Page 1




WELCOME A my ’s Sto r y


T h e Powe r of Im a g e r y


ALL THE DE TAIL S S e s si o n Pa ck a g e s


Pro d u c t s 16 T h e Pro ce s s



3 0

SES SION INSPIR ATION T i m e w i t h [M o m]


Ac t i v i t y + M ove m e nt


S e s si o n S p a r k s


MAK E YOUR PH OTOS ME AN SOME THING Q u iz : Is D o cu m e nt a r ySt y l e fo r yo u?


AMY’S STORY My cat is perched on my shoulder as I write

you are, there doesn’t need to be a reason to

this. My daughter is playing with a friend and

be remembered. Documenting your family in

I hear their laughter echoing off the walls

this season of your life is always honest and

and down the stairway. My son likely has his

worth celebrating.

head buried in a book about dragons, which

My life experiences have shaped my way of

he is obsessed with and regularly shares

thinking and my perspective on photography.

passages that make me cringe. I’m watching

Both through loss and newness, I crave seeking

my kids grow, find their own way and make

authentic connections and noticing details,

new connections to the world around them

like my son smilling with his eyes, the sound

regardless if I think they are ready. This is my

of my daughter’s footsteps as she gallops

life, right now.

downstairs, or the sound of the garage door

What does your life look like now? Is it

opening, signaling that daddy is home.

organized or do you feel a bit chaotic, all

You are here because you want to remember

the while noticing small moments that bring

this time. My job is to give you a view into your

grounding and joy? Every family I photograph

life through my observations and feelings.

is unique. You may be totally cool hanging

I won’t be creeping around, making you or

out in your PJs, messy hair (because you went

your family uncomfortable. Welcome me in as

to bed with it wet...this is me!) and a cup of

a friend and I will show you beauty, laughter

coffee, or three while you make breakfast. Or

and authenticity in what feels routine; your life

maybe you are dressed, teeth brushed, and

right now.

ready to head out for the day. Whomever


THE POWER OF IMAGERY More than just a memory, photographs encourage growth. What feelings emerge when you look at a photo? It doesn’t have to be old to elicit a response, does it? Documentary photography is more than a style that evokes memories. It helps us focus on our present and create our future. Imagine looking through that box of old photos (I know you have several) and the events that have passed, friendships, loss, and new beginnings. Our lives are so FULL of energy! Everytime you pick up a photo and recall that moment, you experience it anew. Your persepective may be entirely different through the seasons of your life, as new events make fundamental changes to your world view. The power of photography is to both preserve and enlighten. These photos tell your story. Images that portray your grandparents or loved ones who have passed can be a strong connection to who they were even if you were not a part of these moments. One such photo for me is my grandmother, leaning against this old car with her dear husband, both with such mischievious smiles and love in their hearts. My grandmother passed many years ago, but seeing her young and vibrant made me realize she never lost that glow, even in her later years. What lessons can we learn from our photographs? We know by reading memoirs or journals we learn a great deal from those who poured their souls into words. Photographs can do the same thing! History can change our perspective, influence our dreams, encourage our aspirations and lead us in positive directions. Documenting our real selves serves to create curiosity and influence future generations.



ALL THE DETAILS Everything you need to know about sessions, products and how much fun we will have!


Little moments, tender and simple that bring your family together. Yes, of course you want this. 10

SHORT STORY $300 These sessions are perfect for you to photograph shorter experiences, such as a morning together at home or a short adventure to a new location. I also suggest this length for the newly born (hospital, home, or birth center). How do these sessions work? We will plan your session together revolving around an activity - this can be somethingtraditional, special, ordinary, or even “doing nothing..” The secret: the activity is not the center of the photo session. You see, by keeping you engaged in an activity, you will be far less focused on the camera. This enables me to truly photograph your love and connection that happens exactly like the time shared when I’m not present. So while it may seem like you need to seek “the perfect” activity, I can promise you the session is not about the activity, but is about creating an environment where you don’t have a care in the world. Don’t worry, I will help you dig deep and find what is truly meaningful to you and your family.

Sessions last up to 2 hours at your own pace (no rushing from one “perfect” spot to another). Included is our pre-session consultation and in-person gallery reveal and ordering.


