Category Archives: Family

Well Hello Again!

I’ve been MIA on the blogging for a bit… the holiday crush for pictures has overwhelmed me this year, in a good way 🙂  I feel so fortunate to have shared in the lives of so many families, artists, models, moms, shoe-shiners, street musicians, and people from all walks of life.  Creating a portrait of someone or someone’s family is an honor and gives me such a unique and intimate glimpse into their lives, and I couldn’t be more thankful this holiday season.

This is a quick peek from yesterday’s shoot at Disneyland.  Thank you Juliette, David and little David for such a memorable day!  ps. you may remember this guy as Yummy Empanada Feet… from this post HERE.

Be back soon!



The Golden Hour, Part 2

I remember walking up the steps to the Kennedy home for the first time feeling incredibly nervous… it was my first shoot as a “professional.”  This is about five and a half years ago… I had a Rebel, one less-than-stellar lens, and I felt like I had no idea what I was doing!  But… I also had confidence in my resourceful nature, creativity, and high-energy personality to make it work.

When I look back at my photographs from this very first pro shoot, I see a lot of what I’ve since become known for…  classic pictures of emotional, playful, intimate moments.  I also see shots that have become my trademark…

Such as the double profile portrait…


…extreme close-ups…




…and my Bed Portraits


I’ll be totally honest with you – I shot this session completely on automatic and spent about a week in post!  Hahaaa!  Things sure have changed a lot since then, and I have been so blessed, but take a peek at my most recent shoot HERE of the Kennedy’s 5 years later, and you’ll see some similarities 🙂



The Golden Hour, Part 1

Photographers everywhere love the Golden Hour… that last hour before sunset, when the light is golden and makes everything look magical.  This savvy mom requested the Golden Hour… and I was happy to oblige last weekend.  The Kennedy family is very near and dear to me… 5 years ago, they were my very 1st paid shoot as a professional photographer!  And I’ve shot for their family every year since… birthdays, Mother’s day, Christmas cards, new babies… and I couldn’t be happier.  This mom, Monica Kennedy, is responsible for a great deal of my success… I have never advertised because her referral is trusted and carries far and wide.  I’ve nicknamed her my MVP-VIP, and she has free sessions for a lifetime.

So make sure to stay tuned for tomorrow’s post!… a highlight of my favorite moments from that very first professional shoot with the Kennedy family.

Here’s how it all began… Monica and Joe – can’t you just feel the love?


Here is my favorite threesome: Ryan, Coco, and Stella… Playing in the park… throwing leaves and getting giggly on the park bench…


The boys…


The girls…


One of my signature shots… The Secret..


Aw, shucks mom – stop embarrassing me!


I adore the Kennedy family… they are sweet, fun, thoughtful, generous, and gorgeous! They are my number one fans, and I’m their’s!

Stay tuned for tomorrow’s post of my very 1st professional shoot 5 years ago with the Kennedy family.



Sticky Miller

It’s always a good time at Santa Monica Pier, with lots of adventures, activity and emotion!  Take Miss Sticky Miller here… she’s my good friend’s daughter and my favorite 4 yr old on the planet.  I adore her little voice and her phenomenal personality — she’s such a ray of positive energy, friendly to everyone, and quite the cutie 🙂

She was so excited to take a day off of school yesterday and go to the Pier… where she knows you can cradle exotic animals…


…Act like a true NYC cab driver…


…chase some pigeons along the boardwalk… and have a really good time!  Until….


…you have to share your bag of sweeties with your mum…


…it’s okay – you can wipe it on there…


…but I know something that will cheer you up!


…and pretty soon you’ll be swinging that bag around, pointing fingers at people, and earning the name “Sticky Miller” …


…you’ll even start dancing to a beat belted out by plastic buckets… lol! and you’ll dance like no-one’s watching 🙂


I adore this little girl!… and all her up/down/silly/around moments between this…


…and this!


Stay tuned for Sticky Miller’s second half of the day, involving red balloons and a red dress – two of my favorite things!



Zen Family Habits

Simple Happiness… “Zen Family Habits” is a fabulous new blog co-created by Sherri Kruger, wife and mom, and Leo Babauta, writer of the super popular “Zen Habits” (one of my favorite blogs) and best-selling author of “The Power of Less.”

I am thrilled that Zen Family Habits will be posting my photographs(!) along with their wonderful articles… some of my recent favorites include: “The Secret Life of High-Energy Parents;” “31 Simple Family Pleasures;” and “Your Ideal Family: How to Make it a Reality.”

Here’s how the writers describe the essence of Zen Family Habits…

“Zen Family Habits is a celebration of all things family. It’s about living simply and with presence of mind. It’s about cultivating healthy, meaningful, relationships with loved ones… having fun and enjoying life’s simple pleasures.  Zen Family Habits is a place where we can all find inspiration and get different perspectives for improving and enjoying our families.”

