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On-Location Sessions: Geographic Boundaries
To further outline the perimeter relative to my Buffalo Grove studio, consider Gurnee as the northern boundary, Wilmette to the east, Elk Grove Village to the south and Algonquin to the west. If there is any question regarding a location, please contact me to determine if it falls within this radius. (Contact-Us page)
A: I can be reached from 10:00am to 9:00pm, Sunday through Friday, and 10:00am to 5:00pm on Saturdays (see APPOINTMENT TIMES below for periods during which we can schedule Portrait sessions). If you attempt to reach me and I happen to be engaged in a session, be assured that I will return your call at the first opportunity.
Please keep in mind that when we plan shooting sessions which take place outdoors, specific appointment times are often dictated by the "look" we are trying to achieve in your Portrait, which in turn is controlled by the time of day we shoot.
If, for example, we're looking to achieve a warm, wistful, possibly dramatic color Portrait, shooting 1-2 hours before sunset is ideal (You may have read that movie makers hold up multi-million dollar productions just to wait for this precious window of light, in order to capture a certain mood). Due to color temperature and angle of light, as a general rule, outdoor shooting should be as far from the "high-noon" hour as possible. As such, most of our outdoor shooting appointments should be made for late afternoon (and at the peak of summer, early evening is also possible).
Also, sometimes we need to take this into account for indoor shoots. For instance, if we're doing your Portrait at your home, and the plan is to pose you or your kids by a window, then the time of day becomes very important. Obviously, these factors do not apply to Studio Portraits. In this case, only my normal Portrait session hours of availability are relevant (see below). You should typically plan on calling to book an appointment at least 1-2 weeks ahead of time.
* PLEASE NOTE: If the above schedule conflicts with yours, let's discuss it and see what can be worked out. *Contact-Us Page
A: Yes. Under no circumstances will the personal information you reveal to me, including name, address, phone number, email address, place of employment, reasons for the photos you're purchasing, etc., be disclosed to any third parties or posted on this or any other website. Exceptions to this policy must come from you, the customer, explicitly.
A: The privacy of our photos is all part of the respect which I feel should help define our relationship. Chances are, there will be some especially outstanding photos produced by our session which I may want to use to promote my business. This would typically take the form of your photo(s) being posted on this website. However, if the public display of your photos would make you uncomfortable, I will certainly accommodate your wishes by withholding such a display. No one has to see your photos but you, if you so desire. As such, you will have to grant me permission to post any of our photos on the Web, regardless of whether I retain copyrights of the images or not.
Regarding any prints you might purchase, my default procedure is to create all prints from our sessions here on the premises. While there may be exceptions to this procedure (for technical reasons or time constraints), there are NEVER exceptions to photos we produce of a provacative, sexy, or otherwise private nature (e.g. Boudoir Photography). All such images shall remain within the confines of this studio, and will not be transmitted either electronically or physically, outside of this studio. This applies to the creation of prints, as well as any other representation of our images. Again, any exception to this policy must be granted by you explicitly.
A: Absolutely. I only ask that whoever accompanies you remain well out of our way and quiet during our session. Portrait photography can be a delicate undertaking, and the atmosphere needs to be controlled to ensure both my concentration and your relaxation. Also, from a physical standpoint, with all of the lights, reflectors, cables, etc., it often feels like we're on a movie set, which is all the more reason people not directly involved in our shoot should stay on the "sideline," for safety purposes.
A: I have a network of professional Makeup artists available for advanced bookings. Please let me know if you're interested in this service at the time of our booking.
A: When it comes to clothing, the type of clothes is up to you, and should be determined by the type of Portrait we are trying to achieve (i.e., appropriate apparel for a glamorous look, a formal look, a casual look, and so on). However, there are certain colors which can cause problems. Extremely dark or light colored clothes should generally be avoided, as they tend to limit the background and lighting conditions under which we can shoot. If there's certain attire you have in mind which you'd consider very important to the Portrait, and it happens to be a deep black or bright white, don't worry. We'll get around the photographic obstacles.
A: Please see the ORDERING section on the Pricing and Services page for an outline of the process.
A: Those simply get archived to a CD and stored away as part of the complete record of our shooting session.
. . . Can we do the Portraits with this in mind?
A: Absolutely! This is where the consultation comes in. If you have such a specific goal for the Portraits, whether it's a certain look or just a particular "audience," we will discuss how to achieve this beforehand.
