My kids are just 18 months apart in age, and most likely those first years were often simply a matter of survival. Of making it from one nap time to the next feeding. But I don’t remember any of that. I only can recall the good. The dance parties and belly laughters, the cuddles and forever adventures. I guess it’s the miracle of motherhood, the way we sift out the gold alone and hold it tight... These parents are in the trenches of life with littles. But a few more years and they will only remember the joy. And that is why I love this job. Because I get to show them how much gold they really did have.
I recently read a most amazing answer from another photographer who was asked what her favorite type of genre was to shoot (families, newborn, engagement, etc). She responded it wan't the type of session that made it a favorite but rather the individual people themselves. It was like I suddenly had this epiphany that I probably knew somewhere back there but just never fully thought out. Happiness and kindness are like magnets. And beautiful souls is my favorite genre. Every single time.
I don't shoot weddings and so I naturally don't do a ton of engagement photos. But these two are getting married in Texas and decided to celebrate first they would capture some memories at their favorite of all places--the beach. And my goodness Laguna showed off for us in all its colorful glory! So perfectly fit for them. Two people who were so obviously made for each other.
It’s always a slightly odd feeling when I photography adults only. They actually do what I ask and stand where I place them for at least three seconds at a time.😜 These two were the best and made me want to start shooting these so much more! Just no weddings.😉💏
We met in Laguna for a high tide sess and I think the water worked its way to our advantage. This generally crowded place was almost empty making for all those great landscape shots that really is the point of shooting at the beach, right? ;-) A little wet, a lot of laughter, and all the good times.
“I wish I had not always been in a hurry to get into the next thing: dinner, bath, books, bed. I wish I had treasured the doing a little more and the getting it done a little less.”
When you let the kids run in the water a lot of fun happens. When you jump in with them I am your new best friend forever. ;-) This life with young kids has in moments of stress and frustration, but mostly its joy. All the good kinds of pure and happy little voices full of laughter and excitement. I have found that the best sessions, the one that fill my photographer's heart to overflowing, are those where the parents don't stress about perfectly behaved, clean, or calm kids. Its the ones who embrace life as it really it. Who simply enjoy their time together. This is when the real magic always happens.
Getting to watch new parents care for their newborn baby has to be one of my favorite parts of being a photographer. The mutual love and care that overflows from them without a second thought. The way they immediately team up in diaper changes, feedings, soothing and cuddling shows first hand how beautiful family really is. One helpless babe, two head over heels in love adults, and I get to capture it unfolding in front of my lens. It may not yet take a village in the terms we often think of things. But it takes their little village together, learning one another's rhythms, adjusting to their forever life together. And my goodness what an amazing village it is. <3
These parent’s sunsets used to consist of long leisure strolls along the beach, hand in hand as they calmly watching those ocean blues crash along the shore. Now those same hands are swinging and dancing babies and making sure no is being washed away by those same blue waves. The best part though? These are the sunsets they wouldn’t trade for the world. And these are the kinds that make my photographer heart soar.
Also that heart of mine, once a die hard Laguna beach lover is falling feet first for Newport now! I am totally and utterly obsessed with this place!! The light, landscape, colors, and not to mention very minimum crowds have me so excited to get here each and every time!
A glance at my feed and it’s little secret I am slightly obsessed with connection between moms and their babes. I’m an obsessively in love with my kids momma and so it just kind of oozes out of me I think. 😆 And this mom and me session in Newport Beach gave me all the mushy feels. Because her story is beautiful. Her life deserving to be documented. This day for no other reason than one: she is mom. And that is always enough.
If your even slightly interested in having your own mom and me photo sess, do it! Your kids deserve to see how beautiful their momma was, how deeply she loved them. The way their simple being with her brought pure joy to her face. These are not just memories for you, but for them too.
She thought they were coming to take some photos while vacationing here in Newport Beach. Me and soon to be finance had secretly discussed the game plan over the phone a few weeks prior. And mad props to this guy because he kept his chill the entire time beforehand. She had NO idea, which made it all the more beautiful. I had the best time ever capturing this priceless moment for them and cannot wait to see all their future has in store!!
Also, if any guys out there are wanting to do pop the question, get in touch! I have enough surprise proposals in my pocket now I have the plan mapped out for us! ;-)
This little guy was probably the most laid back baby I have ever met. So content just hanging out and flashing me his oh so melt my heart grins! There is just something so raw and unmatched about the newborn days. And the bond between this dad and his son was the best. I have a feeling they are going to be good friends. ;-)
My daughter kept shouting ‘this is the most fun day of my entire life!’
I shoot at the beach so often it’s honestly the last place I generally want to go on my day off. But this one was forever worth it. This girl of mine, who in three years has never let the waves splash more than knee deep, went all in for the very first time. And the excitement as she realized her own bravery was everything. Love my little family. Love that we get to call this place our home. <3
Document your big kids! Your story together is just as beautiful. Just as needed... I honestly used to be terrified of shooting older ages. I couldn’t very well be doing rounds of ring the rosie or peekaboo. 🙈Then one day I realized the obvious: these are my own two kids before I blink. And I am this momma, with just as much crazy love, wanting so desperately to soak in every last drop of them. Of our fleeting time together... Now I shoot from a much different mindset. Now I want your big kids in my frame.
I feel like so often we take a photo to remember “we were there.” Every new place we snap another pic. The latest restaurant, vacation, school function—it didn’t quite happen without some form of documentation. And I don’t think this is a bad thing. Believe me, my phone is overflowing with my kids’ cheesy grins. 📷 But I don’t want to take your picture so you can remember ‘you were there,’ but rather, ‘who you were.’ And whose you were. And that your story was always worth documenting.
