Mini Sessions 2020 FAQ

COVID-19 Precautions:
As you look at the list of times and locations, you will notice I am scheduling fewer daily sessions than I have in the past.  With the exception of November 7th, I am only taking on 2-3 sessions on all other mini session dates, and I am scheduling large buffer periods between clients to decrease your exposure to those outside of your household.  I will be wearing a mask and carrying sanitizer, and I will disinfect my bench in between each use.  I will be using a very long zoom lens whenever possible, which will allow me to stand several feet away from you and your family.  I will also have a no-contact infrared thermometer which I may use to take your temperature before your session begins (along with taking my own temperature at the beginning of the day).  I will not require you to wear a mask to your photo shoot, but some of these locations may ask that you wear one when we are not actively taking photos.  If you have worked with me before, you know that I pay high attention to detail and I often fix little things, like jewelry, uneven collars, and stray hairs.  Sometimes I move you around in order to get the pose juuust right.  I won’t be able to do those things this year, though I will try to communicate them as best I can during our session.  Sadly, no hugs from me this year either. 🙁  I know some of these precautions may be uncomfortable and undesirable, but as a professional I feel it necessary that we all follow them strictly in order to keep everyone safe.  While it should go without saying, PLEASE DO NOT COME OUT TO MINI SESSIONS IF YOU OR ANYONE IN YOUR FAMILY IS SICK OR FEVERISH, OR IF YOU HAVE BEEN AROUND SOMEONE WHO IS SICK OR FEVERISH.  If you have any questions or concerns about these precautions, please contact me right away.

Now, let’s get back to business. 😀

Mini Session dates and times are available HERE! There are three weekends to choose from, so please read the information below before making a selection.  I’ve also included some Friday dates this year, so please take advantage of them if your schedule allows!  (If you want to be first to find out about future promotions, make sure to join my email list HERE.)

2020 Dates

Each date offers a different location, most of which are brand new for me!  Several of my past clients said they would be willing to travel a tiny bit further for new, pretty locations, though two of my previous locations are back by popular demand.  Each location is approximately 30 minutes/30 miles away, or less.  I’ve made each location below clickable, and added a few descriptive words, so that you can get a very basic sense of what each spot looks like.  Here are the spots I am shooting at this year:

– Friday, 10/16:
Fairview Park (Costa Mesa, CA) – Tall grass, dirt paths, steel bridge, and great sunsets.

– Saturday, 10/17:
Santiago Oaks* (Orange, CA) – forested paths with river

– Friday, 11/6:
Rynerson Park Trail (Lakewood, CA) – LOCAL dirt trail, tall grass, autumnal trees

– Saturday, 11/7:
Carbon Canyon* (Brea, CA) – Redwood trees, wood chip path, dry grass

– Sunday, 11/8:
Rockbluff Park (Rancho Palos Verdes, CA) – Grassy knoll, green trees, fenced path

– Saturday, 11/14:
Averill Park (San Pedro, CA) – Rock bridge, river, fig tree with massive root system

– Sunday, 11/15:
Ralph B. Clark Park* (Buena Park, CA) – Lake, tall trees, grass, dirt path through meadow

– Saturday, 11/28: Newly Added!
Location TBD

*$5 entrance fee required to enter park.

– “Front Porch” Sessions:  If you are uncomfortable coming out for mini sessions this year, I will gladly come to you on any available dates I have remaining.  Please send me an email as soon as possible to schedule the session (

What’s included?
Mini sessions include 20 minutes of shooting and result in 20 edited images delivered via online gallery.  Your images will be delivered within 2 weeks from your session date via email in an online gallery where you can download the photos in an instant, and/or order prints.  If you would prefer to select which 20 images I edit, your finished photos will be delivered within 2 weeks from the time you submit your selections in the proofing gallery.

How Much?
Mini session are $280.  A $55 non-refundable deposit will be required upon booking, and the remaining balance ($225) will be due at the time of your session.  Cash, check, or Venmo are my preferred forms of payment on the day of your session. You will notice that unless you pay the deposit via Stripe, it will not let you proceed with booking a session online.  In the event that you do not want to use Stripe, I also accept Venmo, Zelle, or personal checks for the deposit payment.  Please email or text me right away if this is the case.  Sessions are given on a first come, first served basis, meaning I will book the person who pays the deposit first.  If you are using Venmo, you will need to first make the payment (using THIS LINK) and then email me your desired session date and time (  You will receive an email confirmation within 24 hours.

How is a mini session different than a regular (1 hour) session?
A mini session is a short, 20-minute photo session intended for grabbing that quick updated family photo to use on holiday cards or social media. It is not designed for large extended families (7+ people) because we only have 20 minutes and you will only be receiving a total of 20 images. If you are looking for other sessions (newborn, family maternity, professional headshots), several candid family interactions, or a very personalized family experience, the mini session will not be enough time.  Mini sessions are scheduled in back-to-back 30 minute time increments that allow for several families to be seen on the same day, in one convenient location (please make sure to arrive on time!).  If you would like to schedule a 1-hour session instead, you can do so by selecting the Family Portrait Session option HERE.

What happens if I need to cancel or reschedule?
The reason I charge a non-refundable deposit is to discourage cancellations and rescheduling, since changing plans at the last minute usually means I cannot rebook your original time slot.  This is a bummer for me, but it also means that someone else who wanted that slot misses out.  For this reason, a new $55 deposit is required to reschedule any session, so make sure to double check your calendar before choosing your date!  In the event of cancellation on my end–due to weather or serious illness/family emergency–you will be refunded completely.  Please do not come out for mini sessions if any member of your family is feeling sick or running a fever; if this is the case I will accommodate you at no extra fee and reschedule you as best I can.

What happens if I am running late to my session?
Unfortunately, due to the nature of back-to-back scheduling, I cannot accommodate you if you are running late.  If you are prone to running late (most of us are!) make sure to mentally schedule yourself 30 minutes before your actual session time, so that everyone is in the car, dressed and ready to go well before the last minute. Most of these locations will require you to find parking and walk to the location, so giving yourself some extra time before starting the session is always recommended.

What should I wear to my session?
I highly recommend color-coordinating your family’s outfits, but this does not mean everyone should wear the same exact color or pattern!  I’d recommend choosing at least 3 “theme colors” and have each person’s outfit incorporate 2 of the colors differently. If you need a good place to start thinking of ideas, I created this Pinterest board for inspiration.  Super bright neon colors never photograph well, and white shirts tend to take on the color of your surroundings.  Pinstripes do weird things to the camera (look up the Moiré effect) and should be avoided if possible. Don’t forget the camera often washes you out, so this is the time to wear a little more makeup than you usually do, and feel free to go all out with your accessories and hairstyles!

Have a question that I didn’t answer here?
Feel free to email me any other questions at

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