Milestone & Family Prep Guide

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Milestone & Family Portraits Prep Guide

welcome. this prep guide is designed to help you prepare you an in-home or outdoor milestone or family portrait session

Thank you for selecting Anna MacIsaac Photography to document these timeless moments of your child's and family's life. We strive to provide out clients with a pleasing photography experience, great images, a diverse product line and exceptional customer service, all at an affordable price. 

We've learned over the years, what makes our clients happy and we've built our business around it. Please read through this guide to view ideas, information and tips to help you feel prepared for your session.

Be sure to contact us with questions. 

Your Outdoor Portrait Session

How far in advance do I book my session? 

We suggest that you start inquiring and planning your session 3-4 months in advance if you'd like a top choice time and choose your location. We only accept a limited number of night and weekend sessions so these tend to book up quickly. Weekend sessions are subject to an additional weekend fee. Typically we can accommodate a shorter notice session but you may not have a choice of time. 

What time should I expect the session?

We will first try to book you about an hour before the sun sets. This is prime time and when Anna can really work her magic! The sunset varies by season with winter sessions falling closer to 4 pm and summer around 7 pm. 

What should we wear?

Whatever you are comfortable in! If you are uncomfortable in your clothes, it's all you will think about during your session and end up loosing focus on what's important. Avoid being too matchy-matchy and please don't dress everyone in the same outfit like white shirts and jeans. The best way is to pick a pallet of colors and coordinate from there. Picking shirts with texture is also ideal to avoid being too plain with solid but not too busy with patterns! You can always text or email me photos of your outfits and I can help you coordinate! 

But it's cold outside in the winter.

Yup, it is. Thankfully we have jackets for this exact reason! Winter sessions can be beautiful, especially with fresh snow. Investing in a wool or non-reflective jacket makes for great winter outfits. We also can pop jacket on and off in between photos. Some little ones can be grouchy in the cold winter months (I know I am) so be prepared to have low expectations and try to let them have fun in their own way. It can also be helpful to have them walk rather than be carried to keep their body temperatures up. Lastly, winter sessions tend to go quicker since we are all trying to get out of the cold sooner and that's okay! We won't jeopardize quality images by working quickly. 

Week Before Session

The week before our session we should have finalized our location and time (sunset can be hard to predict early so might need minor adjustments) and you should have outfits picked out hanging in the closet as to not get ruined before the session. If these haven't been completed, lets chat asap! 

It can be a good idea to start talking to the kids about our upcoming session. This can help them feel excited and prepared. Make dinner conversations about how soon we are going to go to the park and meet Miss Anna who has a fancy camera to take our pictures so we can hang them on the wall. You can engage your children in the preparations by asking them to help pick out outfits and to keep them clean so they are ready for the pictures. If your children aren't the engaging type, maybe just at least bring it a couple times so they know it's coming. 

Try not to watch the weather too soon. New England is ugh, wild! Let's check in on the weather about 3 days prior to the session but if we have to make a reschedule, we likely won't call it until the night prior or the morning of. 

Make an appointment to treat yourself to having Mom's hair and/or makeup done before the session. A mani & pedi would be nice too to make sure we are all groomed nicely. 

The Day Before

The day before your session you will want to iron out your clothes, set your alarm clocks and double check your route to our session. Remind the kids about how much fun we are going to have tomorrow! 

If your session location is far from where you live, consider looking into the area and make a little trip out of it and plan a dinner. Also a good idea to pack snacks and water for the littles (and yourself) so no one gets hangry. 

Our Session

It's a good idea to bring a change of clothes for the littles and pack Mom & Dads shirts to be put on once you arrive. This will help keep from getting wrinkles, or drool while in the car. 

Please arrive to the location of our session at least 10 minutes in advance. This will give you time to unpack the littles, toss on a shirt and text me that you are here before we meet up and begin the session. If you can, either leave your cell phone, wallet and other items in the car or bring a bag to place them in. Take everything out of your pockets so we don't have bulk and double check yourself to remove any hair elastics from your wrist. 

I'll usually take a few moments to chat with you about expectations and hang with the littles before we get started.

Then it will begin.

Then it will be over, just like that! 

Your Studio Portraits Session

How far in advance do I book my session? 

We suggest that you start inquiring and planning your session 3-4 months in advance if you'd like a top choice of time. We only accept a limited number ofsessions and weekend dates tend to book up quickly. Typically we can accommodate a shorter notice session but you may not have many choices of time. 

What time should I expect the session?

Sessions are typically booked on Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday mornings around 8-11am. If you'd prefer a later afternoon or evening session please let us know and we can discuss availability. Sundays are available for an additional weekend fee. 

What should baby wear?

I have a small selection of outfits for ages 6 months-1 year available for choosing for the session but I also suggest you bring an outfit of neutral tones. If you have an outfit you'd love to capture, we will accommodate that as well. Picking outfits with texture is also ideal to avoid being too plain with solid but not too busy with patterns! You can always text or email me photos of your outfits and I can help you coordinate! 

When should I get the food ready for my favorite food smash?

If you are ordering a cake, I suggest placing an order at least 3 weeks in advance with your bakery of choice. If you are doing a spaghetti smash please prepare the noodles about 2 hours before the session so they have time to cool. A helpful tip is to cook the noodles with a lot of salt to help avoid becoming too sticky. Don't put sauce or meatballs on until we set up for the session. Bring these items with you to the session in a container you can bring any leftovers home in. If you have selected our Icing on the Cake session, we will have the cake here ready for you but you might want to bring a container to bring any extra home. 

The Day Of

Feed baby a good meal or snack before heading in to the studio. A fed baby is a happy baby!

Please don't dress baby in any outfit you want photographed. Bring the clothes and change them here so that there are no accidents prior to the session. 

Siblings are not welcomed in the studio during the session if they are not being photographed. Please arrange for a sitter to keep them at home, or take them out of the studio during the session. While we do have a waiting area, it can be quite boring for a child under the age of 13 to sit alone for an hour session. A parent will be needed in the shooting area to assist with any crawling/ walking child.

There are no shoes allowed in the shooting area of our studio. Since little hands touch our floors, we try to keep them clean and sanitized. If you'd like your child to wear shoes during our session, please bring a change of clean or preferably new shoes. You may wear your shoes in our waiting area unless they are muddy or dirty we might ask to keep them outside of our studio in the hallway for sanitary purposes.

Please do not bring extra guests. The studio is rather small and baby can become easily distracted by extra guests around. 

Please remain in the waiting area unless invited in to the shooting area. There is a chair right in the doorway you may sit at to view the session and while you're welcome to step in and get a closer look from time to time, please do not hover. We will let you know if you are needed in the shooting area. Remember, no shoes- I won't judge your non-pedicured feet but you might want to bring cozy socks to hang out in! 

After the Session

You can expect to see a Sneak Peek of your images on our Facebook page. Feel free to tag and share this image, we only ask that you do not download and re-upload to your profile. This image I share is very low quality suited only for online use. When you download from Facebook, the quality gets reduced even more. You can make the image your profile picture right from the image that I post. 

Your images will be completely edited in three to four weeks which at that time we will email you the link, password and coupon code for your images included in the package. 

If you happen to capture any behind the scene images of me working with your family, I'd love to see them! 

We also love feedback in the form of a positive review on Facebook or Google.

Looking Forward to Working With You!

We hope that you will consider us for your Milestone and Family Portrait needs. Should you have any questions, we are always here to help! Email us at We look forward to hearing from you soon! 


Anna MacIsaac Photography