portraits

Spending time with my soul mate - Montana Family and Wedding Photographer

Every year I go visit my family in Arlee, Montana over the Fouth of July week. Arlee is a small a town about a half hour outside of Missoula. There is not even a stop light, and my phone barely works there, and my favorite human is there- I LOVE IT! The family gets their yearly family photographs made, and Ahri and I have some fun!

My first trip out was to meet my cousin’s first born Ahrianna. We had an immediate bond- and have since been connected literally at the hip for all the days I am ever blessed to be with her.

Over the holiday in Arlee there is a Rodeo and a Pow Wow. Its a really nice walk to get to the events- and Ahri and I enjoy going back and forth and taking photos along the way. We both die inside a little every year for the scared and hurt animals during the rodeo. Ahri is an animal lover like her Auntie.

I love her so much it hurts, maybe you can see that in these photographs?

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Beautiful Seattle Wedding - Seattle Wedding Photographer

I love a back yard wedding! Getting to meet and work with this couple was like a dream come true, like finding your people!

I will never forget during the speeches when the bride’s sister told the story of how these two found each other. She told the story of Victoria manifesting her man with her mind, right down to his ethnicity and his height. MAGICAL!

Also they have a baby on the way! So this wedding was sort of an early maternity shoot as well! Hot damn, that’s exciting!

Congratulations on your life together V and T! Your growing family is lovely! I can’t wait to meet your baby.

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Why you should consider an Adventure Family Photo Session- Seattle Family Photographer

Want to make your family photos super duper memorable and go the extra mile (literally) to make them beautiful?

I have tons of information on what to wear and location ideas for your family photo shoot you guys! Gold Creek Pond is special to this family because Travis (a.k.a dad) grew up coming here with his family,and has fond memories of being here with his father. Not only that there is no hike so most of the work is just an hour drive outside of Seattle. And it’s a lovely drive. Even if you choose a location based on it’s beauty alone- it makes the whole family just a little more pumped when they are there for family photos. Being someplace new and exciting is fun for the kids or if your a couple - you can’t beat this beautiful backdrop.

Things to bring. Snacks, maybe a pretty blanket, bug spray, and a warm and (photographable) coat for the kiddos if you have them. Accessories are always fun too, hats scarves, even flowers.

Thank you to Travis, Kelly, Dylan, and Ragen! I have been photographing this family since the their first born was in the belly for maternity photos- so it is an honor to continue to document them! I love this family!

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Celebrating Father's Day - Seattle Family Photographer

I’m a total sucker for dads. Maybe it’s because the father figure in my life was sort of a shakey situation that makes me look at dads with a great amount of admiration. They have a huge job to do, and I respect them ….bigtime.

So this is just me saying thank you from the whole world to all of you KICK ASS DADS out there.

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Montana Family Photos - Seattle and Montana Family Photographer

WARNING- this blog post has way too many photos and it’s about to have way too many words.

I visit my family in Montana every year over the fourth of July. They live in Arlee, Montana and over the fourth they have a yearly rodeo and pow wow. Although the rodeo makes me both excited and very uncomfortable at the same time, the pow wow speaks to my soul.

My family is great, but this little girl (pictured in way too many photos below)is my little soul mate. She is my mother’s sister’s sons daughter. AKA my cousins kiddo, and she calls me “Auntie Dee” Her little brother is maybe one of the cutest little boys I have ever seen in my life. Sorry about the lack of photos of the little guy, but he was a little young to take on these little adventures that Ahri and I went on. I love being with and photographing these kids so much. This year I will be photographing a wedding while I’m in Montana.

Ahrianna and I connected with our love for animals this year. When watching the rodeo, we squeezed hands when the horses fell or the cows were roped- or when the bulls or horses had something tied around them to make them kick. She asked me questions about how come the bulls are kicking? why would they tie a rope around them to hurt them”? She is the sweetest thing.

The last photograph in this blog is hard to look at. The horse was ok, but we were not. I did not know I got that photo until later that night. I took the shot and dropped the camera to gasp in terror that the horse landed so badly.

I decided to blog this trip so that I can compare my new photographs of the family when I get to Montana next month. I cannot wait to see how she has grown.

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Wedding Reception at The Ruins Seattle WA - Seattle Wedding Photographer

J+E

What an amazing Seattle Wedding Adventure!

These two tied the knot up in the mountains and came down to the city to celebrate at maybe the coolest event space Seattle has to offer (in my opinion) The Ruins Event Space Seattle has all the vintage feel and historical artsy vibes that I love. I would highly recommend this space to anyone having a wedding or reception, or just a fancy party, and don’t forget to bring your favorite Seattle Photographer, wink wink.

