FAQs

Sessions
Gallery
Payment
Maternity
Newborns
Images / Digital Files / Copyrights

Sessions
When should I schedule a session?

If you already have a date in mind, great!  Contact me as soon as you’ve decided what date will be best for you.  Be sure to have a back up date in mind, in case I am already scheduled for your first choice.  Your best bet for booking your preferred date is to schedule approximately 6-8 weeks ahead.  Please remember that your session is booked only when you have paid your retainer.
Do you choose the location or do I?
If you know where you’d like your session to take place, awesome!  I like to discover new places or return to old favorites!
If you need recommendations or would prefer that I choose for you, that is also an option.
Is there anything I should tell you prior to the session?
Yes.  I need to know if anyone involved in the session is allergic to any bugs, insects, pollen, etc. as this can affect the location.
I also need to know if anyone is afraid of anything (such as heights or bubbles) or has aversions (such as bare feet on concrete, grass, or sand).
If anyone wears glasses, do they have a non-reflective coating?
Finally, are there any specific kind of images you want/don’t want?  For example, if you have to have a family portrait with everyone making goofy faces, please tell me.  Likewise, if you aren’t a fan of feet shots or something similar, let me know.
What do I wear?
Ah, the stress of dressing for photographs!  Sometimes it’s hard to figure out what to wear that’s not going to look dated ten years from now.  Here’s my best advice:
Everyone should wear clothes that look cohesive but don’t match.  Think of it a lot like decorating a house – you don’t perfectly match the curtains, furniture, wall paint, and pillows, right?  You find a couple of coordinating colors and play with them.  The same thing applies to dressing for pictures.  Also, everyone should have a similar style (casual, dressy, etc.) – don’t have Mom in a formal dress while everyone else is wearing jeans and t-shirts.
Say yes to texture, layering, and accessories.
Say no to one-color schemes.  Please don’t dress everyone in the same outfit (i.e. black shirts and jeans or white shirts and khakis).  I’m not saying you can’t, if you have your heart set on it, but it’s visually unappealing and won’t make nearly the stunning images that coordinating outfits will.  Promise…scouts honor.
Also a no?  Bold prints, writing/logos, cartoon characters.  Clothing that is too tight or too loose.  Uber-trendy clothing.  They won’t do much for you, they’ll create lots of distraction in your photos or your photos will look dated quickly.  YOU should be the star; your clothing choices should enhance YOU.  Simple, classic pieces sometimes show off the wearer the best.
Feel free to bring an extra outfit to your session.  If you’re not sure what to wear and you’d like my advice, you can always email me pictures of the options prior to your session or schedule a complimentary pre-session meeting at your house so I can help you choose an outfit.  If you’re not sure what to wear but would rather look through some ideas online, visit Wardrobe Wednesday’s FB page or look through the What to Wear posts on the blog.
What happens if I can’t make it to my session?
Please let me know at least 24 hours ahead of your session so we can reschedule!  Your retainer will be applied to the new session date as long as the new session date is within 3 months.  You may reschedule one time.  If you cancel your appointment because you choose to no longer retain my services, you forfeit your retainer.
What if my child is overtired/becoming cranky during his session?
No problem.  I don’t want your child to be unhappy any more than you do.  If you want to take the images we’ve procured and end the session early, I will adjust the session fee to the {minis} price as long as the session is under 30 minutes.  Any overpayment will be applied to your print purchase.  Please keep in mind that the number of images in your gallery will be less than a regular session.
What can I expect at our session?
Me: friendly, funny, charming, open to suggestions.  You: willing participant (I’ll even take semi-willing…Dads, I’m talking to you!).  I want you to enjoy your session with me, and more importantly, I want you to feel comfortable so we get great images!  I will do whatever I can to make that happen.
We will capture a variety of images, both posed and not.  A typical portrait session lasts about an hour, but I won’t be rushing you or checking my watch.  I take hundreds of images in that time (longer sessions generate more images); some images may be duplicates to ensure the most flattering shot (i.e. no closed eyes).
Can I/my friend/a family member bring a camera to our session to get some shots?
No. Do not bring your camera or a recording device to the session.  Only individuals involved in the session are allowed at the session.
When will my images be available for viewing?
Processing for regular sessions is 2-4 weeks; processing from events is 4-6 weeks.

Gallery

What happens after the session/why does it take so long before my online gallery is available for viewing?

