Acrylic Blocks | Family Photographer San Clemente

As a Family Photographer in San Clemente, I am always looking for new, unique, beautiful products to offer to my clients. I love offering real, tangible, heirloom quality products with my collections because I believe they are more important than just having a digital file. 

I know I've never gone over to a friends house and asked to see the USB drive of images. Nope, instead, when I walk in and see photos displayed on their walls and table and mantles, I stop and stare, touch, admire. Nothing really says "artwork" like a beautiful product displaying your memories. 

Recently, I discovered just how wonderfully beautiful Acrylic Blocks are. They are sturdy and pristine. Seriously, I'm in love, and I think you will be as well!

family photographer san clemente
family photographer san clemente
family photographer san clemente
family photographer san clemente

I am SO EXCITED to be offering these incredible pieces of art and I would LOVE for you to have one for your own home! Contact Me today if you're looking for a Family Photographer in San Clemente

Project 52 | Month 3 | Family Photographer San Clemente

Continuing, 2 months later, with my Project 52, this Family Photographer in San Clemente has been photographing as much as possible these past few months. I am really enjoying this Project 52. It's helping me to really THINK when it comes to what I'm going to photograph. I make it a point to at least TRY and step out of the box when the theme is posted. 

For March, our themes for the week were:
Week 9: Quiet
Week 10: Green
Week 11: Lucky
Week 12: Bokeh

family photographer san clemente
family photographer san clemente
family photographer san clemente
family photographer san clemente

So for Week 9: Quiet
I set up a little selfie session, thought about what I could do to represent quiet while being by myself. This was the image I came up with.

Week 10: Green
I used my Canon 100mm L lens to do a macro shot of some flowers we have in our front yard. There was enough separation between this single bud and the grass below it and it created this little purple bud in a sea of green.

Week 11: Lucky
For me, I think we as women are lucky to be able to experience life moving inside of us. Even to be capable of this is incredible. Not all women are so lucky, so for those who are, please cherish that.

Week 12: Bokeh
I initially used a slightly different photo for this in my group. However, this image was taken on the same day, at a different angle and actually showcases real bokeh better than my other one. 

I really do enjoy being apart of this Project 52. If you're a photographer looking to join the group, we'd love to have you jump right in. You can send a request here: Artistically Created Group

If you're looking for a Family Photographer in the San Clemente area, I would love for you to Contact Me today to discuss a possible session!

Project 52, Month 2 | San Clemente Family Photographer

Following up with my Project 52, Month 1 (which you can see HERE), I'm a little late getting these posted. I love that being a San Clemente Family Photographer, I'm not limited to any one thing. I get to photograph families, babies, births, and special projects just for me. That's what this Project 52 is all about.

While coming up with the themes middle-end of last year was a little difficult (it's hard to think of 52 original themes). It's also not easy to come up with WHAT to actually photograph for these themes. But that's the fun part. The themes are open to our own interpretation and as artists, we're free to go with what we are feeling.

So, without further ado, here are my weeks 5-8 of Month 2. Can you spot the theme I created within the themes? Here's a hint... there's a certain holiday that happens during the month of February ;)

Our theme for week 5 was RED
I instantly thought of fruit when I saw this theme. I happened to have some pomegranates in my fridge (I LOVE pomegranate seeds). So I figured, why not cut it up and photograph the beautiful design that hides inside.

san clemente photographer

Our week 6 theme was: Passion
I chose to do a selfie session with my boy, Capone. My passion is capturing the moments, the memories. So that's just what I did. And I swear, he's not as terrified as I made him look by hugging him like this

san clemente photographer

Week 7: Love
I can't even begin to describe how much I love this boy. He was the first dog my husband and I got together. He was destined to be ours and he has been loyal ever since.

san clemente photographer

And finally... Our week 8 was: Hearts
I happened to be doing a Gold Hope Session this week. So I wanted to incorporate this little heart sign that I made for the little girl to hold.

san clemente photographer

I have to admit, so far, I'm pretty proud of myself for sticking with it. we are already on week 12, so I'll be sharing more in the next couple weeks. I hope you're loving seeing these as much as I'm loving creating them.

If you're looking to have a family session (or maternity, birth, newborn), I would love for you to Contact Me today to talk about capturing your memories!


Saying Goodbye | San Clemente Family Photographer

As a San Clemente Family Photographer, I often express the importance of a photograph. I always say "When we're gone, the photographs will be all that's left to remember us by." Last week, these words became all the clearer. When you have to say "Goodbye", you understand the true importance of a photograph.

