Senior Portrait Guide

Information and

helpful tips

I’m so glad you’re considering a senior portrait session with Jodi Walsh Photography. Senior portraits are such a significant milestone – these images embody that final transition from teen to adult. Just as our children are such unique individuals, their senior portraits should reflect their unique character.

 

My strength as a photographer has always been the ability to capture personalities. Together, we can plan a portrait session and create images that truly show your senior.

 

This guide provides information about my style, processes, and pricing. As your photographer, I not only want to provide you with a stress-free photography experience but I also want to make sure that you have all the information you’ll need to select the images to print and display in your home for years to come.

image of a senior guy wearing a black t-shirt and jeans. He has his hand up resting on his head and is leaning against a tree. The yellow Roberto Clemente bridge is in the background

Three Rivers Heritage Trail

The Process

purchasing your session and collection with Jodi Walsh Photography

Step 1
the session fee

To book your session, first, pay the session fee and sign the digital contract. Once that's completed we'll finalize the details for your session- date, time, location, and style

Step 2
the slideshow

After your session is complete and your gallery is edited, you'll be invited to watch your slideshow. Here you can see all of the images that will make up your final gallery. Feel free to ooh and aah and enjoy every moment

Step 3
the collection

After watching your slideshow, it's time to purchase your collection. Each collection includes a number of digital files for you to keep, print, and share.

A la carte products are not available until after a collection is purchased.

All clients have the option to upgrade collections from their personal gallery store.

black and white image of a senior girl standing along the back walkway of the Terminal Building in Pittsburgh's Strip District. She's wearing a black leather jacket, a long dark skirt, and combat boots.
black and white image of a senior girl standing along the back walkway of the Terminal Building in Pittsburgh's Strip District. She's wearing a black leather jacket, a long dark skirt, and combat boots.
black and white image of a senior girl standing along the back walkway of the Terminal Building in Pittsburgh's Strip District. She's wearing a black leather jacket, a long dark skirt, and combat boots.
black and white image of a senior girl standing along the back walkway of the Terminal Building in Pittsburgh's Strip District. She's wearing a black leather jacket, a long dark skirt, and combat boots.
black and white image of a senior girl standing along the back walkway of the Terminal Building in Pittsburgh's Strip District. She's wearing a black leather jacket, a long dark skirt, and combat boots.
black and white image of a senior girl standing along the back walkway of the Terminal Building in Pittsburgh's Strip District. She's wearing a black leather jacket, a long dark skirt, and combat boots.

Where to begin

a note for parents & guardians

Time has flown by and your little one is getting ready for the senior year!! It's ok. Take some deep breaths. We'll get through this. I know the feeling of children growing up too fast and I'm here to pass you the tissues and help you through this process. While many schools handle senior portraits differently, this section answers some questions and can help you start the planning process. My goal is to do all that I can to make this experience special and stress-free for you both.

general info about the session and gallery
  • Session Length: Typically 2-3 hours for full sessions and 1 hr for mini sessions.
    Senior clients usually bring 2 to 4 different outfits but can bring up to 6 for a full session and 3 for a mini session. Multiple locations are possible for full sessions depending on the travel time between them. The time can be broken up over multiple days as well. I bring a portable changing tent to all sessions to make changing outfits convenient.
  • Gallery: Clients can expect to see at least 60 hand-retouched final images in their online gallery for a full session and 30 for a mini session. Your gallery will include a wide variety of headshots and full-body shots as well as black and white images. All images will be fully retouched with blemish fading and removal as well as enhancements to lighting to give your images a polished look. Additional editing can be requested and discussed after the gallery is delivered.
Cap & Gown Minis are offered in May & June
image of a high school senior guy. He's wearing a red cap and gown with gold medal on a blue ribbon and a gold cord. He has dark hair that is shoulder length and wavy. There are trees in the background.
Pets are welcome!
black and white image of a senior girl and her dog, a grayhound. She's kneeling next to the dog and kissing the side of his face as he looks at the camera.
a family photo can be part of your senior session or a mini added on later!
image of a family of five standing in a clearing with woods in the background. Mom and dad stand in the center with 3 older boys around them. Two of the boys are tall and in high school. They are all wearing shades of blue.
frequently asked questions
When should we start planning?
SPRING

Spring of Junior year is the time to start thinking about senior portraits. Senior sessions are typically scheduled in the summer before or fall of senior year. This allows for seniors to have their pictures ready for yearbook deadlines if needed (yearbook deadlines are usually in the late fall).

