There are THREE options for Holiday Photos with Sara McConnell Photography this year.  BOOKING BEGINS VIA THE VIP LIST ON OCTOBER 2nd 

(1) Studio Sessions – Christmas at the Farm

November 2nd, 3rd, 4th, 5th, 10th and 11th

(all sessions take place in the morning)




The theme of this year’s Holiday Studio Sessions is “Christmas at the Farm”.  I have created a Christmas kitchen inspired set for babies & children and a snow covered set with live trees for family photos.

All Holiday Studio Sessions are 15 minutes long.

(2) Studio Sessions – The Original Holiday Light Mini Sessions

November 17th and 18th

(Friday morning & Saturday morning)


Moment Session
-10 minute long session for children and babies (siblings only, no family photos).  Ideal for 1-2 children.

Memories Session
-15 minute long session for children and babies (siblings only, no family photos).  Ideal for families with 3-4 children or for shy little ones who may need more time to warm up.

See Photos from the 2016 Holiday Light Set

(3) Outdoor Sessions – Winter Wonderland

November 19th (Sunday morning)


-10 minute long Moment Sessions at an Outdoor East end location.
-Sessions are available for toddlers (2+), children, teens & families (all children must be walking, immediate family members only).  Please do not book an outdoor session if your little one is younger than two or not walking yet.
-The set and location will vary depending on the weather conditions & location.
-The inclement weather date for these sessions is November 26th.  You must be available for both dates.

See Photos from the 2016 Outdoor Session Set

A Different Kind of Holiday Session Experience

I understand how important your memories are as much as I understand how sometimes booking a photography session becomes “one more thing” to do rather than something to look forward to and enjoy. I am as passionate about the photographs I create as I am about making my photography sessions fun, stress-free, and an experience you look forward to.

This year for your holiday session let me worry about all of the details and planning so that you don’t have to!

No surprises:  My 2017 sets have been designed, photographed, and you can book your session knowing exactly what to expect.

Online booking:  I know you’re busy, which is why my sessions are booked through my boutique.  You don’t have to wait to see if you got the date and time you wanted and there is no back and forth emails and delays.

Prompt and on time: My sessions run on time and without delays or last minute changes.  I understand that busy families have a lot of commitments and my priority is to ensure that your time is respected.

No uncertainty: We will let you know every step of the way what to expect and how to prepare for your session: when to arrive at the studio, what to bring, and what to wear.  My session coordinator is happy to help you choose your outfits and answer any questions you have about your upcoming session.

First name basis: Because of my detailed client preparation process when you arrive at the studio I know all of your family’s names, your kids’ ages, and what they like and don’t like (yes, I know the Paw Patrol theme song off by heart).  We don’t waste time at the start of the session figuring out what poses you want because I already have all the details about what’s most important to you.   

Backstage: When you arrive for your session there is a quiet waiting area with a change table, a washroom, and chairs where you can sit and wait.  There are books for you to read to your kids and you have time to get everyone dressed and prepared for your time in the studio.

Choice: You know when your family looks their best, which is why I have you select the final images you would like to have edited and retouched.  Not only do I photograph all of my sessions I am also responsible for editing your beautiful memories.  My attention to detail doesn’t end when you leave the studio, it continues until your final gallery is delivered to you.

Customer service: I book a limited number of sessions to ensure that my first client of the day receives the same wonderful service as my last client of the day.

No delays: Another reason I book a limited number of sessions is to ensure your final images are edited, to your specifications, in a timely manner.  Your gallery is prepared immediately following the session (2-3 business days) and your final images are ready within 3-5 business days.  I know how important it is to have your photos ready to send out to family and friends.  


Frequently Asked Questions

How do I book my session?

Sessions are booked online in the boutique.

How much do sessions cost and what is included?

Please see the boutique for all the details.

I’m not available on the date for the type of session I want.  Can I book the same session on a weekday or another date?

Sessions are only available on the dates listed above.

We also want maternity / newborn / cake smash photos as well as our holiday photo:  Can you set up the Holiday set another day so we can do it all at the same time?