Unexpected glimpses of a second that passes before your eyes. These are moments to remember. 12

MEDIUM STORY $500 A delightul amount of time for the kids and parents to chill, get to know me, and enjoy our time together without the rush of the clock. WHAT CAN I EXPECT? A relaxed and fun-filled morning, afternoon, or evening where you get to choose the momentum of the day. Clients often choose to have their late afternoon into the evening documented, especially those with young children. Dinner prep, dessert (c’mon, you know you want to get those messy hands and faces captured), bath and bedtime rituals are such important parts of our day that we often cruise through, but are beautiful in their own way. During our pre-session brainstorm, you will have the opporutnity to plan out exactly what you’d like to do, or we can go with a more casual rhythm. Whatever brings ease and joy is the direction we will take!

Sessions last for 4 hours. This is the perfect time to do a longer planned activity, drive out of town, and create a magical adventure! Included is our pre-session consultation and in-person gallery reveal and ordering.


“Spending time as a family with no time schedule made our beach day perfect. Amy flowed right along with us.�


YEAR LONG STORY $1200 We will spend 2-4 sessions together throughout the year. You get to choose the times of your life you most want documented (firsts, new family member [human or not], events, or “just because”). These days flow like a short story session, but give you a more complete look at your family. At the end of the year, we will view your slideshow, choosing the details you most want to remember; the intimate, emotion-driven feelings that give an elusive glimpse into your life. There is beauty in both the familiar and unknown. When you take the time to celebrate both exciting adventures and mundane routines, your story has a chance to unfold. Imagine one iconic image from each session on your walls; an album that your children reach for because it’s filled with honesty and joy. What a gift!

Session length will vary depending on how many visits throughout the year. You will receive 12 hours of session time in total. It is up to your family to decide how you would like to space it throughout the year.



Caption or testimonial can go here. Or box can be removed. Caption or testimonial can go here. Or box can be removed.


SHORT STORIES HEIRLOOM | 2500 13X10 Custom Heirloom Album (40 Images) Slideshow Full Gallery High Resolution Digital Files ~In Home Design Consultation and Installation ~ 25% off A la Carte

LUMINOUS | 1500 12X8 Custom Heirloom Album (40 Images) 10 High Resolution Digital Files

~ 15% off A la Carte

SIMPLE | 1000 7x5 Flush Mount Album (20 Images) (1) 12X8 Matted Fine Art Print



MEDIUM STORIES HEIRLOOM | 2800 13X10 Custom Heirloom Album (50 Images) Slideshow Full Gallery High Resolution Digital Files ~In Home Design Consultation and Installation ~ 25% off A la Carte

LUMINOUS | 1500 12X8 Custom Heirloom Album (40 Images) 10 High Resolution Digital Files

~ 15% off A la Carte

SIMPLE | 1000 7x5 Flush Mount Album (20 Images) (1) 12X8 Matted Fine Art Print



THE YEARLY Choose between 2-4 days of coverage. Session Fee +1200

MUSEUM | 4500 13X10 Custom Heirloom Album including ~60 images Full Gallery High Resolution Digital Files (4) Fine Art Framed Gallery Prints

HEIRLOOM | 3000 12X8 Custom Heirloom Album including ~60 images Full Gallery High Resolution Digital Files (4) Fine Art Matted Gallery Prints


I recommend a 16x24 or larger print- it’s like putting your favorite stories right on your walls!


FINE ART PRINTS Images are being left on the dusty folders of hard drives and smartphones. While having images in digital form have their meaning, there is no comparison to having your memories in a tangible state. And from the first look at your life enlarged on gorgeous fine art paper, you will never regret investing in prints. All prints are printed on museum-grade cotton paper. Pricing is based on the longest edge. If you do not see the size you wish for display, I am happy to customize.

Frames are hand milled and custom made out of either black walnut or maple. I have several frames displayed in my own home as a testament to the beauty and durability in these pieces of art. You may choose to mat your image or keep a full frame look. Matted art will come with UV protective acrylic.





1600 800








550 200

GIFT PRINTS* [8x10 or smaller] Set of 5: 300

* Gift prints only available with a minimum purchase of $500. Fine Art Prints come either mounted or matted based on display recommendations.


Choose between Japanese silks, luxe linens, and the softest Italian leathers. All made to be cherished for life. 24

ALBUMS & BOOKS This is my most popular product. Your photos will truly be a chronological story, so there is no better way to put the package together than in an album with crisp pages filled with depth and stories. Your album will have durable, layflat pages.