A: For the In-Studio sessions, I have a variety of backgrounds to work with (e.g., black, white, textured, colored). For the location sessions, props and backgrounds tend to arise from the location itself, and that is typically something we will cover during the consultation. As for props in the studio, I prefer to limit their use to pieces of furniture, such as a stool, couch, chair, sometimes enhanced by an additional piece, like a pillow (depending on the context). My view is that props can sometimes be a problem in Portraits, in the sense that they tend to distract from the Subject. However, if there's a particular prop you would really like to incorporate into your Portrait, I'll make every effort to do so.
In providing a context for Portrait sessions, I prefer to emphasize setting over props. And for those who would like to further enhance their Portrait by "transplanting" themselves into another setting, take a look at some sample "journeys" some of these Portraits took, and where they started from, in terms of background (see Retouching Gallery for examples).
For an extra charge, nearly any of your Portrait images can be re-created with a background we never physically shoot in.
A: After you click on this , either fill out the form and include your desired/available times for a session, or phone using the number listed. If you don't get a hold of me immediately, I will get back to you within 24 hours.
A: Yes - always (assuming we're not shooting on an overcast day, a scenario we really want to avoid). The first thing I will want to know is the location you have in mind. This can often be the deciding factor in determining the time of day we shoot. For instance, if your location is in a heavily wooded area, I would be more inclined to arrange a mid-afternoon shoot; if there is no shade at the location you have in mind, I will probably try to set something up within a few hours from sunset. Of course, the anticipated duration of our session will also be taken into account.
A: I strongly urge that you DO NOT get your images from me saved in .JPEG format. Why? Every time a .JPEG file is saved, a significant amount of data is "thrown out" in the process of compressing it, never to be recovered. Now in theory, you should not have occasion to make changes to, and therefore, need to save any of the images you receive from our shoot. However, you never know what circumstances will arise that will require a "save" or a "save as" to be applied to your file.
A really superior alternative to .JPEG is the .TIFF format. You can save .TIFF files as many times as you like, and there will never be any degradation or data loss. Your PC or Mac should recognize .TIFF files by default. If your PC does not, for some inexplicable reason, you can do the following:
FYI: You always have the option of making .JPEG files from the .TIFF you will receive from me.
A: Please refer to the Deposits and Payments section on the Terms & Conditions page for the consequences of cancelling under certain circumstances.
A: Of course! By some strange quirk of fate, I simply have not yet had occasion to have a Portrait Session with a dog; but, needless to say, dogs of all types are welcome. I do not discriminate on the basis of breed, pedigree, social background, or lack thereof.
A: Think clothes, makeup and mood enhancers . . . Wardrobe changes can be incorporated into our session. As for makeup, from a lighting standpoint, perhaps the most important aspect of makeup is ensuring your face does not have any shiny areas. While clothes and makeup are self-explanatory, by "mood enhancers," I mean anything which relaxes you and is conducive to bringing out your sense of well-being. This could mean some music, so bring those CDs. It could mean a special perfume or fragrance, so bring that. Whatever it is, if it contributes to a better frame of mind, that will show in the photograph.
While we're on the subject . . . You know all of those thoughts you've had about how awful you look in pictures? This is the one time when you MUST put those thoughts out of your mind. Instead, as a partial answer to the question of what can you bring with you, I would like to suggest that you concentrate on the things in your life you do best. Think of those things that, when called upon to do, tend to make you feel the most confident.
Confident, relaxed . . . these are the foundational feelings I'd like you to bring to our session. Remember, when you factor in my Retouching skills, we have more control over the outcome of your photographs than ever before.
A: There are so many variations of how a photograph can be enhanced, retouched or otherwise altered that it would be impossible to list everything. Whatever you might have in mind, be sure and describe it to me when you upload your photo. And please include the name of your uploaded file in the email.
A: Since each customer order is unique in certain ways, wait times will vary slightly. However, the time between our session and when I present your images will typically be about 1 week. Depending on the number of images receiving Retouching treatment beyond the Basic level, your retouched photos should be ready 1 week after you first see them, and prints should be ready 1 week to 10 days after you first see your photos.
A: I can relate to the curiosity of wanting to check what we're producing during the session. However, there are a number of reasons it is best to wait until the images go through my post-production process before viewing them. For one thing, they are "unprocessed" as we shoot, since I photograph using the Raw file format. As such, viewing images at this initial stage would tell you very little about how they will eventually turn out. This is but one reason I do not let the images be seen at the time of shooting.
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