The Holiday sets are only available on the dates listed above because they require specific lighting set-ups but also due to the time it takes to set-up the backdrops and props. Because of the space these sets take up, it’s not possible to use other backdrops when the studio is set-up for Holiday sessions.

My studio is spacious and is currently located in my home.  In the City of Ottawa businesses are permitted to operate in residential properties but are only legally allowed to use up to 25% of the space.  For this reason I have limited my studio space to comply with the bylaws and as such can only set up 1-2 studio sets at one time.

Why aren’t holiday sets available on other dates?

As a full time family photographer I have commitments to my clients for time sensitive sessions during the month of November.  In between holiday sessions I am photographing birthday, newborn, and maternity sessions.

There aren’t any sessions left on the date I want.  Now what? 

Please add your name to the waiting list for the session you’re interested.  There is a waiting list for each of the three Holiday Sessions included in the online listing for each session type.

Can we bring our dog to the session?

Dogs are not able to participate in Holiday Studio or Outdoor Sessions.

How do I pay for my session?

Payment in full is required to secure your session spot.  Payment is processed via PayPal.  You can pay using your PayPal account or using a credit card.

What are the session options?

There are three options this year for Holiday photos (see the descriptions at the top of the page).

What if my baby isn’t sitting up?

I have a variety of props and furniture that I incorporate into the sets so little ones can be photographed posed and/or propped up.

Why can’t we have our family photo with the holiday lights?

For safety reasons and due to the size of the set, family photos are not possible with the holiday lights.

How can I guarantee that I get a session on the day I want?

My Front of the Lens clients have first access to my booking schedule, which means those sessions are booked first.  If you want guaranteed access to my Moment Sessions, consider becoming a Front of the Lens client.  Front of the Lens Packages are available for sale from January to July.

Is 10-15 minutes really enough time?

Absolutely.  I have photographed nearly 3000 sessions and work with amazing assistants.  Families return to me again and again because I work quickly, I make the process fun and enjoyable, and I know how to create beautiful artistic memories in a short period of time.  Little ones don’t have long attention spans and my goal is to make the session as fun and stress-free as possible.

What props do you provide? 

I provide the sets but not clothing-related props like hats, headbands etc.  To prevent the transmission of lice, clients must bring their own hats and headbands.  This also ensures that hats and headbands fit properly and aren’t drooping into your child’s eyes or too tight.

When will we see the images from our session?

You will be provided with a viewing gallery 3-5 business days of your session.  The gallery will be available for 3 days and once your selections have been made you will receive the final digital images, via digital download, in 3-7 business days.

What happens if we are running late to our session?

Because sessions are only 10-15 minutes long I cannot extend your session time.  Sessions are scheduled back to back, which is why it’s important to arrive at least 10 minutes early for your session.

Can we change outfits during our session?

Because sessions are only 10-15 minutes long it’s not possible to change outfits during your session.

Can grandparents, cousins, aunts and uncles come to the session?

Holiday Sessions are for immediate family members only (parents and their children).

How do I change my session date and time?

Please make sure to choose your session date and time carefully as sessions cannot be rescheduled or switched for other session types.

Where will the sessions take place?

Christmas at the Farm and Holiday Light Sessions take place at my studio in Orleans (Avalon).

Winter Wonderland sessions take place at an outdoor location in the east end of Ottawa.

What do we wear?

I provide my clients with detailed suggestions on what to wear and how to prepare for their sessions.

What happens if we can’t come on the day of our session due to illness?

Sessions postponed due to illness cannot be guaranteed to be rescheduled with the same theme or set.   Themed or location-specific ten and fifteen minute sessions that are rescheduled will be offered an alternate themed session at a later date (if available) or a regular studio session.

What happens if it’s really cold or there’s a snow storm on the day of our outdoor session?

All decisions regarding rescheduling and postponing sessions due to weather or location conditions will be made on the morning of the session (1.5-2 hours before the session).  Sessions will not be rescheduled due to temperature, overcast skies, or wind, unless a weather warning has been issued.