WHY I LOVE ALBUMS (AND KNOW YOU WILL TOO): Enter the glue laminate, nature scene cover album of my childhood. I’m sure you know what I’m talking about. The flimsy binding, the now yellowed glue pages and those amazing photos of your childhood, your parents and hopefully your grandparents as well. These albums hold such fond and thoughtful times. We create stories of our own by remembering those before us.

HEIRLOOM ALBUMS Archival Prints | Lay Flat | Thick Pages | Distressed Leather or Luxe Linen Cover | 30 Images 14X11 1950 12X9 1650

HEIRLOOM BOOKS Beautiful HD Press Print | Lay Flat | Linen or Silk Cover | Flexible Pages | 40 Images 13X10 1500 12X8 1200

Additional pages may be added for $25



DIGITAL FILES With changes in technology, ease of printing and social media, digital files are an excellent way to archive your memories and share them with friends and family.

DIGITAL COLLECTIONS-- Hand-Edited for the finest of detail and lifelong print quality. ARTISAN GALLERY: Single: 200 10: 700 20: 950 Short Story: 1200 Medium Story: 1500 Yearlong Story: 2000

DIGITAL SLIDE SHOW-- Slideshows will be watermarked and offered at a resolution of 720p. All edited images: 750

All digital files are delivered via digital download.


THE PROCESS You have an idea of what you want photographed, but it may feel scary to say yes not knowing exactly how a session works. Let’s talk a little about how my process works, so you’ll understand what to expect from start to finish. Going beyond the photos, your experience is important.

1. The Beginning CONTRACT? CHECK. RETAINER? CHECK. YOU’RE BOOKED! I’ll send you a questionnaire that will help me get to know you. Have fun with it! Sit down with your partner and get into the nitty-gritty, because this will help us all create an authentic and fun session together.

2. Brainstorm Call QUESTIONNAIRE TURNED IN. CHECK. Usually before you’re booked, we have a pretty general idea of what you’d like photographed. From your questionnaire, I’ll put together a game plan for our time together and conduct a “Brainstorm Call” to reaffirm we are planning something you will LOVE.

3. Waiting for Our Session Day THE ANTICIPATION IS ON HIGH. About once a week or so unti our session, I’ll check in with a quick tip (like, everyone wants to know what to wear) or just to see how you’re doing. My goal here is to keep you excited and for your end to feel as stress-free as a day at the spa!

4. The Photo Session WHAT EXACTLY HAPPENS AT THE SHOOT? Everyone’s nerves (including mine!) can be a little on edge at first, so we’ll take a few moments to chit-chat. When I feel we’re ready, I’ll give you my signature pep talk. I’m not a silent creep in the corner shooting. It will feel like you just have a new friend hanging with you. You do not need to worry how you should look/what you should do and I’ll help you through any of those fears. This is where my talent lies and why you hired me, so trust in that. Your job: enjoy our time together. Simple as that.


5. Waiting for the Gallery LET’S CELEBRATE THE FACT THAT YOU ARE BRAVE! You said yes to taking control of your memories. Please reflect on our time together, because I want to know how you felt about the experience. At the time of your booking, you will have received a product guide to help you create your dream display. I will contact you with dates and times to meet for your gallery reveal and ordering session.

6. The Gallery Reveal + Product Ordering SNACKS. DRINKS. MUSIC. It’s time to see your story in photos. You’ll see unnoticed moments turned into custom art. You’ll see photos that make you say things like, “OMG, that is so my son!” You may cry. You may laugh. You will smile. You’ll be hooked to this style of photography! You’ll get to feel and touch the products I have on display, so you can visualize what your story will look like in the products before you purchase. You’ll decide on the must-haves during this session with my help, because I know how hard decision making can be! You’ll leave feeling like this experience was an exceptional decision.

7. Product Delivery Depending on what products you selected during your ordering session, you can expect to receive a call from me within 3-4 weeks after I have placed your order. If you live near me, I will hand deliver your products, because seeing your reaction to how they look is the most rewarding experience I can have as a photographer…. plus we’re friends by now!

8. Our After Party WE’LL STAY CONNECTED. You’ll hear from me to see how you’re doing, fill you in on what I’ve been up to, send you inspiration for our next session, and let you be the first to know if I run any kind of a promo. You have the ability to earn your next session at an exclusive rate by referring your friends and family to me.


I have no idea what would be “good enough” for us to document... You. It is your family, your partnership, the time together that is truly worth documenting. I understand your


fears! You have this voice that says, “We are boring, our house is messy, what could we possibly do for all that time?” Let those fears go and dive into the beauty of trust. Remember you are hiring a professional who is there to latch onto those unexpected moments.

