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Your portraits on YOUR wall * Lancaster Portrait Photographer

One of the things I offer to all clients is an in-person ordering session.  It’s a session where you come to my home, and together we view your portraits on a large projection screen, talk through what you want to do with them (wall portraits, gift prints, album etc.), and you place your order.

For those of you who have not done a portrait session, your response to this might be something like – “My schedule is pretty busy as it is.  Wouldn’t it just be easier if I could just do all of this online?”  My answer to that would be an emphatic ‘NO!”   Let me show you why.    :)

When someone schedules and pays for a portrait session – what is it that they want out of it?  The number one reason is that they want wall portraits.   Either they have a big empty space they hope to fill, or maybe they just want to update pictures that are already there.    However, as most of you know, this can be an intimidating task because it is so hard to visualize what it will look like!  Do you want one large portrait, or a grouping?  If you want a grouping, then how do you know which ones will look good together?  And, perhaps the hardest question of all is what size will fit best in that space.   A picture that is too small for the space can look rather pitiful, and one that is too large can look just as bad.

So, here is where the in-person ordering session comes in.  Get ready for this…it’s pretty amazing, and you might have to re-read it to be sure you understand correctly.   Ready?!   At your ordering session, I can use a picture of YOUR wall space and virtually put any arrangement of your portraits on the wall so that you can see them true to scale.   How cool is that?!  You tell me what portraits you want to see on your wall, and then we change the size of the portraits until they best fit the wall space.   The end result is that you know with 100% certainty, what your wall portraits will look like in your own home (without even being there).

Let me show you an example of how I used this for my home recently.  I have a wall space I’ve been wanting to fill for a while.  I’m TERRIBLE at trying to imagine what would look good.  So, here’s a screen shot of ProSelect, the program I use:

proselect room view

This is the wall space with the collage I wanted to possibly put on my wall. And, keep in mind that at an ordering session, you would see this on a large projection screen.   The print size here is 24×36 – and you would see it at an actual 24×36 size.

This wasn’t the first size I tried though – I also tried  20×30, and 30×40 to see how they would look in this space.


Those certainly aren’t the only options for my wall space though!  Maybe I wanted one picture of each of my kids on the wall.  What size should I get?  5×7, 8×10, 11×14?  Which portraits look best together? Here is a screen shot of what would work.  I found that 3 11×14 framed prints would fill this space perfectly.


Or, maybe I just wanted one large single portrait, but I really wanted to see what it would look like black and white.  I love black and white portraits and love that I can instantly show clients what their portraits would look like as black and white.

Also, notice the frames around the prints.  That is another great option.  We can either view them with no frame to see what a gallery or float wrap would look like  (like the collage above).  Or, we can virtually add a variety of mattes and frames to your images to find one that suits the picture best.  Pretty cool, huh?  :)

There are many other reasons why an in-person ordering session makes the process a lot easier…but I’ll save those for another post.  This one is long enough!

Emma - August 19, 2010 - 11:54 pm

Very cool – thanks for sharing :)

Diane - August 19, 2010 - 11:57 pm

I’m going to check out that software — seems like a perfect all in one answer. Thank you.

cbportraits - August 20, 2010 - 12:24 am

Diane, if you do in-person proofing – you will wonder how you ever did without it! :)

Andrea - August 20, 2010 - 3:16 am

So how do you go about obtaining the photo of your clients wall.

cbportraits - August 20, 2010 - 12:07 pm

Andrea – I either take it if I am at their house for a session, or ask them to email one to me.

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