How to prepare for your portrait sitting


It’s very important to get plenty of rest the night before. Puffy and droopy eyes from lack of sleep will affect your appearance.


Avoid new hairstyles, perms or cuts one week prior to your sitting. Come in with a style you feel comfortable with.

Choose a hair style that does not allow your hair to fall across your face; These styles create shadows on your face that are distracting and can make you look older.

For customers with long hair, we recommend that you think ahead about how you would like your hair to appear for the sash photos. Since we recommend highlighting the words on the sash “UCLA” and “Class of 202X” we recommend your hair go back, but it is your preference.

Make Up/Facial Hair

Make Up: If you plan on wearing makeup, we advise to use a slightly heavier makeup than you would normally use.

Avoid using too much makeup because it will make you look pasty. You want to try to highlight your eyes because they are the focal point of a great portrait.

We do recommend using make up that is friendly to flash photography.

Facial Hair: A clean shave is a recommended. Razor stubble or a bad shave is impossible to correct even with digital retouching so we advise you don’t shave the day of your sitting.

For customers with a beard/mustache we recommend that it be neatly combed and trimmed.


During your graduate portrait session you will be wearing a black gown (standard for most colleges/universities), black cap, tassel and UCLA sash (we provide the USC and CSUN for respective students).

Female Customers: We recommend that female customers wear a top with a rounded collar or a tank top. This will prevent your shirt from being seen above the neck line of the gown.

Male Customers: A shirt and tie is the standard dress for a formal portrait.

The color of the shirt and tie is your choice. Avoid colors that clash with each other.

The neck size of the shirt is important. A shirt with a tight neck will create a choked appearance and a shirt too large will lower the location of your tie and give a sloppy look.

Make sure your shirt is neatly pressed to avoid wrinkles. The studio does not provide shirts for your use.

For Everyone: Whether you choose to wear a nice blouse/shirt and/or tie, please come dress picture ready.

This is a once in a lifetime moment, so come looking your best.

As a last resort, we recommend wearing a dark colored top that will blend in with the black gown.


Eye glass glare or the reflection caused by the lenses in eye glasses in a portrait is extremely difficult and expensive to remove.

If you choose to wear your glasses in your portrait session we strongly suggest that you remove the lenses from the frame before your portrait session. The studio will make adjustments in our lighting system to prevent this type of problem.

However, should this problem occur the studio will take no responsibility for the cost of retouching to correct the glare.

The day of your sitting

Show Up Early!

Because of the time limit of our sessions it is important that you show up 5-10 minutes early. Showing up early allows for any time that may be taken up with finding our studio and or starting early if a session before you ends earlier than expected.

BRING A PHOTO ID on the day of your session to be checked in.

For White Board Props: If you purchased the whiteboard prop for your session, please show up 10 minutes early to allow time to write your message.

Our time is as important as yours so please respect ours by showing up early and not showing up late. Showing up late is unfair to your fellow peers who have appointments after yours and show up on time.

We reserve the right to cancel your appointment with the forfeit of your sitting fee if you show up late.

We understand that emergencies show up and we will work with those who can show legitimacy of an emergency.

Rain, traffic, etc are not legitimate excuses for showing up late. It is your responsibility to accommodate extra time for weather and traffic that can be foreseen.

Length of Appointment & Paperwork

Regardless of the type of appointment you made, you will spend the first 2-3 minutes putting on the gown and the remainder of the time having your photos taken.

The photographer will take a total of 6-12 poses depending on the session you booked.

About Awards & Departmental Honors

If you are receiving an award from a department, organization or have a sash, ribbon or medallion you would like to wear in your portraits please bring them with you and let the photographer know.

The studio only provides the college/latin honors cord for UCLA students to wear.