Category Archives: Fine Art Photography

Portraits | Children’s Portraits | Before and After Post-Processing

Continuing down the path of showing you before and afters, here’s one of my favorite shots from Marissa’s fairytale session. I seriously love the after version of this shot! The before however? Well…

I’m just going to go ahead and admit that I overexposed this shot like a mutha…you get the idea. Actually, I’m ridiculously embarrassed to show this to you. I questioned my sanity when I chose it as the before and after shot of the day. But I’m just going to be real and admit to you that I freaking messed up. It happens. We’re all human. I don’t know why I did it, and I don’t remember the circumstances. It was likely just plain old operator error and my lack of checking the back of my camera. And…yeah, shit happens.

Regardless, I wanted this shot in her final gallery! I wanted a bit of a dark and mysterious look to the photo. So I rolled up my sleeves, took out my ninja editing skills, and got to work. I knew it was going to take a bit of creativity to get a really overexposed shot to look dark and moody. This is the beauty of shooting in RAW and knowing your way around Lightroom and Photoshop.

Honestly, I’m so glad I didn’t just delete the photo. This photo turned out to be one of my favorites from the session. And for it’s creative edge, one of my favorites ever.

So take it from me. Even bad shots are often salvageable (not all of them — but many are). You’re not a bad photographer if you make a mistake. Rather than being upset with yourself, explore what you can learn from your mistake. Perhaps you can learn something about your workflow in the field. Perhaps you can learn a new editing skill. Perhaps you’ll just learn to check the back of your camera on occasion. Whatever you learn, pay attention, and soak it in. It’s all part of your journey.


Here’s the shot straight out of camera (SOOC). OMG, eek!


And here’s the “after” version after applying ninja editing:


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Portraits | Marissa | Children’s Portraits

I am ridiculously excited to share this portrait session with you today! It may just be my favorite styled session ever. I had such an amazing time developing the concept for this shoot. There’s something about fairytale mashups that I absolutely adore.

This is a modern day twist on Snow White and Little Red Riding Hood, mixed into one!

And Marissa was SO fun to work with. Seriously. I love this girl – she has my heart. There was so much laughing and creativity. So many ideas being thrown around. I had the best time with Marissa and her sisters (who were my fabulous assistants)!

And you know what I love about working with kids? They love to get into character. For reals. Tell them to pretend they’re scared and alone in the forest, and they take that direction to heart. They’ll give you everything you ask for…and more. And the end is always a giggle fit.

Can you guess where we shot this? Although it looks like a forest, we were actually in Red Rock Canyon here in Las Vegas. I LOVE when I can make a setting look different than you might imagine.

Good times, my friends. Good times. Enjoy the photos!



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Portraits | Children’s Portraits | Before and After Post-Processing

Last week I introduced you to Ashley and Destiney, and the styled portrait session I did with them. It’s still one of my favorite sessions! I’ve really been enjoying sharing all these portrait sessions with you, and even more so, sharing my editing style through before and after photos. 

This before and after is a special one. I had an idea in my mind for an artistic portrait. Of course, as I worked on the shoot, I got wrapped up in other photos, and I nearly forgot to take the artistic portrait I was hoping for! But I remembered just in time. We were losing the sun behind the mountains, but we had just enough to get what I needed.

What do you think? I love the warm tone, the added the light, and the hint of magic. I’m a sucker for magic. Fine art portraits are fast becoming some of my favorites.


Here’s the shot straight out of camera (SOOC). It’s quite a bit different from my final edit, and that’s exactly what I intended:


And here’s the “after” version with that bit of magic added in:


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On Birthdays, Playing Big, And Being Unreasonable


So I’ve been thinking about something the last week or so, and I want to share. I don’t normally talk philosophical stuff on this blog, but today’s a special day, so I’m making an exception. And this is good. Like for reals, good.

First, you may want to know why it’s a special day (or maybe I just want to shout it from the rooftop and tell you). It’s my birthday!! And I’m a big celebrator of birthdays. I believe in extra helpings of brownies and extra hugs and special indulgences and birthday week (heck, I believe in birthday month!). I also believe this is a great time to take stock of what’s going on in my life. You know, figure out what I LOVE, what I don’t love so much, what I would like to adjust.

And that’s what I’ve been doing this past week — taking stock.

I’ve decided 37 is the year of asking for the unreasonable. The year of believing the unreasonable will happen. The year for expecting more and getting more and being more.

Here’s the thing. I have this awe-inspiring, beautiful life. I love it. I’m fortunate beyond measure in so many ways. Plus, I’ve got some seriously big dreams. And I find myself questioning those dreams on occasion, wondering if I’m being unreasonable by hoping for too much. And then I make them a little smaller, a little more reasonable (I don’t want to come up short, after all).

But I’m turning that habit on its head this year.

I’m exchanging that habit for this mantra: I just wanna see if I can make all my dreams come true.

Because, why not?!?

Nothing is too big, and nothing is unreasonable. I’m going after it. I’m going after all of it. I choose to believe in magic and soul mates and abundance and security and pure joy. I choose to believe in me.

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