard to coordinate with.
Pull colors from the prints from the main outfit to wear. Those prints are wear you find those colors! This helps tie together the look as a whole and makes for a beautifully elevated look.
HOW TO ELEVATE YOUR LOOK
USING PROPS AND ACCESSORIES
We’ve got your outfits down, now let’s take your photos to the next level and make them uniquely yours with some props. They can help tell a story and add interest to any photo.
Bring a bottle of champagne and shoot it off at sunset in front of the city lights. Or let’s met at an ice cream parlor and let the ice cream drip off the cone and all over your ring.
Let’s add dimension by bringing a white sheet backdrop to a session and maybe you paint each others bodies.
Have an old school car? Make out in the front seat surrounded by florals inside the car. Florals are another great option to elevate your experience. They add color and beauty, and can bring in editorial vibes.
Props can also be as simple as the accessories you wear. With a hat, you can hold it by your side, hide behind it, or grab at the brim. Wrap a scarf tightly around your shoulders, let it hang down and graze your lower back.
The options for props are endless and so are the ways they can be utilized. If there are specific hobbies you enjoy doing together I always recommend letting m tag along on a date doing exactly that.
DON'T BE AFRAID TO GO BOLD
LET'S GET CREATIVE
Don't be afraid to go one step further to really elevate your experience and deepen the creativity.
Let's finger paint a blank canvas blanket in an open field where your kids can be truly free to make a mess and be themselves. Catching the unencumbered joy on your faces will be well worth me having to wash paint out of my hair.
Let's make it editorial. Don’t be afraid to show some skin while you grow that miracle human inside your belly! I’m ready to hype you up and make you feel like the goddess you are. I have been envisioning a wet maternity session for month, either at the beach or even your bath tub. Let's make it happen.
If you already have an idea of your own, that’s great too! Or if you just know you want to do something different but aren’t sure what, let’s come up with something together! As an artist, photography is my outlet. I love any chance to get super creative. When there’s space to play into wild trends or explore new looks it allows me to do some of my best work — I promise you won’t be disappointed.
Farmdog Flowers | @farmdog_flowers
Stemming From Love | @stemmingfromlove
Florist & Hound Design | @floristhounddesign
Meadoway Flower Farm | @meadowayflowers
Teshuva Fields | @teshuvafields
Sunborn Gardens | @sunborngardens
Remington Flowers | @remingtonsflowers
Tamara Holden | @tamaraholdenhair
Alex Brown | @spacebyalexbrown
Katie | @katyasladhair
Emily | @emilyraebridalhair
Elizabeth Scott | @elizabethscottcompany
Melody | @collectivelymel
Tamara | @tamaramakeup
Kylie | @kyliejordanartistry
Erika | @erikaalexisbeauty
America | @makeupbyamericaf
Tricia Clarke | @triciaclarkemakeup
Bryana | @bryjeanartistry
Tamara | @tamaramakeup
Kylie | @kyliejordanartistry
Where to shop?
ABLE SHOPPE @ableshoppe
CULT GAIA @cultgaia
AMERICAN TRENCH @americantrench
SHONA JOY @shonajoy
LAUDE THE LABLE @laudethelable
LOST GIRLS @lostgirlsvintage
BYLT BASICS @byltbasics
MAURIE + EVE @maurieandeve
Z SUPPLY @zsupply
NICO.NICO WMN @niconicoclothing_wnm
JENNI KAYNE @jennikayne
FREE PEOPLE @freepeople
ALSO CHECK OUT NUULY - monthly clothes subscription service
use this link here for $10 OFF
Session Location Ideas
The Pfister Hotel — MKE
Where luxury meets vintage. The interior of the hotel is absolutely gorgeous with old paintings, wallopers, chandlers, a vintage phone and a gold elevator. It's chef's kiss.