I love photographing love. Just sayin’ - and these two are obviously in it to win it.

Josh and Ellen - Congratulations on your beautiful union and life together.

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Seattle Adventure Family Photographer - Seattle Family Photographer

THIS DAY!

I love an adventure family session. This one was special to me since I have been photographing Cody and Tara since their engagement shoot. I did their Orcas Island wedding photos. Tara and I did a little sexy fun shoot to surprise Cody on their wedding day with. I came over to photograph August for his newborn session. All leading up to this beautiful PNW famly session at Gold Creek Pond up at Snoqualmie Pass. Heaven!

It’s an hour drive to get up there from West Seattle- but once you park it’s like a 2 minute walk to this beauty. Week nights are lovely up there, nice and mellow. In fact we were almost alone this night.

Tara and Cody did a great job with styling this shoot. Tara texted me along the way anytime she saw something to wear to the shoot. I gave it the thumbs up or down, and they showed up wearing the perfect colors to be photographed in nature.

I am so grateful that I get to photograph this growing beautiful family.

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What to wear to your family photo shoot - Seattle family Photographer

HELLO!!! I’m glad your here.

Ok biggest asked and very important question, what do we wear to our family photo shoot this spring/summer?

First let’s address the DO NOT DO list:

Please no logos or words on shirts. Steer clear of bright colors like florescent pink that look awkward in nature. Stick to colors that match your background.Rusts, orange, mustard, navy, dusty blue, burgundy work well in nature. There is no need to dress super fancy as if your going to a wedding, but take it up a notch from day to day.

You don’t have to be all super matchy- matchy, like let’s not all wear white for example. Just chose a complimentary color scheme. Patterns are ok if done right. Texture is fantastic.

Bring layers and keep in mind that its photogenic if your toddler has to wear it. (these are suggestions remember I do not want to seem bossy!)

On patterns- you don’t want to have a toddler in plaid and when dad holds he or she and is also wearing plaid- the patterns go all crazy on your eyeballs- taking the focus off the kiddo.

So keep it simple! Maybe just one or two of you wear a pattern.

Accessories are fun. Hats, scarves can add color and texture.

There are so many dresses for the little girls, the list goes on on and and on. I’ll link to a few examples and try to keep this updated! Here is one idea. I love this company Joyfolie for moms and daughters. (first photo below- both dresses are from there) Here is a great dress suggestion for mom - or something similar. Comfortable and flow.

If moms want to go big - DOEN is my absolute favorite. If not good for inspiration. Freepeople is also great.

DADS: keep it simple!, neutral shirt and casual pants. Maybe no sneakers….

Here is a great Amazon Example

Amazon has tons of great ideas, and I have a Pinterest board for inspiration.

ZARA is a great site for the babes and kiddos

CHECK THIS OUT FOR THE BABES! too cute!

AMAZON suggestions for DADS

And BOYS

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Amazon suggestion for babies - and here too

I do not want to make this complicated for you I promise! YOU MIGHT HAVE MOST OF YOUR CLOTHES IN YOUR CLOSET ALREADY!!!

A month in the life of me

Holy Smokes you guys - I had such a crazy 25 days I had to write about it.

One San Diego wedding, two newborn shoots, one maternity shoot, three family photo shoots, one fun conceptual shoot at Goldcreek Pond with a dear friend, one walk around the block with my friend visiting from Australia, one weekend photography retreat at Cannon Beach full of crazy photos and newfound friends.

As I sit and recover, editing through photographs for days and sipping Kombucha and tea, I honestly could not be happier with any of this work. I AM SO GRATEFUL my heart could just explode. Like everywhere into a million pieces. Is every month like this? Heck no. But it will be.

Thank you for listening. Thank you to anyone involved or even reading this for allowing me to express myself through my work.

Have a great day, and I hope your not watching Game of Thrones because it’s literally taking years off my life.

XOXO

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Why you need ALL of the photographs made at your family portrait session. Because your family is a ART.

I was recently talking to an mom who was interested in having a family photo session. After she wrapped her head the price tag (she told me that it’s totally worth it) she said she does not need more than a few family photographs, and definitely does not need 70-100 images to sort through, too overwhelming. I can see how this would seem so you guys, but it is not the case.