I have one driving goal every time I pick up my camera. And it’s not to show you what it looked like, but rather, how it felt. You have iphones and dslr's to snap the scene. Selfies and even selfie sticks to get everyone in the family right there in the frame. I don't want you to choose me so that I can grab a pretty picture of bribed smiles and perfect poses. I want your messy beautiful life with kids. I want to capture the way your heart sees your babies, the way it melts right into puddles of that ocean when you see the excitement in their eyes. The joy that fills your soul as they laugh and splash in the waves. Ten and twenty years from now I want you to look back and not just remember how tiny they were, but how much their love filled your life. And in ten and twenty years from now I want those now grown babies to look themselves and see what a beautiful childhood it was.
I get it, weekdays can be hard to get to the beach. There is work, school, activities, your tired and maybe even a little cranky. ;-) But as challenging as the thought may seem the pros far outweigh the cons. Having family photos taken is an investment of both your money and also time. There is so much planning involved with outfits and hair and making sure everyone has had naps and snacks, and the list goes on and on. Most moms arrive a little frazzled at first, which is totally expected and normal. They calm down within a few minutes of shooting. :-) But after all that time and effort there is no better way to be disappointed than to realize that those awesome rocks or pretty cliffs you were looking forward to having in the backdrop are now a no go because they are swarming with people. And then as you try to find a little empty corner with no where to shoot but straight out towards the water you are then being stared at by those same crowds of people as you try to kiss your wife and dance with your baby without feeling self conscience about it. Having lifestyle images taken is very personal and intimate and to make it as stress free and relaxing as possible is key. And this is why I only schedule for weekdays. The crowd factor is literally night and day difference.
I met this beautiful family on a Thursday at a non crowded cove in Newport. They got to really relax as they enjoyed the place mostly to themselves. And I was able to allow my creative freedom to come out, using the light in the exact way I wanted to catch all that golden glow and blue skies. And getting the epic backdrops that make my heart happy.
And so with that, let's meet for a Tuesday, and everyone can celebrate with tacos after. :-)
We met at Laguna beach to capture some maternity photos for this mom and dad to be. She told me she could feel her baby girl kicking throughout our time together and all my baby fever came flooding back in. ;-) Some of the sweetest people, they are going to be such great parents. And I think the heavens totally agreed with me, showing off just for them. <3
E is most definitely for Ella, and I think her name should mean "happiest baby in the history of ever." And the interaction and connection between this family was so strong it totally melted me. In home sessions are some of my all time favorites. Don't get me wrong, I do love my beaches, but there is just something so raw and pure about shooting in your own home. The place you spend so many intimate hours. The rooms that are all tied together with a million sweet memories. This was their first home as a family of three. This room the first she will call her own... Ok, I will stop of all the sappy writing now, but for real, there really is no place like home.
I actually started this photography journey without even thinking about pictures. I had a mom blog, not the latest trends and foods kind, but words of encouragement to other mommas in the trenches of life with littles. After a couple of posts went “viral,” I decided I wanted better photos to go with the writings, and so I learned the in and outs of my little camera and shot my kids like a mad women. Shortly after we moved to Cali and on some crazy whim decided I would start photographing families. I wasn’t very good! I slept little and studied everything I could get my hands on. I’m not naturally talented at this—at all. I don’t have an eye for creative composition or technicals. I draw stick people with my kids and my home would come in very last place at better homes and gardens. 🙈But although I have spent the hours teaching myself the technicals, I didn’t choose photography for fancy crops or angles. I choose it because of that Mom blog. That driving passion to show women how beautiful their life of momma really is. To see the love and passion, the joy and safety their children feel when together. I think we often feel embarrassed to admit how hard it all is sometimes. The stresses and fears, the nonexistent work/play balance, the forever wondering if we’re enough... But we are. She is. And to show her this. To show her that in the middle of the wonderings and wanderings she is doing something right, that is why I still choose photography. Because every mom deserves to have her story seen.
We woke up before the roosters for this. Totally worth it. 🐓 Beach sunrise sessions are understandably not my most requested time slot but oh how I love them more than just about anything! Lovely Laguna, that is forever crawling with millions of summer ready swimmers, surfers and sand castle builders was completely empty allowing for all those wide landscape shots. The only one who joined us was a lone Seal. ;-) And the colors at this time are so unmatched. Soft haze mixed with morning pinks and blues. Add to it all this momma's dress and I was the most happy, although tired, gal by the end of it!
So the most asked, and most obvious, question I get asked when its time to book a session is "what beach do you shoot at?" In the past I would maybe try to describe a spot, or send some screen shots from my Instagram. But finally, three years after moving to Orange County, I had the genius idea of putting together a couple of posts to easily show you, and let you decide what you feel would be the best fit for you and yours! And so with that, here is beach #3, in Laguna.
The tiny little cove offers such a quaint charm with its small cliff, rocks, and palm trees. Not to mention super easy access and one of the least amounts of steps in the history of Orange County beaches. :-)
So the most asked, and most obvious, question I get asked when its time to book a session is "what beach do you shoot at?" In the past I would maybe try to describe a spot, or send some screen shots from my Instagram. But finally, three years after moving to Orange County, I had the genius idea of putting together a couple of posts to easily show you, and let you decide what you feel would be the best fit for you and yours! And so with that, here is beach #2, in Laguna.
The cove is a good amount bigger than my other Laguna beach which can sometimes make it easier for little ones to run and play without being confined to such a small strip. The light here is just magical and the palm tree at the end of sunset fill my beach lovers heart with everything happy. :-) Also easy access down to it, which is always a big plus!