Q: Where are you located?
A: I offer one Saturday a month (only 2 spots available) in Portland Oregon and offer occasional pop up one day events in Portland Oregon. I also am available for limited travel events with my partner Angelina Luciano.
Q: Do you have a studio?
A: I have never worked in studio. It is my preference to travel to locations whether they be local or in another city so I can keep things fresh for my clients as many see me for repeat sessions. Sessions in Portland take place in private homes, hotel suites, AirBnB rentals or sometimes around the city and/or in nature. It’s all up to the client. For travel events, sessions take place in beautiful private rental homes.
Q: I really want to do this but I am nervous having my pictures taken. What if I don’t like them?
A: I always tell my kids that if you look for something wrong in anything, you will always find it. Making portraits for people is a specialty I have dedicated myself to for fifteen years. I am very good at what I do and I have a natural ability to make people comfortable during their sessions. Empowering my clients has always been my greatest gift. It is a symbiotic relationship built on trust and being open to the experience. Like all art, art is subjective. This is a not a money back guarantee business. You can expect your photos to be on par with the images of clients I have showcased on my site and that my partner has on hers. You can view her work here: Angelina Luciana
Q: Do you include hair and makeup?
A: Yes, hair and makeup is included with all sessions in all locations.
Q: Why do you shoot with someone else in other cities but not locally in Portland?
A: At the end of 2014, as my career was at it’s zenith, I was forced into early retirement due to spine disease. Since then, I have had several surgeries and after five years of healing my body, I felt comfortable trying to return to work again in a limited capacity. Working with one client locally on occasion is a doable ask of my body. However, the physical toll of 10 hour days of back to back clients that travel sessions demand and the travel itself is just too much to ask of my body alone. I thought travel events would never be something I could do again until I noticed the work of a photographer I mentored. Her work jives well with my work and I felt if I could share the load of travel events and post processing with another photographer, it would make them possible for me to perform again. 2020 is our test year!
Q: How do you split up the shoot with another photographer?
A: We have the schedule set up so each client has a three hour session. After an hour for hair and makeup, we have ample time to work with the client’s comfort and preference. We can take turns shooting or shoot tandem together. It is completely up to the client.
Q: Will you be adding other cities to your travel in the future?
A: I get this question a lot. As much as I would love to say yes, the truth is, I don’t know if I will be doing any travel after 2020. It may turn out to be too hard on my body so if visiting me in Portland is not doable for you, I highly recommend booking the 2020 event closest to you or that would double a great getaway weekend.
Q: What are the package options?
A: You can find investment options here: Investment Options
Q: What if I don’t see a package I like?
A: I/We are happy to work with clients to custom build a package at any of the set price points of existing packages. Just let us know what you would like.
Q: What payment options do you offer?
A: We offer:
– 10% discount on all packages that are paid in full at time of booking;
– $300 deposit at time of booking and monthly payment plans up to 6 months;
– Creative financing through our online Client Portal for clients who want to spread their payments out on multiple credit cards;;
– 10% Military discount for active duty, spouses and veterans (military ID required);
– 25% discount for all Pop Up Events (see Booking for description).
Q: I want to do this but is there a more affordable package you can customize for me?
A: With the options for other discounts and interest-free payment plans, I have made it as affordable as I can without reducing the value of my work and expertise. People get sticker shock. I get it! I have a family and rarely splurge on luxury items for myself. When I do, I do my research and I get the very best service I can find. I want it done well, done right and I want to enjoy the experience. I offer that level of quality and service to my clients.
When I was doing session fees and product separately, my most popular package, by far, was the digital package with print and web files. It offers clients all of their images from their Proofing Gallery Reveal, fully retouched, in print and web format, with full printing and posting rights for unlimited personal use. My clients love having all their photos and they love the freedom and affordability of having whatever they want printed at a much lower cost than purchasing directly from the photographer.
Before I retired, sessions were $300 and the digital package was $1000 and about 85% of my clients purchased the digital package. So, when I decided to only offer my services in all-inclusive packages, I used my popular digital package as a reference point, put the session fee and the digital package together and reduced the total by $100. From there, I built my other collections following the product options my partner has found the most popular with her clients over the last five years while I was out of the game healing from surgeries.
Q: Why is everything prepaid? Isn’t there an option to pay for the session by itself and then decide on a package when I get my proofs?
A: I’m going to be real and avoid flowery business jargon here. Given my health issues and the length of time I have been doing this, I am no longer open to the risk involved in structuring pricing that way. Requiring all-inclusive prepaid packages allows me the peace of mind of a streamlined business model, the freedom to book less clients in a day so that I can give my clients more time (sessions are now 2 1/2 hours instead of 90 minutes so now I can book up to 8 clients a day as opposed to the 15-18 a day I used to have to book) which facilitates a much more nurturing and relaxed environment that a rushed schedule simply cannot provide. I appreciate your understanding and I know it is an investment but I also know that my work is worth it. 🙂
Q: What if I need to cancel or reschedule?
A: Our policy is that deposits are non-refundable and required to book your space. If notice is given within 2 weeks, we can reschedule or refund you completely if we are able to fill your spot. Since 2020 is a test year for me, I can’t promise reschedules in travel cities but if you are unable to make it to your session, with advance notice, I can always reschedule you in Portland. You can read the policy here: POLICY
Q: I’m sold! How do I book?!
A: Outstanding! You can book with me directly for Portland sessions, here: Booking
You can book a travel event on my partner’s website here: Rachel Stephens & Angelina Luciana 2020 Travel Events