Tag Archives: las vegas senior portraits

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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Portraits | Senior Portraits | Before and After Post-Processing

It turns out, it was kind of fun sharing that before and after with you last week! I really do love to edit (perhaps not 500 photos in a row, but I love to make art with my photography, and much of my art comes through in my editing style). I used to worry what people would think if they saw my before and afters (I don’t know why — I’m just one of those overthinkers sometimes). But I took a photography class a few months back (I’m always taking new classes, working to learn new techniques), and my teacher really impressed upon me that your editing style is all yours. It’s personal preference. Some people are going to love it, and some people are going to hate it. And some people really just won’t care. So I’m embracing my editing style, and I’m letting you see my art in the raw, before it’s totally complete. And I kind of love that! There’s something cool about seeing a person’s vision from beginning to end. 

On a side, note, I just finished redecorating my art room a bit (not everything, but still lots of changes), and I am IN LOVE with it. One of my favorite changes is that I now have a pretty, comfy new chair that is set up specifically for plopping my laptop on my lap and editing while Netflix (or whatever else) streams in the background. I seriously want to go in that room and sit there for hours. And I really think that room is making me love editing even more (because I just love to be in there). I’ll be showing you a before and after of the art room next week. Can’t wait to share!

For this week I’m sharing a portrait from the collection I showed you earlier in the week. My gorgeous student, Tamar.

Here’s the shot straight out of camera (SOOC). I still love the shot as is, but you know, I love to add a little of my own flare:


And here’s the “after” version with a little golden sunshine and a color pop added in:


I hope you enjoyed this week’s before and after! Thanks for stopping by, my friends! xo

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Portraits | Tamar | Senior Portraits

This gorgeous girl did senior portraits with me last school year, and I just have to post a few of my favorites from the session.

I’ve been thinking about her recently because she posted on Instagram that she was about to hop on a plane, as she’s spending this year studying in Israel. This got me thinking about what an amazing person she is, and how freaking excited I am for her! Seriously. In addition to taking her senior portraits, I was also her teacher three of her four years in high school. I got to know her quite well over the years, and I can honestly say, she’s an amazing person. She’s kind. She’s funny. She’s smart. And she’s full of love. A total sweetheart.

Tonight, I’m sending her love and good wishes for the most amazing, life changing, fulfilling year yet! Tamar, you are a special soul, a beautiful person inside and out. And I can’t wait to see what comes your way this year. You deserve all the best the world has to offer!



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Sneak Peek | Christiana | Senior Portraits

Meet Christiana. She’s a gorgeous, fun-loving, creative senior that came down from Tonopah to do senior portraits with me. It was such a fun afternoon!

We started our planning for the portrait session by creating a Pinterest board that we all pinned ideas to. I noticed Christiana posted a great, cozy coffee shop shot, and that got my wheels turning. Adorable coffee shop to shoot in? Heck yes!

I met up with Christiana and her mama at my absolute fave coffee shop in Vegas — Cafe Darak. We chose two locations for the shoot and decided the first would be the cafe. (How could I resist? It’s so damn cute!)

And Cafe Darak was awesome. They were happy to let me do my thing, moving from spot to spot, taking pics. The big windows filled with light were a dream. And let me just tell ya, in case you haven’t been there, they have THE BEST honey bread. A big, thick slice of toasted bread, ice cream, syrup, and yummy spices (I’m thinking it’s cinnamon, but I usually eat it so fast, I’ve never actually stopped to check this out). Point being. Go to Cafe Darak. They rock.

This turned out to be the perfect spot to start the session and get comfortable. We chatted a bit about the pics before starting, and then we got to work. I just love working with clients that are open to creative concepts and locations! Christiana and her mom, Melissa, were amazing. I absolutely loved getting to know them. Enjoy this peek at the first part of our afternoon!


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Coffee Monday | Why I’m Passionate About Portraits

It’s a late one getting this Coffee Monday out! But better late than never, right? Today, I’m taking some time out to tell you the story of how I came to photography and why I’m passionate about it. In the process I let you in on a bit of my history (and my love of bucket lists!). So grab your drink of choice, get cozy and press play!

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Coffee Monday | A Simple Introduction

Happy Monday, Friends! I’m seriously excited! (I’m excited a lot on this blog, aren’t I?) But I’ve got so many reasons. Here’s what I’m happy about today: I made my Coffee Monday video!! Woot!

I’m really happy to share with you a Coffee Monday video that serves as a lovely introduction to yours truly. I’ve accepted a blogging challenge from the awesome Alex Beadon called the Feel Good Blogging Challenge, and I’ve decided to incorporate that challenge into Coffee Monday. I’ve got seven weeks of goodies in the works. And it starts today.

For week one, here’s what I’m talking about: who I am, why I started blogging (and I’m reaching all the way back to 2007 to answer that), who this blog is for, a couple things I’m ridiculously proud of at the moment, and the one thing (make that two) that I hope you take away from my blog.

Thank you ever so much for taking the time to watch my Coffee Monday videos! Seriously. It makes my day sparkle (but not like sparkly vampires, ’cause that’s just silly).

Oh. And one more thing. I need a new name for Coffee Monday! As I mention in the video, calling it Coffee Monday when it’s not being posted until Monday night is…well, it’s just plain wrong! Have an idea? Send it my way. Oooh, that actually gives me an idea — I should make this a contest! Stay tuned. I’ll introduce the contest in the coming weeks. Yay!

