The differences between MINI vs PETITE vs FULL Photography Sessions

I get asked all of the time whether I offer mini sessions, and people are often shocked to find out what they are inquiring about isn’t actually what they want to book. Thankfully, I have exactly the perfect solution for them that simply goes by a different name: “The Petite”. Let me explain.

Mini Sessions

back to school minis at local park with antique desk

Mini sessions are great for themed shoots like around special days like Halloween or Christmas because you get a couple of photos captured to commemorate the event to share with friends and family. These types of sessions are very short appointments held back-to-back on one specific date, at one specific location, with one specific staged setup, which allows for a price point that makes it possible to schedule more than one throughout the year. My personal favourites are my Back to School minis which happen every year in September with the studio’s antique desk.

Standard Full Sessions

Standard/Full sessions are where you get to enjoy the entire experience with your partner or family, in addition to the resulting portraits. Especially with working with a full-service studio, everything is personalized to your preferences and needs. Before the session even happens, your photographer is getting everything ready for you: you get to select the date that works best for your schedule, we find the best location to suit your preferences, help you select the best wardrobe options for you family, and we pick the best time of day to bring your vision to life. The session itself is meant to be more than just a button-clicking appointment; you get to enjoy having fun and being silly with your family, with no strict time limits on capturing those moments. Once the session has happened, the experience continues with an in-person ordering appointment where you get to go through the printed proofs from your session to pick your favourites and the photographer will customize the artwork you purchase.

standard full outdoor family photography sessions in Ottawa and Manotick, Ontario

Petite Sessions

petite session at a local tree farm for holiday cards

Petite sessions are almost like a preview of the full-service experience: you get all the perks of a full session, on a smaller scale. The shorter sessions are a great option for booking a few throughout the year to create an annual family album, and now is the perfect time to book during the fall season to create beautiful images for holiday cards. I would love to work with you to make that happen!

To put things into perspective, I have created a visual for you below so that you can see all of the perks at a glace, and decide which option suits your needs and wants best:

Full SessionPetite SessionMini Session
– choose your own date
– up to 1-2 hours
– up to two locations of your choice
– flexibility of start time for lighting options (sunrise, golden hour, sunset, etc.)
– pre-session consultation and prep guide with session tips, wardrobe recommendations, etc.
– access to the studio’s client closet (wardrobe options)
-unlimited wardrobe / outfit changes
– ability to alter your hair and makeup looks to match outfit (professional HMUA also available for hire)
-personalized ordering appointment with printed proofs
– gallery of up to 50 images to choose from
– choose your own date
– up to 30 minutes
– one location of your choice
– flexibility of start time for lighting options (sunrise, golden hour, etc.)
– pre-session consultation and prep guide with session tips, wardrobe recommendations, etc.
– access to the studio client closet (wardrobe options)
– personalized ordering appointment with printed proofs
– gallery of up to 25 images to choose from

– back to back sessions on one specific date
– up to 10-15 minutes
– one specific location one specific staged setup
– prep guide with session tips, wardrobe recommendations, etc.
– gallery of up to 10 images to choose from  

The most obvious difference is the resulting gallery, not just because you can see the number, but rather because you can literally SEE the variance in the images in the full session versus the mini (see gallery examples below). The biggest behind-the-scenes difference is in the planning prior to the session and the amount of attention and detail that goes into making sure your session goes smoothly. Mini sessions are planned once for everyone that day (just as much energy goes into making them perfect!), whereas your petite or full session is planned uniquely for YOU and your family so that they reflect your preferences and vision.

Now that you have a better idea of what to expect, we can get a clearer indication of what the perfect session is for you, whether it is just you, you and your partner, the whole family, or a fun date with your best friend. Reach out to or use the contact page to send a message so we can get planning!

Family Portrait Artist: Pregnancy, Baby’s First Year & Beyond
(613) 371 – 4594 |

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