FAQ FOR ACTORS
What type of photo shoots do you do?
- I do everything except events. 95% of my work has been photographing actors of all levels, but I do business portraits, family portraits, maternity and kids’ photography, beauty/fashion/glamour shoots, and newborn photography.
If I’m an actor starting out, what do you suggest for a starter package?
- It depends on your budget and your needs. Actors should have photos to cover all the different looks and character types they are suited to audition for and that's why my unlimited package is so popular. But if you are on a budget and just need some starter photos, a 2-look session should suffice.
I’m an actor and hate still photography; I’m only comfortable “in motion.”
- You’re not alone! I hear that all the time. Actors want to act; they don’t want to “pose” for the camera. You’re in luck because I really try to make you feel like you’re on a film set. We talk about a character you’d play and I help you embody that. Sometimes I’ll even have you say a line (sometimes just “with the eyes”, sometimes out loud). We go through different types of characters and I help you “live” that character so that we get shots showcasing the mood, the essence, the “feel” and the energy of that character. I often say a great shot is like a production still — a shot of you acting on set, playing the character you would play if you were ACTING (not “modeling”).
I’m a model turned actor. I love to pose and love the camera, but I can’t be natural. Can you help?
- I sure can. I photograph a lot of models turned actors. If you read the above, that should tell you that I try to make sure you forget to “pose” but mostly “act” or just be yourself. I help you visualize an environment or people behind the camera that you know — people who bring out different natural feelings in you. I will remind you when I feel like you are “modeling” to let it go and don’t feel the need to “work it.” Just relax. Let’s play different characters. Let’s show off different aspects of your true being. We can totally drop the modeling thing!
I have a child who wants to be an actor. We’ve never taken pictures. I’m nervous s/he won’t know what to do or won’t enjoy being at a shoot.
- I promise everyone will enjoy my shoots! Kids and adults alike don't always know "what to do" when they are new on set. If actors knew what to do, directors would be out of business! Every movie/TV show needs a director. Every stage performance needs a director, and every photo shoot needs a “director” — to help you get to a place that works really well for our shoot! I love kids (have 2 of my own) and know them very well. I love to get to know them, joke with them, make them laugh and have fun. It’s not about posing (although i do make adjustments on head/body positioning when necessary); it’s about “being yourself” and having fun. I love photographing newbies! Children often leave from here as my friends, not as a client. I love getting to know kids!
How do I prepare for a photo shoot?
- Too much “preparation” causes anxiety and stress. Try to relax, drink lots of water, eat sensible meals, exercise like you usually do (don’t crash diet, please!), get sleep and act like you are preparing to go over to see your cousin or aunt or friend (yes, that’s me)…. There is no stress needed. No preparation needed. Do you know your lines? No? No problem! You don’t HAVE lines. How much easier can it be than to not have lines you need memorized? Easy-peasy. Only thing you need to prepare is knowing where you’re going, have your wardrobe picked out the night before, and have a nice chunk of time blocked out for our shoot. And breathe. Don’t forget to breathe. I swear, people don't breathe. lol.
Do you shoot outside or inside? Natural or studio lights? (new answer as of Sept 2016 for Atlanta weather)
- I have the option to do either. I have a private house that yields me several different natural background options. A blurred background is great for theatrical shots. Too much detail is bad. I will also always have studio lights set up even if I end up using the light only to light the background (yes, the b.g.). Sometimes we just need to have the studio lighting available due to dark clouds. The lights would augment the natural light. Also, occasionally we WANT to create shadows or certain type of "moody" lighting that emphasizes a more dramatic, dark, even sinister character. I have the option to mix it up. Commercially, most agencies prefer a neutral background, often a white background (as you can see in my portfolio). You will be well lit, I promise you! Every photo in my port, except for maybe 2-3 total, is shoot with natural sunlight!
My agent wants specific type of photos. Wants a specific type of shoot (e.g., white background, black background, natural background; no makeup, serial killer look). Can you accommodate him/her?
- Of course. See previous answer. We’ll discuss ahead what your agent or manager needs. Or what he/she doesn’t like. And I’ll prep our shoot accordingly. I work with a ton of agents/managers. We will get the shots that are requested. And even have some fun getting additional shots while you’re here!
What kind of payments do you take?
- I prefer cash or check, but you can pay by credit card as well.
When will I see the pictures? What is your turn-around?
- I usually immediately look at your photos after you leave. I always select the ones I like. This process takes many hours. I often crop and loosely color/light correct your photo so it comes to life even more. Cropping a photo tight can make all the difference. I select anywhere from 30 to 100 photos (depending on how many we took) that are my favorites and review the photos thoroughly so that I don’t miss anything. 99% of the time my favorites are your and your agents’ favorites. Usually within 24-30 hours of our shoot i will have a slideshow ready for you that I email. This will have two galleries — one that is “photographer’s pick” and one “all original photos.” The slideshow will have a password. You can review your picks and even download (if you paid by cash) immediately. You will get a flash drive at a later date with all pics and all your final retouches.