During a session I may capture anywhere from 100-500 images (or more!).  After your session, I upload these images to my computer and archive the originals.  Then I evaluate each image and choose the best shots.  I repeat this process to make sure I didn’t miss anything amazing.  At the end of the selection process, I end up with a minimum of 20 images (for a typical portrait session).
Next?  I begin the editing process.  All those images I thought were great during the selection process get edited.  I complete basic retouching, adjust color balance, saturation, contrast, etc.  On each image.  After I’ve finished adjusting the images, I apply creative effects to a few of them (b&w, aged/vintage, haze, vignettes, etc.).  I may try several different effects until I find the one that enhances your image best.
Once editing is done, I archive the finished product and convert/resize your images for web-viewing.  I upload them into your private, password-protected online gallery and send you an email to let you know your images are ready, along with ordering instructions.
How long will my images be available in my online gallery?
7 days.  Online galleries can be republished for an additional 7 days for $25.
Why do you charge to republish the online gallery?
Reposting your gallery takes time and uses storage space on my website.  While I’d like to be able to keep galleries up for longer, I need to be able to accommodate all of my current clients and their galleries as well.
Can I share the password to my gallery with friends and family?
Yes, absolutely!!  They are welcome to order any prints/products as well.
I’ve placed my order and paid.  When will my prints/products be ready?
Your prints will be ready in approximately 1-2 weeks.  Fine Art prints and specialty products may take up to 4-6 weeks.  During the holiday season (September through December), orders may take longer due to high volume.
I’ve placed my order.  Can I change it?
Once your order is placed, it cannot be changed.  Please place your order carefully, and contact me with any questions prior to placing your order. Due to the nature of custom photography, all sales are final.
Questions about image storage and/or re-orders?  Read the “Image / Digital Files / Copyright” section below.

Payment

What is your pricing and what does it include?
You may view my session prices by clicking on “Investment” from the Sessions tab.  The session fee covers preplanning for your session (which may include location scouting); the time and talent of the photographer; photographer’s travel 25 miles from Midwest City; all paperwork; uploading, processing, and archiving your images; and creating a private, online proofing gallery for you and your family to view.
Prints and products are priced separately.  Please email me for a price list.
What is a retainer and how much is it?
A retainer is a nonrefundable payment used to reserve your session date/time.  The retainer is 50% of the session fee; the remaining 50% will be due no later than the day of your session.  The retainer must be paid within 5 days of booking your appointment.  If it has not been paid, your session has not been booked, and the date is susceptible to being booked by someone else.
When do I pay for my prints/products?
Payment is due in full when you place the order.  Unfortunately, Victoria Bement Photography cannot accept partial payments.
What kind of payments do you accept?
VBP accepts cash, checks, and Paypal.  You can pay by credit card through Paypal.  Orders will not be processed until payment clears.  Checks returned by the bank for any reason will be charged a $25 service fee.  Additionally, all orders will be canceled if they are not paid in full within 3 days of notification.
I’ve decided I no longer want my print/product order.  Can I return it/get a refund?
All sales are final.
Your session price changed since I originally booked my session.  Will I have to pay the new price?
No. When you book your session, you lock in the price for that session.
Will you let current clients know before print/product prices increase?
Yes.  I will give notice on Facebook (make sure you “Like” Victoria Bement Photography so you will receive the notice!) at least two weeks prior to any print/product price increase so current clients have the opportunity to order or re-order prints and products at the lower price.
Prices for prints and products are guaranteed for 30 days following your completed session.  So if you have a session right before the price increases, don’t worry!  You can still take advantage of the old price list, too.  Orders placed more than 30 days after the session will be subject to the most recent price list in effect.  Prices, promotions, and incentives are subject to change without notice.
How can I earn a free session or a discount on services/products?
Like” Victoria Bement Photography on Facebook to find out about specials, promotions, and incentives before anyone else.  Refer friends and family to the VBP Facebook page for increased promotional opportunities.

Maternity

When is the best time to take maternity pictures?

