Pre-Shoot Preparation

Once you’ve booked and confirmed your portrait session, it’s time to start prepping to get you camera-ready!

The degree to which you’re able to prep will largely depend on how far in advance you’ve booked your session.  Each person is different with different needs, priorities and budgets. So read through the following information and take from it that which resonates with you. This is a guide only, to help you think of ways in which you can get the best possible results from your portrait session.  And don’t be afraid to treat yourself. If you think about it, when was the last time you gave yourself some pampering? You deserve it!


1 Month Before Your Shoot

If you need motivation to start a more healthy lifestyle, then now is your chance! Use your photo shoot as a goal to work towards the healthiest version of yourself. Decide that THIS will be the moment you decided to make the changes you’ve been meaning to.

Under the advisement of professionals, consider making healthy choices and changes about your eating and exercise habits. Set a manageable goal with your shoot date as the first target.

Remember: Everything in moderation. Make small, positive changes every day, and after 30 days when you look back, you’ll see the cumulative effect of all your effort!

Begin drinking more water to hydrate and cleanse your body from the inside.

Stay out of the sun to avoid tan lines, discolouration and dehydrated skin.

Begin a Gratitude Journal – Practice daily gratitude on a daily basis by writing at least 5 things you’re grateful for. It could be as simple as being grateful for the warm shower you had this morning, or it could be gratitude for the overseas holiday you’ve just booked.

But most of all, show some gratitude and self-love for yourself. Write down how you’re grateful for your own body, mind and soul. It’s time to start appreciating who you are!

2 Weeks Before Your Shoot

Have a facial. Either book yourself in to your favourite spa or do one at home. I suggest doing this 2 weeks prior in case you don’t usually have facials and your skin has time to recover from any redness or reactions that appears as a result.

1 Week Before Your Shoot

Begin planning your outfits. Whether you’re using the services of a professional stylist, or you’re going it alone, set aside the outfits you’d like to be photographed in. Whether it means clearing out your wardrobe to find those items that have been forgotten in the back, or borrowing from your friends and sisters, or whether this is the permission you need to go shopping, here’s some tips on choosing the right items for your shoot:

When choosing your outfits, consider choosing something dark (black, navy, charcoal), something light (cream nude, light pink), something fun/funky/whimsical/elegant & something sexy (backless dress or top, lingerie). This will ensure that you have a nice variety and will help you out of your routine outfits that you wear every day.

Think about Texture. If you love the feel of your favourite shawl, bring it along. We love layering and interesting textures of fabric can add to the depth of the final image.

Avoid prints. Prints, large patterns and logos or writing on clothes can be a distraction in photographs and end up competing for attention, rather than having the eye drawn to the person in the photo.



Choose well fitting. Choose clothing that fits your form well. Not too tight and not too loose. Just right is when your natural curves – bust, waist and hips – are hugged by what you’re wearing.

Necklines. Consider trying different necklines to those you usually wear. Here are some examples to inspire you along with how to wear them with necklaces:

Forget the Shoes. We rarely shoot full length portraits so shoes are less important for the shoot. But of course, if they make you feel more glamorous, then by all means, bring them! I know for some, their shoes are their best friends!

Accessories. Choose earrings, necklaces, bracelets, belts and scarves to compliment your chosen outfits.

Decide how you want to display your photos. Do you want to have a keepsake box of prints that you can cherish and selectively display or give as gifts to your family and friends? Do you want to display your portraits on the wall as a constant reminder of your newfound confidence? Or do you want to have your images put together in an album that you can take with you and page through with others or on your own when you need a reminder of how amazing your are?

Book a hair appointment. Now’s the time to have your hair trimmed and coloured at your usual hair salon. Don’t try anything too far out of your comfort zone in case the change is too drastic for your taste. For an extra bit of pampering, have a hair treatment to help make your locks more luscious.

Shop for new bras. If your current bras have seen better days, then this is the time to stock up on a handful of quality bras. Consider choosing a nude, a black lacy number and a strapless bra that gives you the support in all the right places. Support underwear is also a great idea for those figure hugging outfits you’ve chosen.

3 Days Before Your Shoot


Waxing. If you wax, this is the time to de-fuzz your legs, underarm and bikini line, if necessary. Be sure to give your skin time to recover from redness and swelling.


2 Days Before Your Shoot

Mani & Pedi. Have a manicure, pedicure & paint those digits in your favourite colour! Be sure to let the family know that you’re off ‘washing-up’ duty until AFTER your photo shoot!

Increase your hydration. Continue to keep yourself hydrated and consider supplementing your water with lovely relaxing herbal teas.

Shape your eyebrows. Tweeze or thread your eyebrows making sure not to get over zealous.

Exfoliate. Do a light body and face exfoliation to get rid of any dry flaky skin, leaving you with a fresh, polished glow.

Hair mask. Treat your hair one last time with a home hair mask.

1 Day Before Your Shoot

Iron Clothes. Iron your outfits and hang them ready to be loaded into the car in the morning.

Wash hair. Wash your the night before your shoot and style as per your usual routine.

Shave. If you haven’t or don’t wax, then make sure to shave your legs, bikini line & underarm the night before using a new razor blade to avoid any unsightly lumps and bumps. Moisturise well afterwards to sooth the skin.

Sleep well. Plan a restful evening with a healthy meal and get a good night’s sleep. Don’t forget to set your alarm clock!

The Day of the Shoot

Wake up refreshed with your first hot drink of the day followed by a good breakfast.

Take a shower without wetting your hair. Apply moisturiser and skin products as per your usual routine. Do not do your makeup.

Wear loose clothing and if possible, no bra to avoid imprints on the skin.

Pack bags. Carefully pack your outfits into bags or hang them in the back of the car.

Map your route to the studio.

Arrive at the studio, ready to be pampered and photographed like never before!

Got Questions?

Need help with your shoot preparations?