How long have you been a photographer?
I have always had a passion for photography, since my childhood. I remember always using the point and shoot disposable cameras. My senior year in high school, I gave myself 5 years to enroll in photography school upon my high school graduation. That is how much I loved photography. Though I didn’t end up enrolling in photography school until 9 years later.
Once I graduated high school I went straight to cosmetology school. I took it my junior and senior year in high school and had a scholarship to continue my education. Less than a year I graduated with my cosmetology license. I stayed in the beauty industry until I had my daughter and became a stay at home mother.
Moving forward to 2009, I found out that you can enroll in online photography school! My mind was blown, I was conflicted with leaving my daughter and missing out on all the precious time with her and going to school. I know right, crazy! I jumped on that bandwagon and enrolled in online school so I could stay home with my daughter. I was confused on how I was going to learn dark room online? I found out later its strictly a digital photography school. Which is fine, I’ll learn all that later!
I started my journey to becoming a photographer July 2009 when I enrolled in with Art Institute of Pittsburgh Online Division. I found out later that year we were going to be stationed in Managua, Nicaragua for 2 years, so thankfully I choose right because I was able to continue my education because I was doing it all online!
In 2012 while living in Texas, I launched Crystal Arroyo Photography in September. So I have been in business since September 1, 2012. That is when I started calling myself a photographer.
March 26, 2014 I officially graduated with my Bachelor of Science in Photography, yay! I traveled so much and never took a break through my travels, and it’s a huge accomplishment to have my Bachelors Degree! I am also back in TN and walked with The Art Institute of Nashville on June 20th to have a formal graduation.
Now I can officially call myself a professional photographer!
What type of sessions do you offer?
I offer couples and engagements, maternity, newborn, family, children, head shots, product shots, birth, modeling shots and even events, such as baby showers, homecomings. The list continues!
Where do you do your sessions?
I offer professional studio and natural light location photography. Clients have the choice of a studio session or a location session or both! I have an in home studio. I allow animals inside my studio to be incorporated into family sessions.
Are you a legal photography business?
Yes I am with taxes and everything!
Do you have insurance?
Yes I do!
What is required to book my session?
I require 50% down at the time of booking to secure your slot. Once we have discussed a place and a time and a date, I will send you my contract that can be filled out electronically through my webpage. I also give clients an option to pay their retainer through my website, or I can invoice you. I would need your retainer within 24 hours for your slot to be secure.
How many images do I get?
You will not receive every image that I take. I will take a few of each pose to make sure no one is blinking, etc. I use these images in case I need to create a composite to create that perfect picture. I am known to switch faces/people with another picture in Photoshop.
I always tell clients you will get a minimum of 20 images. Clients normally will receive 20-40 images depending on if the session is done in studio or location. Location shoots typically come out with more images than studio.
I will not be that photographer that gives you the client a bunch of images that are the same. I will give you a variety of poses.
It is my job as a professional photographer to choose the images that are best, and make any corrections, such as creating composites in post production.
What is your turn around?
I typically will have your session completed within a week, though during the busy season, I tell clients 2 to 3 weeks.
Do you give out a Copyright release/Full rights to images?
No, the images will always remain property of Crystal Arroyo Photography, I do give out a print release, which is where you can choose your own lab. A lot of people will get copyright and print release confused. They are two totally different things. My images will always be mine, but you as a client have permission to choose your own lab to print through.
Do you offer prints?
Yes I do, I currently send off my prints and canvases to a professional lab and I also offer albums that I create then have a lab print and mail back to me. For those who are interested in ordering prints/canvases or other products through me, you can view the images and pricing through your online gallery.
Do you offer a CD?
Currently all my clients receive a customized CD with a print release, and an online gallery (and the opportunity to choose prints through me) of their images.
You offer customized CDs?
Yes, another go big or go home. I purchased a printer that actually prints onto the CD (NOT a sticky label). All clients will receive an image of their session on their personal CD that is actually printed onto the CD. Again, I love doing things myself instead of sending off to the lab. It is fun for me!
Do we get the hi resolution files?
What programs do you edit with?
I use Lightroom 4 and Photoshop 6, and well camera raw as well.
What should I/We wear?
I want you to be comfortable and show your personality in your style, therefore I am not picky. Though I have been asked so I normally say stay away from bright colors, such as reds, greens and yellows. I do think these are beautiful colors in dresses, I think it’s not so great in shirts. With these colors you tend to get a splash of this color on your skin. Red especially reflects on your face and skin in images. I normally tell clients colors like whites/blues/grays are good.
How long are your sessions?
Typically a studio session can last up to an hour, to an hour and a half. A location session can run close to 2 hours or even more. I don’t do timed sessions, and I schedule accordingly so no one feels rushed. Though when it comes to kids, when kids are involved, they run the show and when they are done, then well we are done. 🙂
What should I expect during a newborn session?
Newborns are best photographed before they are 14 days old. Everyone will say this, but it’s not always true. All babies are different and I have shot newborns up to 3 months old for a newborn session.
Younger babies will sleep longer and have a deeper sleep, and when it comes to specific poses, their bellies are not as full so you can bend them in poses you wouldn’t be able to when they are over 14 days old. Older babies are awake a lot longer, which may make the session run longer.
I recommend trying to keep your baby up for at least an hour before arriving if all possible. I also recommend waiting to feed your baby until you arrive at the studio.
Once you arrive, and you feed your baby, they will be in a beautiful sleepy slumber. I know this doesn’t always happen, just saying what I would recommend for a smooth running newborn session.
During the session, I will shoot family, mom with baby, dad with baby and children with baby. I will also photograph baby by themselves on the bean bag and in various props. Expect to spend at least 3 hours in the studio!
I will smooth skin, remove baby blemishes and rashes and scratches in post production.
Do you shoot weddings?
I am currently not accepting weddings at this point. I am currently 8 months pregnant (as of May 2016) and may resume with accepting weddings by next summer.
FAQ will always be updated!