Portland Maternity and Newborn Sessions

When couples contact us letting us know they are expecting, the conversation oftentimes quickly turns to scheduling photo sessions.

When should we capture maternity photos?

When is the best time to do the newborn photos?

Where should we capture the newborn photos?

Do you ever come to the hospital to capture photos?

What about when our little one turns 1?

These are all great questions and we absolutely love helping couples plan for this exciting time in their lives.  We offer an array of photography options from individual sessions to complete packages covering everything from maternity sessions through the baby’s first year and beyond.  It is wise to get a sense of what is available and then for the two of you to make a decision that best suits your needs.

The primary guidelines to keep in mind are the following: Maternity sessions are recommended anytime between 32-36 weeks into the pregnancy.  Newborn sessions are recommended within 7 days of the baby’s birth.  It is easiest to start with these two sessions in mind.  Some couples prefer to not capture maternity photos or to do more of a mini-maternity session.  Those are certainly options.  But most often, the newborn session is the one that is considered of the utmost importance.  We offer newborn sessions at our photography studio in downtown Portland where we have access to lots of room, incredible natural light, and an assortment of blankets, props, and outfits.  However, we also happily travel to couples’ homes as well where we are able to personalize the session by including images captured in the nursery and throughout the home.

We are so excited and honored to have the opportunity to work with a couple of friends of ours Samantha and Jamie in capturing this wonderful milestone in their lives.  This past fall we had the opportunity to capture their maternity session at Cathedral Park to take advantage of the fall colors and then visited them at their home for a newborn session.  Here are a handful of our favorites from both of those portrait sessions.  Later this year we will be capturing a 6 month session as well as a 12 month session.

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My Traveling Photographer

I have always had a passion for travel.

When traveling personally to locations like Sweden, Estonia, and Australia and when traveling professionally to locations like Mexico, St Lucia, and the Czech Republic, I have always had my camera in hand.

One of the things I love most about returning from a trip is looking through all the photographs.  The images provide lasting memories and wonderful art for my home.  In 2016, I decided to combine my passion for travel and photography to provide a unique opportunity for couples and families to have their vacation experiences professionally documented.

My Traveling Photographer provides the ultimate personal vacation photographer experience.

 

Surrogate Photography

In my previous blog post, I discussed how the theme of twins carried through my personal work and how I have turned my focus toward creating more of that type of work as I evolve in my photography career.  About a year ago, I was contacted by a set of intended parents who were flying in to the United States to witness the birth of their set of twins through a process known as surrogacy.  An anonymous donor’s eggs are fertilized and implanted into a surrogate mother who then carries and births the newborn child(ren).  It is a remarkable experience that creates an incredible bond between the surrogate and the intended parents.

I have been honored to work with a number of surrogates and intended parents to witness the miracle first hand.  Maternity sessions, birthing sessions, fresh 48 sessions (where the newborn baby/babies are photographed at the hospital within 48 hours of birth), newborn sessions, and family portrait sessions have been very popular with surrogates and the intended parents.  Surrogates and intended parents from Europe, South America, and throughout the United States are brought together to make the miracle of child birth possible for couples who are not able to birth children themselves.  It is truly an incredible experience to witness.

We are forever grateful to the Northwest Surrogacy Center, not only for the incredible work that they do, but for affording us the opportunity to work with their clients.  Surrogate photography is by far some of the most invigorating photographic work I get to create for couples.  Here are some of our favorites from a recent fresh 48 session at the hospital with a follow up newborn session at our photography studio.  Within days of these sessions, we designed, created, and printed 100 custom birth announcement cards for the intended parents to share with their friends and family overseas.  The parents and their newborn twins are back in Europe getting settled into life as a family.

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Rampillon - January 18, 2017 - 1:09 am

Adorables et adorés

Identical Twins

I have been fortunate enough to have a number of mentors in my life, many of whom happen to be photographers.  There was my childhood next door neighbor who was a wedding photographer.  He brought me on to perform normal day-to-day office work like sort through negatives, order wedding albums, and help keep things organized.  I was immediately drawn to the work he was doing and very much wanted to learn as much as I could.  He offered me free photo lessons on the side and guided me toward my very first camera purchase.

In high school, I enjoyed learning the fine art side of photography through my wildly talented high school photography teacher.  His whimsical yet demanding approach to learning the medium is where I really found my love for photography.  The weekly photo assignments had me out in the field creating work I never though possible only to then head into the magical darkroom where my visions became reality in the form of black and white photographs.  It was a time when we mixed chemicals, exposed photographic paper to light, and truly made our pictures by hand.  My high school photography teacher and I communicate regularly by phone even to this day.

When it came time to apply for college, there was only one thing I wanted to do and that was pursue photography.  There were a number of colleges to choose from but I set my sights on Bard College in NY.  The highly esteemed department of photography professors pushed my creativity even further and challenged me to create a style and approach to photography that I could claim as my own.  While that is something I continue to strive for even to this day, the knowledge and experiences I gained during those 4 years have served me very well in establishing a career in photography.

