Right now, I am in the time of life that seems pretty chaotic. I have a four-year-old and a 1-year-old and my family has that manic energy of people with small children. Our house is never clean and we eat a lot of chicken fingers. While it can be crazy, I love my family to bits and this pandemic year and a half has really bonded us. My son is really into superheroes and my daughter is into “borrowing” my accessories. They are just these sparkly luminous kiddos. These memories are the kinds of things that you treasure and I want a record of us right now. I love family photos and was fortunate to get a session with Shoott through Columbus Mom! We thought we’d “shoott” our shot (I love puns).
What is Shoott?
Shoott is an AAPI female-run photography business. It was started in 2018 in NYC and has expanded into 60 cities. Columbus is one of them! When I looked up the company I also noticed friends in other cities like Indianapolis had used them too. There is no sitting fee and you pay $15 for the photos you like, $120 for 10, or $240 for the whole gallery. They have locations all over the city and you can meet your photographer in many gorgeous parks or cool locations. The purpose of this company is to support freelance photographers and you get a 30-minute session. The website was easy to navigate and it took no time at all to book a spot. It was very intuitive and user-friendly.
Before the Shoott
I love to plan things and am extremely detail-oriented. The website was really easy to navigate and we looked at all kinds of places in the city. We chose Inniswood Metro Gardens because it’s one of our favorite places to go as a family.
Once I booked the shoot and location, I got notes about what to do and suggestions for the shoot. For example, we were advised to get there at least ten minutes early. We were told where to meet our photographer and they sent ideas for the shoot such as good ideas for family pictures. A few days before the shoot, I got a text from our photographer and she asked if I had any questions. I originally had planned on wearing a very bright yellow dress and I asked her what she would match with that. She suggested blues and purples or neutrals. Upon searching through my husband’s clothes, we realized he had nothing that matched so I went with a black jumpsuit. Our photographer, Jenny, checked in with us before we got there and told us what she would be wearing. She was on time and prompt and excited to work with us. She was easy to communicate with as well.
The big issue with my family was how to dress. My husband is a jeans and t-shirt guy and I love loud clothing. I’m a maximalist and he is anything but. He wore a nice neutral button-down and I wore my black jumpsuit with gold accessories. My kids wore blue things because they have blue eyes. My mom came in a blue dress. I didn’t want our pictures to be matchy matchy and wanted our personalities to shine through.
Shoott suggested having easy things to switch up the outfits so I brought a few accessories for us, including headbands, hats, and a chunky necklace that my daughter is obsessed with. We used clothes we already had in our closets to keep it natural.
During the Shoott
We chose our favorite spots to take pictures, such as the entryway, the rock garden, and The Secret Garden. I love how the place almost seems like a ruin and it just feels magical. I thought we were the only ones who called it that until I looked at the pictures and saw it really is called the Secret Garden.
It was a hot day and we were sweating a lot so 30 minutes was the perfect amount of time before my kids were done. My mom packed snacks to eat outside of the park and the kids were motivated by that. This one of many tips that helped so much!
I wanted to have more candid shots of the family because I didn’t want family photos that seemed less than authentic. Jenny took pictures of our interactions and gave us good suggestions for poses. It flew by, to be honest. I had planned on taking more pictures for the ‘Gram but it took a lot of concentration and focus to get the pictures done. We were wondering how many would be good because my son got really distracted and my daughter was cranky (we later found out she had an ear infection). It was a good experience and we were happy to do it. Afterward, we went and got ice cream, and then the kids just crashed. It was long enough to get great pictures and short enough to avoid meltdowns. It was timed perfectly. Chef’s kiss.
Before we left Jenny asked me how I wanted her to edit the pictures. She suggested colorful and bright. She said we would get the pictures in 3-5 business days. We actually got them in about 1! I looked at the pictures and I was so impressed with how beautiful they turned out.
Shoott has a thirty-minute time frame because they vet their photographers and trust the people they send. I put some favorites on Facebook and the response was great from all of my friends. I know you shouldn’t care how many likes you get, but honestly, it’s a wonderful feeling when things turn out well. I have a happy wall in my room with photos of my family so I see them before I go to sleep and when I wake up. I can’t wait to add these pictures to my happy wall!
Jenny really captured our family at this time. You can see how much we love each other and our personalities. I’m a lady who loves a coupon almost as much as I love tasteful pictures of my family.
If you are interested in hiring Shoott, use the code COLUMBUSLOVE and get 15% off 5+ photos.