My goal is to capture images that make you smile

I'm not a fan of sitting pretty with fake "cheese" smiles, I'm a fan of capturing connection and I try really hard to tell a little story with each session. The story of you and your loved ones.

How do we achieve this? 

Most moms and grandmas like an everybody smile photo so we'll do that first to get it out of the way, after that though I like to have fun with my clients. We may just talk, I may ask questions, we may play a game. Sessions are so much more fun this way and bring out real expressions. Smile at me when I ask, otherwise I just want you to interact with your loved ones and try to maintain some kind of contact with at least one of them if possible. If something doesn't work, we'll move on with no problem, I'm pretty laid back. So if you're worried about getting in front of the camera, don't be! Truly do not overthink what I say and just go with it because your photos will be all the more amazing this way.

Parent Expectations

If you have young children, please don't schedule during a nap time. If they're sick, we can reschedule. If it's cold out please wear layers (I cannot stress this enough). It helps if they have a snack and a potty break or diaper change before the session. Please don't stress smiling to your family, yes we have some smiling opportunities but my style does not coincide with smiling the whole time. Instead, you can just tell them to listen to the photographer because we're going to have some fun and play. During the session, please do not lecture your child if they don't do what they're told by me. Yes, if it's something big then please step in but if they're not comfortable doing something I ask then I'm totally okay with moving on. My goal is to have the children's trust so your gallery can reflect who your child is...so if they aren't having it that day, I will linger back a little and try a different approach. I have two children of my own and did daycare for five years, I got this. 

What should you wear?

Style Guide by Click Magazine.

In addition to the style guide linked, please be sure to dress for the weather. A comfortable body will produce far better photos than a fashionable appearance. Also, please wear appropriate footwear. Often times, our session will be outdoors and I'd hate for you to have to suffer from blisters from our session or ruin your favorite high heels because of a soft/squishy ground.

Please Note (faqs)

*Your session is not finalized until your contract is signed and your retainer is paid. I send these out via email and they're super easy and fast to do. If you do not sign before the due date I will consider your session cancelled. I always appreciate being notified if you've changed your mind about the session so I don't lose the business of someone who may also be interested in that time frame.

*I am always willing to meet for a consultation in a public area.

*A USB option is available in lieu of your online gallery for an extra $50, this includes the cost of the USB, my time, and the postage needed to mail. The USB will only contain images you've purchased and that's already included in your retainer fee. Ideally, you can download the images yourself for no additional cost.

*You can expect your gallery to be delivered 4 weeks after your session date via email for a portrait session. For a special event or photojournalism session, please allow up to 3 months.

*Military families are offered a discount of 15% off any session type. In the event that they'll miss the birth of your child due to deployment, I offer 30% off to make it easier to preserve that moment to share upon their return. 

*If you have a special needs child that may need some repour built before they can open up or another approach done, let's chat about it. I want your session to be as stress free and successful as possible. 

Location Ideas

Do you already have a place in mind? Great! Let's chat about it to see if we can make it work.

Don't have a place in mind? Let's check out our options :)

The grounds at Cave of the Mounds- (extra $30 because they require photographers to pay a fee for a permit) Is gorgeous! Flowers, that big red barn for a background, wide open space. Trust me, you couldn't regret this location, just give me time to obtain the permit for your session and we'd be good to go.

Tower Hill State Park- I haven't scouted many places here (yet) but there is a stone building that could be fun for your shoot.

Governor Dodge State Park- Endless possibilities here, I'm especially fond of the field next to where you park for Steven's Falls.

Mine Hill Trail/Mine Hill Prairie- I've done a good portion of my shoots here. Two little wooden bridges, long grass, the Weeping Willow tree, the stream...it's a cute location for anything.

Shake Rag- LOVE this place! So many unique things to include in your background. 

High Street Sweets- Good for a mini session with some young kids (or the young at heart). 

Peck's or Heck's- I would LOVE to document your family shopping for fruits or vegetables, picking out your Halloween pumpkin, and feeding the animals. 

Maquoketa Caves State Park- Gorgeous trail and fun caves to boot! It is a bit of a drive though if you're up for it.

Hyde's Mill- There isn't much room to work with here but it's a classic background.

Pope Farm Conservancy- The sunflower field, the little rock wall, the long grass with pretty "weeds." It was my favorite location last year.

Downtown Mineral Point (or another town)- I love this town and there are so many unique nooks and crannies to photograph in. 

Your home- Yes, you read that right, right in your own space. It's much more personal and memorable. Easier for you to get comfortable also. 

Pendarvis- There is a fee to enter here but it's well worth it with it's trail, buildings, and landscape. 

Peck's Landing- Can be found on HWY 23 not far from Spring Green and Tower Hill State Park. There is a trail that leads to a small beach off of the Wisconsin River. Water, sand, and lots of trees make up this picturesque area.

Dubuque Street Art- Near Hotel Julien there are multiple large painted buildings all within walking distance of each other. Could be fun for Senior, couple, or sibling shoots.

© 2017 by Tonya Backes

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