Remember Me - Session Preparation Guide
Congratulations on booking your Remember Me Photo Session! I'm very excited to meet you and your furry friend soon. I hope you are also excited to get started, create beautiful photographs and stunning artwork for your home.
My number one priority is to ensure your dog or horse and yourself enjoy the photography experience. When we meet on the day of your session, we'll take a moment, have a chat, go over our game plan and most importantly, let your animal get used to me and my camera. We'll then jump into the session, have fun and create a variety of beautiful images for you to choose from after your session.
Remember Me Sessions can be quite emotional at times, especially if you know that it will soon be time to say goodbye to your furry friend. Please rest assured that the session will be designed around you and your animal, I will give you all the time and space you need and can also offer a shoulder to cry on.
Please feel free to join my private client Facebook group, in there you can ask any questions you might have and I will be posting useful guides and tips, as well as upcoming events and special offers.
To get the most from your photography experience, please have a look through my session preparation guide for tips on how how to prepare both your animal and yourself. If you have any questions or concerns at the end of the preparation guide, please do get in touch! I'm always here to help and am more than happy to answer any additional questions.
Give your dog or horse a good brush and perhaps even a bath the day before your session, getting rid of as much loose hair, dust and dirt as possible and leaving a beautiful shiny coat.
If your dog has long fur I would additionally recommend carefully trimming the fur around the eyes before the session. We wouldn't want to hide their wonderful expressions!
For Dogs, I recommend having a clean collar and lead for your photo session, ideally muted colours rather than super bright. Ideally leave the harness at home, as they don't photograph well and they are very difficult to remove in postproduction.
For Horses, a clean black or brown leather headcollar or bridle and matching lead rope. A nylon headcollar is fine as well, but ideally a dark or muted colour and matching lead rope.
Exercise or rest
You'll know your dog/horse and their energy level best. High energy animals can benefit from a little exercise before the photo session. Just leave enough time for you to clean them up and give them a little rest before the session starts - heavily panting dogs or sweaty horses don't look the best in photographs.
On the other hand, if your animal is quite laid back and not very excitable, it might not be necessary to exercise before the session.
Keep your dog or horse in his or her daily routine as much as possible. Although, I would recommend feeding them a smaller portion, if it's their feed time just before the session. They can have the rest of the meal afterwards.
Preparing your Dog or Horse for the Session
A lot of my clients ask for a good mixture of photographs, some of their dogs on their own and some with them and their dogs together. I love photographing the special bond and connection between an animal and their owner and always encourage you to be in at least a few of the images yourself.
Have a look through my style guide and please let me know if you have any questions.
Wardrobe options and styles
Choosing your outfit for the session is the fun part! There are countless options, think of casual, smart-casual, country or if you like even full glam. See some examples below.
Most importantly, I always recommend wearing something you feel comfortable in, ideally stay away from baggy clothing, bright colours and busy pattern. Muted colours photograph really well, perhaps even colour coordinate with your dog.
Jumpers, Jeans, a floaty top or plain t-shirt or dress with country boots, trainers or any other fun pair of shoes.
Casual / Smart Look
Smart jumpers, fitted trousers, smart jeans, shirt with tall boots or smart ankle boots.
Tweed jacket, blouse or shirt, waistcoat, fitted trousers with smart tall boots. If you show your dog, perhaps even your show outfit.
Scarfs, hats, necklace, bracelets or watches.
If you need any styling help, you might want to consider a colour and style analysis and consultation. Check out Rosee Elliott, who is a fantastic colour and style consultant with House of Colour.
Hair and Makeup
This one is more for the ladies. If you fancy the full pamper package, I'd be more than happy to arrange a hair and makeup artist for the day of your session (at an additional charge), or I can recommend some fantastic MUA's for you to get in touch with yourself.
You can of course also do your own hair and makeup! A couple of tips for long hair. If you would like to have your hair down in the photos, try not to tie it into a tight ponytail, as you'll end up with a big crease in your hair. Best to either have it either in a very loose ponytail or loosely plaited, or even better not tied up at all.
We all love to take advantage of any sunny days and head out to enjoy the sunshine at any opportunity. In the run-up to your photo session, make sure you are well protected from the UV rays, watch for tan lines and sunburn, as both don't photograph well.