My uncle passed away last week. It was heartbreaking. For his wife, who he had spent 42 years with. For his children, who he loved to teach. For his grandchildren, who he loved to love. For all of his friends and family, and for me.

When I heard the news, one of the first things I thought about was the photos I took of him at my cousin's wedding almost 3 years ago. I cannot even begin to explain just how grateful I am to have those images to look back on. I'm also glad that my cousin and my aunt have those images to look back on as well. My only regret is that there aren't more of them.

You see, when someone passes, that's when things become clear. The time we didn't spend, the talks we didn't have, and the pictures we didn't take. Thankfully, my family had tons of other photographs of him that they were able to share and look back on.

He was a kindhearted soul. I always remember him being laid back, funny, and patient. He loved his family and he was kind to everyone he met. He will forever be missed by anyone who knew him. And I'll forever be thankful that I am a San Clemente Family Photographer who was able to capture my uncle in photographs, even if I wish we had more.


san clemente family photographer

3 Ways to get Sharper Photos | San Clemente Family Photographer

As a San Clemente Family Photographer, one thing I see a lot of newer photographers struggling with is how to get sharper photos out of camera. There are A LOT of different factors to consider when trying to make a sharp image. Today I'm going to discuss three ways to get sharper photos.

I'm choosing these particular three factors because I personally feel these are the top three to take into consideration when trying to get sharper photos.

There are a lot of reasons that having enough light on your subject will effect how sharp your image turns out.
One reason; having enough light on your subject helps your camera to "grab" onto the right area you're wishing to focus on. What I mean by that is: while our lens is what we use to focus, the camera itself still needs to be able to "see" what we're trying to focus on. It looks for areas of contrast (an area of light next to an area of shadow). If your subject is too much in the dark and there isn't some light that the camera can grab onto, then your lens is going to have difficulty focusing. This brings up another point about contrast... backlit images typically have decreased contrast and more haze. Because of this, it can make it harder for your lens to focus. It is created by the way the light source is hitting your lens (typically going straight into it). It's like us being blinded by the sun when we try to look right at it... a little hard to focus, amiright?!

san clemente family photographer

As you can see, between these two images, the top image has less light on my subject, aka my dog. While her eyes are still in focus, you can see how having more light on her does actually make her appear sharper.
On top of making it easier for your camera to find the right area to focus on, having enough light also helps reduce your ISO. If your ISO is too high, you'll have noise/grain in your image. If your image is underexposed and you need to bring back some exposure in post, you're going to have noise in your image. Having too much noise will make your image look less sharp, even if you nailed focus.
All I did different (besides adjust my settings) for these two shots was open my blinds to camera right.

san clemente family photographer

This is a big one. If you do not have a fast enough shutter speed, you are going to introduce camera shake into your image. This will make it impossible to have a sharp image, and you also will not be able to fix this in post. A blurry image out of camera will remain a blurry image out of post.
There's a bit of a "rule" when it comes to how slow you actually let your shutter speed get. The rule is 1/focal length. What this means is that if you're using an 85mm lens, your shutter speed should not drop below 1/85ths of a second. And since 1/85 isn't an option on any camera I'm aware of, you'd want a shutter speed of at least 1/100th of a second.
Now, it's also suggested to never let your shutter go below 1/60th of a second. This is because this is the average threshold for people to hand hold their camera. Meaning, any slower than that and it's suggested to use a tripod. Now... of course, there are always those who have very steady hands and can go lower than 1/focal length or even lower than 1/60, but you'll need to test your own limits. I know that I am more on the shaky/unsteady side of things. So I prefer to keep my shutter speed as fast as possible. Because I know I cannot fix a blurry image in Photoshop, I never want to risk introducing camera shake into my image.

san clemente family photographer

Here are two more shots of my beautiful and well behaved model. As you can see, the top image is NOT sharp, and the bottom image is. Both of these were photographed using my Canon 35mm lens. The shutter speed in the top image is 1/40 and the shutter speed in the bottom image is 1/125. So, as you can see, even though I was still at 1/focal length in the top image, I was below 1/60. And for me, through my years of personal experience with photography, I know that I like to keep my shutter speed at no less than 1/100, even with a 35mm on my camera.
I encourage you to test your own limits at hand holding your camera.

