Portland Family Photos
Family is EVERYTHING
As a parent, the love you have for your children is unlike anything else in the world. When my son was born in 2022, it was almost like he whispered to me, “Here mama! Here is a brand new perspective on life! Infinite inspiration on the depth and beauty of humanity! For you, mama!”
Was everything harder? Probably yes. Was everything more emotional, more beautiful, sweeter, more tender? Yes. Was every moment simultaneously so long and too short? Very yes. Did time become a funny, elastic, fickle thing? You bet.
I’ve photographed families for 15 years and they never cease to amaze me. I love being silly with children. I love getting to document the depth of love that parents feel. Every season of parenthood brings new joys, hard times, and reasons to be grateful. As a family photographer, I am here for it all. The big group photos with grandparents that you know will be hanging on the wall long after they pass. The little toes that grow too fast. The big smiles and the goofy faces. The photos of your little kids with your old dog who won’t live long enough to see them become teenagers. The images of your gorgeous baby belly and the anticipation on your partner’s face. The baby teeth. The fuzzy hairs. Tossing them in the air to make them laugh. All of it.
I want your family portraits to feel authentic, joyful, genuine, playful, magical, flattering, candid and artistic.
Most importantly, I want your family photos to be a positive, joyful experience. I want you to feel gorgeous, handsome, and full of love - even if your toddler isn’t feeling cooperative that day. I want you to walk away with photos that help you treasure these memories: the fleeting beauty of family togetherness, silly moments, tender hugs, and yes, even a few images of you all smiling at the camera. I will bring my playful, genuine energy to tell your story artistically, and make you feel your very best.
Family Photo Posing and Direction
I’m going to be honest with you: being photographed is weird. It just is. Even though we are more used to it than any previous generation, it’s still really weird. My goal as your family photographer is to make it WAY less weird. Lucky for you, family photos are pretty easy because all you have to do is PLAY and interact with the people you love most in the entire world. Everything else falls into place. Not sure how to do that in front of a camera? I’ll help you out. Most of my direction is focused on getting you moving so I can capture candids that feel real. I also make a lot of self deprecating jokes and silly sounds to get young children and dogs to look my way - just for one or two shots! The real focus is making you comfortable enough to be yourselves - snuggling, laughing, chasing each other, and getting candids of all that realness. I’ll give you enough direction to start out, with the hope that you end up in your own little world, laughing together while I capture everything.
1) Email me! From there we can set up a phone call to get to know each other and chat about details! I want to hear all about you and your family, brainstorm ideas for the shoot, and I’ll go over my process with you verbally as well.
2) Choose one of my collections and a date, and I’ll send you an online contract and invoice reserve the date! Then you’ll be officially booked!
3) I’ll send you resources to help you figure out outfits and a perfect location that fit your family and your style!
4) On the day of the shoot, we’ll meet up and I’ll start with a few simple photos of everyone looking at the camera, then direct you to move in fun, playful ways and capture more candids for the rest of the session! We will wander around the location and continually change things up to keep it fun for little ones. If you are doing photos at your home, we will do a little tour when I arrive, and talk about the different spaces first, then I’ll start wherever you feel most comfortable and I’ll document candids throughout the session. For most family shoots, people only wear one outfit, but you are welcome to change if you want partway through! Just keep in mind that many outdoor locations lack bathrooms, and you may need to change in your car or behind a tree.
5) After the shoot, I’ll upload the photos and get rid of anything awkward, and then I will put the rest in a private online gallery and send them to you as proofs. They will be straight out of my camera at this stage, but you will able to look through them all and choose your favorites for me to edit and retouch. Each of my collections has a specific number of final images, so depending on which one you get you’ll be able to choose 10-50 images. You can also order extras for $15 each. I’ll send you the proofs within a week!
6) Once you finish selecting your favorites and email me, it will take up to 4 weeks for me to edit them and get them back to you!
7) I’ll edit and retouch the photos in both color and black and white, and deliver them in a second online gallery where you can download them directly or order any prints you might want!
Family Portrait Pricing
Full maternity, family, and newborn collections all start at $900
If you want to do a 20-30 minute, mini portrait session, those start at $450 and I offer them on specific dates during the year! You can sign up to get notified when I release dates and time slots on my mini session email list here.
Email me and we can go over all the details together!
Family Photo Locations in Portland
There are so many places in our lives that make us feel happy, relaxed, and peaceful. Or they hold special memories and meaning. These are usually the best places for photos - somewhere that you feel connected to! Sometimes, you might not have a place in mind, but you can picture an idea of a place - a meadow, a forest, a waterfall, etc, and I can help you find the perfect spot!
For family photos, often the best place is where spend the most time: your home. It’s comfortable, it feels safe, and its real. I’m always happy to do in-home photoshoots that reflect the beauty of everyday life!
I also LOVE the look of a clean studio environment! There are several studio options available in Portland if you prefer an indoor location for your pictures.
In Portland: Mt Tabor, Hoyt Arboretum, Forest Park, Cathedral Park, George Rogers Park, The Pearl District, various bridges in downtown, Alberta Arts District, Sellwood Riverfront Park, Tryon Creek State Park, Laurelhurst Park, Washington Park, Jenkins Estate, Cooper Mountain, Peninsula Park.
Outside of Portland: Sauvie Island, Timberline on Mt. Hood, White River Recreation Area on Mt. Hood, Trillium Lake, Women’s Forum in the Gorge, Latourell Falls, Government Cove in the Gorge, Viento State Park, Dalton Point in the gorge, Beacon Rock, St Cloud Day Use Area, Rowena Crest, Cannon Beach, Ecola State Park, Hug Point, Cape Kiwanda, Smith Rock State Park, Painted Hills, Mt. Saint Helens, Silver Falls State Park, Tamanawas Falls
What to wear for family photos
Most of my family portrait collections include a professional stylist consultation to help you and your family look your best! The days of matchy-matchy outfits are over, and its all about finding a cohesive color scheme and building a beautiful textural wardrobe around that. The most important thing is that you wear your favorite clothes that make you feel the most confident and comfortable. Make sure that everything fits you really well, and if you feel self conscious about a certain part of your body, don’t wear clothes that show it off! I typically prefer photographing people in neutrals and solids because I want the focus on you, not on your clothes.
Weather and Light
Although locations and backgrounds are important, I’d still say that the number one thing that shapes the way a photo looks is the lighting.
I almost always use natural light (not flash) because it tells the story more accurately and give my photos a beautiful authentic look. However, not all natural light is created equal.
Bright sunlight in the middle of the day can be harsh but edgy. Open shade is flattering and soft, while dappled shade with sunlight can be difficult and contrasty. Soft backlighting in the evening looks romantic and happy with sun flares. Cloudy weather makes for photos with a beautiful even cast and more mood. It’s important to know that all these types of lighting create a different look, and for the most part, that look is up to the weather.
I love to take portraits year-round in any type of weather, BUT I always prefer to do the sessions around sunrise or sunset so we can get the most flattering light of the day!
While I can’t guarantee a specific type of weather, you can book a photoshoot around a particular time of year when you are most likely to get the look you want! If you love my foggy, moody, Pacific-Northwest imagery, those photos are most likely taken between October and April. If you want brilliant sunshine, harsh shadows, or soft backlighting, you may want to plan a session in peak summer.