What to know before for your senior pictures

June 20, 2019  •  101 Comments

High School senior on a horse.Home school Senior photosOften people ask if they can bring their pets. My answer: The bigger the better.

I have a high school senior! Now what?

What to know when booking a senior photo shoot with Lynn Brennan Photography

Congratulations! If you are reading this, you are probably either a senior, or are a parent of one. Amidst the craziness of preparing for senior year, I try my best to make your senior photo experience as painless and fun as possible. Here is a FAQ guide to help you through the steps. As always, if you have any questions, feel free to reach out!


When do senior shoots get scheduled?

There is a wide range for when you can have your photos taken. Most like to have them done the summer before your senior year, into early fall. I have done senior photos as late as the summer after senior year though. If you plan on having a photo taken by me in the yearbook, better to schedule them earlier rather than later. Yearbook deadlines often fall within the first couple weeks of the school year.

I only take on a limited number of seniors in any year, reserve your space early.

Senior shoots should be uniquely you

Probably never before in your life, and never again, will you have a photo shoot this tailored to who you are. Your senior photos should highlight who you are as a person at this important and exciting time in your life.

I always like to chat before senior photos to try to get an idea of your likes, dislikes and other things that make you, you. This will help me come up with ideas for unique locations and themes for your shoot.

Canisteo Greenwood SeniorSmokebombs? Check.

What time of day is best for a shoot?

Depends on the season. In the late fall and winter, any time of day is fine. Any other time of the year I recommend either Morning, Late afternoon, or early evening. NOT in the middle of the day (it’s hot, shadows are severe, and you will squint).


I NEED one of your senior videos!

Yeah you do! Just let me know when you book your shoot that you would like a video as well so I can bring the appropriate equipment.  Not sure what a senior video is? Click here. (Turn your volume on).


What do I wear?

Here is a guideline to help get you started. You certainly don’t have to stick to it. Sydney Livingston - Hornell Senior Photos-15Sydney Livingston - Hornell Senior Photos-15

I know the shopaholics aren’t going to like to read this, but your senior photo shoot really isn’t the time to go out and buy a whole new wardrobe (sorry). I recommend having 3-4 outfits for your shoot:

Your signature casual outfit

This varies a lot from person to person. It can be as simple as  jeans and a t-shirt. Are you ALWAYS in a hoodie? Wear it. More at home in a romper and heels? Awesome. Live in your pajamas? We will find a way to make this work -- challenge me. This is outfit is about telling your story through your personal style.

Your parent’s favorite outfit

I know, I know, I said this shoot is all about you. But, these photos will be hanging on the walls of their house for the rest of eternity. Let them pick an outfit for you. And remember, they are probably fitting the bill, so they get a say.

Something you feel AMAZING in

This should be more formal. I’ve seen everything from sundresses and button down shirts to evening gowns and tuxedos. The sky's the limit. What would you wear if your crush asked you out on a date? That’s the outfit I am talking about here.


A school uniform, your soccer warm ups, what you wear for your favorite activity. This is about telling WHAT you do with your outfit. Make it as fun as you want. (A cap and gown would be awesome too if you can find one!).

Alexa VasnScoter Hornell-71Alexa VasnScoter Hornell-71

Location, location, location Marcus Tingley-40Marcus Tingley-40

Back to the session being all about YOU. When we chat, please feel free to tell me about your favorite spots. People tend to think that you need HUGE, expansive gorgeous spaces for photos. You don’t. I have a list of pretty spots to go (and we will generally visit a couple of them). But I want to hear from you. Do you stop and get ice cream on the way home from school every day? There’s a spot! Live your life on a football field? Guess where we are going. Spend every free hour working at the local pizza shot? That would be AMAZING! (Don’t laugh, I am 100% serious).  Still stumped? That’s OK too! Some of my favorite sessions come from just hopping in the car and finding new locations.

We can always fall back on my pretty spots, but it’s always special if the location means something to you.



How long is this going to take?

Plan on two hours. Sometimes it takes more time, sometimes less. But 2 hours is a good rule of thumb.


I’m not super comfortable in front of the camera

No problemo! I will talk you through it. I will pose you as much (or as little) as you would like. I also have handy-dandy prompt cards with photos on them that I can show you and say “do this.”

I really do try to make it a fun experience, but be warned, my jokes are bad. (Stolen from my 7 year old bad).


Who can come with me?

That’s all up to you and what will make you the most comfortable. Bring a parent/friend/sibling, whoever will help you come out of your shell. If you would rather it be just the two of us, that’s fine too. I’ve found that, especially with girls, bringing a best friend can be super fun. Try not to bring more than two people though. 

Berardi Senior Photos Canisteo-Greenwood-64Berardi Senior Photos Canisteo-Greenwood-64

What if it rains?

Well, we have a couple options. I watch the weather like a hawk, and if it looks like the session is going to be a complete wash out, we may have to cancel, but I try not to. I do have access to a couple outdoor locations where we can shoot and not get wet. Feeling adventurous? Let’s shoot in the rain!


So I love your work, but I want to do something COMPLETELY different than everyone else

Yes, yes, YES. The more different, the better. Let’s chat.


How many photos can I expect from my session?

Generally you can count on about 50 photos. For a two hour session, this may not seem like a lot, but it will when you decide which prints you want to order… trust me.


Let’s talk money. What do I owe you?

There is a $300 sitting fee due at the time of your session. That fee is applied toward the cost of the package you choose. For information on my current packages, click here.


I want to have more than one session

Totally doable. I’ve done this a few times. For example, for someone who wanted photos in a field of flowers, but was also a superstar skier. An additional $200 sitting fee would apply.

Alexa VasnScoter Hornell-71Alexa VasnScoter Hornell-71


Can I see examples of past senior sessions?

Sure thing, just ask!


How long do I have to wait to see the finished product?

Let’s be honest, we all love social media, so I will post a sneak peek of your session within 48 hours of your shoot. (If this is something you would rather not have, just let me know.) For the whole gallery, turnaround depends on the time of the year. I try to get your rough proofs back within two weeks.



Speaking of social media, once I get all of my photos, can I share them?

Absolutely! I LOVE when clients share my images. I just ask that you not add any filters (if there is something you would like done to an image, let me know and I will edit it for you). It would also be great if you can tag Lynn Brennan Photography when you post them.


I love the proofs! Now what?

Now you pick a package. I can either send you a form to fill out to choose which images you would like, or we can sit down and figure it out together. It can be a daunting task.


Please feel free to reach out if you have any additional questions. 

To schedule a shoot, Message me on Facebook, or Call/text me at 607-382-5026




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