The Perks of Props | Bethesda Baby Photographer

When our parents tell us about where we came from, they often joke that we just showed up on their doorstep in a basket, perfect and precious. That’s exactly how Baby Kayleigh arrived for her photoshoot in the Bishop’s Garden at the National Cathedral in Washington, DC—a bundle of joy wrapped up in an antique wooden washbasin her mom brought on loan from the repurposed home goods store, The Endless Elm.

I love it when parents bring props to the shoot. It really helps make the final product personal and meaningful—and it helps make the shoot comfortable from the start since there’s something familiar already in the landscape. It also gives my subjects something to play with—we had a blast with the refurbished picture frames, playing peek-a-boo with Kayleigh and making her squeal when we pretended to cough.

Kayleigh was an absolute peach in every way. She laughed and giggled the entire time, and with a face that precious and animated, I naturally wanted to make that smile the focal point of as many shots as possible.

She wore a soft violet jumper, which blended in perfectly with the violets and thistles that formed the backdrop of a number of the shots. She literally looks like she sprung up from the garden. Mom and dad wore white, which really made Kayleigh pop. With tons of natural light, it was easy to highlight different sides of her big personality and create some gorgeous effects.

One of my favorites is of Kayleigh raised up against the sun with just her dad’s arms and hands visible in the foreground. She literally looks like an angel—it’s a shot that her parents will re-purpose years from now for her wedding for sure.


Brothers and Sisters | Bethesda Family Photographer

Brothers and sisters are as close as hands and feet.
       ~Vietnamese Proverb


The Crop Factor | Bethesda Family Photographer

A cornerstone of my business has always been that I believe clients should always have access to their digital files. It is more likely today that you will share your moments electronically rather than in print. As I discussed in an earlier post, you can't pass down a hard drive to your children.

Because you will most likely only print a few images to gift to parents or display in your home, why not spend a little extra order quality prints from a professional printing lab?  Professional printing labs are ideal because they are calibrated to a photographers color profiles, do not auto color correct the images, and a bunch of other technical stuff that is really important. Bottom line-- sometimes prints from places like Target and Ritz Camera look completely different than what your photographer intended them to look like or even your very own computer screen. You don't know how many times I've seen my beautiful images printed out and everyone looks green!

While perusing Pinterest this evening (and by peruse.. I mean spending at least 4 blissful hours looking up succulent plant wall art.. so random!) I came across an image by another photographer reminding me of the importance of CROPPING.

Most images taken straight from the camera will be in a 4x6 format (or 2:3 ratio), but most prints you hang or display are 5x7 or 8x10.  So when you are not printing from a pro lab, be sure to check and see a preview of how the image will be cropped. Because in most cases, a computer, and not a human, might chop off a very important part of your image. :-)


Shayla + Michael | Married | Bethesda Wedding Photographer

Shayla and Michael were married at the beautiful Milton Ridge Chapel in Clarksburg, Maryland a few weeks ago on a misty August afternoon. The always chic and fabulous, Tanzi of Weddings by Tanzi worked her magic again, transforming the comfy cottage atmosphere into a romantic Tuscan theme with a modern color palette twist. As Shayla gleefully prepared to meet her groom at the alter, Michael was cool as a cucumber hanging out with his best friends. It was a long time in the making, but these two make getting married look good! Congratulations Shayla and Michael!


Carmella + Josh | Baptized

Today was a very special day for my niece and and nephew, but it was also an incredible day for Rob and myself as we became godparents. Carmella and Josh were baptized in the same church that we were married in and it was so special and nice to spend time with my family in Pennsylvania this weekend.


Crystal + Jake | First Look | Pennsylvania Wedding Photographer

I could go on and on about Crystal and Jake's wedding in Lehigh Valley, Pennsylvania yesterday. It was such a special occasion for me because Jake is the brother of one of my oldest and dearest friends. On a gorgeous summer day they exchanged sweet vows at the Woodstone Country Club amongst family and friends.

Below are images from their First Look. It is honestly one of the sweetest and most sentimental moments of the wedding day and really helps couples not only share a private interlude before a whirlwind of emotions and excitement, but also allows us to capture the images they will cherish for a lifetime. To read more about First Looks click here!