Family photo sessions vs holiday card minis

Connecticut family photography, Connecticut holiday mini sessions, shoreline CT family photos

Every photographer has slightly different offerings, and at this time of year it can be confusing to figure out what kind of session you’re really looking for.  Here’s the difference between my family photo sessions (offered all year in seasonal rounds) and my holiday card mini sessions.  You can read my FAQs about family photo sessions here!

  1. Candids + posed (family) vs just posed (minis) – A family session allows time for art to happen.  With the freedom of an hour, I can catch a spontaneous hug with daddy, sibling hilarity, or sunlight in a wisp of hair.  These are the unexpected photos, the ones you can’t plan for.  Seeing what gems I’ve captured once I’ve gotten home is one of my favorite parts of my job!  This is not to say that I don’t highly value posed photographs, too.  Because of the time limitation, in a mini session we stick to those, in various combinations of people.  Family photo sessions, Father and daughter huggingConnecticut family photo sessions, Silly sister momentConnecticut family photo sessions, portrait of a girl on a beach
  2. Enough time to settle in (family) vs short & sweet (minis) – If your child is shy, or conversely extroverted and prone to excited wiggles, a family session is a much better fit.  This gives us time to get into the same rhythm, and to allow my presence to become both natural and fun.  If your children tend to be happy at the beginning of a new activity without needing warm-up time, then a mini will work just fine! Please note that I do NOT recommend minis if you have more than one child under the age of 5.
    Connecticut family photo sessions, Portrait of a little boy
  3. 60+ image gallery (family) vs 15 image gallery (minis) – Because family sessions are longer, there are more choices in your gallery.  Is this a good thing or a bad thing for you? 🙂
    Holiday card mini sessions, Happy family being photographedHoliday card mini sessions, dad and son
  4. Explore a location (family) vs stick to one main area (minis) – During family sessions I like to take a walk.  If we are at a park we might make a big loop, stopping at spots with beautiful light.  This can be really helpful for kids who need to MOVE, and is also great for getting those candids!  If we are walking and talking, I can sneak candids of even the most camera-aware toddler or tween!
    Family photo sessions, Child pointing at pond

I hope you find this helpful!!  In terms of cost, my family sessions cost $100 – $200 more and include five full-resolution digital images (plus options to purchase all of them + beautiful archival prints and albums).  Mini sessions cost less and include all of the digital images (~15), and of course you still have the option to purchase prints and products.  I’m happy to have an online meeting with you to help you arrange a beautiful wall gallery, even if I won’t be personally making your prints.  I consider it a crucial part of my job to help you get your photos on your walls, or in an album!!! Don’t let your photos sit on a disc or in the cloud.  Enjoy them every day!

If you’d like to book a family or mini session, contact me so I can help you get started!

Family photo sessions mom kissing child



Serving Guilford, New Haven County, Connecticut, & beyond