My kids are older, does this still work? Absolutely! Tweens, teens and young adults are developing their own individual narrative. Imagine who they are now and where they will be in the years to come. They aren’t just learning how to walk, or running around like little animals, but they are so unique in their growth and this is a chance to truly celebrate them in this season of their lives.

A session in my home? Do I have to? No, you don’t, but, if it is a concern about your house being too messy or not Pinterest worthy, let that go. Your home is who you are in this moment. You and your family will look back fondly, maybe even with laughter at the designs of the decade. I feel this way looking back at my childhood photos in the 70’s (think puke green, orange and yellow) and it draws me in to very vivid memories of those early years. Our homes hold so much that is worth honoring.

I am not sure I can do an unposed session! Have you had a traditional portrait session? How did that make you feel? I know I feel like I’m performing for the photographer and not enjoying my family or myself. If you FEEL good in the moment, you will shine! These moments can be laughter, snuggles, quiet, or anything that makes you connect with your surroundings.

Hmmm, my husband may not be so keen on having a photographer with us (at all). I get it, really. You are inviting me to hang out like a friend, which, by the end of the 30

session, we will be! I’ve heard from both men and women that these sessions are so much more relaxing and enjoyable because you are doing what you want and not being directed to sit or stand or jump. What does your husband like to do? We will incorporate that into the session. We are documenting your life, afterall, so you can just be you. Sound fun?

Can we include extended family? In a word, yes. The ability to incorporate grandparents, cousins, etc into a session can be a rewarding photo session. Depending on the session dynamics, it may cost a little more to have more people involved, because I have to work even harder to create images with everyone in the frame, individual relationships in the frame, and documentary photos of people individually as well. If you have more of an event in mind, please send me details via email. That being said, I have the best memories of visiting my grandparents and miss them all dearly! So, I encourage you to think outside fo the box and consider a session where you visit Grandma’s house on a Sunday or invite me to the big, family dinner you have once a month.

Will candid images look good on our walls? Personally, I prefer strong, storytelling-documentary images displayed throughout my home. Along our staircase, on our bookshelves, in our bedroom we have memories of babies, toddlers, and almost teenagers recalling sweet moments that I never want to forget. One of my favorites are my kids when they were 6 and 2 and my daughter was blowing bubbles while my son laughs and looks at her with such adoration. They are different people now, but I can recall that moment with perfect clarity and joy. Another is from a family trip to Bali (wow, what an experience!) where we were sweaty, tired and ready to just call it a day, but it’s connected, we were together in the thick of being a family and I adore it. It is such a gift to have these moments and I want to give you this same gift through our session together.



INSPIRATION Session ideas for everyone at all times of year



TIME WITH [MOM] Every mother, whether you work full time or you stay at home, carries a familiar scene for your children. It goes beyond the love and nurturing and yields a sense of belonging and security. Aimee doesn’t fit into any mold. A stay at home mom, amazing baker, consumate planner and post-partum doula, she fills her world with thoughtfulness and beauty. For our session, we chose to hang out after the kids came home from school to create a quiet time followed by a wild soccer match in the backyard.

WHO IS A TIME WITH [MOM] session for? This can be a mix & match session with mom, dad, Grandma, or anyone. A short session would be sufficient to document a few key activities the help represent the relationship between individuals, like a mom and her children. WHEN & WHERE CAN THIS SESSION BE HELD? Anytime, anywhere, indoors, or out. I�ll ask you a few questions about your family dynamics, personalities, and help you decide what will highlight our time together.



Any location where you and your family feel at home will be a place to sink into comfort for our session.


ACTIVITY SESSION Chrisi & Brian along with their children, love weekend hikes, exploring new locations and sharing some quiet time together while getting some fresh air. For this session, we decided on a hike through Powell Butte, a retired orchard full of forest, prairie and wetland spaces.



A simple hour or two hiking is plenty! Part of the

It’s important you match the scene. Meaning, wear

activity session, I’ll show how you interact with each other

something comfortable. When you feel comfortable,

during the activity and how each person plays a role in

you’ll look beautiful. And it will look really off if you wear

the memories in the making. The other aspect is to create

a dress on a hike for family play, for example.

images that awaken all 5 senses in living this experience.