It was during my time at Bard College where my interest in identical twins really blossomed.  I spent my entire senior year photographing sets of identical twins.  I recall road trips to various parts of NY, OH, MA, and NJ to meet with and photograph twins of all ages.  It was a photography project that fascinated me greatly and brought me in contact with over 50 sets of identical twins over the years.  Every so often, I learn of more sets of twins and when possible, I take up the opportunity to photograph them.

One of the things all my mentors (and most photographers mention in general) is that it becomes a challenge to balance the demands of owning and operating one’s photography business with the desire to create personal work.  In the early years of building my business, I felt a strong commitment to focus my activities on the business itself.  As time has gone on and my business has leaned more toward supporting itself, I have begun to take greater liberties in pursuing personal work.  It has been very rewarding and in turn, informs and improves the work I create for my clients.

I recently had the opportunity to photograph a 1 year session for Christina’s daughter.  We met at a local park and captured fun portraits of Christina, her husband, and her beautiful daughter.  It as an extremely fun experience and following the session, Christina was kind enough to follow me on Facebook and Instagram.  Of course I made sure to follow back.  I always enjoy seeing people’s comments on the photographs I create for my couples and having the ability to stay connected on what is going on in everyone’s lives.  While scrolling through my Instagram feed one afternoon, I saw Christina post a photo of her with her identical twin.  I nearly passed out with excitement!  Not only because she is an identical twin but because she and her sister look so incredibly alike.  You’d think that after photographing so many sets of identical twins that the novelty of it all would wash a way a bit.  But, not for me.

I reached out to Christina, briefly explained my twins project, and asked if she and her sister might be interested in participating.  Thankfully, they both said yes.  Here are just a couple of my favorites from a portrait session we had together at my studio.  Projects like these inspire me and remind me to keep being creative and to never stop creating new work.

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Portland High School Senior Portraits

Photographing high school senior portraits in and around the Portland area is something we enjoy immensely.  We work directly with the senior and his/her parents to select a location that best speaks to the senior’s personality and interests.  Once the location is chosen, we forward a complimentary What to Wear Guide that offers tips and suggestions on what to wear for the senior photo session.  We recommend that seniors bring 2-4 outfits that they can change in and out of throughout the session to create greater variety to the images that are captured.

We recently met up with Marcus in Lake Oswego to capture his senior portraits at a local park.  While many high school students participate in sports like basketball, football, and volleyball, Marcus focuses on a more unique sport – water polo. In fact, he plans to continue the sport when he goes on to college in California.

Within days of the senior photo session, we provided him and his parents with an online gallery of images to choose from for his yearbook photo.  Inclusive in all of our high school senior sessions is a digital file that is prepared in accordance to the guidelines for each high school’s yearbook requirements.  We handle all the communications with the school and ensure that the file is submitted properly.  One less thing for parents to worry about.  We then meet with the high school senior and his/her parents at our photography studio in NW Portland to review the rest of the work and make ordering decisions for prints, cards, and other products.  To see the wide range of products we offer, check out these high school senior products for your home.

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Something Borrowed | Lounge Packages

Something Borrowed is a Portland, OR based event design and specialty rental company that I have worked with for many years.  Their unique pieces add a lot of personality and character to any wedding or event and their collection keeps growing and growing.  They have recently expanded into a 5,000+ square foot warehouse space that is filled from floor to ceiling with incredible rental offerings.

Lane’s most recent development in her business is the announcement of lounge packages.  These are lounge areas that are created and styled as a package.  They take out the guess work of trying to determine which items pair best together.  Her creative team has put these packages together and have officially launched the new concept on their website.

If you or anyone you know is planning a wedding or event, make sure to check out Lane’s extensive rental collection at Something Borrowed.  Check out some of her pieces and design aesthetic below.  We had the chance to team up together at our photography studio to stage and document each new package offering.

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Mai & Blake | August 13, 2016

This past summer was extremely busy for us with weddings and other various photography assignments.  It prevented us from blogging as frequently as we normally do in favor of making sure our clients received their images as quickly as possible.  Now that we are caught up with our assignment work, we are now catching up on blogging our recent work.

Mai and Blake were married at the Gray Gables Estate in August of this year.  The day was very warm and we made every effort to keep the couple and their guests as cool as possible.  We made sure to capture portraits with family members in the shade and made sure to take many breaks as needed to remain fresh and comfortable.

One of my favorite things to do at a wedding is to gather all the guests around the newlywed couple immediately following their wedding ceremony.  Everyone gathers around and I typically climb a small sized ladder to gain a higher perspective looking down on the crowd.  It is a great keepsake from the wedding day for couples to have a photo with all of their wedding guests.  As soon as the image is captured, guests continue on to cocktail hour to mingle and enjoy the rest of the afternoon and evening.  We headed inside for the wedding reception and enjoyed capturing all of the events as they unfolded throughout the day.

Here are a number of highlights from Mai and Blake’s wedding at the Gray Gables Estate.

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