September 30, 2015

What a family photo shoot with Emily looks like - Ventura County Family Photography

If you've ever wondered what happens during a family photo shoot, you're in the right place! I'm going to show photos from a family shoot I did this year while describing the flow and focus during this type of shoot. Every family is different so every family shoot has its own unique flow but generally I shoot the following in this order, 1. Individual portraits 2. Family/smaller groupings 3. Candids.  

This family wanted updated photos of the 3 younger children and an updated photo of the whole family that they could print, frame, and display in their home. Knowing what the client is hoping to get from the session is so important to me. I usually start with individual portraits so the children were up first. I also wanted to be sure to get a variety of shots for each child. A full body shot as well as a close up, and photos orintated portrait and landscape.
 This session took place at Arroyo Verde park in Ventura which has many beautiful and natural settings for a family photo shoot. Once the portraits of the younger children were done I wanted to make sure we did a couple family shots before the younger children lost all interest.
I take individual portraits first because during that one on one time with each person they quickly get used to how I work and pose, and I get used to how they move and react to me. When it's time to pose everyone for the family shot, everyone is comfortable with me and we're able to set it up with ease. 

I usually take the family portrait with at least two different settings and two different poses. I think it's important to give the client options for when they select their images.
After getting the family portraits, I like to give them space to play around with each other, talk, and laugh. 

 I step back and give the family space to interact and just be themselves. I don't pose or direct these shots. My goal is to capture real moments, emotions, and expressions.  This family just had a  lot of fun talking, laughing, being silly, and I love how it's so easy to see that in these photos.
 And sometimes families get a little crazy and start throwing each other around! I definitely didn't ask for this but since my camera was already up and ready I'm glad I caught it!
At the end of a family shoot we quickly talk through everything that was shot to make sure we didn't miss anything. It's a good way to end on the same page and set everyone up for what can be expected at the Photo Reveal. The Photo Reveal is where the clients get to pick what images they would like instead of just getting whatever the photographer picks. It's an exciting and unique aspect of my photo shoots that I really enjoy offering. More info on the Photo Reveal and how it works will be coming very soon! 

September 22, 2015

Kristen & Mario - Los Angeles Temple Wedding Photography - McCormick Home Ranch Reception

It was a beautiful June day at the Los Angeles Temple for the wedding of Kristen & Mario. The following photos highlight the two of them from the bright beginning of their day to the non-stop dance party at the end.
 They chose the stunning McCormick Home Ranch in Camarillo for the location of their ring ceremony and reception. I could have photographed the Ranch for days with it's beautiful landscaping and the amazing light peeking through the tall trees.
 The green barn at the back of the property was such a fun backdrop for bridal party photos and family photos.
 Once again the light fell perfectly on the Bride and highlighted the enormous palms just right. The Ring Ceremony beautifully honored the couple's friendship, courtship, and marriage.
It's always such an honor to capture all these moments and more for a bride and groom on their big day.

September 4, 2015

Mermaid Photo Shoot - Ventura Beach Photography

I'm sharing some highlights from an adorable mermaid shoot I recently did with a sweet little girl who loves mermaids. She was so camera shy but I wouldn't expect anything different from a mermaid. It worked out great though because my favorite shots sometimes are not the ones where the subject is perfectly smiling at the camera. I love to capture the candid moment of a soft laugh or eyes drifting off day dreaming. To gets those shots during a photo shoot I often have to pretend like I'm not taking a picture, I'm just getting my camera "set up." I think it relieves some of the stress for the person in front of the camera. They get a chance to breathe, and relax for a minute while I time the shot to get a real candid turns out, my little trick works for mermaids too.

January 22, 2015

Best of 2014 - Ventura County Photography

I have so much gratitude for every shoot from 2014. I've said it many times but I have to say again that I truly have the best clients. I have people that ask me to photograph them because they like my style and value what I do which is such a blessing and an honor for me. The photos below are my personal favorites from 2014, each for a different reason. It's has been a joy to stop time for just a moment and create something beautiful in each photograph. I'm so grateful for all my clients who trust me to do that for them! My top ten in no particular order:

This beautiful woman is a fellow photographer and friend of mine who has pushed me creatively more than once. She asked for a styled vintage pin-up shoot that would be a present to her husband. I was able to incorporate everything I've learned about posing women with the style she brought to the shoot and it made for a set of photographs that I'm so proud of. 
There was a moment of excitement for me during this shoot when I knew that I had just taken the photo that I had hoped would happen. Adorable family + everyone playing and smiling + beautiful scenery + blurred ocean at sunset = exactly what I wanted! And the little guy sticking his tongue out makes it so much better!

This girl made my top 10 last year. And she will probably be in it every year. Not because she is my niece but because she is awesome to photograph and takes direction so well! If you've been to the LACMA, you'll recognize the lamp posts she is surrounded by. With dozens of people walking through the posts and taking selfies with friends while we shot, we had to wait for just the right second to get it too look like no one else was around.
Having two little boys of my own, I'm a sucker for mommas and their babies. These two peas in a pod were so fun. This gorgeous woman is an amazing make up artist. I've photographed some her clients and her work is flawless.
I love love! Everything about this sweet couple's intimate ceremony was beautiful. I'm lucky to have been there and to call them friends. I also love the composition of this photo and those amazing trees. 

I'm all for a little PDA during a photo shoot.  He said he was too tall for a kissing shot. I disagreed and I'm so glad I did! With out knowing it they left the perfect amount of space for that beautiful sun to shine through. I wish I had a shot like this of me and my sweetheart!
I was able to photograph this precious baby at 3, 6, and 9 months of age during 2014. She was this fun every time! Her eyes need zero enhancing, they are this beautiful and more in person.
These are my own sweet babies. I envisioned this photograph while I was pregnant and I couldn't wait to have big brother hold his baby brother. After I posted this photo the first time I got a lot of questions about how it was created. Along with the right camera settings, a lot of patience, and needing two adorable kids, it takes a sheer curtain over a sliding glass door and a white blanket of the floor. It's all natural beautiful light.
I mentioned that I love love but it may be an understatement of how much it actually melts my heart. These two melt my heart. Every engagement shoot is so exciting for me. These shoots are a fun, serious, sweet, silly, and romantic all packed into one session. This couple was all of those things and fantastic to photograph!

I take a lot of family photos at our local pier. It's beautiful anytime of day and any day of the year but if you catch it at the right time with the right tide it's like magic. This photo is my best example yet as to what I've been working on lately. This one photo is actually about 16 photos stitched together. The purpose of doing it makes for one photo with a very sharp and very shallow depth of field (only the family and the line they are in is in focus) and a lot of scenery. It's always fun to see a photo like this come together.

Thank you again to everyone who had me photograph them and the people they love this last year. 2014 was so good, I'm excited for what 2015 has in store!

August 17, 2014

Hannah - Ojai, Ventura County Senior Photography

A few highlights from a favorite senior shoot! This girl has so much spark! She made this shoot so easy with her amazing smile and personality. I also loved photographing her in our hometown of beautiful Ojai. Ojai is filled with nooks and crannies that are perfect as portrait backdrops. Thanks, Hannah, for having me do these portraits for you to celebrate your high school achievements! Best of luck to you during your upcoming years at BYU!