I hope you get a chance to visit their site to bring a little more love and inspiration to your family… Here’s to simple pleasures! and photographs, of course 🙂



A Screaming Good Time

There was a whole lotta screamin going on at the Pier this past weekend. You may remember these two wild things as the “Betty Butter” girls from our shoot earlier this year “Dancing in the Park.” Well they outdid themselves on Sunday… dancing, running, squealing, screaming…  The above shot is them hollering on the way up…

and shrieking on the way down!!…


Aw, a pause in the action a moment for a good luck hug…


Devilishly competitive, this Mom is the first in my history of shooting at the pier, who actually won the prize and didn’t let the kids win… lol!!  Just look at the intensity:


So I bounced Mom to the sidelines and told Dad to keep her busy…


Y’all know by now that this is one of my signature shots… I love the total joy and movement in this one…


A good squeeeeeeze high above the ocean…


Being chased by Dad and an anatomically correct Homer Simpson – don’t ask, but you would run too.


A hoot and a holler…


…and sometimes, the screaming just gets to be too much…


…until the next time 🙂




Looking for Trouble

Nothing like getting into trouble with your younger brother. Remember this little heartbreaker from my recent post “A Good Jewish Boy”… he looked all sweet with that flower, didn’t he?… But boy, he was a handful!  and I think it was his sister who talked him into it 🙂

Tell me these two aren’t up for causing trouble!…


Two of my favorite moments from the shoot… Silly and Sweet…


Look at the body language on little miss thang…


Oh.  My.  Goodness.  Now, I’m in trouble!


Here’s their newly born cousin, and you can tell he’s going to be looking for trouble soon too…


I love these faces!  and I love capturing them with my camera – I feel like I’m squeezing their little cheeks with my lens 🙂

More cuteness, madness, and fabulous news soon…


A Good Jewish Boy

Nothing like a cutie in blazer offering me a flower! This is my third shoot for this family, and I am completely charmed by this little guy every time.  Just look at those eyes!


Pouting because he couldn’t get the flower to stay in his lapel… ugh, so cute!


This little songbird stole my heart.  How can you resist?


I’ll post more pics of this gorgeous sweetheart and his family soon….

Once I recover from heartbreak 🙂



Whole Lotta Blonde Goodness

It’s holiday picture time!… and I am busy busy shooting family photos all during the fall.  Here is quick peek from a shoot this past weekend – a photo party in the park with the beautifully blonde, all-American, sweet Benson family.

Love a good close-up…


One of my recent favorites…  It just says DAD to me…


And let’s not forget how all this craziness started…


These pics make me feel good.  They are a reminder for what’s important in life… being silly, loving, playful, comforting, and connected to the ones you truly truly love.

xoxo – I’ll try to blog more soon!



Ashli Marino is one cool girl. She is super sweet, easy going, affectionate with her parents, loving with her friends, and has a way with animals.  So it’s only natural that she celebrated her Sweet Sixteen birthday on Friday with family, over 200 friends, and a few furry beasts: an African Lion, a Mountain Lion, an African Monkey, and a Wolf.

Pre-party, getting ready…



Peeking out of the dressing room as her friends arrive…


Ashli makes a grand entrance with a wolf, and the paparazzi swarm!


This African Lion is named Romeo, and we weren’t allowed to get too close.  Romeo’s trainer told me to stand back up when I had crouched down for a shot, warning me that Romeo may try to fire pee at us.  Seriously? Yes.


The African Monkey is also “very dangerous” according to the trainers, and no stranger is allowed to hold, pet, or interact with him… Until he met Ashli and was completely won over by her.  Look at him – he’s practically coo’ing in her lap.  (Do monkeys coo?)  And yes, even though he’s wearing a diaper, he still looks scary to me.


The dance floor was packed the entire time…


The party was held outside at Mountain Gate Country Club.  My second shooter for the evening was the amazing Shani Barel – who’s presence on Friday night was a Godsend.  I recommend her highly!  I am so grateful for her enthusiasm, positive attitude, and generosity.  Here are a couple of Shani’s shots…



It’s all about the shoes, until —


Cupcakes and a cocktail of milk – perfect.


Happy Sweet Sixteen, Ashli!

Thank you for a memorable evening, and I’m looking forward to geeking out with our camera’s together soon 🙂



Santa Monica Pier, Sarah and Aaron Pt. 2

I’ve known 4 yr. old twins Sarah and Aaron since they were born, and I’ve been lucky to photograph them every year of their young lives since. I’m crazy about these two kids! – they have such personality, are so loving and energetic, and are hands down the most cooperative and up-for-anything toddlers I’ve ever met.

What a great job I have, to spend an afternoon with these two little packages of happiness at Santa Monica Pier…


Gazing out at the sea…


Sarah is definitely the “me first!” type of girl, independent and fearless, quick to laugh and easy to smile.  While Aaron is laid back, super sweet and very silly.  This picture says it all…


Running after pigeons, running after each other, or just running wild – these two ran almost the entire time.


Snack faces.


Putting a penny in for luck…


Celebrating his win with “woofie” and “swish!”


This girl’s got sass… she doesn’t walk, she struts!


Whew! – a moment of rest…


…and that was all before lunchtime!

Stayed tuned for more 🙂



Santa Monica Pier, Sarah and Aaron

Busy Busy!… I’m so fortunate to be booked solid every holiday season with family portrait sessions, and this year is my busiest.  I’ll catch up with postings this week.  In the meantime, here’s a quick sneak peek of one of the most fun shoots this year.

Little 4 yr. old twins, Sarah and Aaron at Santa Monica Pier yesterday.  It does not get any more adorable and sweet than these two…


More tasty cuteness on the blog tomorrow!