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May 28, 2021

Family Photographer in DC | Frequently Asked Questions

The MEP Experience

Family photographer in DC | Family stands near flowers in Brookside Gardens

As a family photographer in DC, I often hear the same questions from clients as we prepare for their session. I wanted to gather the responses here in one place to best meet your needs.

It is a true honor for me to document this precious time you have with your family, whether you are expecting a little one, or you have older children already. I want you to feel prepared going into your session so you feel and look confident and love your images for years to come.

What does the planning process look like?

It is important to me for you to be completely comfortable and prepared going into your session. As part of your custom photography experience with me, I have a few simple things we do before your session.

First, you receive a planning guide in the mail that walks you through each step of the process. You will become familiar with my favorite locations, what to wear, how to prepare your children, etc. You then complete a short questionnaire so I can get to know you and understand your family dynamic to best document your connection and love for one another. Lastly, we meet (typically virtually) to walk through location, wardrobe, what you plan to do with your images, and more. You will leave your planning session 1) feeling prepared and comfortable, and 2) already finding a friend in me!

Family session at Carlyle House in Alexandira, VA.

What should my family wear?

This question can often be one of the most stressful for families, and it really doesn’t need to be. I provide beautiful, whimsical dresses for mom and guide you through how to best coordinate the rest of your family. I have thoughtfully curated the best fitting and most flattering dresses for moms of all stages so you look and feel beautiful for your photographs.

Once we determine what you will wear, we coordinate the rest of your family together so you will not second guess your decisions.

Wait, you shoot film? What does that mean?

Yes, I adore photographing with film. I shoot with analog film alongside digital during your session. What this means is that I take photographs on thin plastic strips, or film. I won’t dive into all the nitty gritty details, but basically, when a camera’s shutter is released, the film is exposed to what the lens is seeing. This creates negatives that need to be developed (think back to those disposable Kodak cameras!). Once the negatives are developed, they can be scanned into digital files and printed, just like if I photographed with digital alone.

You can read more about film here.

Carlyle House Family Photo Session

What does the creative fee include?

It is of the utmost priority for me to provide you with a customized experience to fit your specific needs. The creative fee includes your pre-session consultation, your planning guide, access to the client wardrobe, your session on location, and your artwork appointment.

All images and artwork are selected and purchased during the artwork appointment.

Mother holds her son closely during a Maryland Family Photo Session in Brookside Gardens.

What happens during the artwork appointment?

I strongly believe in preserving family legacy through heirloom artwork. We will have an artwork appointment approximately three to four weeks following your session. The turnaround time is slightly longer than usual due to the film being developed. Although it extends the process ever so slightly, I promise you it is SO worth the wait.

At your artwork appointment, you will view your images for the first time, and we will order custom artwork to best meet your needs. Perhaps you are building a gallery wall of your family over the course of a year, or maybe you are interested in a family album to leaf through with your loved ones – we will find what holds the most meaning for you and your family. You will receive your artwork around four weeks later.

Family Photographer in DC | Mom cuddles with her baby at the National Arboretum cherry blossoms

What if my kids don’t behave during my session?

I have seen it all, don’t worry. In the worst case scenario, I will still be able to provide you with beautiful images.

However, we will work hard to set up your family to be as prepared as possible. I wrote an entire post on how to prepare for your family session, but the gist of it really comes down to what you do before the session.

Having kids be a part of the outfit selection (with some guidance, of course!), ensuring they are well-rested, filling up bellies before the session, packing snacks and toys, etc. – all of these things play such an important role. I have quite a few tricks and games up my sleeve to capture your authentic connection, so please do not worry about directing your children.

Sometimes we can prepare all the right ways and our kids can still be independent. That’s okay! I will still be able to provide you with beautiful, authentic images.

Family photographer in DC | Family Session at the US Capitol

Marie Elizabeth Photography | Family Photographer in DC

Marie Elizabeth Photography specializes in fine art Maternity, Newborn, and Family Photography based out of Washington, D.C. She also serves the areas of Arlington, Alexandria, McLean, Falls Church, Vienna, Bethesda, Potomac, Chevy Chase, Kensington, Silver Spring, College Park, and Riverdale Park. 

It is always an honor to serve as your DC Family Photographer. I provide a custom, luxurious experience to lead you every step of the way, beginning with a planning guide to make you feel confident and prepared, a consultation to achieve your portrait goals, a client wardrobe, hair and make-up artists, and finally, artwork to adorn your walls and preserve your memories forever. Let me be a part of your story today.

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