2023 Fall Family & Portrait Mini Sessions


Mini sessions are back by popular demand! It is our most requested session this time of year and we are so excited to announce our mini sessions on NOVEMBER 5th, 2023 at Heather Farms Park in Walnut Creek are now available for booking! Our limited spots book up quickly so make sure you snag yours today and share with your family and friends. You can read more down below to get the answers to the most frequently asked questions.

So what are Mini sessions?

They are short sessions (20 minutes in length) at a specific location (Heather Farms Park in Walnut Creek). You book a time slot (which you can find below) and enjoy your session. These are a fantastic way to get those holiday card photos or simply have updated portraits of you and your family without the length of a full session. Mini sessions are great for kids and dogs because 20 minutes is usually the right amount of time in front of the camera before they start getting fussy. It’s a great way to get a taste of our portrait sessions, especially if you have never done one before. Mini sessions are not limited to families and we welcome couples as well as families with dogs.

What can you expect at a mini session?

Mini sessions are all about fun! Since they are pretty short, there’s no time to feel nervous because we’ll be jumping right in with lots of movement through poses. I love the use of movement to capture genuine reactions and moments between family members. I’ll direct everything so you don’t have to worry about what to do with your hands or where to look.

Where are the mini sessions held? 

At the gorgeous Heather Farm Park in Walnut Creek (301 N San Carlos Drive in Walnut Creek.) An exact marker will be sent out once you book.

What are the timeslots?

There are timeslots every 20 minutes beginning at 10am. The timeslots are: 10:00-10:20, 10:30-10:50, 11:00-11:20, 12:30-12:50, 1:00-1:20, 1:30-1:50, 2-2:20, 2:30-2-2:50, 3-3:20, and 4:00-4:20. Since all the sessions are back to back, it’s very important to arrive early so that we can get started on time. If you are late to your session, there is no way to push it back to make up for the time.

What is the cost?

Our fall mini sessions are $250 for 20 minutes and you will receive 10 high-resolution images.

What is the date of the mini sessions?

The mini sessions will take place on Sunday, November 5th.

How are photos delivered & how many photos can I expect? 

You will receive 10 high-resolution images in a password-protected online gallery. You can download your images and even order prints all from inside your gallery. The editing process takes 2-3 weeks and you will be sent the gallery through your email.

Your gallery will be live for 3 months so make sure to download all your images by then.

What is the booking process?

You can request a timeslot by filling out the form at the top of this page. Once I have your information, I’ll let you know which of your top three timeslots are available. From there, I’ll send over a booking proposal and contract. Once you’ve signed the contract and paid the balance, your timeslot is officially saved. *Please note: All bookings are on a first come, first serve basis and nothing is saved or reserved until the contract and balance are taken care of and signed.

What do you wear to a mini session?

There are no right or wrong outfit choices- the best outfits are the ones that you and your family are most comfortable in. However, I do have some general recommendations based on my experience. Feel free to reach out if you are having trouble deciding between outfits and I would be happy to help.

It looks great when families coordinate outfits rather than trying to match colors and patterns. Coordination is choosing different colors that look good together rather than all wearing the same color. For example: Pink, blue and grey all look good together and coordinate well.

Some things to avoid are bright colors (reds and neons) as they can reflect intense colors onto skin tones. Also, try to avoid patterns smaller than a dime. Tiny patterns cause distortion in colors and can result in a shirt or outfit looking half one color and half another. Checkered shirts and patterns are fine as long as the “checks” are on the larger size. A few other things to avoid are tennis shoes, graphic tees, bold logos, sunglasses, and baseball hats.

You can see some examples of outfits worn in past mini sessions by scrolling to the gallery at the end of this page.

What should we bring to the mini session? 

There’s not much that you need to bring to a session. If you have any props such as holiday items or a cute blanket feel free to bring them. If you have anything more than or something that requires set up time, please let me know ahead of time. If you have young children under the age of five, it is very helpful to bring a favorite stuffed animal or something that makes noise or plays their favorite song. This is useful in getting them to look at the camera and smile. The same goes for any dogs as well.

How many people can we bring to a mini session?

Up to six people are included in the pricing. If there are any additional people you wish to include there is a $25 per person additional fee.

I’m not available on that date, can I pick a different one?

We have full sessions currently available for 1 hour outside of the fall mini sessions. They are an additional fee. Mini sessions are a limited date-specific offering.

What happens if there is inclement weather?

In case of rain, we have a back up date of Sunday Nov 19th. We will be keeping an eye on the weather and will let participants know if there is a change in weather 1-2 days prior.

Can we bring props or backdrops?

Feel free to bring any props as long as they are not too large or bulky or need extensive set up time. Please let me know what they are ahead of time. We won’t be able to accommodate any backdrops at this time but will be using the beauty of Heather Farms park.

Are mini sessions refundable? 

No, they are not refundable but if you can’t make it you can regift your time slot to someone else.


If you have additional questions, feel free to drop me a line at hello@nicoledial.com and I would be happy to answer that for you!

Some of our past mini sessions!