san clemente family photographer

This is another mistake I see a lot of newer photographers make. Either they leave their focal point in the middle of their view finder, or they allow the camera to choose the focal points for them. In my opinion, both of these are mistakes. For one thing, unless you are ALWAYS using a center composition, which I don't personally recommend, you're going to need to utilize your other focal points. They're there for a reason, use them! Now, your center focal point is your strongest one, but that doesn't mean the others should be ignored. I like to use the focal point that is closest to the composition I'm looking to have for my image. Practice moving your focal points so that you can get used to where the buttons are located and soon you'll be able to move them without having to look at your camera.
Now, you could focus and recompose your image, but there are limitations to doing that as well. For example, if your focal point is in the center, and you tilt your camera upwards to focus on someone's eye, then recompose the shot by tilting your camera back down so that the center focus point would now be pointed at their torso, there's a chance you will alter your depth of field. You will shorten the distance your camera is to your subject and your subjects face will not be sharp. Focus and recompose works best when moving from right to left, not up and down. That's just something to keep in mind, and something that I again encourage you to practice with so that you can see for yourself what I'm talking about.

san clemente family photographer

The image above is something that you might see when you look into your view finder and want to change your focal point (this is what I see on my Canon cameras, Nikon may be slightly different). The middle example is showing that the camera would be using the center focal point. However, it's also showing that you're using ONE focal point, which is what I suggest. This is where you could change your single focal point to any of the other gray boxes that would best achieve the composition you're looking for in your image.

Hopefully these three tips will help you in getting sharper images. As I mentioned, there is SO MUCH more that goes into getting a sharper image in camera. These are just my top three. If you're interested in knowing more, I've put together a little ebook for you. You're welcome to sign up for my newsletters to get tips & tricks sent straight to your inbox. When you sign up, you'll get my 8 tips for How to Achieve Sharper Images in Camera. These newsletters are for newer photographers looking to learn how to use their cameras to the best of their abilities!

If you're interested in some one on one mentoring, I'd love for you to Contact Me today! I love helping newer photographers grow and learn.

I have been a San Clemente Family Photographer for 3 years. Capturing families interacting is the best job! If you're looking to schedule a family photography session, I'd love to hear from you!



Elise, Kaleb, & Boe | San Clemente Family Photographer

I love my job. Being a San Clemente Family Photographer is honestly one of the best jobs there are. Getting to meet new families and capture their unique dynamic is always fun and exciting for me. Each family is different. They have their own vibe, their own personality. On top of that, each individual is unique as well.

Elise, Kaleb & Boe are no different. You may remember seeing Elise & Kaleb on the blog before (You can check it out here). Not all of my families consist of human children. Some, such as this one, have fur children. As a fur mom, myself, I love when families want to incorporate their little four-legged family members.

Boe is the sweetest boy. He loves going on his walks, which is Elise is so good about taking him on. He also loved going to Deer Park, a park on Camp Pendleton. For this reason alone, we chose this as our location. Since Boe is a bit of an older pup, it's not always so easy for him to get around, and usually not for very long. But he LOVES going to Deer Park. It was such a special time getting to capture the three of them together, interacting and just being the happy little family that they are.

San Clemente Family Photographer
San Clemente Family Photographer
San Clemente Family Photographer
San Clemente Family Photographer
San Clemente Family Photographer
San Clemente Family Photographer
San Clemente Family Photographer
San Clemente Family Photographer
San Clemente Family Photographer
San Clemente Family Photographer
San Clemente Family Photographer
San Clemente Family Photographer

Being a San Clemente Family Photographer is one of the best things I've ever had the pleasure of being apart of. If you're looking to get your own family photos done, I would love to chat with you! Contact Me today to set up your photography session!

Spectrum Inspired | Family Photographer San Clemente

Last year, being a Family Photographer in San Clemente, I was lucky enough to become a contributor at an amazing company called Spectrum Inspired. This company is a community of photographers, working together to provide free photography sessions to children who are on the autism spectrum.

I believe that all children are a true blessing from God. So it was pretty easy for me to get behind this cause. If you aren't exactly sure what Spectrum Inspired is all about, you really should check out their site: SPECTRUM INSPIRED

family photographer san clemente

Their mission is this: SPECTRUM INSPIRED is a global community that connects, supports and uplifts individuals and families touched by Autism Spectrum Disorders. In order to educate the general public, our team uses Lifestyle Photography to document a diverse group of children on the spectrum and their families across the globe in effort to normalize and destigmatize ASD. It is our mission to give families a platform to voice their struggles, celebrate their victories and share their story; all the while, removing the stigma and stereotypes of what is thought to be representative of Autism and show the world just how broad and beautiful the spectrum is. 