Honestly, don’t even think too much on an activity prior to

The key with choosing an activity is to pick something

filling out your quesitonnaires. This is where my expertise

familiar and comfortable for those participating. It’s not

comes in. If you do want a session at a public place, we’ll

about picking something “cool” for the camera, but to help

plan a time that makes it optimal for less people and secure

each person enjoy each other and the experience.

a permit in advance, if needed.



Seeking captivating moments in the ordinary and seemingly mundane. You are fascinating!


SESSION SPARKS The most common problem my clients have in the planning phase is usually this: “I don’t know what would be worth photographing.” This stings my heart every time. Any ol’ scenario will do, it just takes a photographer’s vision to draw out the magic. I promise. • MATERNITY LIFE: There is a story here. It’s in the very

• A BUSINESS STORY: Telling the story of a business

spot you lounge around & dream of what life is going

through photos will give your potential clients or

to be like as a parent. It’s the details this pregnancy has

customers a feeling like they already know. This is a

affected your life with, like sleeping with that maternity

great way to humanize your business.

pillow or your new frozen mango addiction. This

• GET-TOGETHER TALES: In our home, we host game

session will be part of the story you tell your child when

nights, barbeques, or campfire nights with friends & family.

they are expecting.

The scene constantly changes, because the attendees lives

• A ROAD TRIP OR CAMPING TRIP: First of all, I’m dying to

are changing - marriage, kids, old friends over for a visit,

accompany a bunch of good friends heading out for a

new friends, and more. These photos are perfect to pair

good time. However, this is also great for families that

with stories of “remember that one time....”

like to get out of town and check out a new city or get

• ADVENTURE SESSIONS: Whether a full on vacation, a

into nature for the weekend.

weekend to the family cabin, or a day on the beach,

• AN INDIVIDUAL STORY: Not all sessions have to be about

telling the story of adventure will be an epic photo

a couple or a family. I picture myself telling individual

session. I promise!

stories too, whether you are young, single, and

• THE GIFT OF A GENERATION: What if you don’t hire

independent or you’re older, widowed, and carrying

me for you? What if we plan to tell the story of your

with you a long life of stories - YOU have a story worth

Grandparents or Great Uncle or your parents? What if

photographing today.

they agree to a session & we preserve their story?



MAKE YOUR PHOTOS MEAN SOMETHING A collection of stories to evoke your own memories & an exclusive quiz to help you plan your own documentary session


QUIZ Don’t worry, you aren’t being graded! Curl up with a glass of wine and go deep. Think about your family, your loved ones and the moments you cherish most. In the end, you will know if a documentary session speaks to you.


Grab a piece of paper, a pen, and a highlighter

List 5 family members and/or close friends. Leave some space between each person, as you’ll have more writing to do.

Next to each person, write the first 3 memories that come to mind of time you’ve shared with each person.

Back to the top, go through each person again. Next to the memories, list the first two things that come to mind when summing up who each person is. For example, Grandpa Dan loves woodworking and can be found in his workshop.

Highlight the memories you have photos for WITH YOU in them. Then, highlight the character summaries you have photos for that represent the spirit of each person.

Add up the number of highlights you have photos for and the number you do not.

The Results: If you have 13 or more highlights, you are in great shape! This means you already value the preservation of memories, and likely have a handful of photos to represent each person on your list. That is a treasure! Most people have not had these results. If you have 12 or fewer highlights, this means most of your precious memories are stuck in your mind. You can share these stories through your words, but don’t have a way to visually share the stories and details to others or to reflect upon when the memories become less fluid.

How to obtain more memories in the form of a photo? Ask yourself: Do I love a night of sitting on the couch, glass of wine in hand, and a conversation about days passed while feeling paper memories between your fingertips? Do my days in life seem to be rushing? Even last week is started to become a blurred, distant memory? Do I want my future generation to feel a connection to our life as it is now? Can I be just a little bit fearless, let go of my reservations, and trust Amy to photograph and reveal the love that surrounds me daily? If you answered yes to any of those questions, let’s set up a time to talk further. You may not be able to say this about a new purse or latest electronic, but you will never regret preserving your memories.


YOUR LIFE, NOW. Email me to book. AMY THELEN Professional photographer & educator

All rights reserved © 2019

Profile for amythelen

The Guide to Real Family Photos  

Portland, Oregon family documentary photography. Candid, real, totally you.

The Guide to Real Family Photos  

Portland, Oregon family documentary photography. Candid, real, totally you.

Profile for amythelen