I am so excited that you chose me to photograph your family for a sunrise beach session! I am humbled and thrilled to capture these precious memories for you. Please know that my approach is very unscripted, sometimes a bit of high energy, and usually a tad goofy. I am not a huge fan of too posed images. Yes, I will try to get a few good smiling at the camera shots, but at the beach I do a lot of walking and connection style photos as well.
This sunrise session takes place in New Smyrna at Smyrna Dunes Park. There is a $10 parking fee ($20 for a 1 year pass). It's a beautiful place, you could even plan on staying and enjoy the beach after your session! Click here for the location's website.
Important info for your session:
The light changes quickly, so we might move around a bit to take full advantage of the beach and beautiful sunrise. The sky is completely different every morning, and every minute it changes. Some days it is a bit more cloudy, or a bit more bright, but that is what makes these sessions so unique and perfect to me. None are alike. The way the clouds are for your session time will never be duplicated. However it is, it will be lovely!
If it is cloudy I will need to start a few minutes later. Please know that I will make sure that you get a full gallery of images in your time frame, but if I have to adjust the time a bit it is to help make the gallery better for you, so patience is good in that situation. That being said, if there aren't any clouds and the sun is getting wild, I will move more quickly because it gets bright really quick.
Please come a bit early to your session. Please be at the beach ready a couple of minutes before your session starts. This will ensure the time runs smoothly. The sun can get out of control quick at sunrise, so there's not much wiggle room.
PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE wear bug spray. Put it on before you leave your house/hotel, and then again as soon as you arrive. The no-see-ums are usually terrible.
Also, embrace the wind! It is almost always very windy at the beach. If your hair normally goes crazy with humidity, don't expect this session to be an exception to that. Trying a new hairstyle on a windy and humid sunrise beach session is quite risky.
There are usually a few photographers there at sunrise. I will be the crazy lady running around and talking loudly.
As for what to wear, I want you to feel comfortable and beautiful. Please choose a wardrobe that matches your style, as well as the scenery. For beach sessions, neutrals (gray, tan, white, cream) are perfect. Even a hint of color (blush, gold, pale blue, faded denim, pastels) look good, too. Don't get too matchy matchy (like Olan Mills style). Keep in mind that what you wear makes a HUGE impact on the look of your photos. Mom, wear something that makes you feel like a million bucks. If you get stuck with wardrobe, please send me an email/message, and I can help. Flowy dresses and skirts are amazing. I love long dresses that have flowers, or that are a pastel ombre, even solid flowy dresses are perfect, too. Barefoot is perfect.
Click here for a Pinterest board with wardrobe inspiration.
Here are links to great dress sites:
For kids: Old Navy, Gap, H&M, and Zara are great.
You will probably get a bit wet.
If you are vacationing, please know that if you're sunburned, I really can't fix that. Blotchy skin and tan lines won't be edited out, so do all of your vacation sunbathing after your session.
Dads and kids are usually half asleep for these sessions. It's totally okay. Don't fret. Keep in mind that I had a photographer do my family's beach photos and I experienced what all moms go through trying to prepare and get through a beach session. Major props to you (pure insanity for me - haha). That's why I am writing a novel to tell you all of my experiences that I have found work best to keep this smooth for your family. Remember, if mom is happy, everyone is happy. Please choose happiness!
Tips on your kid(s): Let kids be kids. No "cheese" smiles, please! Sometimes kids don't even smile, and it is okay. I am here to document your family on this day, just as they are. Sometimes more reserved children don't open up much, but that is perfect, because that is them. Please don't threaten your kids. That usually doesn't end well. I will guide you on how to work with them to create portraits where you can't tell they are upset. A handful of times I have had littles hate the beach and they cried the entire time. I was still able to get a full gallery with thrilled parents. So we'll work with any child (just as long as you stay happy, mom!).
Props: I am not a proppy person for beach sessions. Let's just enjoy the beach.
Moms: please remember to keep good posture and your chin pulled out a bit to help make more flattering images. I will try to remind you, but with quick moving kiddos, it's sometimes hard.
Click here to see some images from sunrise beach sessions that I love! This will help prepare you for the way that I shoot. You will receive a good variety of images in your gallery. No two galleries are the same, but some pictures are very similar. If there is a specific image, or a couple, that you really want for your session, please let me know in advance.
If you need to contact me the morning of the session, my phone number is (352) 455-8015.
If at any time you have questions, please email or message me. I am here to help make this a great photo shoot for you!