Kanzan Cherry Blossoms at Regent's Park in London. Photo by Cristina Ilao

It's that time of the year again and mini sessions are back!


Mini sessions are seasonal offerings available only on fixed dates and at designated locations, usually a beautiful park, a garden or in my studio. These sessions are shorter than the regular portrait sessions I offer and are perfect if you just want a few photos or don't require a full session.


The next batch of mini sessions happening this year:

- 28 October (Saturday) at the Ely studio in CB6 3TD


A mini session includes the following:

- twenty (20) minutes shoot

- three (3) months access to your own secure online gallery

- five (5) digital images with an option to purchase additional digital copies and prints from your online gallery

mini sessions

Mini-Sessions FAQs

How is a mini-session different from a full session?

There are several differences between a mini-session and a full session.

  • Full sessions allow you to go through the whole process of having a consultation to ensure the shoot fits your exact needs. It gives you the flexibility to choose the date, timing, and location of your photo shoot. Mini sessions are only held at designated dates, times, and locations already chosen by the photographer.
  • Full sessions include at least 2 hours of coverage with the option to extend to half a day or a full day. They give you a good variety of photos to choose from. Mini sessions only last for 20 minutes with 5 free complimentary digital photo downloads and the option to purchase more.
  • Full sessions are available throughout the year whereas mini-sessions are only offered at certain times, usually at the beginning of each season or on special occasions like Christmas time.
  • Full sessions can be rebooked and postponed with a portion of your fees available for refund if you really have to cancel. Mini sessions are non-refundable and can’t be canceled.

Are mini-sessions right for me?

Mini sessions are great if you just want a few photos and you’re happy for me to choose the location for your shoot. It’s great for quick couple portraits, annual family photos, and updated profile photos.

Email hello@cristinailao.com if you require more coverage and are interested in a full session.

What time do I need to arrive at my mini-session?

Please arrive 5-10 minutes before your schedule. Mini sessions are done back-to-back so there’s no wiggle room if you’re running late. You’re paying for a specific time slot so you don’t want to lose on some of the time you’ve already paid. For example, if you booked a session from 9:00 a.m. – 9:20 a.m. and you arrive at the location around 9:10 a.m., you’ll already lose the first 10 minutes you paid. You’ll still be able to have your photos taken but your remaining shoot time will just be from 9:10 am – 9:20 am. If you arrive after 9:20 a.m. or after the time slot you booked, your session fee will be forfeited.

What’s the cancellation policy for mini-sessions?

Mini-session fees are non-refundable and non-cancellable. If you really can’t make it to your session and you postpone with 48 hours notice, you’re allowed to use the credit for a future session. You can only postpone once.

If your session is scheduled to be held outdoors and the weather forecast isn’t ideal for a photo session, you’ll be contacted and given the option to reschedule to another future session or get a full refund.

Can I gift/sell my mini-session to someone else if I can’t make it?

Yes, you most definitely can. Mini sessions are not cancelable but they are transferable. Make sure you give 48 hours notice and provide details on who the session is being transferred to.

How long will it take to get my mini-session photos?

You’ll be given access to your online gallery 2 weeks after your mini-session shoot date.

How can I book my mini-session?

Head to the links below. You’ll be directed to my booking form so you can choose your mini-session slot from the options, fill in your contact details, and pay the mini-session fee.

You can sign up to my mailing list if the current mini-session dates don’t work for you and if you’d like to be updated when new mini-sessions are released.