Great question! First, we do portraits not pictures. Pictures are those things you snap with your phone and rarely see a physical print of it. Portraits are professionally light images showing the most flattering side of you. I'll borrow a very well written analogy from an article I came across (sourced at the bottom of the page), to give you a better perspective.
"The Shoot and Burn Photographer
A newer photographer is more likely to have a business model called “shoot and burn” where booking happens over email, you pick a location and date, (hopefully) sign a contract, have your session, and at the end you receive a USB, disc, or digital download of all of your pictures. If you asked a shoot and burn photographer “how much do senior pictures cost” they would likely give you a number that was $100 (extremely inexperienced) to $700+ (more experienced to very experienced). The shoot and burn photographer is counting on volume to run a sustainable business which usually means fewer client touch-points and less service compared to other models. At the end you might be able to purchase prints or canvases through them in an online gallery, but will need to make those selections on your own. Most shoot and burn photographers don’t specialize in one type of photography and photograph everything from weddings to newborns to high school seniors (their financial success depends on it)." *
The Full-Service Photographer
I arrived into the full-service photographer category after many years of investing in training, education, certifications, exploration, mistakes, listening to clients, & overall love for photography. Our approach, quality senior photographers, to your senior portraits is completely different than the shoot and burn photographer. How you ask? Here are a few ways we invest in you and your experience:
Pre-planning: We believe that any successful event requires a lot of planing. Our strategy for success starts with you. We want to know about you! What do you love? What do you hate? Are you involved in any sports/clubs/activities at school or outside of school? Are you shy? Are you bold and outgoing? Do you even feel comfortable in front of a camera? What kind of music do you like? What are you most favorite outfits and why?
There's a ton more questions, but we can tackle those during your pre-planning session. You can expect individual attention during your entire portrait experience. You won't have to guess at anything along the way. Check out my page The Senior Portrait Experience for more details on how I customize my sessions for each of my seniors.
It all comes down to money, or does it? We understand this is a big investment for you. It's a big investment for us too. We've spent hours, days, months, years, investing in your portrait experience. Feel confident we take this to heart and want the best experience possible for you. High school senior portraits are in the same class as wedding portraits. You only get one chance at being a high school senior. Once you graduate, it all becomes a memory. Your portraits will represent your memories.
After doing years of experience and learning I now have my Senior Welcome Packet for my new senior clients. This packet is designed to help highlight the real differences between DIY photo sessions and a using pro. This packet breaks it down to the simple truth. Know what you want but still unsure of what you need? Just reach out, I would love to talk with you more to find out exactly what you want to get out of your experience so that I can better recommend which experience would meet those needs. I am not a volume photographer. That means I focus on my quality of work and invest in each of my clients more than just the time it takes at the photo shoot. Financial worries? I offer a payment plan to make things easier for you and your parents. I get real life is happening every day.
By taking the time to read this post, you have already invested in your experience! Researching and planning which photographer you will trust with this major accomplishment in your life to shows that you aren't looking for the DIY photographer. I'm here to help. I would love to work with you and make your high school senior portrait experience meet or exceed your expectations!