I just wanted to take a minute to talk about the importance of the pre-session warm up. What is this, you might ask? This is the photographer-child interaction time that occurs before we begin the session. I always suggest that you show up a little bit early, maybe 5-10 minutes, to your session so we have this time to get to know each other. Especially with young children, it’s going to be a little bit scary interacting with someone they’ve never met before. I want to ensure we can really show off your child’s personality, so I want him or her to be comfortable with me and with the environment. Filling out the questionnaire beforehand will also help me know how best to break the ice while getting down on your child’s level.
If we were to just throw them into the middle of the session and there’s this stranger with a camera jumping around trying to get them to look and smile, your child is going to tense up and there may even be confusion. We really just want everything to run smoothly.
If you can arrive early, this will give me time to introduce myself to your child, and to try to get a vibe on how the session will go. Some children warm up right away, while others need the entire warm up time to start to feel comfortable and come out of their shells. And that’s OK.
After I introduce myself, I will try to get to know your child/children. I’ll ask him/them questions about what he/they likes, what he/they don’t like, sing songs, maybe play a game, etc. If the child is to young to answer, I may ask you the same questions to help me get to know the child. I will also have these questions in the get to know you questionnaire so if you fill that out before hand it will give me a jump start on making the session run as smoothly as possible. Just to break the ice a little, so by the time the session starts, your child/children is happy and more familiar with me. Making sure you’re there early enough to have this time is probably one of the most important tips I can give you for your child’s/children’s session.
Once we’ve done a session and your child/children realizes that I’m not scary and we have fun together, the next session shouldn’t need much warm up time at all, if any. But for the very first session together, it is a must.