I am horrible doing my own makeup. Do you have a makeup artist you can recommend? (New answer for Atlanta:)
- Some people are great with “natural” makeup but nothing beyond that. I’m one of them. I always suggest that if you want to be more "natural," definitely do your own makeup. If you are doing the unlimited session (and are a female), I suggest hiring a makeup artist. You will need to get from a "plain," blue collar face to a glamorous, sexy, professional, TV-makeup ready face. This is very hard to do on your own in my opinion. It also helps you to relax and focus on one thing -- the shoot -- rather than stressing about getting your makeup right. But if you've got the skill, bring it. For guys, PLEASE do not wear any foundation or makeup. Trust me -- Photoshop can much easier fix a blemish or dark under eye circles than makeup can. 100% fact. Since I am new to Atlanta, I welcome meeting makeup artists to network with.
What are your favorite TV shows? What do you like to watch?
- Well, that's awfully nice of you to ask. What a friendly gesture to inquire about me as a person (haha). I love "Mr. Robot," "Game of Thrones," am a huge "Breaking Bad" fan... Love "Homeland" and "Stranger Things," and really enjoy comedies like "Mozart in the Jungle," "Blackish," "Fresh off the Boat," "Silicon Valley," "Flight of the Conchords" (10 years delayed on that), "Kimmy Schmidt," "Master of None." What are YOUR favorites?
Can you help with wardrobe styling? I have no idea what to wear or what to bring.
- I can help. It's what I do and I'm great at it. We’d have a few email exchanges before the shoot and go over wardrobe. I have some dos and don’ts I will let you know. I’ll also make suggestions based on the characters you are trying to achieve. You want your wardrobe to reflect the character. Don’t bring scrubs or lab coat if you want to play a doctor. I prefer we don’t wear costumes for our shoot. Don’t bring a police uniform to play a cop. There are many different ways to project the character and “live” the character. You don’t need a “costume” to reflect the character you are playing. I also always say bring at least 3 choices for EACH look because sometimes what works in person doesn't work great on camera. Have options! If I see pictures of you ahead of time and see your work and see who you are, I can better help visualize you in the "right" clothing to get what we need for a successful shoot.
I'm not very good with hair. Do you have a “hair person” I can hire for the shoot?
- My first suggestion is this: don’t do a whole new hair style for our shoot if you’re only doing a 2-look session. Don’t try something you’ve never done before, because your pictures should reflect how you look on a daily basis. If you can’t recreate the hair for an audition, don’t do it. That said, I CAN HELP WITH HAIR and have created hair styles for both my female and male clients. I help with kids’ hair. I can pretty much do anything (put curls in, take curls out) except bridal hair, but we don’t need that. Plus, don’t forget, we only need your hair to look great from the front. Not the back. So that makes it so much easier. Your pics are 2-dimensional, so you need to look good from the front and maybe the side. Not the back. But I do help with hair and we can make it work together! If you are doing an unlimited headshots session, we can definitely play around with hair styles that suit the character you are trying to portray. I love hair!
How long are your shoots?
- That depends which package you choose. A two-look session will last approximately an hour. Since we have a nice chat before we start to shoot (so I have a great idea of who you are and what we need to accomplish), I’d say an hour and a half. An unlimited session without a makeup artist will last 3 to 3.5 hours, and with a makeup artist on premises, up to 5! A 3-look session without a MUA on premises lasts approx 2 hours. The short answer is anywhere from 40 minutes to 5 hours.
My manager/agent wants me to have a bearded look and a clean-shaven look. Can we do that at your shoot?
- Why of course! Some guys have 3 levels of facial hair — full beard, goatee (or mustache) and clean-shaven face. We can do that at our session. You will have a bathroom where you can take care of all your grooming needs.
Do you offer referral discounts?
- Glad you asked. If you refer 5 people to me who book, your next session (3-look max) is completely free (including retouches that come with the package). I’ve had people actually take advantage of this.
Do you offer other discounts?
- I do offer discounts for sibling shoots — when two (or 3) kids are actors and need headshots on the same day. Also if friends want to do a same-day session (at the same time), and let’s say share a makeup artist at the shoot, you can save a lot with the makeup as well as the shoot. Since I streamline the shoot by shooting one person while the other changes and does hair/makeup, I am always photographing someone, and the wait is very minimal for the other person. It’s a very efficient shoot and a great way to save money. Same-day shoot for multiple people do get a discount. Email me for a special rate.