Schedule as soon as possible, and plan to take your maternity pictures between 26-34 weeks.  Ideally, you want that round little bump phase, not the “Is she really pregnant? She looks like she’s just gained a little weight!” or “Is she past her due date?!?” phase.   I’ve been there and done it…and gone through each of those moments.
What should I bring with me or wear for my maternity pictures?
Plan to wear loose fitting pants (think yoga) and either a strapless bra or a tube top so we can get those tummy shots! If you don’t feel comfortable baring your belly, that’s okay, too. Just wear clothes that show your bump (i.e. fitted shirt over jeans, a beautiful dress). Feel free to bring multiple outfits! It’s important to look cute, but you (and the baby) should be comfortable, too!!
Other things you might want to bring with? Ultrasound pictures, toys, infant clothing/shoes, and any “prop” you may have that says your child’s name.

Newborns

When should I schedule my newborn’s session?
Newborn sessions are best within 5-12 days after birth – earlier is better!  Newborns sleep a lot during this time, which allows us to move him/her around without waking.  The images you’re coveting are easily created early in your newborn’s life; the older your baby gets, the harder it is to capture.
Why does a newborn session last 2-3 hours?
My priority is ensuring that your newborn is comfortable, peaceful, and happy.  The session may be up to 3 hours to allow your newborn time to feed and snuggle as needed. I don’t mind waiting.  And if anyone needs a break, just holler.  I want to make sure you get the best possible images.
What should I do to prepare for my newborn’s session?
Cut their nails if they are long or jagged so they don’t scratch their beautiful skin.  Feed your baby right before your session begins.  Have a pacifier on standby (even if they haven’t used one yet) – it may help sooth them.  If your baby gets hungry, be prepared to feed them.
What happens if my newborn pees and poops on your things?
Don’t worry…it happens. Pretty much everything is washable.
Do you bring props (baskets, headbands, hats) with you?
Yes!  I try to bring a variety of props with me to both newborn and infant sessions.  However, if you find something that’s totally to die for, feel free to get it!  You are more than welcome to use any of your own props.  Wondering where to look?  I recommend Etsy.

Images / Digital Files / Copyrights

How long do you retain the images?
Prior to uploading images to an online gallery, I will archive the files on an external hard drive.  Ordered image files will be archived indefinitely, while unordered images will be purged from the system three (3) months after your session.  However, please remember that technology is fickle.  Computers crash, external hard drives fail, CDs and DVDs get scratched.  I will do everything in my power to prevent these events from occurring so that you may re-order prints or digital files in the future, but you should plan to order any prints or digital files you would not want to lose.
If, for any reason, I need to delete your ordered image files from my computers and hard drives, I will make every effort to contact you first.
What if I want to re-order my prints?
Great!  As long as I still have your files, you are welcome to re-order at any time. There is a $100 minimum purchase on re-orders.
Do you offer digital files?
Yes. All digital files will be placed on a disc.  The disc includes both low-resolution (suitable for email and Facebook) and high-resolution (sized to 8×12) images.  Discs will come with a print release so that reprints may be made at your choice of lab.  Please purchase prints larger than 8×10 directly through Victoria Bement Photography for optimum quality.
Where should I print my digital files?
I do not recommend using a generic print lab (i.e. Walmart, Walgreens, CVS, Target, etc.).  Your pictures will come out okay, but they won’t be as vibrant as if you had used a professional print lab.  I recommend that you use Mpix.
What is your copyright policy?
All images on Victoria Bement Photography website, blog, and Facebook are property of Victoria Bement Photography.  The images from your session are copyrighted by Victoria Bement Photography.  Unauthorized reproduction or use of any of these images is copyright infringement and is illegal. Reproduction or use is defined as downloading, copying, distributing, posting, adapting, adopting, capitalizing on, reselling, manipulating, or utilizing any intellectual property in any way (including chat board or forum posts).  Please email me {victoriabement@gmail.com} to gain permission to reproduce or use any of my images.
Digital image CDs are for personal print use only and cannot be used for resale, copying, distributing, or marketing purposes (including professional comp. cards).  If you wish to use your digital files for any reason other than to print, please email me directly to gain permission.  (The lone exception: Clients who have purchased a disc of digital images may post their images to their Facebook account ONLY if they put the following caption with each image – “Photographer: Victoria Bement | Victoria Bement Photography” and provide a link to either the Victoria Bement Photography Facebook page or to the Victoria Bement Photography Blog.)
Copyright infringement is punishable by law and is strictly enforced.
Please don’t steal.  It’s not nice.  And I will come after you. : )

Still have questions?
Shoot me an email and I’ll answer them!