Moms: Stop what you’re doing right now and look up Andre Toro Photography. I have mixed feelings about anything requiring a family photo shoot (*cough* holiday cards *cough*). The reason for my opposition is just how much of a chore it is to coordinate — a chore that is often put almost entirely on the moms. Well, this experience was the polar opposite, and I cannot recommend it enough.
Andre is a mom to two girls and has such a uniquely inspiring story. She was an electrical engineer with an MBA from MIT Sloan (casual) doing photography on the side — until 2018 when she suffered a concussion and received the wake-up call that this side project was truly her passion. And thank goodness, because her work is fine art! She captures the raw, beautiful authenticity of each of her clients and families.
While I’ve been extremely lucky to have some great photos taken of my kids and family, the experience with Andre is full service from start to finish. Let me share all the great touches Andre includes to make this an amazing experience for moms and families.
Andre set up a call to talk through the steps, timing, and process so we would be informed and relaxed when the day came. She then set up a time to come visit my home (I’ve never had this happen before)! During the home visit, Andre went over her packages and gave us recommendations for prepping for the shoot. But, most importantly, she got a feel for us in the comfort of our own home. She explored how our home was styled so she could make recommendations for the aesthetic. She also took measurements of walls we were considering hanging photos on so that she could design wall options for us.
After the initial conversation and measurements, we took a walk through our closets. Andre shared that most people don’t think they have what they need in their wardrobes for a styled family shoot, but they always do! Her advice for styling was to avoid colors we couldn’t imagine hanging in our home and to not be “too matchy matchy” — you want a variety of colors and textures to give dimension to the photos. She helped me choose pieces for each person in my family, and then I sent her pictures of the final outfits ahead of the shoot day.
While the entire experience was lovely, one of my favorite parts was going to Andre’s gorgeous studio in Lexington an hour before the rest of my family to get pampered. Andre partnered with Ariana Lynn to do my hair and makeup — a service she provides for moms with all photo packages! It was such a relief to not have to think about this part and feel confident going into the shoot.
Andre has a styling room to hang your family’s clothing and for you all to get ready. Once my three men arrived, they got changed and then we hopped into the 45 minutes of photos.
She made sure we got all the arrangements of kids and parents, so we had lots of options. The best thing about Andre’s style is that she just went with the vibe of my kids — two boys, 3 and 5, with a LOT of energy! They wanted to run around and change seats and stools, and they had very little time for any still poses. But, she was such a pro and made it fun and silly, which got fantastic results.
Right after the shoot, she gave the boys some little treats, which they loved. Once the guys took off, I got to sit right down with Andre and look through the shots. I’ve never gotten that instant review before, and it was a very cool experience to look through the photos for the first time together!
Through the review process, we put shots into yes, no, and maybe buckets to narrow it down to the finals she would edit. I couldn’t believe what she captured through the chaos of two wild little boys on a Friday afternoon. It was hard to choose — there were so many great ones.
Once we landed on our finals, Andre got to work on edits and then sent us a gallery. She was also able to show me a variety of ways I could style the wall she measured during her visit to my home. It was so cool to see the rendering!
Once the gallery was finalized and sent to us, we got the prints included in our photo package and had the opportunity to select some beautiful add-ons. It was a full-service experience from start to finish.
Andre’s work really speaks for itself, and I can’t recommend this experience enough to moms. Andre takes all the stress out of coordinating a family photo shoot and delivers a gorgeous reflection of the uniqueness of your family — memories to treasure forever.