We know how important your family photos are. They capture a special time in your family’s life story. So I’ve compiled some of my favorite tips to help make your family portrait session the best ever! Use these tips as a checklist as you prepare for your family photography session.

1.  Decide What to Wear, Ahead of Time.

Make sure that you go through your closet and decide what everyone will be wearing prior to the day of your session.  Try on all the clothing and make sure it fits everyone well.  Also, if you have older children, make sure everyone is on board for the clothing choices.  We want everyone to look AND feel their best.

2.  Save the Sweets for Later.

For the littles…please don’t give the kids candy prior to the session.  We want to offer them a sweet treat as an incentive to do their best and have fun during the session.  If they have already had their fill, this won’t work very well.  Also we really want to avoid that “sugar crash” that happens about an hour after eating sweets.  Finally, blue, red, orange or green candy stained mouths are really hard to fix in PhotoShop!

3.  Relax, No Cheese Please.

We know that family photography can be stressful for Mom and Dad, but the best thing you can do is relax and have fun.  We want to tell the story of your family at this stage in your life.  While giant smiles are amazing, the soft thoughtful looks, as well as belly laughs and everything in between are great as well!  We kindly request that you make your family session a “Cheese Free zone”!

4.  Decide on a Goal.

It is helpful to have a clear vision of what you would like to accomplish with the photography session.  Do you want a beautiful art piece for your wall, a custom designed album, gift prints for loved ones, etc.? Let us know!  We love to be able to shoot with the finished product in mind.

5.  Get Your Rest.

Make sure everyone is well rested on the day of the session.  If you have small children, try to plan your session around the best time of day for them.  We find that for kiddos under 3, early morning works best.  For the best lighting for outdoor sessions, we typically book 1 to 2 hours after sunrise or 1-2 hours before sunset.  Or  we can book your session in our studio for beautiful lighting at any time of day.

6.  Get Personal.

Bring something that is uniquely personal to your family.  Does your child have a favorite blanket?  Bring it!  Is your dog an important member of the family? Bring her along.  We really want these images to resonate with you for years to come.

7.  A Favorite Location.

Pick a location that is meaningful to your family.  Are your fondest memories sitting under an umbrella on the beach, or spending time at the Fun Zone?  Maybe your family loves to go antique shopping in downtown Orange?  Where ever the location, you should incorporated it into your photography session.

Holiday photos in the summerLet’s face it, this summer Christmas is probably the last thing on your mind. But did you know that summer is the best time to take family photos for those holiday cards? Here are my top ten reasons why you should book your family portrait session today.

#10. Easier to book. It’s easier to get a weekend appointment (or an appointment at all).

#9. Sun-kissed skin. You will still have that fresh, summer glow instead of that winter pallor.

#8. A chill photo shoot. Your session will be more relaxing, because you don’t have to worry about fitting it in to your busy holiday schedule.

#7. Bragging Rights. You can tell your friends that you got your holiday cards finished early!

#6. Clothing Sales. Fall clothing is on sale. You can pick up a really cute outfit for every member of your family at a discount. Check out for amazing outfits for kids 12 and under.

#5. Beautiful weather. The weather outside is amazing this time of year–and oh those spectacular sunsets.

#4. No Crowds. You won’t have to fight the masses at the popular holiday portrait spots.

#3. Holiday Card discount. You will get 20% off of your holiday cards when you place your print order at the same time.

#2. The Savings. My Christmas in July package (good thru 8/31/15) is only $299 (reg. $499), so you’ll save $200 right off the bat.

#1. Those Family Portraits. Because you aren’t holiday shopping, cooking for holiday parties or traveling to grandma’s house, you will actually make the appointment. And you’ll finally have creative, contemporary portraits of your family that you will enjoy for years to come.

Contact me today to book your summer holiday photos: kristin @ or call 949-510-3862

I am so inspired by the amazing people I get to photograph each day.  Especially those people who face adversity with a smile and have a beautiful spirit.  Carolin is one of those unique, beautiful individuals who can really light up a room with her gorgeous smile.  She is an only child whose Mom is a survivor of brain cancer.  Unfortunately, Carolin’s mom is in wheelchair as a result of an injury suffered after the cancer treatment.  Carolin’s amazing Dad is super supportive, but still has to travel for work.  This doesn’t slow Carolin down at all.  She comes home, helps fix dinner and hangs out and keeps her mom company and still manages to find time to act in her school plays and get all her homework done on time.  A truly warm, sweet, bright and loving person.  I am so proud to have had an opportunity to capture her beauty, inside and out! Enjoy!


See more by watching her slideshow:

Sometimes you have to plan while the flowers are a blooming!  And since I have no idea how long they are going to stay around, you may see lots of flowers in my sessions in the near future.  These gorgeous yellow blooms are the perfect backdrop to a fun, earthy, family photography session.  The Collins family dressed just right to blend in with the beautiful wild flowers, trees and other earthy elements.  Not to mention the fact that their kids are gorgeous…. even if Ryan thinks he can’t smile….. and I have pictures that prove he does have a great grin!  This family is near and dear to my heart, as I can totally relate with Sue and having a husband obsessed with the Eagles.  If you, like me, love the wild mustard, now is the perfect time to book a session.    Be sure to check out the slideshow at the end of the images for a little behind the scenes action!




For the first time in my entire life, I went almost three months without reading a book from late September to late December.  I can’t believe that the time just flew by and I was so busy with work, kids, friends, family, etc. that I just never picked anything up.  Over the years, I have been in a few book clubs and always was the go to gal with my friends for book recommendations.  In fact, my biggest problem in book clubs, was almost every book they recommended, I had already read.  People are always amazing that I read so many books with my busy schedule.  Honestly, if you followed me through my typical day, you would be amazed at how many moments there are to just grab a few minutes to read.  For example, you would never find me waiting in line at the post office without my book in hand.  The best part, is my Kindle is now on my phone, so I am never without something to read.

So you might be asking yourself, how come I went for so many months without reading???  I asked myself the same question, and it is honestly because there were too many other distractions.  I watched more Netflix while I was touching up images, so that felt like my break… even though I was working.  But the reality is, watching something doesn’t have the same effect on me.  Reading allows me to relax and unwind and it quiets my mind.  I missed it!  I was feeling anxious all the time and I didn’t know why.  On December 21 after an incredibly busy family photography season, I escaped for a few days to my folks place, in Arrowhead.  There my Mom and I lite the fire, settled in under some warm blankets, and read some amazing books.  Finally, I felt totally relaxed.

If you are like me, and love to escape into a great novel, you should follow my page.  I try to updated it frequently with what I am reading.  I would also love to get input from you on great recommendations.  Here the link to my page:

Last year I did and art piece called “Love Story” based on my book obsession.  Here is the final piece: