June 3, 2020

How to Pick Your Senior Photographer | AHP

How to Pick Your Senior Photographer

If you are wondering how to pick your senior photographer, you have come to the right place. Your senior portraits are a big deal, and likely the first time you have had professional portraits done since you were a newborn. You probably won’t have professional photos taken like this again until your wedding day! There are so many senior photographers to choose from, but you want to be sure you are picking the best one for you.

This guide will outline the key things to think about when booking a senior photographer. And I am here to help answer any questions you may have along the way!

Think About Location

Have you always envisioned your senior portraits in a field of tall grass? Or maybe you want your background to be a blooming rose garden or urban city streets. Making sure your senior photographer shoots in locations that match your vision is so important.

We can shoot your senior portraits in numerous locations. I have a studio in the heart of Opera Alley, so those who want indoor senior portraits can experience the natural light and minimalist aesthetic of my studio. Afterward, it is easy to step outside into downtown to capture portraits with the colorful city streets and alleys as the backdrop.

We can also head to the waterfront, parks, gardens, and more. I am flexible with locations and have shot sessions in so many places! I love scouting out new locations, too. I am here to understand what you are envisioning for your senior portraits and bring them to life in the perfect location.

How to Pick Your Senior Photographer | A Helpful Guide from Professional Photographer Amanda Howse

Love Their Style

Every photographer has a unique editing style and aesthetic. Understanding the photographer’s style and whether or not it matches what you like will help you narrow down your options when picking your senior photographer. Make sure you look through the photographer’s portfolio and love their style before booking them. Your photos will have a similar coloring and overall mood.

I have a bright, colorful, and natural editing style. I want my seniors to look like the best versions of themselves in their portraits. This means I highlight your natural features and show you in your best light! I never over-edit photos because I want them to look natural. You won’t find any dark and moody vibes or heavily filtered photos in my portfolio.

Picking the Best Senior Photographer: A Guide | Tips from Tacoma Senior Photographer Amanda Howse

Check for Consistency

A great photographer will be able to shoot in all types of light. Their work should be consistent throughout their portfolio. One way to tell if your senior photographer is consistent is to see full galleries of senior sessions. It is easy for a photographer to pick one image from each senior session that shows their best work, but you want to see all the images to make sure they have a range.

I have galleries on my website that include different locations and share blog posts with multiple photos from each session. This gives you an idea of what to expect from a senior session. Plenty of my sessions include indoor and outdoor portraits, multiple locations, and different lighting and seasons. I maintain consistency for my clients, so they know what to expect.

Location Ideas for Senior Portraits in Tacoma | How to Pick Your Photographer | Photographed by Tacoma Senior Photographer Amanda Howse

Featured Portraits

There are senior magazines, social media accounts, and websites that feature and publish senior photographers. Having work published means the photographer has been recognized within the industry. This sets a standard for senior photographers.

I am grateful for the number of times I have been published. Having my work featured in well-known senior magazines shows off the ah-mazing seniors I get to work with, along with recognizing the work that I am doing.

Here are just a few places that have featured my work:

Inspiring Teens Magazine


Pose Patch


Senior Year Magazine

The Senior Playbook

The Twelfth Year

The Vibrant Senior

Prints and Products

Your senior portrait session is a way to celebrate this monumental time in your life. The session gives you portraits you can look back on for a lifetime, but these photos should not just be handed over on a CD, stored on the computer, or forgotten about. Custom, archival-quality photo products are an important way to remember this time in your life. When choosing your photographer, be sure to ask about the prints and products offered from your session.

AHP offers products with each portrait session to ensure you get beautiful products to finish your senior year experience. Seniors and their families can choose from “á la carte” products or popular collections that bundle products for a discounted price. These keepsake products include albums, canvas wall prints, heirloom image boxes, grad cards, and announcements. Digital files are stored on a luxe USB drive for seniors to keep.

When booking with AHP, we go over all the product collections and options. We also have sample products so you know the ah-mazing quality you can expect when you receive your products.

Professional Prints and Products for Senior Portraits | Tacoma Senior Photographer Amanda Howse Heirloom Products for Senior Portrait Sessions Offered with Each Session | Tacoma Senior Photographer Amanda Howse Print Your Senior Portraits | Amanda Howse Photography

Testimonials from Previous Clients

Knowing what previous clients have to say about the photographer will tell you a lot about what to expect. Rave reviews ensure the photographer is wonderful to work with and delivers a high-quality experience. Ask your friends what their senior photographer was like, and if they enjoyed working with them. Check the photographer’s website for testimonials to get an idea of the client’s perspective.

AHP includes client testimonials on the main page of our website. This includes positive feedback from seniors and their parents. I want to deliver an ah-mazing experience to every senior, and getting positive feedback is so rewarding. And it is so fun getting to work with the friends and siblings of past clients who have referred me.

Does Your Senior Session Include Prints and Products? | How to Pick a Senior Photographer | Amanda Howse Photography

What the Session Includes

When deciding how to pick your senior photographer, it is so important to fully understand what comes with your photo session. Questions to ask your senior photographer include: the number of locations included, how many outfit changes you are allowed, and whether or not the session includes professional hair and makeup.

I have a team of professional hairstylists and makeup artists to give you a VIP experience during your senior portrait session. We also offer at least two to three outfit changes, with an unlimited wardrobe option for the “Le Diva” session. I also have an AHP Style Closet, which I fill with on-trend outfits and accessories. Seniors can borrow from the AHP Style Closet for their portrait sessions.

Each session includes multiple locations, with the option to add on a studio session. This gives you indoor and outdoor portraits for versatility. You’ll have unique senior portraits that do not look like everyone else’s.

Professional Hair and Makeup

Each AHP session includes professional hair and makeup application, with the option to add an on-location stylist for different looks. Having a professional hair and makeup artist for your senior session is so important. While you may be used to doing your hair and makeup, professional makeup for photography is different than what you might wear every day. Using the right products looks better on camera. How much makeup these artists put on you is up to you, but rest assured, you will still look like yourself! My pros highlight your natural features and make you feel your best.

Location Ideas for Tacoma Senior Portraits and How to Pick Your Photographer | Amanda Howse Photography

Making It Official

Once you know how to pick your senior photographer, it is time to make it official. Make sure the photographer is legal. You can check this out online by looking for their business license number. Your photographer should also offer a signed contract. This protects both the photographer and the client, so it is an important part of the booking process.

Remember that time is of the essence once you have found a senior photographer you love. Book as soon as you can to get the photographer and date that you want. Most professional photographers have a date that their “books” open when they take on clients for the following year. I open my schedule in mid-March for the junior class to book their summer and fall senior session dates.

Let’s Connect!

I hope I am the right photographer for you! If you are ready to book your senior portrait session, it is easy to reach out on my website. You can also email me at [email protected], or call/text me at 530-412-0730.

How to Pick Your Senior Photographer