Senior Portrait Details
Our senior portrait process is designed to create a very personalized photo shoot and unique senior pictures for high school seniors and parents with a strong desire to achieve senior portraits that are unique, artistic, that bring out your personality and celebrate what makes you special. Occasionally we create exceptional senior portraits because we happened to be in a great location at the right time with the right outfit. Most of our best work, however, is the result of getting to know you and carefully planning the details so we are consistently in the right locations that are best for you, with the right clothing and accessories to achieve your desired look, at the best times. In doing so, it is important that we get to know you and use our combined creativity to craft and execute a plan that will lead to captivating, inspired senior portraits tailored specifically for you.
Before your photo shoot we meet with you and at least one of your parents to get to know you and plan your photo shoot. During your Planning Appointment we explore your ideas, interests, activities, accomplishments and other things that make you special and work with you to translate them into an actionable plan to create the images you will love. We’ll cover everything from locations, clothing, timing and any special concerns or requests. After we’re done, we will send you a copy of the plan to review and help you prepare for your photo shoot. The plan helps everyone involved stay on the same page and know what to expect. It’s not unusual for our clients to want to make changes before the photo shoot so don’t hesitate to give us a call with your ideas or changes. Changes to the plan can have consequences you might not be aware of so be sure to stay in touch so we can help advise about possible trade-offs and make sure you get the images you are expecting. We prefer to meet our clients in person, however if that is not practical, we can meet with you over the phone as long as both you and one of your parents can be on the call together.
Most of our senior shoots are 2-4 hours and usually take place in the late afternoon and early evening when the sun provides the most flattering light. We carefully plan your shoot to make the best use of the natural light and locations, minimize travel and keep you in front of the camera as much as possible. Most clients choose to have their photo shoots entirely on location. Some clients choose to have part of their photo shoot in our studio for yearbook headshots or studio fashion. Most high schools will accept yearbook photos that we create on location so there is seldom need to do portraits in the studio unless clients desire one of our signature studio styles. We try very hard to make your photo shoot unique, particularly with regard to your classmates that come to our studio, so we do our best to avoid photographing you at the same location as your classmates and if we do, we try to use the location differently.
We have a few general rules for clothing: Wear what you love! Bring extra outfits! Accessorize as much as you are comfortable! Dress for the Weather (ever try to look pretty while you were shivering?). The rest really depends on the location and look we are trying to achieve. We spend a lot of time talking about clothing in your consultation and if we have strong opinions about what to wear and what to avoid, we’ll discuss our recommendations and include them in your photo shoot plan. We don’t put arbitrary limits on outfit changes because every senior and every situation is different. In the rare case where the number of outfits you are thinking of seems too few for the variety you are looking for or too many for the time we have planned for, we’ll advise you about the tradeoffs and help you make the appropriate changes to the plan.
We prefer to go the extra mile and photograph you at locations that are special to you so your pictures have more meaning (e.g. your home, places where you have grown up or spend a lot of time, places you have always admired for their beauty). We have our own favorite locations as well so we can make recommendations to suit what you are looking for and in close proximity to keep travel between locations to a minimum. While we are primarily location photographers, we do have a state-of-the-art studio at our Urbandale, IA location and we’re not afraid to use it. About half of our senior clients choose to have some of their portraits created in the studio.
Placing Your Order
A week or two after your photo shoot we meet with you again to show you your pictures, help you pick your favorites and place your order. We present you with 100 or so pictures, along with our suggestions, and help you to quickly edit down to a manageable number for the products you are interested in. We provide a high-touch, consultative approach to help you select the best products, sizes and options to suit your needs and get the best value for your money. When we are done, we provide you with a detailed report of everything you ordered including thumbnail images, sizes, and options. Payment for your order is due in full at the time it is placed. Short term payment plans are also available. Ordering appointments are typically conducted at our studio, however, where this is impractical do to long distances, we can conduct the appointment via a web meeting where we can walk you through your pictures from the comfort of your own computer and help you place your order as though you were at our studio. Isn’t technology great?
