With the holidays rapidly approaching many people are starting to think what a wonderful thing it would be to have holiday photos of their family or children to share with their family and friends. Holiday photos make the perfect present to gift to loved ones and share through holiday cards and emailed greetings. But did you know by the time most people think about booking a holiday session it’s too late? Every year I have to break the bad news to dozens and dozens of families that they are too late to book a holiday session and unfortunately they will miss out this year. 

Wait, how early do I need to book a holiday session?!?

Believe it or not, holiday sessions are wrapped up in mid-November.  That’s right! It comes as a surprise to so many people that sessions aren’t available in late November or December and today I wanted to explain why these sessions are offered for such a short window of time.

Ottawa holiday family photos

I’m not the boss

I photograph family, maternity, and newborn clients, which means my schedule is dictated by due dates and birth.  Because of the time sensitive nature of maternity and newborn sessions, I can’t close down my studio for holiday sessions for more than 2 weeks.

Ottawa holiday newborn photo of baby

By the books

Because my studio is located in my home, I’m limited by how much space I can dedicate exclusively to my business. 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. That means when it’s the holidays in the studio, I can’t photograph any other sessions.

Ottawa holiday lights photo of two children

The season of…

Joy & Germs.  When the cold weather arrives, so do illnesses.  I schedule my sessions earlier in November because it means fewer clients are sick.  I also need to put aside days in my schedule in case I get sick and need to reschedule my sessions.  

Less is more

I know how important these memories are to you, which is why my entire team works incredibly hard before, during, and after the session to make sure you have beautiful photos.   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.

Ottawa holiday family photos

By truck or plane or hand delivered

The photos I take are used for holiday cards and gifts, which means we need to have them in clients’ hands as soon as possible to ensure that you have time to order cards, gifts, and mail items overseas.  Twice in the last few years we’ve faced Canada Post strike action over the holidays, which meant significant mail delays. As a result, I wrap up my sessions in mid-November to ensure that everyone has time to prepare for the holidays and send their loved ones photos and cards.    

What about sessions in the snow?

For a few years I offered outdoor sessions in late November and early December.  Unfortunately Mother Nature ruined the fun with wildly unpredictable weather. We made it through wind gusts, -18° temperatures, frost bite, and mud, only to realize that happy families are far more beautiful than snow.  My most recent outdoor holiday sessions were at the end of October and they were fantastic! The set was beautiful and festive and everyone got to wear their beautiful holiday outfits without freezing. 

Ottawa outdoor holiday family photo of 5

Do you want to make sure you don’t miss out on a holiday session?

I know you’re busy and you have a million things to do on your to-do list so I make the planning and booking as easy as possible for your holiday sessions. In the lead up to booking for holiday sessions I send along updates and early notice of when booking will start through my VIP List newsletter. The booking links are sent directly to your inbox through my VIP List so you can select which session date and time you’d like from my boutique so you don’t have to worry about delays and missing out on the most popular sessions of the year. If you want to be on the list so you don’t miss out next year, just add your email address here and we’ll take care of the rest!