February 3, 2019

Chicago Photography Sessions…in Winter

Winter Photos in Chicago


During the latest polar vortex in Chicago, everyone stayed inside. Chicago Public Schools shut down, company’s shut down….my favorite Thai delivery place shut down…

No one in their right mind would have left to go anywhere, let alone a winter photo session in Chicago. But, things eventually went back to normal, and we were able to venture into the outside world.

And, even though it’s not going to polar vortex anymore this year (or, hopefully, ever again), it brings up a great point.

How do photographers without studios continue to hold photography sessions in Chicago Winters?

Great question. But I first want to clarify that if you love a photographer, their style, and their brand, don’t let the fact that they don’t have a studio make you think any differently about them.

When I set up my business, registered my LLC, bought equipment, paid for a website and editing software, etc., expenses were then factored in to my cost of doing business. Adding a studio is a significant cost. Session fees need to cover this expense. Maybe one day I’ll have a huge studio. Maybe I won’t. But right now, I’m an “on location” photographer.

So, if you want to book a session with me in the winter, what happens?

Well, if you are booking a newborn session in Chicago, I currently focus on “lifestyle” sessions, and come to your home. If you want a family in-home session, let’s do it! If you want outdoor winter pictures, we go outside. For everything else?

The answer is easy: we visit the indoor spots that have great indoor light.


Some places require permits. Some places just require permission. If you select a location such as Garfield Park Conservatory or Lincoln Park Conservatory, both stunning spots to have your photo session, the permit fee is $75. Permit fees can vary by location. The cost is added to your session fee, paid by the client, since it’s a choice to go to that particular location. The photographer takes care of registering for the permit, after your deposit is paid.

Want to avoid permit fees and don’t have your heart set on a specific location? Anywhere with natural light will do. Crystal Gardens in Navy Pier, your home, Wildwood Conservatory in Elmhurst, a favorite local spot, or we an bundle up and go outside. Winter photos in Chicago? It will all work.

Any examples?

Part of being a professional photographer is making you look amazing in any setting. The benefits of indoor sessions for winter photos in Chicago, are not dealing with wind, bugs, or extreme temperatures. The benefit of bundling up and heading outside, is to capture those awesome seasonal moments. Below are examples of a recent maternity session at Wildwood Conservatory in Elmhurst, a branding session in a coffee shop, and headshots at Crystal Gardens in Navy Pier.

If you want to update your headshots, capture your pregnancy, focus on a branding session, or get some fun family pictures, we can absolutely make it happen in the winter. And you may get some unique pictures we otherwise wouldn’t have captured! Connect with me to set it up, I’d love to chat. Especially now that we’ve put the polar vortex behind us. 🙂





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