Where is Lance Hill Photography?

Our studio is located at 710 Hwy 96 W, on the North Shore of Snail Lake, directly across Hwy 96 from the Shoreview Community Center.



Are you open on the weekends or evenings?

Not on a regular basis. We regularly photograph Tuesday - Thursday, 10am-6pm.  The best lighting for outdoor photography is in the afternoon once the sun has hit it’s peak (think 2pm, 3pm, 4pm, 5pm)  Only by request (and additional session fee), will we take appointments on Saturdays.  With 30 years in this location, we’ve created designated outdoor sets that are optimized for the late afternoon.


What are your most popular times?

We have three popular times of the year:

  1. June-August - school is out! And... school sports don’t typically start until the last two weeks of August. There is nothing to miss! When you’re a high school senior, summer is the easiest time of year to have your senior portraits taken.
  2. Fall colors - It all depends on the first freeze and wind, but we typically find the last week of September and first week of October to be the richest with Autumn colors.  Since these 7-14 days are all there is for fall images, these session dates tend to go very quickly!
  3. MN State Fair : August 27-September 7, if you are working the fair / attending the fair / please be cautious of this event so you don’t double-book yourself!


How do I get the images I want?

Lance will take 60+ images of you with your 1-3 different changes of clothing in the studio and outside.  Keep in mind one-outfit sessions only have images taken indoor.  Two outfits and more will go both in and outside the studio for the session. Your portrait session will last about 50 minutes for the typical session (2-3 outfits)

Bring your interests and your hobbies - your favorite sport (uniform and/or equipment), car or truck, pet (dog, cat, horse, etc.), best friend, fishing pole, musical instrument, and whatever else is “you”!  This is included, complimentary with your session!  Lance will do a buddy shot of you and a friend, family member, or pet during the session as well, also complimentary.  Many photographers charge extra for these options, including a ‘park’ session.  We have it all right here for convenience of location and knowing the lighting the best!

If you have specific ideas or wants, please share them with Lance when you arrive. Cut out pictures from your favorite magazine or catalog and bring them to your session. More than anything, Lance wants to make sure you get senior portraits you love. He’ll capture a variety of expressions and is confident you’ll have something you like.


What if it rains or there is bad weather?

If you bought a session for at least 2 outfits, some images can be taken outdoors.  But if it looks like rain or wind will be crazy, give us a call before you leave and we’ll decide if we need to reschedule the outdoor portion of the session. Regardless, we’ll still do the indoor images. Keep in mind, summer and autumn showers come and go quickly; it might be raining where you are but sunny here. There are few times rescheduling is necessary. But we’ll work with you to find something that works for both of us.


When will I be able to see and order my portraits?

The possibilities are endless with your images. Traditional or out of this world, it’s all about what you want and like. 

That said, there are a LOT of options with digital photography. You will have the option to post your session images to the web.  A password-protected, online gallery, viewable from anywhere in the world, is a nice way to view your images and get opinions from friends and family that don’t live near you.  There is a $215 nonrefundable deposit to post your images to the web.  Of this charge, $200 will go towards your final order.  Online galleries will be active for 5 weeks from their posted date.

When you are ready to finalize your portrait choices, we invite you to call our studio to make an ordering appointment.   At this ordering appointment, you’ll not only see your images in a variety of sizes, but we’ll walk you through your many options so you can make a comfortable, educated decision. 

This viewing appointment is very helpful for clients. Back in the '80s, clients were stuck choosing options from a stack of 4x5 proofs.  No more.  With digital photography, you’re now able to virtually see the finished product before ordering it.  It some instances, like custom collages and enhancements, we will email you a proof before sending it to print.

During your ordering appointment, we will help you sort out your favorites, listen to your wants, steer you clear of unnecessaries, and help you find a collection and/or a la carte items that fit your needs.  This helpful process allows you to note all the pros and cons of each image and find the best possible price for the images you want.

Bring anyone that you want to be a part of the decision making process, because you’ll be placing your order at this time.  If you need an additional ordering appointment, there will be a $25 fee.  Please keep the number of attendees to the ordering appointment at four people or less.


What tips can you give me for my hair, glasses or makeup?

Hair - it’s best to have your hair cut at least a week or two before your session. This will give it a chance to fill in or relax.  If you aren’t planning on having your hair freshly cut - don’t worry! We just don’t want someone coming in after a bad hair cut and then be super not happy about the images that result from it. For that reason, please don’t try a radically different haircut or style too close to your session - what if you don’t like it?

Makeup (guys too!) - Here’s a quick hint that will greatly enhance your images - before your session, stand two feet in front of the mirror and dab a small amount of cover-up makeup over any noticeable blemishes. If you can’t see them in the mirror, they’ll show less in your photographs and make retouching you, easier and more accurate for us!