Most clients preview their images and place their order during their ordering appointment without need of proofing. If you wish to preview your images ahead of your appointment, we are glad to publish them to our preview website a few days before we meet. If you choose to have us publish your previews we ask for a small publishing fee of $25 and an advance on your order of $400.
Pickup and Delivery
Print orders are usually completed in 2-3 weeks. Orders including albums or sports composites can take 4-5 weeks. Most clients pick up their orders at our studio by appointment. For our clients on the East Coast or outside of the DSM area, we ship your images to your home via UPS.
Creation Fee and Scheduling
The creation fee for photo shoots is $100/hr and our minimum photo shoot is 2 hours. This creation fee pays for us to plan your photo shoot, photograph you and edit and prepare your preview images. The fee is not applied towards the purchase of any products. The creation fee is due when we commit to your photo shoot date on our schedule. For photo shoots 4 hours or longer, we may also ask for an advance payment towards an album or other product where the variety of images we create will go to good use.
Your photo shoot date can be rescheduled at no cost with at least 72 hours notice. While this is very rare, creation fees may be forfeited for missed photo shoots or photo shoots rescheduled with less than 72 hours notice. Often our clients avoid forfeiting their creation fees it we are able to fill their forfeited photo shoot with another client and/or the client can fill another opening on short notice.
Availability and Waiting List
We typically schedule only one photo shoot per day and are usually booked 4-6 weeks in advance. Clients who prefer to have a photo shoot earlier than they were able to schedule can request to be added to our waiting list for an earlier appointment.
Prints, Products, Packages and Pricing
We are a full service studio offering photographic prints, wall decor, coffee table books, announcements and invitations, custom framing and one-of-a-kind art prints. Descriptions of our most popular products are available on our website by visiting Senior Portrait Products. Most clients purchase a wall-sized print, several gift-sized prints, wallets and storyboard or coffee table book with their favorite images. Prints are sold a la carte and in Collections. Rather than offer fixed packages, we offer discounted pricing for bundling print collections and signature products like Coffee Table Books, Storyboards and Sports Composites.
Pricing for our prints, products, collections and packages are available upon request. If you are trying to figure out how much you can expect to invest in senior portraits, we encourage you to call us at 888.482.5735. We’ll do our best to help you figure out what you want and need and then provide you with a good estimate.
We accept checks, cash and all major credit cards. Automatic payment plans are available for large orders. Checks should be made payable to Photojeania, Inc.
Frequently Asked Questions
Do you offer images on CD?
You can purchase digital copies of your senior portraits individually, in collections or as add-ons to your non-digital order. Whether you are looking to print your digital images or simply share them on social media, we have options to fit your needs. All of our digital images are fully retouched and enhanced. We do not sell proofs, unedited images or all images taken at a photo shoot on disk.
What happens of it rains?
Once it is apparent that rain, wind, cold or heat will make it highly unlikely that we will be unable to complete your shoot successfully, we reschedule your appointment for our next mutually available opening. If that opening is later than you would like it to be, we can put you at the top of our waiting list so you can take advantage of possible earlier openings. While heat, cold and sometimes wind can be predicted as much as a day in advance with some certainty, rain is a funny thing and it may not be clear until a few hours before your shoot whether it is best to proceed or reschedule.
Do you offer packages?
Kinda. Our prints and products are generally a la carte. If you're looking for packages like school pictures where you can get an 8x10, two 5x7s, five 4x5's, 16 wallets and a key chain then no, that's not us. We do sell collections of prints that are more flexible (e.g. collection with one wall-sized print and 8 gift-sized prints). We also have incentive pricing (e.g. save 25% on one of our signature products when you purchase a collection). Between collections and incentives, most clients save considerably on their orders without being locked into rigid packages.
Are there travel fees outside of Des Moines?
If your photo shoot is within an hour drive (2-hour round trip) from any of our locations (e.g. Des Moines, Columbus, OH, Avalon, NJ, etc...) then there is not cost for us to come to you. For travel more than a 2-hour round trip, there is usually am hourly travel fee. Travel fee's are sometimes waived in lieu of an advance on your order for a particular product. Travel fees for long-distance, destination (all day or overnight) photo shoots are priced on a case-by-case basis.