Mini Session Vs. Full Session – Hampton Roads Family Photographer


Mini Session Vs. Full Session – Which is right for you?

It all depends on your goals!

Mini sessions are shorter with less shoot time (as quick as 15 minutes) and fewer images delivered.

Full sessions are up to an hour long, with double, sometimes triple the number of final images in the gallery. 

Just about every session type can be done in a quick mini session – whole family, just the kids, cake smash, milestone, couples, maternity & even seniors. 

But that doesn’t mean the mini session is going to fit your needs!

Hi! I’m Alison, your chaos coordinator – the Mary Poppins of family photos!

Mini sessions are 15-20 minute sessions

More time does not equal more value because more time never made anyone cry less, or have more fun! Weather your kids are grown and cooperative, or super young and uncooperative, its perfect for simple updated family photos, cake smash, maternity, high school seniors, milestones, or Christmas card shots!

Yes! 15 minutes is enough!

More time is not more value. My mission is to leave you asking, “That’s it?!”

Fast. Fun. Done.

Dad is going to be pleased and you’re going to be shocked I got so many happy faces so quickly!

They happen at pre-determined dates and locations.

Get on the Waitlist now to get them in your inbox as soon as they’re released! Be sure to drag it to your primary inbox so you don’t miss it!

Mini sessions happen roughly once a quarter, sometimes more often in the busy seasons.

5 Reasons to go for a full photo session.

1. You haven’t done photos in years (or ever!)

If its been years since your last session, don’t skimp! Give yourself time get a full work up of groupings and shots – whole family, just mom & dad, mom with kids, dad with kids, kids only, kids individually, and maybe even the dog!

Assume it’s going to be a long while before you do it again.

2. Your crew is young.

If your crew is elementary age or younger, and even more so if you’ve got more than 2 that are under 10, give them lots of time to just be themselves. A good photographer is going to know how to handle them, but more time will mean less stress you, Mama!

But by the same token, more time isn’t always more value and could actually back fire. It all depends on your crew’s personality.

3. You’re including extended family.

More people require more time. Its like maneuvering a fishing board vs. a cruise ship. Extended family is a slow moving cruise ship that takes a lot time and coaxing! 

Remember doing the family portraits at your wedding? It’s almost like that! 

4. You want a wardrobe change.

Mini sessions don’t allot enough time for changing clothes, not even a shirt.

Unless you book two mini sessions with enough pad time in between too find a restroom! Then that could totally work.You have a shot list in your mind 

5. You’ve got a shot list in mind.

If you’ve got a list of more than 5 shots, you probably need a full session. It could be whole family, just mom & dad, mom with kids, dad with kids, kids only, kids individually, and maybe even the dog!

That list is seven strong, and could be done in 15 minutes, but it would depend mostly on how cooperative your kids are.

Mini sessions vs. full sessions - which is right for you? by alison bell, photographer

Reasons to go for a mini session

1. Quick family update

If you do family sessions fairly regularly and you don’t need a whole list of shots, the mini is for you!

2. Christmas Card or Holiday theme

Maybe you want particular holiday theme that is being offered, especially around Christmas to put on your card. Mini sessions are the perfect time for holiday themes

3. Simple Senior portraits 

If your graduating senior isn’t big on photos, or doesn’t have much of a preference, one or more mini sessions could be the solution. 

Booking 2 or more mini sessions in different locations will give variety without breaking the bank. One session could be in the Vibe District, and the other on the beach.

4. Your kids are older & more cooperative

If your whole crew is middle school or older, more time isn’t more value. Usually the mini session will go so fast they’ll be delighted and in high spirits when its over! 

5. Just the kids or baby

15 minutes of just the kids is perfect. Its just short enough they’ll still be in good spirits by the time it’s over!

Or you want special birthday shots of just one child.  A mini session will take the pressure off being in front of the camera. This is includes cake smashes or milestone shots of a new sitter!

Mini sessions vs. full sessions - which is right for you? by alison bell, photographer
Mini sessions vs. full sessions - which is right for you? by alison bell, photographer
HEY! I'm Alison, Your Fun And Hilarious Family & Newborn Photographer!

I'm a South Carolina native, USMC spouse, and recovering homeschool mama of a four boy circus. Bring me your crazy!

After 11 years of photographing families all over the world, I've realized my clients aren't printing their images. We go through all this work to get dressed, coordinated and then let those photos die on the hard drive.

No more!

There's nothing easy about family photos but I'm here to help you with every step from what to wear to printed in your hands whether thats an album or wall art. I want you to Make your people the rock star of your house!

You'll be reminded of what really matters every day when you see the giant prints of your crew laughing on your walls every. single. day.

Currently stationed in Virginia Beach, Virginia photographing families all over the Hampton Roads area from Suffolk, Norfolk, Chesapeake and the Eastern Shore all the way to Portsmouth and Elizabeth City!

Follow along on the Gram at @alisonbellphotog or reach out today!

I find joy in chaos. The louder, the better! I'm a USMC spouse, South Carolina native, recovering homeschool mama of a 4 boy circus. They've taught me the most important facet of family photography: KEEP IT FUN!

about Alison

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