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Sneak Peek Friday | Makenna | Senior Portraits

I have a very special senior portrait session to share with you today! Oh how I love this girl. She’s smart and funny and quick witted. She’s got boatloads of talent. Let me tell you — this girl can sing! She also happens to be gorgeous. And she has no idea how beautiful she really is. She’s got big dreams and big plans, and she’s working on making them a reality. I love people that don’t limit themselves: the dreamers, the doers and the change makers. She’s one of those people.

Meet Makenna.

Oh, and did I mention she’s got this awesome vintage style? To die for. Unique. And it made this portrait session so much fun!

Makenna and I had an amazing time just outside Las Vegas in this great middle of nowhere desert town called Nelson. We embraced that vintage style of hers and planned a shoot that would show it off. And we laughed. Seriously, I loved everything about this shoot.

Makenna’s latest adventure is off at college in Oregon! She’s in love with the green surroundings and the drastic change from desert life. She’s soaking in the rain and the clouds and the scarf-wearing weather, and she’s studying languages and culture and working toward kicking butt with those incredible vocal skills of hers.

It was such an honor to create Makenna’s senior portraits. I really do feel so lucky to know so many amazing teens with big dreams and the will to reach them.

I can’t wait to see where the future takes you, girl. You’ve got this!

Makenna-senior-portrait-nelson-nevadavintage senior portrait taken in Nelson, Nevada Makenna-senior-portrait-nelson-nevada-3 Makenna-senior-portrait-nelson-nevada-4 Makenna-senior-portrait-nelson-nevada-5 Makenna-senior-portrait-nelson-nevada-6 Makenna-senior-portrait-nelson-nevada-7

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Sneak Peek Friday | Brittany | Senior Portraits

I’m sitting at my breakfast bar, having my usual oatmeal and juice, editing photos and getting ready to head out for an awesome mini adventure at Bryce Canyon National Park. I am SO excited to be heading out for a long weekend! And so excited for hiking and mountain air and laughter with friends. These are the days that I live for.

Know what else I live for? Creating art. As long as I can remember, I’ve dreamed of canvases and paints and charcoal pencils and textured papers. I think that’s why I’m so drawn to photography. In so many ways, photography is the art of capturing life. It is light and emotion and moments. And I love it. All of it. I am so honored each time a client trusts me to capture a moment for them. Truly.

And this girl. I love this girl. Obviously she’s beautiful. But she’s so much more than that. She’s curious and caring and one of the sweetest people I’ve ever met. She’s authentic. She has a big heart and truly wants to make a difference in people’s lives. She’s a dedicated friend and a hardworking student. Brittany is off creating new memories and finding new adventures at West Virginia University, studying things like psychology and art. Come to think of it, Brittany is quite the artist. I’ve seen some of her creations, especially her photography. This girl has talent and a great eye for beauty. Really and truly, I can’t wait to see what the future brings her. She deserves every bit of happiness and success coming her way. And I feel honored to know her — and to have had the opportunity to capture her senior portraits.

Brittany_Senior_Portraits_heather_rae_murphy_photography Brittany_Senior_Portraits_heather_rae_murphy_photography2 Brittany_Senior_Portraits_heather_rae_murphy_photography3 Brittany_Senior_Portraits_heather_rae_murphy_photography4 Brittany_Senior_Portraits_heather_rae_murphy_photography5 Brittany_Senior_Portraits_heather_rae_murphy_photography6

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Sneak Peek Friday | Ilana | Senior Portraits

Things have been crazy around here at HRM Photography — in a good way! I’ve been busy setting up senior sessions, planning themed shoots and getting my learn on. I spent last weekend at a photography retreat in Scottsdale, Arizona. I can’t wait to share the details with you! It was such a blast, I learned a ton, and I made some amazing new photog friends. I truly believe a photographer is never done learning. There is always something new on the horizon, and I love to get out there and find out how other creatives do things. From business to technique, I plan to always learn new skills and keep adding to my arsenal.

I currently have one portrait session date left for November. If you would like to get senior portraits done in the fall, now is the time to book. Contact me by phone or email: 310.382.0716 or heather@heatherraemurphy dot com. I would love to chat with you about setting up a senior portrait session that knocks your socks off!

In other news, I am ridiculously excited to share this next senior session with you! Ilana is such a beautiful soul — so full of energy, so motivated and so much fun to photograph. We laughed a ton! I love her personality, and I especially love how it came through in her senior portraits.

Ilana’s got big things ahead of her! She’s off to Portland State University to make her mark as a Viking. Up next: crazy amounts of studying, and with a little luck, crazy amounts of fun too!

It has been such an honor to get to know you over the years, Ilana. I can’t wait to see where this next adventure takes you. You are beautiful, you are smart, and you are driven. A triple threat! Keep pushing yourself to the next level. And most of all, enjoy the journey!










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Coffee Monday | 2015 Beauty Revived Seniors

Happy Monday! And what a Monday it has been! Seriously. Can you tell I’m getting this out a little late? Hey, it’s still Monday, so that counts for something. But I’ve got to tell you, if you’re still drinking coffee this late in the day — put the cup down, peeps. Put. The cup. Down.

So today’s Coffee Monday is super exciting! I’m announcing my 2015 Beauty Revived Seniors! Weeee! And, yes, that was seniors. Plural. With an “s.” I narrowed it down as far as I possibly could. And then I farmed out the nominations to other photographers to make them choose! It was SOOOO hard picking just one girl. And, in the end, I didn’t. I picked two! Why? Because they’re both brilliant, amazing girls that work incredibly hard and deserve the world. And I couldn’t help myself.

So here goes. My 2015 Beauty Revived Seniors! Give ’em some love.

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