So... are you, or do you know, a deserving family with a child on the spectrum who should benefit from this amazing gift? If so, I urge you to reach out to them. Send them an application by going HERE.

If you're a family in the San Clemente/Orange County area, I would LOVE to capture the true spirit of your child as well as your unique family dynamic. If you fill out the application, all you have to do is request me as your photographer, and I'll be the one blessed with capturing lifelong memories for your family!


3 Day Juice Cleanse | San Clemente Family Photographer

As a San Clemente Family Photographer, I feel it's important for me to share with you more than just a blog about the sessions I do. I make it a point to try and become actual friends with my clients because I value that aspect of our relationship. Part of that includes me sharing bits of my life with you.

So... at the beginning of the year, I decided to try a 3 Day Juice Cleanse. My dad and stepmom bought my husband and I a really nice juicer for Christmas. I've already put it to really good use in a short amount of time.

I've never done any kind of cleanse before, so I knew I was in for a bit of a challenge. But I also knew I really wanted to try it. I was hoping for a bit of a reset to my system. See... while my husband is deployed, I don't always feel like cooking for myself. This usually results in me eating out more than I would really like.

I didn't want to do a cleanse that completely eliminated food. So I found one that allowed me to still have a decent dinner at night. The only restriction was that it was lean meat/protein and veggies. So no starches (I cried a little about that), and no carbs (at least not the kind I'm used to eating like breads and pastas).

I found THIS ONE on Pinterest. I didn't take any photos of the juice to show you and be all fancy because... well.. juice often looks a lot yuckier in person than it does in the photos you see online.

So here's what I thought of it and my results.

1. Day 1 and 2 juices did NOT yield 64 ounces of fluid. This left me feeling pretty hungry throughout the day even though I was making sure to drink plenty of water as well.
2. I had some HUGE cravings for salt on days 1 and 2. I mean... I wanted to rip open a bag of potato chips and just go to town kind of craving.
3. I realized just how much I eat not because I'm hungry, but just because I feel like putting food in my mouth. I found myself constantly wanting to graze just because. But I would have probably killed for some popcorn.
4. The juice was YUMMY! I was actually a little surprised about day 3 being as good as it was. I like juicing. I like most juices. However, beet juice has always been too earthy for me. BUT, this particular mix was pretty tasty. So much so, that I would make it again.
5. I lost 5lbs in 3 days. Granted it was all water weight, I did notice I was less bloated. I mean... what woman doesn't want that?

All in all, I think the 3 Day Juice Cleanse went pretty alright. Seeing a 5lb weight loss, even knowing it was water weight, had me tempted to go a couple more days, haha. But ultimately, I knew I just needed to take the next step in altering the way I consume food and the types of food I'm consuming.

Have you tried a cleanse that you love? If so, drop some details about it in the comments below! I'd love to hear about it!

Valentine's Day Session | San Clemente Family Photographer

As a San Clemente Family Photographer, one thing I make sure I capture during a family session is a couple images of just parents! Too often, parents forget that they were once just a couple. And even though you may have children now, you still need a little reminder now and again about what drew you to one another.

That's why, this year, I'm offering a Valentine's Day Session. This session will be just for the couple. It's important to spend a little time with it just being the two of you. When is the last time you took 20 minutes to just express your love to one another? Well... I'm going to give you that opportunity!

For a limited time, from now until February 14, 2017 I am going to be offering Valentine's Day Sessions.

San Clemente Family Photographer

These sessions will be 20 Minute Sessions and will include:
- 10 High Res, fully edited images for download
-A beautiful Glass Box with 10 5x5 prints (same images that you download)
Sessions will be held within 20 miles of San Clemente (92672) and can be scheduled any day, Monday-Sunday. Please see the link below for location options.
Investment is $300 + 8% OC sales tax (total is $324)
This collection is valued at over $700!!

In order to book your session, session fee must be paid in full and is non-refundable. You may choose which date/time/location works best for you. You'll then receive an email with the contract and model release, as well as a short questionnaire about your relationship.

Choose Your Session

So what are you waiting for? Book a Valentine's Day Session for you and your love. Treat yourselves to a romantic session for just the two of you! Let me capture your love through my eyes.

Click here to see more of my Couple's Photography

Have questions? Contact me!