I thought about this for a minute. I know the answer to this because of shooting mini sessions. Every photographer stresses about mini sessions because we always end up shoot more than the 20- 30 minutes. And if the family don’t buy all of the photos- IT KILLS us to just toss them. So we either are sad and throw them away never to be appreciated by anyone, or we give them away at a price that we are not proud of. We end up rushing and only getting the posed shots.

WHY do I need so many? Because you just might love those family portraits later. Imagine you will look back at your 35 year old face when your 80, you won’t be so bummed on your imperfections then.

Because what your kids don’t know how appreciate now - they certainly will later. These are also for them and their kids.

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Your family is a piece of art. Why? Because your the only one like you. There is none other.

Because often the magic happens deeper into the hour session, or at the very end.

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Shooting with multiple kids - Seattle Family Photographer

How do you do it moms and dads? All I can say is that I am IMPRESSED by you and you need to know that you amazing for the work you do.

These are the thoughts that I left this family session thinking. Your day includes (but is not limited to) patience, perseverance, love, hard work, sleepless nights, respect. You work so hard. You deserve beautiful images to preserve this time in your life, no matter how exhausted you feel. Your kids will enjoy these photographs. Your grandchildren will enjoy these photographs. EMBRACE the chaos. Your family is a piece of art, there is not another like you out there.

Now how do we make your family session FUN and not more work for you? First of all, let go. Take a deep breath. Let me be in charge of posing you. If your toddler acts up, we just take a break and you deal with it as you normally would. Trust that you will get beautiful family photos, you are here in this beautiful chaos. You’ve emailed, looked for family photographers, trusted and choose one, bought new outfits, got your hair done, now let’s enjoy this moment, and let go of all of the stress.

Trust me, and breath… we got this!

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Seattle Boutique Style Pre- School Portraits

Once a year, I bust out my little-people-studio kit and head to Bella Mente Pre School and childcare.

I look forward to seeing how much the kiddos have changed and grown, or if they recognize me from doing some of their family photos. I love their silly faces, the outfits they sometimes put together themselves, and just watching them be kids. I love the grumpy faces and the look in their eyes. Here is a preview of this years Pre School photo shoot.

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Family Photo Session when your all grown up- HECK YEAH

I love this idea.

Erin’s parents are divorced and they both live in Minnesota. They were both set for a Pacific Northwest visit at two different times around Christmas, so Erin booked two family shoots at some awesome PNW locations. I love this idea, again and again.

Why not have some special photographs taken with your parents when your all grown up? The first shoot we did in the freezing pouring rain up at Rattlesnake Lake in North Bend, Washington. We toughed it out and it was well worth it.

Now Erin’s mom is not a fan of the cold, so we went to the Volunteer Park Conservatory. This place is GORGEOUS and so is Erin’s love for her parents.

This Seattle family photographer is up for any Pacific Northwest Adventure with you!

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Seattle Engagement Session Discovery Park

I am so excited to photograph this wedding! And it’s SOON!

I have done family photos for them in the past, and their family includes amazing dogs… if you know me, I love that! This engagement session took place on a beautiful day at Discovery Park. I miss that warm weather Seattle.

All I can say is that I am one happy wedding photographer when I get awesome people in love like this. I cannot wait to photograph this wedding. I love love!

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Pacific Northwest Wedding Perfection, Salish Lodge, Snoqualmie, WA

What a wonderful Pacific Northwest Wedding at the Salish Lodge overlooking the majestic Snoqualmie Falls.

Chyna and Jason met and fell in love as teenagers. They went separate ways and led separate lives, but the universe returned them full circle back to love.

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Family Photo Sessions- Lincoln Park, West Seattle

Ok with this family, I can’t even …. First of all, the beautiful mom is from Orcas Island, which is a magical place and explains why she had such a magical creature.

I love what they chose to wear to their Lincoln Park, West Seattle Family photo shoot. The hour went by so fast and I was happy to deliver a gallery full of love, color, light, and dimples!

Lincoln Park is one of my GO TO places to do a family session. It’s big enough to be alone, and I know the park very well.

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West Seattle Family Photo Shoot - Seattle Family Photographer

This is a perfect example of what can happen if you have me over to your place for a in-home family photo session here in Seattle.

What can I say, this family is amazing.

We thought we would take advantage of the green space next door for the beginning of our shoot before we began to loose light. An owl was hooting the entire time, LOVE.

We took a walk through the forest, and we ended in the back yard. Mom had wine, and we lit off some smoke bombs. We hung out by the Cadillac and the motorcycle for some fun shots.

I was all sessions to mimic this one, super easy, laid back, in and out of the home- family photo session. My kind of photo shoot. Thanks guys!

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