The best thing about being an Orange County photographer and having a studio in Laguna Beach are the beautiful beaches! The beaches in Laguna are one of the most stunning places to have a high school senior photography shoot.

Although I end up with half the beach in my car after, it is truly one of my favorite places to shoot, especially in the Southern California “winter”. Personally, I believe the beaches in the winter make some of the most amazing backdrops. The unrivaled sunsets and blue skies, along with the beautiful textures of the rocks, sand and water, come together to capture the best moments!

If you have a senior that is graduating soon and you are looking for one-of-a-kind pictures to commemorate their high school accomplishments and utilize for gifts and/or graduation announcements, this is the perfect time.

I am offering a “Model for a Day” promotion in February and March. For $249, the package comes complete with hair and makeup and a portrait session with up to 4 outfit changes! You also get to go home with a 11×14 matted print. This is perfect for a senior session or even as a special treat for another treasured family member! Here are some of my recent beach sessions with some amazing seniors.

Summer Hair and Skin

Summer is here and with it more sun, sand, and hopefully fun! In Orange County, we have a loooong summer season that often extends far past when the kids are back in school. But as the summer season officially kicks off we want you to look your best for your family photos, Christmas in July session, or on any given day at the beach, or Fashion Island, concerts in the park, or wherever you like to spend your summer days (and nights).

We’ve assembled some of our favorite summer hair and skin beauty tips to help you look and feel your best both in front of or away from the camera.

Let’s jump in!

For Healthy, Radiant Skin

No matter your age, your skin is often the first thing people notice, and ultimately the foundation for any healthy look. Get your skin looking lush and the rest of your look will fall into place.

summer hair and skin

Alternate Exfoliation

By now, we know the importance of exfoliating those dead skin cells in order to promote a healthy complexion, but experts now say that it’s best to alternate your methods.

Switch up your exfoliation routine by using a chemical exfoliant one day and a manual scrubbers like a loofah the next time. Allure magazine has some great suggestions for both mechanical scrubbers and chemical exfoliators.

exfoliate your skin

Healthy Water

Of course we hope you get plenty of time at the beach or in the pool, but when it comes to skin, it’s time to drink up. We’ve all heard that we need to drink our 8-10 glasses of water per day, but in summer it’s especially important. With higher temperatures or more strenuous activities it’s easy to get dehydrated. But did you know that drinking water isn’t just good for your general health but for your skin as well? Of course you did, but take a look at what Dr. Tara Rao says below.

Dr. Tara Rao, interviewed for Prevention magazine says, “One of the most important things I remind my patients is that your skin really is an outward sign of your internal health. The best anti-aging trick is to be healthy (and sun protect, of course). Hydration is just one, but important, part of that.”

Skincare Supplements

Speaking of healthy from the inside out…When we talk about skincare we often think of topical skin treatments like exfoliating creams, toners, cleansers, masks, etc, but there’s another way. Did you know there are actually holistic supplements you can take to improve your skin’s resiliency, youth, and boost it’s natural protection from the sun?

Studies have shown that Vitamin C and Vitamin E may help prevent and treat ultraviolet (UV)-induced skin damage.

Green tea extracts, according to a UK study, reduce inflammation and may also help protect skin against harmful sun rays.

Vitamin K is essential to helping the body heal and can also improve the appearance of stretch marks, scars, dark spots, dark circles under your eyes and more.

Vitamin D is essential to a variety of bodily functions but also for maintaining healthy skin and treating psoriasis.

Biotin is excellent for both skin and hair health.

Check out this Anti-aging daily supplement pack on


For Beautiful Hair

summer hair and skin care tipsGrab a Scarf

Add some style and protection to your summer wardrobe with a hat or scarf.

Not only does it help protect your scalp and hair from sun damage, but it also helps retain scalp moisture.

Sunscreen for Your Hair

We all know we should be protecting our skin with sunscreen, but it’s also important to protect your hair and scalp against damage with hair sunscreen, here are She Knows’ best recommendations.

A Mask

Once or twice a week drench your hair in a luxurious hair mask. That’s right, it’s not just for faces anymore! recommends Kérastase Reflection Masque Chromatique, (~$53), but we’ve also tried (and love) Trader Joe’s Shea Butter & Coconut Oil Hair Mask, for under $5.

Love these beauty tips? Let us know in the comments below. Or share some of your own!

Whatever your regimen, we hope you’ll choose Blue Sky’s Studio to capture your beauty on camera, for years to come.


A friend of mine recently told me that when she was a little girl she used to count the number of photos of herself in her family’s home. Then she’d count how many there were of her brother. She wanted to make sure they were equally represented. That they were both loved and that it showed on her family’s walls, side tables, dressers.

Family photos improve children's self-esteem

One of my favorite things about my photography work is seeing the looks on my clients’ (and their children’s) faces when they see just how amazing and beautiful they look in photos.

As children grow and develop, the world around them influences how they internalize love, belonging, and self-esteem. As parents, we know that showing our love and acceptance to our children is integral to their growth as happy, healthy future adults, but did you know that seeing themselves in photos actually boosts their self-esteem as well?

Research has indicated that having family photos in your home can actually help your child feel more valued and even given them a deeper understanding of their heritage and place in the family unit.

Family Photos tell Your Family’s Story

Photographs are said to be worth a thousand words and those visuals tell a story—the story of your family and life together.

“When children grow up surrounded by photographs, it gives them a richer understanding of where they come from, which helps with confidence. Until recently, people often thought of photographs as almost trivial, but actually they are an incredibly important way of connecting with our sense of self, with each other and with times gone by,” says Professor Geoff Beattie, Dean of Psychological Sciences at the University of Manchester (UK) author of a 2009 study on the effect of family photos on children.

Seeing themself in photos enriches a child’s sense of identity

Photos in your home act as an implicit and distinct statement that family is important and that each member is equally important.

As human beings we assimilate objects of value into our subconscious definition of self-identity. Kids are like sponges, soaking in every family photo, every photo of themselves into the story that is their life.

Each family photo displayed in your home is a silent, “I love you.”

Printed photos vs. digital


Of course so many of us love to share images of our children online, but we can’t forget the value of printed images that not only set a tone of love and acceptance in the home, but provide the easiest way for your child to simply see themselves in pictures every day. Without having to turn on a device.

There’s a different level of engagement that happens when we engage more of our child’s sense of not just vision, but touch. There’s just something different about holding an photograph in your hand.

Dr. David Krauss, licensed psychologist who has been using client family photos in their therapy sessions since the 1970s, recommends placing family photos and photos of your children in their own bedrooms too, so they will be the first thing they see in the morning and one of the last before they shut their eyes at night.

A Parent’s role in bolstering your child’s self-esteem with photos

A fun activity suggested by Judy Weiser, licensed psychologist is to talk about your family photos with your children. Tell them about the people they might not know as well, or show them photos of themselves as babies, or even photos of parents and grandparents as children. Talk about how they belong and how much love you all have for each other despite your different lives, opinions, and generations.

If you’d like to read more a more in-depth article on this subject, visit Glow Imagery here.

A Photographer’s role in fostering your child’s self-esteem

“A photographer’s job is to create and make the image look like a safe holding space for kids where they are safe and protected. Kids get it on a really simple level,” says Dr. Krauss

It’s my mission to make your family photo session as fun as possible. I recommend that you get your kids involved in the process. In fact, I created a video with five ways you can help your kids prepare for their photography session.

And remember that friend of mine who used to count photos of herself when she was a child?

As a mother, she now makes sure she always has an equal number of photographs on display of her own children. ;)