 

*IMPORTANT*

Fall (from the end of September through the first week of November) is my busiest time of the year and those weekend dates fill up fast with seniors and families. If you know you’re going to want a fall session, I recommend reaching out by mid-August to secure your date.

 

I know that life gets hectic. Between school and work and activities and just life, senior portraits can end up on the back burner. Please know, summer and fall are not the only time to schedule your senior session. Senior portraits can be scheduled at any time. I've even scheduled senior portraits well after graduation because again... life. Whenever you can, please make time to document this important milestone.

Where should we have our session?
choose a place you love

Any place can have portrait potential and fortunately, you have a photographer who sees that potential!

 

When deciding on a location for the session, I encourage seniors to think about the places they enjoy visiting and where they feel most comfortable. Do they love the city and the energy of downtown? Do they love being in nature? Are they connected to their school or other special places (e.g., home, Grandma’s farm, a dance studio, etc.)? These are just a few of the questions that can help you and your senior to brainstorm ideas for locations. If you are still stumped, I'm happy to suggest some options or check out my Location Guide.

 

During your pre-session planning, we can also decide if we need a second location.

How do we choose outfits?
start with 2

Choosing outfits for any portrait session is challenging. All seniors should plan for at least 2 outfits. I typically recommend 1 casual outfit and one more dressy one.

 

It's really important to let your senior choose their outfits. This will help them to give the best expressions during their session. The best expressions happen when we feel confident and comfortable and often that is tied closely to the clothes that we're wearing. They should choose clothing that they feel comfortable in- the feel of it, the fit of it, and style.

 

Before the session, I ask my clients (especially the girls) to text or email photos of their outfits (preferably wearing them). This helps me to be able to start visualizing your senior in their location and I can catch clothing pieces that might not work well with the camera.

 

Also, feel free to bring extra outfits or accessories to the session. It can be fun to mix things up a bit and get more creative with looks.

Do I have to be there for the session?
you're always welcome but you don't have to

There are a lot of emotions tied up in senior year which can make relationships between parents and their seniors challenging. I always encourage mom or dad or any close adult to come along for the session. It can be nice to have extra hands to carry things and extra eyes to catch details that might need to be fixed- fix a collar, tuck in a pocket, brush back a stray hair. Plus, I think it's such a fun moment to watch your child experience. However, I understand that as parents, sometimes we make our kids self-conscious, so if there needs to be some distance in order to get the best out of your senior, that's totally fine.

 

If you choose to not accompany your senior for their photoshoot, I do ask that a parent or guardian be in the area and have a cell phone for anything that might come up.

Jodi Walsh Photography is the best: fantastic and (more importantly imo), she makes your kid feel special and beautiful!

~ Melissa N.

image of a senior girl standing by a black iron fence in Schenley Park, Pittsburgh. She has brown, shoulder length, curly hair and is wearing brown overalls with a green top.

Schenley Park, fall

image of a senior girl sitting on stone steps near Phipps Conservatory in Pittsburgh. She's wearing a flowered long dress, with an orange knit sweater and black combat boots.

Phipps Conservatory, fall

image of a senior girl sitting on a bench at the Color Park near Pittsburgh's Southside neighborhood. She's wearing a red plaid shirt and has brown, wavy hair with violet tips.

Color Park, Southside, fall

pricing

senior full session details

what to expect

Senior clients can expect 2 to 3 hours of on-location portrait photography. During the planning, we'll discuss location options and outfits.

Sessions are relaxed with no pressure to perform but with a little guidance to help you look your best in front of the camera. I always start my sessions with tips for looking natural while posing and will share some resources to give you ideas. The best thing is to try to have fun with the experience!

*no print or digital products are included with this fee*

session fee

$200

collection details

what happens next?

Your client gallery will be ready approximately two weeks after your portrait session (you can expect to receive email updates on the editing progress).

 

Clients will receive an email invitation to view their gallery slideshow. All portraits are presented in the brief 2-3 minute slideshow. After viewing the slideshow, choose and purchase the collection that best meets your needs and budget. All collections include a set number of digital files with a release for you to keep, print, and share at your convenience.

