Mini Session vs. Full Session: Understanding the Differences and Making the Right Choice

In the world of professional photography, choosing between a mini session and a full session can sometimes feel like navigating a maze without a map. With differing durations, final product offerings, and scheduling options, it's essential to understand the distinctions between the two to make an informed decision that aligns with your needs and preferences.

Mini sessions, typically lasting between 15 to 30 minutes, offer a concise yet focused opportunity to capture precious moments in a specific location. The resulting product is a curated selection of images, usually around 20 in number, handpicked by the photographer to highlight the best moments of the session. These sessions are often scheduled by the photographer on predetermined dates and may be themed to suit occasions like holidays or specific seasons, such as fall or Christmas.

On the other hand, full sessions provide a more extensive and flexible experience, lasting between 50+ minutes. During a full session, clients have the freedom to choose both the location and date, allowing for a more personalized and tailored approach to their photography session. Additionally, full sessions often include the option for outfit changes, enabling clients to showcase different looks and styles within the same session. The final product of a full session typically comprises a larger gallery of images, exceeding 50 or more, providing a comprehensive representation of the moments captured during the session.

In essence, the choice between a mini session and a full session boils down to your individual preferences, budget, and desired outcome. If you're looking for a quick yet impactful session with a curated selection of images, a mini session may be the ideal choice. On the other hand, if you prefer a more extensive and customizable experience with a broader range of images to choose from, a full session might better suit your needs.

Ultimately, both mini sessions and full sessions offer unique benefits and opportunities to capture cherished memories. By understanding the differences between the two, you can confidently select the option that best aligns with your vision and expectations, ensuring a photography experience that exceeds your wildest dreams.

Reasons to Book a Mini Session:

  1. Save Time: Mini sessions offer a quick and efficient photography experience, ideal for those with busy schedules or limited availability.
  2. Perfect for Kiddos: Families with young children benefit from the short duration of mini sessions, capturing precious moments before attention spans wane.
  3. Low Commitment: Mini sessions require minimal time and financial investment, making them an accessible option for individuals seeking a handful of updated shots without extensive planning or expense.
  4. Seasonal Themes: Mini sessions often coincide with specific holidays or seasons, offering themed opportunities to capture festive moments. Whether it's a cozy autumn setting with colorful leaves or a festive holiday backdrop, mini sessions provide a chance to commemorate special occasions with themed photoshoots.


  1. Generational: Full sessions are ideal for capturing moments with extended family members, providing opportunities for candid shots with grandparents, cousins, and other relatives.
  2. Personalized Experience: Full sessions allow for greater customization, including choice of location, date, and outfit changes, ensuring a tailored photography experience.
  3. More Options: With extended time allocated to the session, clients benefit from a wider variety of images. Additionally, the flexibility to explore multiple locations enhances the diversity of the final gallery.
  4. Greater Control: Full sessions empower clients to have more control over the session, allowing for personalized themes, specific poses, and creative direction tailored to individual preferences and vision.

Do I Offer Mini Sessions All the Time?

Yes, indeed! I have a personal affinity for mini sessions, both as a photographer and as a client. The efficiency of a 15-30 minute session, particularly when working with toddlers, resonates deeply with me. I prioritize extending this same flexibility to my clients. While I do host mini sessions multiple times a year, I also recognize the importance of accommodating clients who seek this streamlined option at their convenience.

Over the years, I've observed various photographers whose work I admire, yet often found their scheduled mini session dates didn't align with my availability. Understanding that this dilemma isn't unique to me, I've chosen to deviate from the traditional approach of offering mini sessions only on predetermined dates. As a blended family myself, I appreciate the challenges of coordinating schedules and prioritizing time together, especially when it involves sharing custody of children.

Hence, I've opted to offer mini sessions on an ongoing basis, ensuring accessibility for clients who may prefer or require a shorter session. This approach acknowledges that not everyone can commit to a full session and that rigid scheduling may not always be feasible. Additionally, I restrict mini sessions to local clientele to maintain efficiency and focus.

Regardless of your choice, what matters most is selecting a photography experience that aligns with your needs and vision. By understanding the differences between mini sessions and full sessions, you can confidently make an informed decision that ensures memorable and meaningful photographs for years to come.

As a photographer, my goal is to provide exceptional service and flexibility to my clients, offering mini sessions throughout the year to accommodate diverse schedules and preferences. Whether you're seeking a brief yet impactful session or a comprehensive photography experience, I am dedicated to delivering stunning images that capture the essence of your unique story.

Thank you for considering my services, and I look forward to the opportunity to create beautiful memories with you and your loved ones."

Cheers! - Jordan