Even though I'm based in Phoenix, I regularly get requests to travel to Flagstaff, Sedona, or Prescott for sessions, and I am SO GAME. The weather is so beautiful in Northern Arizona in summer and early Fall, and there are so many beautiful spaces that families can really move in (without having to worry as much about running into a cactus!). Below are a few tips for preparing for a session that requires a bit of travel.
Tip #1: Book Early!
While I am happy to accommodate requests for locations that require travel, it takes a bit more planning on my part to pull them off... so advanced notice works in everyone's favor! This also gives me more time to research and scout a perfect location.
Tip #2: Plan Ahead!
While you certainly don't NEED to book a place to stay at your destination location, it can be really nice to have a local "base camp" so that you're able to get into town early, have a place to get ready, and then not have to worry about driving back in the dark. I do recommend finding a hotel and airbnb with a good cancellation policy; if, for example, we get rained out of a session, you may end up stuck with a reservation. Alternatively, you may want to look for a "photogenic" place to stay, such as a cute cabin; that way, if it rains, we have an option for doing a cute and cozy indoor session.
Tip #3: Style for the Season!
I'll never forget the time my husband and I, fairly new to Arizona, took off for a Sedona trip in mid-March wearing flip flops... and then realized halfway there that it was snowing in Sedona (thank goodness for outlet malls with boot shops). It can be really hard to think about choosing outfits with sleeves, jackets, and warm shoes when it's over 100 degrees in Phoenix, but it is so important to be dressed for the right climate for your family session. I have solutions to bring happiness to kids who missed nap time, feel hangry, or are just spirited and independent, but it is VERY HARD to bring joy to a child who is very cold (or very hot!). The best way to prepare for various weather conditions is to layer... start with a lighter shirt or dress, add a jacket, pack scarves and hats just in case.
Tip #4: Plan for Traffic.
Anyone who has traveled from Phoenix to Northern Arizona knows that traffic jams are almost inevitable. Consider leaving an hour or two ahead of schedule and then hitting a restaurant if you arrive early: no last minute stress if you get stuck in traffic AND no worrying about hangry kiddos or partners. Win-win!
Ready to book?
Reach to out to me via the Contact page of my website to book your Flagstaff, Sedona, or Prescott family photography session! Let's go play in some beautiful Northern Arizona fresh air!
Laura Waugh is a lifestyle and documentary family portrait photographer based in Phoenix, Arizona.