This was Dan and my second time in Moab and we loved it even more than the first. Granted, our first time we awoke to a thunderstorm causing our tent to blow away…and drove to the nearest hotel. This time around, we camped on some BLM land and had several acres all to ourselves. The view was beautiful!! The weather was hot, but dry, and made for some incredible sunrises. Our dog loved the space and freedom to explore, and Dan slowly got comfortable with Ollie disappearing for a bit…he always came back to us. ;).
Since I photograph about 15 newborn sessions a week, maternity shoots are a really beautiful change of pace. A reminder of what its like before the craziness begins. Moms (and dads!) are often emotional and exhausted, but so excited to meet their little one. And I mean this- I think pregnant woman glow!! There is this beauty they give off that runs deep. Capturing it is one of my favorite things. Add a dog, a sweet husband, and some cool PNW beach clouds in the mix and you’ve got one happy photographer. :)
Sometimes I delay editing a session because I don’t want the experience to end. This was one of those for sessions me. Shauna is a fellow photographer and friend of mine and we’d talked about doing a shoot at this location for a while; so getting to photograph her family here was such a treat! I loved spending the evening chasing around her 2 boys and seeing the world as they see it. Their energy was contagious and I couldn’t help but smile all the way home.
Mark is an attorney who just launched his own law business, and we had a blast creating some shots for his website. This studio has some neat old windows with TONS of natural light- it was perfect for the personable yet professional look he was going for. Check out his website here! https://www.marktysonlaw.com/
This home session was a neat one. Mallory and Matt had just finished building their first home on Vashon Island. (Not sure how they managed to do this at the same time as having a new baby…) Even cooler, Mallory grew up in a house on this same lot. Years after her family moved, the house caught on fire and was abandoned for 16 years. Mallory and her husband, Matt, decided to build their first home on this lot, and moved in not long before our session. You can follow their blog here: https://dandelionsdrywall.com/
I loved that I got to capture the space at a time like this. I can only imagine the walls will be filled with framed photos, finger paintings, and handwritten notes as their family grows. But for now, just like their new daughter, everything is so fresh- so new! This home has so many sweet memories to come. :)
Newborn home sessions are one of my favorite things to photograph. The transition of having a new baby in the house isn't easy- parents are often sleep deprived, covered in spit up, and anxious about getting everything "right." But despite all of this, capturing a new baby in his home is so beautiful. Everything is new. The dog is still getting used to his scent. The parents are learning what keeps him calm and how to swaddle. The baby is learning what this crazy thing called life is. And I love that I get to stand back and capture it.
When Jane and Phoebe contacted me about photographing their wedding at our alma mater, I was ecstatic. The little town of Walla Walla is a magical place, and photographing these two beautiful ladies here was a dream come true. I don't believe in soulmates, or there being that "one right person", but YOU GUYS- Jane and Phoebe are literally perfect for each other. They have a type of love is so honest, strong, and all encompassing. It was such a treat to be spend the weekend witnessing and I'm SO excited for their future together.
One of my favorite parts about road trips is the flexibility. In July, Dan and I drove from Seattle to New Mexico to photograph a wedding, and planned to camp in Colorado on the way back. With the wildfires and unpredictable thunderstorms, we decided on a whim to head to the Grand Teton National Park. (What's an extra 500 miles??) We were so excited to final see the Tetons and they definitely did not disappoint.
We spent 3 days camping and hiking in the Bridger-Teton National Forest since dogs are allowed, and our pup Ollie had a blast chasing bugs and frolicking through the wildflowers. (Luckily he never brought back any bears with him!) I'm already so excited to plan a trip back to Jackson. The sunrises, stargazing, and cool summer temperatures are pretty hard to beat.
Some days this job feels like a dream. When Katie approached me about photographing her wedding in New Mexico last fall, I was thrilled. I love traveling- but traveling for work!! Even better.
Katie and Eric’s wedding was extra special because it took place on property in New Mexico that has been in the family for many generations. Located in a sub range of the Rockies and filled with quaint family cabins and stretches of forest that hold more memories than one could imagine. Eric grew up with this place as his safe space, his space to adventure, his community. Ultimately, his home away from home.
The wedding took place right in the middle of Monsoon session so the ceremony was at 11am to avoid any storms. It was a day filled with dancing, barbecue, and so many beautiful toasts that I lost count. Katie and Eric are some of the kindest and fun loving people I’ve had the chance to photograph and their warmth was seriously contagious.
Katie and Eric, thank you so much for including me in your wedding and for putting your trust into me. The love you two have for one another is truly something special and I'm so glad I got to capture it.
Best wishes to you both!
Natural light makes me giddy. I live for the golden light that makes everything feel like a movie, or the nostalgic feel of soft blue light at dusk.