A la carte products are only available after purchasing a collection.

simple

collection

$400

10 digital files

classic

collection

$750

25 digital files

$200 product credit

deluxe

collection

$950

60+ digital files

$300 product credit

senior mini session details

what to expect

Senior clients can expect 1 hour of on-location portrait photography. During our planning time before the session, we'll discuss location options and two or three outfits.

I know how uncomfortable it can feel in front of the camera, so my sessions are always relaxed with no pressure to perform. I'll be sharing tips and resources for posing naturally as you prepare for the session, and during your session, I'll be guiding you so that you look your best. Trust me

*no print or digital products are included with this fee*

session fee

$125

collection details

what happens next?

Your client gallery will be ready approximately two weeks after your portrait session (you can expect to receive email updates on the editing progress).

 

Clients will receive an email invitation to view their gallery slideshow. All portraits are presented in the brief 1-2 minute slideshow. After viewing the slideshow, choose and purchase the collection that best meets your needs and budget. All collections include a set number of digital files with a release for you to keep, print, and share at your convenience.

A la carte products are only available after purchasing a collection.

petite

collection

$300

5 digital files

essential

collection

$540

15 digital files

$75 product credit

complete

collection

$675

30+ digital files

$150 product credit

the products

off the cloud and into your home!

everyday prints

printed on professional photo paper with a semi-gloss finish, for the highest quality long-lasting print.

standard sizes available

canvas

fine art canvas wraps are printed directly onto museum-quality canvas using archival ink, with a beautiful finish and canvases arrive ready to hang

frames

photographic print on semi-gloss paper, mounted with a thick 8 ply mat board, protected by a front acrylic, permanently sealed with a black backing paper.
pre-assembled and ready to hang.

books

press-printed coffee table books are created using the strongest binding system that allows the pages to flow like a traditional book, and are printed on matte paper for incredible quality and longevity.

image of a square linen covered photo album. the cover is beige and the album is set on a dark wood floor

artist deckled edge prints

archival 100% cotton and acid-free prints, with a rich and textured finish. carefully hand-torn to create a soft feathered edge that adds a beautiful softness to the image.

sizes 5x7 - 11x14 available

acrylics

printed on fine art paper and set under a clear acrylic with a glare-free finish, featuring polished edges for a modern-looking display.

linen box

carefully handcrafted, print boxes include an elegant ribbon to easily lift prints and are ideal for presenting and preserving prints.

albums

beautifully printed on Fuji Deep Matte paper, these albums are carefully constructed by a team of skilled artisans to create a tremendous visual impact with rich colors and pure whites.

and many more

If there are products that you're interested in but don't see here or in your personal gallery story, please send me a message and I'll be happy to find that perfect product for you!

what next?

a message for seniors

You've been waiting for the past 3 years for this moment. Senior year is finally here so it's time to start thinking about your senior portrait session. Whether you want to keep it simple or get creative and really show off your personality, together, we can create your vision. This might be your last formal portrait for quite a while so I want to encourage you to make the most of the experience.

Collection prices are from $400-$950

contact Jodi for more detailed information.

make 'em special! make 'em unique! make 'em you!

It's idea time! Your assignment is one shot! One image that is uniquely you, at this pivotal moment in your life! What is the most important part of your life right now? Let's find a way to incorporate it into your session!

a car?

a pet?

an instrument?

a sport?

a wild location?

There are so many possibilities to make these photos an experience you'll never forget and with just a bit of planning, we can make almost anything happen.

Collection prices are from $400-$950

contact Jodi for more detailed information.

black and white image of a senior guy. He's wearing a South Fayette letterman's jacket standing at the stadium. The South Fayette scoreboard is in the background.

South Fayette Stadium, winter

Locations

image of a senior girl in front of Cucumber Falls at Ohiopyle State Park. She's wearing a long flower skirt and a knit halter top. The falls are in the distance.

Cucumber Falls, Ohiopyle, fall

How to Pose

images of a senior girl in a high neck, sleeveless gown. It's fitted and then flares at the knee. She's standing in an alley in downtown Pittsburgh.

downtown Pittsburgh, spring

follow me

family, senior, headshot, and creative

portrait photographer for the Pittsburgh area including:

Cranberry, Fox Chapel, Mt Lebanon, Sewickley, Upper St Clair, and Wexford