Family Lifestyle…. or Family Documentary?

When it comes to family photography, you may have an idea that you want fun, candid portraits that really show the personality of your family.  Something unique, unlike any other family out there—because isn’t every family a little bit different?  We all have our own inside jokes, Saturday morning routines, causes for tantrums—you name it!

Then you get in touch with a photographer and find that you’ve got options, and therefore, DECISIONS to make!  Of course, options are never a bad thing.  You just want to make sure you’re going into those decisions educated, and I’d love to give you an overview of what we offer at Jenny Penney.

Jenny Penney has two types of family sessions.  The “Family Lifestyle Session” and the “Family Documentary Session.”  So what are the biggest differences and which one is right for your family?

Difference #1: Time

Family Lifestyle Session – 1-2 hours

Often centered around an activity, we spend some time playing and interacting, and then some posed shots of everyone in the family together and individually.  I like to start in home, if possible, and then head out for a bit of an adventure around the neighborhood.


Family Documentary Session – a flexible half-day

Though it’s certainly possible (and probable) to get some beautiful and poignant images with a shorter session, spending a half day with your family allows everyone to let their guard down, and after a while, forget I’m even there.  Which of course leads to more of a connection with each other, more real moments, and ultimately more of a true story of your family.

Difference #2: Cost and What’s Included

Family Lifestyle Session Fee – $125 (+tax) – Session fee covers the Initial Consultation, time spent photographing your family, and the careful editing of approximately 40-50 images from our time together.  All print products and digital files are purchased separately at the Viewing Session 1-2 weeks after the shoot.  Clients can set their own budget and purchase accordingly.


Family Documentary Session Fee – $825 (+tax) – Included in the cost of the session is the Initial Consultation, time spent photographing, the careful editing of 125-150 images, and a Custom 8X8 Designed Album, featuring 15 images from our shoot and the digital files for those images (with the option to add more images and upgrade to a 10X10 album).  Tan or black leather cover with optional title imprinting.  Other print products and digital files can be purchased separately at the Viewing Session 1-2 weeks after the shoot.


Which Session is Right for You?

Family Lifestyle Session

  • Families with a newborn or one child under a year
  • Families in need of portraits of the kids for some upcoming event or milestone
  • Couples with no children (or no human children, anyway ;), or couples who are expecting soon
  • Private people who don’t necessarily want a longer day with a stranger (but I promise, I’m not strange!) in their personal space.


Family Documentary Session

  • “Chaotic” households. All that chaos translates into AMAZING images!
  • Families with more than one kid
  • Those who value the true story over the “perfect” picture
  • Families who are open with the world about themselves, and ready to invest in their family history.

Hope this is helpful for those out there considering a family session with us, or anyone else!


For more information about Jenny Penney sessions, or to check our availability, email me at  I’m available for travel throughout the Puget Sound and beyond.  And I’m looking forward to getting to know your family!