I got an audition (or a call-back) the day of our shoot. I need to cancel. Are you going to get mad at me for such short notice?
- I'm only going to get mad at you if you don't book! Your job as an actor is to audition and book. Right? It's just how it is. If you get an audition the night before the shoot, just text me as soon as you find out and I'll wish you luck and we'll reschedule for another time. Otherwise please don't flake. Just be open with me and tell me what's up. I'll be totally understanding.
What if one of the looks from our session just didn't work out and I don't have a usable photo?
- Rare, but this can happen especially when we're doing a lot of looks and changing often. If you feel we didn't "nail" the look because something just didn't work out (wardrobe, hair, etc), come back and we'll shoot that look again (only that look). No charge of course. I want you to have great shots and I am happy to get you more photos if I didn't capture what you wanted me to capture. Generally speaking, you will have a TON of photos to choose from, so this rarely happens, but I am here to advance your career and if we didn't get the money shot, come back for more.
Can I bring my boyfriend/girlfriend/great-grandmother/parent/child/sister/pet to the shoot?
- Yes (well, not your pet), but please ask me first and let me know in advance if you are bringing someone to the shoot. Don’t surprise me. I’ve had surprises and since my studio is also my home, I prefer no additional people unless you are a minor or absolutely need support system (one other person max). I really do like to limit people at the shoot, not only because A) they will be bored to tears waiting hours for you to be done, but also B) there isn’t a whole lot of extra room for extra people. But the short answer is yes, but please let me know. But no entourages please. If you have your own makeup artist, by the way, you absolutely should bring her/him and have the makeup artist stay here for the whole shoot to help you out with makeup. But please discuss with me ahead of time.
What kind of camera and lenses do you use?
- I have a Canon 5d mark iii. I use an 85mm “portrait lens” for our shoot if I’m doing portraits/headshots. For 3/4th or full body, or multiple people in the photo (such as family shoots), I use a 24-70mm lens.
Where are you located and where do I park? (new answer for Atlanta)
- I live in Decatur in a private residence. Parking is super easy on the street.
MATERNITY PHOTO SESSION INFORMATION:
Recommended between 30-34 weeks of gestation, but if you are carrying twins, we can do it earlier, and if you are feeling wonderful (with a single baby), we can do it as late as you wish Sessions are usually in-studio with studio lighting. You can request an outdoor session such as at the park or beach. Studio shots offer more ability for artistic nudes and more artistic shots session lasts approximately 2-2.5 hours includes several outfit changes I provide beautiful fabrics and accessories to use in shots You will receive all high resolution pictures plus 4 of your favorite shots retouched on a USB flash drive. With a full priced package, you also get one large print (8x10 or 8x12) and three 5x7 prints. PROFESSIONAL MAKEUP IS HIGHLY RECOMMENDED. PHOTOGRAPHER CAN SUGGEST MAKEUP ARTISTS THAT WOULD COME TO THE STUDIO BEFORE OUR SESSION TO DO YOUR MAKEUP.
NEWBORN/CHILDREN PHOTO SESSION INFO:
Newborn sessions are best prior to 2nd week after birth (ideally at 10 days) because the baby sleeps a lot and is easier to move around without waking. Newborn sessions are very involved and can last up to 4 hours because most of the magic happens when the baby is in deep sleep. We have to stop for feeding and soothing, so please anticipate anywhere from 2 to 4 hours for a successful, complete session. After newborn session, we recommend photography sessions at 3 months, 6 months, 9 months, and at age 1. After that, yearly photo shoots are ideal. Sessions are typically in-studio, but if you prefer, in your own home (for an additional cost) Sessions can be anywhere from 2 to 4 hours long (breaks are often needed so baby can be soothed and fed) Parents and sibling(s) are absolutely encouraged to be a part ofthe photo shoot (session costs more when more than 4 people are involved) Several outfit changes for baby and parents (and sibling)recommended You will get all high resolution images on a USB drive, including 4 professionally retouched favorites. With a full-priced package, you also receive TWO 8x10 prints ready to frame.
PHOTO RETOUCHING: You will receive 4 beautifully retouched photos with each session you book (5 for fashion shoots). I can retouch additional photos for a charge (please see pricing for more information).
REFUND AND RESHOOT POLICY: I am happy to either refund your money or do a complete reshoot if you are unhappy with your pictures. However, I cannot offer a refund or reshoot once the photos have been released to you. You will view all photos online, and if you feel none of the pictures work for you, we can scrap the session and do a new one, or I can refund your money. But not after the photos are in your possession (as in, on a USB drive or received in email). My goal is your happiness and success.
PLEASE CHECK PRICING PAGE FOR MORE INFORMATION.