Cake Smash Frequently Asked Questions:
When should I book the session?
It’s never too early! I recommend booking the session with at least two weeks before you need the images ready (for display or to post on birthday!) so I have enough time to edit! I also need a couple of weeks to plan your session, to buy/make props, order the cake etc.!)
Where does the session take place?
At this time, all sessions are done in my studio in Ramona, CA. I am not offering in-home sessions until further notice. If you are interested in an outdoor cake smash session, I do offer them as well! Keep in mind that outdoor sessions take place 60-90 min. before sunset for the best light (which depending on the time of year - may not work with your little one’s happy time!) And there may be limitations on set style/decor and their may be a travel fee as well!
How do we decide on a theme/set decor?
Once you book, I have you fill out a planning questionnaire. This is great to communicate ideas you already have, if you are totally lost on what to do, I always have ideas and suggestions!
How long does a session last?
It depends a bit on which package you book but generally sessions are 60-90 min long. I start by spending about 10 min chatting with you and interacting with your little one to warm them up to me and the space. Then we move to our sets. If doing a portrait set, it’s usually about 10 min, cake smash set is usually 15-20 min and the milk bath is usually about 15 min. One year olds don’t have a lot of endurance for much more than that!
What can I do to prepare my little one for the session?
The best advice I have is to make sure your little one is rested for our session, so scheduling it with their nap time / happy time in mind! I can work with a shy baby and a hungry baby, but there is no solution to a tired baby but sleep! :)
What if my child doesn’t like the cake?
To be honest, most babies don’t “love” cake. Some don’t like the texture, some don’t like the taste (it’s just too sweet!) but most will dig around, smear it and “finger paint” with it. If they aren’t digging into the cake, we can put some familiar foods (puffs, Cherrios, berries) into the back of the cake for them to pick out ! From the camera point of view, you can’t tell it’s not cake! I also have small wooden spoons available for your kiddo to use to dig in and make nice big messes!
What should I bring?
Besides a happy baby? Nothing! Nothing is required on your part unless we have previously discussed you bringing a special outfit or prop to incorporate into the session. I even provide soap and towels for clean up, as well as swim diapers to use (if desired) during the milk bath! But you are welcome to bring your own items if your little one has allergies or skin sensitivity (although I launder all my studio items in ‘All Free and Clear’ detergent)! My goal is to make it as easy for you as possible!
Who should/can come to the session?
With current Covid restrictions still in place, it does help to limit how many people are in the studio at one time. So ideally just mom and dad will be there with baby! Let me know if you need/ want someone else to attend! My studio isn’t that large and honestly, when there are too many people in front of baby, it can be overwhelming for them!
What can I expect when I arrive/What is the flow of the session?
I will spend some time chatting with you and letting your little one warm up to me….trying to get a few smiles so I know they are relaxed. Then we start shooting! Depending on which package you select determines which sets I include but if doing the full experience, we start with simple/classic portraits first, then the cake smash (with some non-cake pictures on this set first) then we end with the milk bath set. IF you aren’t doing a milk bath, I do still provide you with some water, soap and towels to clean up your little one after! And that’s it! You get to head home and I take care of all the clean up!
What should I do during the session?
You know your little one best and what makes them smile! Standing behind me helping me get smiles is best! We don’t want too many distractions around me or you will end up with a lot of photos of baby looking left and right and not into the camera! Feel free to bring items that you have that make baby happy! I do have an Alexa in the studio to play music too!
How many images will I get from the session? Can I get the RAW/Unedited images?
After the session, I will send you a link allowing you to view the (unedited) images from the session (a proof gallery), from there you will select which images you would like edited. How many images you select is based on the package you selected when you booked (anywhere from 5-20) but you can also purchase additional images (to be edited) if you see more that you like! RAW images/Unedited images are never sold or released but as I mentioned above, you can always purchase more images to add to your selections that will be edited for you!
How long until my images will be ready after the session?
I usually upload and send you the proof gallery from the session the same day (or next day at the latest!). Once you make your selections and send them to me, it may be up to two weeks to get them edited and returned to you!
Can we combine a family session with the cake smash session?
I don’t offer any combined sessions with Cake Smash Sessions. I like to keep the focus on baby only and as I mentioned, they don’t have a lot of endurance at this age, so adding additional family dynamics and variables into the images cuts into their “happy” time. I suggest scheduling a separate session (on a different day) for families!