What to Expect - Seniors

There are certain things you as a Smith Studio Senior should be aware of and watch for in your preparation of your session.  Below are some tips or a few guidelines that over the years we have found help us and YOU to create a stronger portrait session.  PLEASE read over these and if you have any other questions please contact the studio via e-mail or call us at 319-984-6732.

If you are scheduled from 3:00 - 5:00 and show up late or are not ready, you will have less time.  If you need to get ready here (hair, makeup, etc.) please arrive early enough to be ready by your start time.

Vary the style, all one look (like tanks) gets boring.  Vary the dress level, bring some dressy, some medium and some casual.  Remember, it is best to do one or two outfits that mom will like, then we can do the stuff YOU like.

Our sessions let you do unlimited looks within your time period.  This means if you change fast, you get more variety.  Spend all day in the dressing room, you get less time in front of the camera.  Most people can get 3-4 looks per hour.   We suggest you bring double what you think we will do so we have more to pick from.

Some shots are close up, others are full length.  Plan outfits completely.  It is hard to do a full length formal in your suit if all you brought was big old tennis shoes. Speaking of suits, please include DARK socks and dress shoes to complete the look. Don't know how to tie a tie? Deb can or bring it pre-tied to slip over your head.

Also remember, as a general rule, light clothes look better on lighter backgrounds and darker clothes look better on darker backgrounds.  So if you prefer dark, bring dark, if you prefer some of both, bring both.

Group your outfits together ON HANGERS.  It is amazing how many people come in with clothes stuffed in a bag and wonder why they are wrinkled!  Make sure they are ironed. Although we have an iron for touch ups, we don’t want waste your time on ironing.

If you are doing an outdoor session, most locations do not have places to change.  You can wear a layered outfit and drop or add a piece for a different look.  You can also use our vehicle to change!

Make sure your clothing flatters you.  If you think you have large arms, be careful of sleeveless styles, they can make your arms look fuller.  Shorts are okay, however, bring some long pants too. 

The black and white glamour look that is so poplular is best with black clothing.  The contrast between the skin and black is what makes them so dramatic.  So bring some black!

Makeup should only be slightly heavier than normal-about like you might wear in the evening.  Mascara should be clean and contain no clumps.  So if your mascara is old and clumpy, replace it first.  Avoid makeup with sparkles in it.  When you move, it makes a nice shimmer, but in a photo, where you are still, it creates a little white spot that almost looks like a zit. Also avoid heavy liquid makeup and makeup with an SPF in it. Although it is good for your skin
in the sun, the SPF tends to create a shine.  Summer shine can be controlled by using translucent powder that knocks out the shine without adding additional color. Please bring your makeup along to your session so you can do quick touch ups as needed. Don't forget your lips! Add a touch of color or shine to them. Lip gloss offers a great pop to your photos.

Please make sure you are clean shaven. Retouching stubble may cost you extra and still does not look as good as a clean shave.  Boys, got a goatee that mom hates, but you love? Do your casual shots first with it on, bring your razaor and go to the restroom and do a quick shave for mom’s formals.  Everyone is happy that way!

Avoid changing your hairstyle or cutting your hair right before your session.  Let it be natural.  Quick easy hairstyle changes during your session are OK, but make it quick or you lose camera time.  Artificially bleached hair is often not the best, in 10 years you might say - “What was I thinkging??”  Bring your own hair care tools and products with you.  It is ok to show up early in curlers if you need to!

We will try and help with hair, however, it is hard to know what your hair is supposed to look like.  So remember hair sytle if ultimately YOUR responsiblity.

If you have different jewelry for different outfits, you might put each set of jewelry in a plastic baggie and hang it on the hanger with that outfit. Jewelry adds a personal touch to show your style!

BRING THEM!!  Bring props that help define who you are.  Some popular choices are: Sports equipment (balls, hurdles, medals, whatever), sports uniforms (include your shoes), musical instruments (from flutes to rock guitars), activies (dance, swimming, FFA, books, you name it!), vehicles (cars, trucks, four wheeler, motorcycles), skateboards, bicycles, etc... the possibilites are endless!

Most glasses glare!  Some prescriptions more than others.  Your best bet is to check with your optometrist.  Most will loan you an empty set of frames similar to yours for your photo session.  We have even had some remove their lenses just during their session. It can make a big difference!

Tan lines are not attractive in portraits.  We suggest you vary your swimsuit top to minimize any tan marks.  Remember to not overdo your tanning, skin that looks like dark leather is not the most attractive.

Avoid SUNBURN!  Sunburn and peeling skin DO NOT photograph well!!  Tan, yes, burn no! Don’t overdo!

We retouch blemishes, so don’t worry about minor breakouts!

Pets are OK as long as they are house broken.  It is a good idea to have someone bring your pet and then leave with them after the pet shots are done.  Treats can be helpful to hold a dogs attention.

Parents and friends are welcome.  They can be a help.  HOWEVER, if they distract you, it is best to have them wait in the front reception area of the studio.  You can have a couple of shots with a boyfriend, girlfriend, best friend or sibling at no extra charge.

Let’s face it, we are at the mercy of mother nature.  If it rains, no fretting as we can’t do anything about it, we will simply reschedule.  Don’t worry about clouds as they actually HELP! If weather is questionable, simply call the studio!

Nails show!!!  If they have the paint all chipped off it will show.  Many casual shots are done barefoot, so don’t forget about those toes!  Avoid real bright colors.  Natural or basic work best.  We don’t want to draw attention to your neon nails as they may look really bad with your next outfit!

It is amazing how many times someone will come in wearing bright colored underwear and not realize it is a problem until they go to put on the WHITE PANTS! Or come in wearing a white bra and put on a black sleeveless shirt.  Please bring appropriate foundation wear for each outfit.  Flesh coloroed is your best bet.  Also, if you need a strapless, bring one.  Tucking the straps down usually shows and looks bad. With todays thin fabrics, you might want to carefully select these pieces so they do not give unsightly lines.