Nails (guys too!) - your fingernails (and sometimes even toenails, if you are barefoot!) will show in your images.  Be cautious of having chipped fingernail polish, bandaids, etc. in your images!

Glasses - If you wear glasses most of the time, you’ll want to wear them in your portraits. To eliminate glare and reflection, we have small screwdrivers to pop the lenses out of certain types of frames for the session.  Having the lenses out eliminates glare and distortions of your eyes.  If  you choose to wear your glasses with glass, keep in mind the glass glare and reflections will be removed at your expense.

Braces - You don’t have to wait to get them taken off.  Our digital photography skill-set has allowed us to take many sets of braces off over the years - and the smile underneath looks great!


What do I wear?

The more clothes you bring, the better.  You may now use them all but together, you and Lance can choose the ones that go best with the backgrounds and scenes that you like. Include your favorites, something formal, everyday clothes and anything else you might want. Above all, bring two changes of a solid color, long-sleeved top.  Long-sleeved, solid colors create a richer look!

We have a great spot for many clothing ideas and combinations on our Pinterest pages (girls, guys, family, etc.)

Senior Guy Clothing Ideas (click!)

Senior Girl Clothing Ideas (click!)

Guys - For a traditional portrait, bring a suit or sport coat. If jackets aren’t you, medium and dark colored sweaters or shirts photograph well. For casual and outdoor photos, dress comfortably with jeans, sweaters, shorts, sweatshirts or T-shirts.  Try to steer clear of patterns and stripes as though will make the viewer focus on your clothes instead of on you!  Same thing with logos, if you have a giant Abercrombie & Fitch logo on the front of your shirt, it is very distracting!

Girls - Bring the colors and clothes you feel best in. Bring formal dresses, sweaters or lace for the more traditional look. For casual and outdoor photos, dress comfortably with jeans or khaki.  If you have certain clothes you like, it’s most likely because you look good in it - bring it!  We can always help you narrow down once you get here.

Most seniors will bring a small bag or suitcase with a variety of options in there.  It is better to be safe than sorry!  We will help you choose what looks best!


What else can I bring?

Among other things, Lance’s photography is unique because he works hard to bring our various facets of your personality. That’s where the fun begins! Bring your favorite hat, musical instrument, pet, sunglasses, hobby, letterman jacket, car, uniform or sports activity.

When you bring extras, it makes your session different from others, so use your imagination!  Whatever you come up with, Lance will create something great for you!


How much retouching and artwork will you do?

All of our work includes retouching of blemishes and circles under your eyes.  By request, we will remove stray hairs, scars, moles, and freckles. As mentioned earlier, on special requests we can digitally remove braces for an additional charge.

Lance’s digital artwork shows the true scope of his creative mindset and is very popular.  If you have ideas, or looks you want, please let us know ahead of time so Lance can create images that will go best with the look you’re wanting.


What about my yearbook photo?

Your yearbook is included FREE and we’ll send it to your school for you (electronically is most popular).  Please keep track of your yearbook deadline, and check to ensure your image has arrived.  Keep in mind : NOT all schools accept yearbooks from photographers outside the contracted studio chosen.  It is worth asking, as some will make exceptions!  If you are not sure about the date your yearbook is due, please ask your school yearbook advisor.

A complimentary yearbook is included with your senior order.  If you have not yet placed your senior portrait order, a yearbook will cost $100 and this amount will be applied towards your senior order once that is decided.


Can you help me pick a frame?

There are a variety of frames available for you in all sizes. To determine the size and shape of your portrait in frame, consider the wall space where it will be displayed. There is a tremendous difference between a 11x14 and a 30x40 when displayed over the same sofa. Interior designers recommend that a portrait occupy at least 50% of the wall space. If not, the viewer’s attention will be drawn to the wall rather than to the portrait. 8x10s are NOT good for wall display because they need to be viewed very close.  This size is appropriate for a desk or table display.

We offer the convenience of complimentary framing for you so you can take your portrait(s) home ready for hanging or to present as gifts.


When will my finished portraits be done?

When you’ve placed and finalized your order, 50% of the order total is required down to start processing.  We understand the importance of why you’ve chosen us for your portraits. To ensure your portraits are a level above others, each image is hand retouched and enhanced in meticulous detail before being printed for complete quality control of color tone and image impact. Each image is protected with a pressure laminate to ensure quality for generations to come, unless you specify otherwise.  For example, the Basic Finish, does not include this special protective finish.  The Custom Finish, and above, do.  For those clients choosing Basic Finish for their portraits, we highly recommend the print is displayed under glass for protection.

Typical orders take 4-6 weeks to complete. You will be notified by phone that your order is complete and ready for pickup.