Session Tips

A little curious about how the whole process will unfold? These tips should help answer some common questions & give you an idea of what a session with Chasing Daylight Photography is like from start to finish!



Location is everything when it comes to your photos. I have shot in over 50 different locations in San Diego County, so if you name it, I’ll likely know it like the back of my hand. Start thinking of your vision for your session. Are you picturing light, airy, beach photos? Or photos in a colorful, dramatic urban setting? If you have kids, consider quieter places where they are less likely to be distracted. I can offer up plenty of suggestions for exact locations, just think about what type of spot you’re interested in & we’ll figure out the rest together!


Your outfit(s) is another really important aspect to your session. If you are booking a session with young children, outfit changes can be difficult. Consider bringing different hats, jackets, or accessories to mix up your child’s look without taking a ton of time or making them too upset. If you’re booking a family session with older children, outfit changes are optional & totally up to you. If you’re booking an engagement, headshot, or senior portrait session, outfit changes are encouraged! Consider outfits that match your unique personality for senior portraits & for engagements think about colors that coordinate with your wedding day… the more different looks the better for these sessions! And just to be safe, here is my list of biggest wardrobe mistakes I see:

  • Too matchy-matchy: If you are looking for a classic, timeless look, I can totally understand coordinating outfits! However, instead of getting the entire extended family in white shirts with bluejeans, consider having half the family wear that, and let the others play around with the theme a bit. Think white cotton dresses or toddlers in jean overalls or throw some denim jackets in the mix. To be completely honest, my all-time favorite family photos tend to be ones with an overall color theme (pick 3 colors) and everyone does their own thing with it!
  • Skirts too short & shoes too high: Ladies! I need to be able to sit you down in some shots so please, if you’re wearing a dress or skirt, make sure you can be seated comfortably in it! Also, we will walk around our location A LOT. Bring heels along for far-away shots but wear comfortable shoes for close-ups and walking purposes.
  • Stains, big logos, & other distracting subjects: If you’re bringing a baby or a toddler to your session, consider changing them right before we start, as opposed to feeding them breakfast in the car on the way. Photoshop is fantastic, but it’s never fun (or easy!) to retouch applesauce stains out of every image!
  • Outfits not matching the location: Heading to the beach for your session? Leave the stilettos at home & go barefoot! Really consider your location when selecting your outfit. Going for a rustic location? Think a cute sweater paired with jeans, boots, and a pop of color in the form of a necklace or scarf. Don’t be afraid to ask me for suggestions! Also, check out our Pinterest page for some inspiration!


I live for warm, luminous, yummy backlighting in my photographs. I want to see the sun streaming through the trees & casting a glow across my subject’s faces. I see life in lighting & it’s not rare for me to think a parking lot is absolutely gorgeous if it’s cast in the right amount of sunlight. As for posing style, if you’ve been in the market for a photographer, I’m sure you’ve come across the phrase “photo-journalistic” once or twice by now. It’s the modern way most photographers choose to capture their subjects both for weddings & portrait sessions. I will give you TONS of direction, don’t get me wrong. I know that most of my clients are not models, and I can tell immediately when someone doesn’t know what to do with their hands. However, I am a firm believer that some of the best photographs come from the “in between” moments. At a wedding, this looks like the moment after I set a couple up for a kissing photo & they think I’ve taken the shot already and they immediately relax & smile at one another. At a family session, this might be the look on a kids’ face that I capture after I say a silly (or gross, let’s be honest) word & they giggle at their parents. I strive for these moments just as much as I do the posed shots. So I like to say my style is a mix between classic portraiture with the authenticity of a photojournalistic style. I will get to know you on a personal level throughout your entire session, make sure you look your best, and make you feel as at ease as possible.


I typically book weekends about a month in advance, and weekdays are usually booked up about 2 weeks in advance. Peak months for me are usually summer months when kids are out of school, as well as right before the holidays, and session spots can easily fill up 2-3 months in advance during those times. Once we complete your session, I upload all of your images & make my initial selection of my favorite images. I don’t limit the number of final images I retouch (the numbers given in the “investment” tab are just a minimum based on averages) so you can rest assured you will receive all of the best images from your session. I go through a basic retouching & enhancing process to bring out the colors, smooth skin tones, and increase the overall “pop” of your photographs. Once that’s complete, I upload your photographs online & provide you with your own (unique) link. Digital images are typically ready within 2 weeks of your session date. When you receive your link, it is important that you download (and back up!) your photos immediately. I do my best to keep everyone’s photos backed up on my own personal hard drives for as long as possible, but once the images are successfully transferred to you, I do not guarantee that I will keep your originals.


Will I get a CD in the mail?

Nope! I want to try to find a way to keep my prices low, but with rising taxes & postage fees, I didn’t think it would be possible. At the same time, I was trying to figure out ways to “go green” & save on paper and supplies. It came to me one evening that digital downloads are the solution to both issues. Handling time is cut almost in half as you will have access to your images immediately after I finish the upload. In addition, many new computers are made without CD drives, so this helps keep everything streamlined for those without CD drives. This is the solution that will save me hundreds of dollars in postage & taxes, so I am happy to pass those savings on to you.

How far do you travel?

I love to travel! Session & Wedding package prices listed on the site apply to locations within San Diego County. For travel costs & custom pricing for sessions outside of San Diego County, contact Kate here.

What does your retouching process include?

My retouching process is fairly basic. I strive to get exposure & other details correct in camera so it limits the amount of time I need to spend in post-production, therefore getting your images to you as quickly as possible. However, most everyone needs a little skin smoothing & I also correct for white balance issues, contrast issues, and perfect skintone color while retouching. Additional retouching requests like blemish removal, specific color requests, & anything requiring additional Photoshop work are available for an additional fee.

Do you have a studio?

Not technically. For years I had a beautiful studio downtown and in the Clairemont area, but when I took maternity leave with my son, I didn’t think it made sense to keep the studio. I do have a great relationship with my former studio partner, however, and her studio is available for rent for cake smashes and milestone shoots!

How many people are included in the session package price?

Good question! Family sessions include up to 5 people (and yes, children & babies count as people!). Additional people can be added on for $10 each. If you are planning an extended family session, please be sure to specify the size of your group & ages of any children when inquiring.


Ready to book? Inquire here!!