Works for Me: Portrait Innovations

***Updated to add photos at the request of the lovely and persuasive Bitsy Parker***

Every year since Joshua and Kate were six and four months old, respectively, Emily and I have taken them to get their pictures done together. The first three years we went to the portrait studio of a local department store that I really love whose logo features a red circle inside another red circle. I can’t bring myself to print the name of said store because I love it so much, and I can’t believe I m about to speak ill of it. But I am. The pictures were always pretty good, and the price was always very good, but last year, when the kids were two-and-a-half, the pictures were terrible. The photographer only got two shots total for us to choose from. TWO! Now I realize that have two two-year-olds as subject matter isn’t the easiest assignment in the world, but COME ON! TWO SHOTS??? Emily and I were pretty unhappy to say the least. The one day, while strolling in the new outdoor section of our local mall, Emily discovered Portrait Innovations, and the heavens opened, and the sun shone down, and a rainbow appeared. Ok, all that really didn’t happen but it was a momentous discovery!

Portrait Innovations is a photography studio that uses open layouts, real ACTUAL state-of-the-art digital cameras (instead of a “clicker” remote-controlled camera like the one the horrible photographer at the horrible portrait studio used), and they have a lot of neat backgrounds and props for your kids to play with and get their picture taken with. Plus, they cannot accomodate up to 40 people in one photo! The aforementioned department store photogrpahy studio will only take up to seven, which meant once Sophia was born, my sisters-in-law and I had to find a new place to get our yearly picture of “the grandkids” taken for my mom. Of course, the new place we found (thanks to Emily!) is Portrait Innovations! The pictures turned out great, and the price is excellent! They have an all-the-time, no-coupon-needed portrait package for just $9.95 that includes the following:
One 10 x 13
Two 8 x 10’s
Four 5 x 7’s
Four 3 x 5’s
Plus 6 greeting cards!

All for $9.95! No sitting fees or other fees except sales tax! And here’s the kicker: you get your pictures printed out in about 15-20 minutes. FITFTEEN MINUTES! I used to wait THREE WEEKS at the other portrait studio!! And of course, the pictures are fantastic! The family photo I included in this post is from Portrait Innovations. In a couple of weeks, I’ll be getting Sophie’s one year pics done there and I can’t wait! So head on over to their website and see if there’s one in your area! I’m so glad Emily found Portrait Innovations, because it SURE works for both of us! Here are some examples:

My family photo, May 2007

Sophia’s 6 month photo, May 2007

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22 Replies to “Works for Me: Portrait Innovations”

  1. So glad you told us about that. I have been thinking about trying them. I’m gonna make an appoinment. Too bad you don’t get some kinda referral gift.

  2. Thank you! My husband and I have been married over 9 years, and the last time we had any portraits done was at our wedding! I think we may do pictures now to send with our Christmas cards, especially as I found a location very close to our home! I wonder if they’ll allow pets in the pictures…

  3. Our family has used them for two years now. They are awesome! Plus, if you buy a certain amount you get ALL the photos taken on a CD. Great deal!

  4. Your pictures are great! My friend also recommended this place. We also had a bad experience before(jcpenney). We went for our first pics with our daughter(in that same ducky dress!). She took ONE photo and missed many opportunities to take more. She replied “Your daughter doesn’t smile”. Actually, she smiles all day long. We walked out.
    Thanks for the tip on this place and what a great package price. I am going there.

  5. I agree…this is the best place to go! We went for my daughter’s six month photos and we’re taking her back for Christmas pictures. The only problem is I just couldn’t decide which ones NOT to get!

  6. Not be be nitpicky or anything, but I would like to make one minor correction.
    In the second paragraph, about midway through, the author says, “they cannot accomodate up to 40 people in one photo”. This is a minor typo, she ment to say they can accommodate up to 40 people. In fact many of our studios have a photo on the wall with 42 people many of whom are younger children, and I’ve seen a session with 47 adults at the studio I work for. As you can see, Portrait Innovations’ studios are spacious enough for your whole family, or your active, all-over-the-place little-ones.

  7. Hi, there. It does sound like a great deal and the pictures are cute. But, being a photographer, I feel as if factory studios are just that, factory. I want to know my clients by name and have them come back to me. You will always get the same lighting at a studio like this. Being a mom, I understand that being unique is fun too. Just for thought.

  8. I’ve gone there three times with my kids. The picture are always cute and I love that they are printed the same day.

    Here’s my problem, every other person’s pictures I look at from there, are of the extact same poses. Where’s the innovation and creativity that they talk about on the website.

    Just a heads up for anyone going in. Don’t be afraid to speak your mind and tell them what you want out of the pictures or different poses to do.

  9. Just landed on your blog – thank you for this info. We are planning to try PI. Can you get the 9.95 deal for 2 pics? I have 2 kids -would I be able to get a package for both kids or need to get it with both in the same pic? Do you know prices for extra sheets or to purchase a cd to print from?

  10. I’ve always been pleased with the Portrait Innovations (PI) in our area. I have not gone anywhere else with my 4 children in the last 3 years. We’ve used Picture People and Sears but PI is our favorite. You can only get one of those $9.99 deals per family per promotional period, so be prepared to pay more for a second child. It’s worth it, though.

  11. I have made my sons 4 month picture appointment there. They said the price was 16.50 per collection. And, there are 3 sheets per collection. I figured that wasn’t too bad!

  12. This will be my 3rd or 4th year going there. I love it. They have caught some very memorable unposed pictures. These are the best. The package is 9.95 and you get 40 pictures with that. It is well worth every penny that we spend even the extra!

  13. We’ve used Portrait Innovations for at least 6 years for familyportraits at Chistmas time. The only complaint I haveis that sometimes they overbook & your appointment can be an hour or more late. But, we’re always happy with the price, the pictures, and the service.

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