Preparing yourself for the Session
Your Session Check List
Things to remember for your dog
Clean Lead and Collar
Any other Accessories
Favourite Toys (ideally clean)
Towel or wipes
Things to remember for your horse
Clean headcollar and/or bridle
Clean saddle and numnah
Any other Accessories
Polo's or other non-staining treats
Towel or wipes and brushes
Things to remember for yourself
Appropriate clothing (extra layers, waterproofs)
Comfortable shoes (walking boots or wellies for example)
Water and perhaps a wee snack for longer shoots
Clean clothes, if you'd like to be in the photos as well
Hairbrush (for long hair)
Makeup bag for potential makeup top-ups
What happens after the Session?
Once we finish our session and I got my last cuddles from your dog or horse, we'll say our good-byes and I will head home, where I will upload and back up all of your gorgeous photographs, to make sure they are all safe!
I then start the post-processing, in the first run I select my favourite images from your session and get rid of any duplicates, closed eyes and other unflattering moments. In the second run, I go through the selected images again and hand edit every single one of them to perfection.
Approx 10-14 days after your session, I will upload your images to my online viewing gallery (normally between 30-40 images). I then send you an exciting email with the link and your password, so that you can view your images for the very first time. At the same time, we also arrange your ordering appointment.
Your ordering appointment can take place in the comfort of your own home or another mutually agreed location. At your ordering appointment, I will show you my stunning product samples and you decide which sizes and styles you would like to purchase. I am happy to advise and give you my opinion on what would work well, but I promise - no hard sales!
Your order can be paid for by bank transfer, card or cash.
Approx 2 week after placing your product order, it'll be time for the big product reveal! After double-checking your printed products, I will hand-deliver these to you. All you have to do is hang them on the wall, sit back and enjoy your new artwork.
All products are handmade to the highest standards and produced by professional printing labs here in the UK.
Please feel free to download my Product Pricing Guide, by clicking on the PDF icon below.
Dealing with Grief
Saying goodbye to our beloved furry family member is never easy and everyone deals with grief in a different way. We might be hit with strong emotions like shock, guilt and extreme sadness, these are normal emotions in the grieving process.
While going through the grieving process you might feel that some people around you don't fully understand your feelings and that your sense of loss is not being taken seriously. If you are struggling to come to terms with the events that have happened and feel isolated or unsupported, please know that you are not alone! There are people who understand and professional support is available.
I have teamed up with Wendy Andrew from The Scottish Pet Bereavement Counselling Service, to raise more awareness around pet grief and help pet owners in need of additional support on dealing with the loss of their animal.
Head over to Wendy's website to find out more and to get in touch with her:
www.thescottishpetbereavementcounsellingservice.com or find her on Facebook
Help for grieving animals
Grief is a natural response when a family member or friend dies. We know this for ourselves, but is the same true for our animals? The answer is “yes.” Dogs and horses can grieve, but just like us, they all respond in their own way. The behaviours that you might observe vary based on how close the relationship between the animals was and their temperament.
But regardless of how grief is displayed, we can do a lot to help. Here are a few tips for helping your animals deal with their grief:
Recognise the signs
Some of the signs could be: refusing to eat, sleeping more, demanding more attention, seeking out the deceased favourite spot, appearing depressed
Give them what they need
When dealing with grief, respect what your animal is trying to communicate. For example, if they are looking for more attention, give it to them, but don’t force yourself on an animal who wants to spend some quiet time alone in their friend’s favourite spot.
Time your attention
On the other hand, if your animal's grief is causing them to act in ways that are problematical (being destructive or very vocal, for example), make sure that your attempts to console them aren’t inadvertently reinforcing that behaviour.
Don't rush the process
Some animals will go through the grieving process quickly or not appear to grieve at all, while others may seem to get stuck.
Ask for professional help
If you feel that your animal needs more help than you can give them, don't hesitate to contact your vet or speak with an animal behaviourist (I can highly recommend Helen Greenley of Creature Kind - click HERE to visit her website).
Remembering your Furry Friend
How you want to remember your dog or horse is a very personal decision! There is no right or wrong!
Following your photo session, I can of course deliver beautiful wall portraits, image boxes, albums, and prints, please get in touch to discuss the options.
In this section of my welcome guide, I would also like to share a few other ideas to remember your dog or horse.
Beautifully hand-crafted memorial jewellery and keepsakes, incorporating your animal's ashes.
Stunning frames with a photograph of your animal and perhaps their collar (for dogs) or a shoe (for horses)
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