Portrait Session FAQ

We know you have questions, and we’ve got answers! Our goal is to make your family portrait session relaxed and fun, so please take a moment to read through our most commonly asked questions and learn more about what a session with CHP entails!


How do we book our session?
• Once we’ve established availability, sessions are considered booked once the contract and non-refundable session fee have been submitted. Our booking process is 100% electronic, and all sessions are scheduled through our online booking system – we try to make it as easy as possible! You will be emailed the link to your booking proposal, and just follow the prompts to submit the contract and session fee. Once submitted you’re all set!

Do you offer mini sessions?
• Not during season, and not as stand alone sessions. During season beach sessions are in such high demand that unfortunately we are unable to offer mini sessions. We do typically offer minis in the late fall, on a pre-determined day. If you’d like to keep up-to-date on our minis, feel free to join our VIP Facebook Group.

How will we see our photos?
• We try to have a little preview up within a couple of days, and full galleries are ready within 2-3 weeks after your session. The gallery link will be emailed to the booking party, and they may forward it along to everyone else. Galleries remain online for 2 weeks, and may be extended for $10/day should additional time be needed.

Where should we take our photos?
• Beach portraits take place at Coquina Beach in South Nags Head, and typically start around 1.5 hours before sunset. Coquina is the best OBX beach for photography and where 99% of the the images you see on our website have been taken. Alternate locations are subject to availability. *Travel & admission fees may apply.

We have little ones, can we choose our session time?
• For optimal lighting and results, and to remain consistent with our style of photography, our sessions are scheduled 1.5 hrs before sunset. Start times vary, and typically start anywhere from 5-7pm based on time of year. For example, during the summer months beach sessions typically start around 7pm. While we understand little ones tend to go to bed early, we only offer sessions during these times. However, we’ve found over the years this generally ends up being a non-issue and most kids rally once they’re out on the beach!

What if I need to cancel?
• We offer a limited number of sessions each week and cancelling last minute prevents us from re-booking the date. Most weeks a significant number of inquiries are turned away due to being booked out, and therefor our session fees are non-refundable and due in full at booking, We understand that situations can come up and in the event you cannot make your session we will do our best to reschedule, one time with at least 48 hours notice, based on availability. If no dates are available, or you are unable to choose a date at that time, a rain-check will be issued to use towards a session at a later date within one calendar year. *There are no refunds or reschedules or no-shows.

What if the weather is bad?
• Typically we’re able to work around the weather by adjusting our start time a little earlier if it looks as though we have rain coming or it’s going to be overcast. We suggest you stick close to home are are flexible the day of your session should we need to adjust our start time. We intentionally take a limited number of sessions each week to allow us built-in rain days. In the event it’s a total rain-out, your sessions will be moved to another day. For this reason, we do ask prior to booking that families be flexible with their session availability.

What if our kids don’t behave?
• That’s the fun of being a parent…you never know if they will or won’t! 🤪 In all seriousness, they tend to surprise you and it’s VERY rare we aren’t able to get at least something! Kids aren’t robots and sadly there’s not magic formula to make them cooperate. What I will say is that we try to make sessions fun – and it’s the main reason we incorporate both structured groupings and candid photos. Sometimes little ones just aren’t having it – they cry or won’t smile or feel shy…and that’s ok. We do what we can, and when in doubt we have you interact with them vs trying to get them to just smile at the camera. We’ve also found sometimes just capturing those candid moments work best for cranky kids – and sometimes it might just not be your year but you can always look back and remember the time the kids cried during family portraits!

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