Like all magic, a stunning senior portrait is built on what goes on behind the scenes. And it doesn’t start in front of the camera. It really begins when you come for your initial chat. That’s where, first of all, you get to decide if we’re the studio for you or not.
And then, if you decide to move forward with us, we start by getting to know you. The thing is, your senior portrait session has to be tailored to your personality, lest it be a waste of time.
If you feel your best and most comfortable self in jeans and a leather jacket, then we need to know that. If you like to dress up, that’s good to know, too. The more comfortable you are in front of the camera, the better your senior portrait will be. Senior model Hanna loves to play with different looks, from the prom dress you see in the behind-the-scenes peek above, to jeans and a button-down, with stops along the way for some summery dresses and even a fashion-model-esque sheath dress and blazer.
Of course, only one of these looks will make its way into the pages of Hanna’s yearbook. Time will tell what she opts for. But that’s not really the point. The point is the process. So many photographers approach senior photos as something to be done quickly, with a limit to the number of wardrobe changes they’ll allow in the interest of time. We think your senior portrait session should be an event, not a chore to check off the “senior year” list.
We start in the studio. We keep the atmosphere lively and fun. This is supposed to be a party, after all. It’s hard to look happy if you’re tense or uncomfortable or feel like you’re being ordered to move this way and that without knowing why.
That won’t happen at C1M. As you can see, Hanna was having a blast during her shoot. (Remember playing dress up as a little kid? It’s like that, except the pictures are better.)
We made sure that we knew a little bit about Hanna – how she sees herself, how she’d like to portray herself to her peers – because that stuff matters. Your yearbook photo, even though it captures only one moment, will follow you. It will be the one your classmates look to when they think back on senior year. It will probably hang on your mom’s and dad’s living room wall for the rest of their lives. It will resurface when you least expect it on “Throwback Thursday,” or on your class reunion nametag. And so, you want to feel like it has captured the true you. Not an awkward, stiffly-posed you who spent a rushed half-hour with a photographer you barely knew. Some people light up for the lens without hesitation. Some need a little more time to warm up. Whichever type you are, your senior portrait sessions should be tailored to suit you, just like we did for Hanna. (What do you think? Can you guess, from the photos above, which type Hanna is?)
Once we’ve captured a good-sized set of images, it’s time to review them. Our huge in-studio monitor gives you nearly instant feedback on how a particular pose or outfit works. And the best part is, because we do this together, you have plenty of input. If there’s an outfit you love, but you hate your facial expression in every shot, you get a do-over. And if an outfit you thought would be great turns out not to photograph flatteringly at all, there’s plenty of time to change it up and try again.
Every detail of our senior portrait sessions is geared for two things: fun and superior results. Your senior year is special, and your senior portraits should be something more than just another school photo. Your life is about to branch off in a new direction. Let us capture exactly who you are right now.
Walter Schnecker, CPP, CPC, CCH
Walter Schnecker is the owner of C1M Photography, LLC in Amherst, NH. He loves senior photo sessions, because they give him a chance to experiment, play, and draw on his fashion photography background.
Jun. 26, 2015 High School Seniors No Comments