About Clothing, Color, Tone, and Style....

The goal of any fine portrait is to direct the viewer's attention to the face or faces in the portrait. Bright colors, such as red and orange will completely overpower the face and ruin a portrait. Avoid busy patterns, especially printed material, these tend to be very distracting. Memorable portraits take careful planning, and the clothing you choose if very important to your portrait's success.

Extra Tips

  • Turtle next or V-necks are flattering provided that neither is exaggerated in style...
  • Long sleeves are nice, when weather permits, as bare arms can call attention to themselves and will overpower the face.
  • Long pants should be wore instead of shorts, too much flesh is distracting to your face.
  • Clothing should be loose and not tight.
  • Clothing below the waistline should be darker than above, as attention could be drawn to the lower part of the body.
  • Hair cuts should be about one week before the portrait session.
  • Get a good night's sleep the night before.
  • Eyeglasses create glare, try popping out the lenses or borrow a pair from a local optician.

Clothing for Families

In a family group, proper clothing coordination is critical. Choose clothing in the same tonal ranges so that no single member of the family stands out.

Helpful Children's Tips

Clothing-Simple clothing photographs best. Also remember, shoes often show in the portrait.

Smiles- Smiles are beautiful on children, especially on close up images. Please do not instruct children to say silly words like "cheese" or tell them to smile. Natural expressions, soft smiles, and spontaneous looks on children make for enduring portraits.

Scheduling- When is nap and dinner time? If you feel your child is not in the proper mood or is not feeling well, do not hesitate to call so that we can reschedule.

Who Should Be There- Children usually do best when siblings or relatives are not brought along. Extra people can be distracting and could hurt the portrait.

Shy Children- Give them time to warm up to me and their surroundings, its important the session is not rushed. It is also important not to answer for your child when a question is being asked, as a rapport needs to be established.

Favorite Toys- Bring along your child's toys, book or favorite items. All of these factors give security and add to the personalization of the portrait.



The most important element in a portrait is the expression. Since the eyes are the "window to the soul," I feel that the most important expression is the eyes and not the grin. I do not always try to make my subjects smile. I prefer to capture the quiet beauty found in a soft expression, where the eyes are wide open. 


I try to avoid over posing my subjects. I prefer that the posing reflects the natural positioning and the body movements of my subjects. This is especially true with young children. I will remind Adults and teenagers about good posture, because it is more flattering to the body. As an artist uses composition in a painting, I too use similar rules in my portraiture. At times I do not place my subject in the center of a portrait. If you have a certain pose or look that you are going for, please feel free to bring an example, and I will see what I can do.

Lighting & Filters

A fine portrait uses lighting to create highlights and shadows, thus gibing the portrait form and shape. Soft focus filters are often used to soften complexions, and definitions in the portrait.


All of my photographs are edited in Adobe Photoshop CS6. If you have a scar or something that really bothers you, let me know during your portrait session, and I will let you know what can and can't be edited out of your picture.

Weather & Time

Since I am an outdoor photographer, I depend on good weather. I do not cancel a session unless there is more than a 60% chance of rain. Although, I do not want to take photos in rain, beautiful pictures can be taken in between scattered showers. I do have to have some sun light to take pictures. So, depending on what time of the year, I will only schedule appointments, during good periods of lighting.

Click on the link to see examples of locations

Where do you want to be photographed? I have some locations that I can suggest to you during a consultation. You are more than welcome to bring some suggestions to the conversation. I am always looking for new places to photograph. Also, I would love to come to your home and photograph you there. I just need to make sure that there is some shady locations outside. Harsh sunlight does not flatter anyone. My locations that I will suggestion to you are:

  1. Glencoe Duck Pond- There is beautiful willow trees there and lots of great places to take photos
  2. Downtown Gadsden- So many endless possibilities there.
  3. Noccalula Falls- Again BEAUTIFUL scenery
  4. Farm- an old red Barn (literally 100 years old) in North Gadsden, with beautiful trees and foothill mountains behind it.