As your photographer, my goal is not to recreate the lighting of the situation, but to capture the feeling of your day. I want you to look back on the photos and remember the warmth of the sun, or the smell of the rain right before it began (hello Seattle!)
Here are a few tips to help schedule for throughout your day. Keep in mind this is in no way something you must follow, merely a guide if your day has flexibility and you want to enhance the feel of your photos.
This is one of my favorites parts of the day! The mood is high and good lighting can help capture this even more beautifully.
The ideal lighting situation would be a room with big windows that allow lots of natural light to come through. Clean and interesting decor is helpful, but as long as there is some window light, I can make any space work.
I love outdoor ceremonies! If you decide to have one in direct sunlight, I recommend avoiding mid-day hours (10am to 3pm) as this provides harsh shadows. In summer months, the best time for the ceremony would be several hours before the sun goes down.
If you do have a mid-day ceremony, I suggest setting things up so the sun is behind the alter, and the guests are facing the sun. If the ceremony is in the morning, have the guests face towards the sunrise (East,) and if your ceremony is in late afternoon evening, have your guests face towards the sunset (West.)
Less is more when it comes to the backdrop for family photos. I know... I know, you've chosen a gorgeous location to get married at and you want to highlight this! But keep in mind, a clean background is ideal for consistency and simplicity in group photos.
The reception style has a lot of flexibility based on your style and what you want your space to feel like. With artificial lighting, I lean towards warm light and love the aesthetic of Italian string lights! They look great near the dining, dancing, and seating areas- especially when the sun goes down! Check out the beautiful Bokeh they provide in the background of the photos below!
Bride and Groom Portraits
If there is time, I always suggest doing some portraits at golden hour. This is the last hour before the sun goes below the horizon, and allows for some dreamy and surreal looking photos! These photos can be done in 20 or 30 minutes, and are a fun chance for the bride and groom to get some alone time after the ceremony (when the stress is gone!)
Obviously you can't predict what the weather on your day will actually be like. I always suggest planning for harsh direct sunlight, but if it turns out to be a cloudy day, don't fret! Overcast weather is beautiful lighting that acts like a giants soft box. It looks beautiful on people and allows the timing of photos to be even more flexible.
If you have any questions, let me know! I'm excited to help.
Tips and Tricks for Photographing a Fussy Newborn
Whether you're a new mom or a budding newborn photographer, you're probably wondering how on earth you take good photos without the baby fussing the whole time. This is a good question! Newborns are tiny unpredictable subjects, but with these tips, you can gain a lot more control over the situation.
Hunger: Has the baby been fed recently? If not, you might notice he or she is rooting (turning the head towards anything that touches the cheek,) or opening the mouth repeatedly. If the baby has been recently fed, he or she may be uncomfortable and need to be held upright and burped.
Swaddle: I almost always start by swaddling the baby. This way, you can get some guaranteed happy shots and proceed to slowly un-swaddle parts of the baby for pictures of arms, toes, etc.
Sway/Shhh: Sometimes you'll have a fussy baby and its hard to identify why. If you've fed and swaddled him/her, try carefully swaying and shhhh-ing into the baby's ear. Do this loudly and it should work like a charm! Rumor has it, shhh-ing reminds them of the sounds in the womb.
Temperature: If you're trying to get sleeping shots, make sure the space is warm! Sometimes I bring a little space heater to my shoots, this is a great tool as the white noise also calms the baby.
Hope these pointers helped! Have some tips and tricks of your own? Answer in comments!
It started pouring about 5 minutes before this session started. And do you want to know the coolest part? These two didn't even notice. Two-year-old Rhys put on his rain boots and every rain puddle he walked past was better than the last. We had the park to ourselves and spent most of the photoshoot chasing geese, throwing leaves, jumping in puddles, and soaking up the incredibly beautiful bond that this Mother and son have for one another. Rain or shine, I'm so thankful for sessions like this one.
A message to all the Moms and Dads: during our photo session, try not to just stand behind me and beg your kiddos to “smile normally.” Interact with them! Dance with them! Maybe even sing they’re favorite song. Not only will you have more fun, but you will build memories that the little ones will cherish for ages. ❤️
This little man LOVED being in front of the camera. It was so much fun watching how easy his mom and dad could make him laugh and golden hour at the arboretum made for a beautiful evening.
This session was so perfect. Mom had just gotten home from the hospital and big brother was so enamored with "his" new baby. I loved getting to captured Momma's love (and grandmas!) for these sweet kiddos.
I met this family when their baby was first born and let me tell you - this little guy landed into a pretty amazing crew. This was our 6 month session and due to rainy weather, we decided stayed indoors for most of it. I had so much fun capturing some of their day-to-day activities, (and making sure their dog Bodie didn't take up all the attention.) I'm still wondering how I got so lucky as to watch the the four of them grow together!