Tag Archives: portraits

Personalized Forest Fairy Goddess Shoot – Oakland, CA

Forest Fairy Goddesses Dancing

One of the things I love about being a photographer is the ability to bring a vision to life, and it’s always a special treat when your vision aligns with someone else’s! This shoot is one of those moments.

Tamar is my Yoga instructor, and owner of Tamar’s Training. She is not only a fantastic personal trainer, but also a fun, creative spirit. So when she showed me a picture of photo shoot she wanted to do – a band of fairy goddesses in a forest – I was definitely on board! The concept fit perfectly with my Hidden Realms series.

Tamar has a large number of fabrics, outfits, and accessories from her days as a belly dancer, so we had the wardrobe covered. I have spent a fair amount of time scoping out good outdoor locations for just such a concept, and we settled on Joaquin Miller Park in the Oakland Hills.

Forest Goddess Dancing Portrait Boho Hippie Fairy Goddess Photo Shoot Oakland Boho Hippie Fairy Goddess Photo Shoot Oakland Modern Bohemian Forest Goddess Leaning Against Tree Outdoor Styled Photo Shoot Oakland Alameda Feminine Artistic Portraiture SF Bay Area Modern Boho Styled Photo Shoot Four Women in the Forest Forest Faeries Photo Warrior Forest Faeries Creative Portraiture in Alameda Oakland Forest Goddess Photo

Do you have a vision you’d like to bring to life? Let me know!


Outdoor Portrait Photography – Alameda, CA

We recently met with Pam and Marvin at their waterfront office in the Alameda Marina to take some casual outdoor head shots for their respective businesses. Pam is the principal of Chaolysti, a solar energy consulting firm, and Marvin is founder of Hamon Engineering, which specializes in solar design, assessment, and implementation.

couples photography Alameda CAcasual outdoor business head shot Alameda CA      man wearing a hat and bowtie head shot

With the estuary in the background, the marina has a great variety of places to shoot.  Bonus that it is under a mile from our studio!

outdoor casual business head shot outdoor portrait photography Alameda CA

While we were there we also snapped a few fun shots of them together, including this photo of the two of them posed with their bikes. (If you didn’t know, Alameda happens to be one of the best places in the Bay Area for biking.  Not only are there beautiful vistas and historic spots everywhere, it’s also totally flat!) This is one of our favorite shots from the session:

creative couples photography Alameda CA

Bicycles: Infinite MPG!



Urban Family Portraits with Pets – Alameda, CA

When this family contacted us about shooting a family portrait they knew they wanted to shoot outdoors and have photos with a modern, urban vibe like an old brick wall or graffiti wall. Our studio just so happens to be in a neighborhood like that, so we met at the studio and shot at a few different spots along the block.


We love dogs so we were really excited when they mentioned they wanted to bring their Silky Terrier Snowy along to include in the family portrait!

This shoot was a lot of fun, and we had a good time playing with the variety of background options on our block!

child_portrait_photography_alameda family_photo_with_dog_alameda silky terrier photo

Executive Portraits on Location in Diablo, CA

These photographs are from an executive portrait session shot on location in Diablo, CA. For this shoot our objective was to provide our client with a variety of images that were more casual than a standard business head shot, and with a lot more personality. We took a few of our studio backdrops and light set up to recreate an in-studio look, and also took advantage of the gorgeous views at his estate to deliver a photo set that can be used for both corporate messaging and personal branding.

casual_business_head_shot corporate_personal_branding_photography_bay_area creative_head_shots_bay_area executive_head_shot executive_head_shots_wine_country executive_portrait_Diablo executive_portrait_photographer_oakland executive_portrait_photography_Diablo executive_portrait_photography_east_bay executive_portrait_photography executive_portraits_east_bay executive_portraits

Family Portraits in Benicia, CA

family portrait by gazebo in Benicia CA

We recently had the chance to shoot again with one of our favorite families. For the past 4 years we have done a Fall season shoot with these guys, and it was great to see them again and see how much the kids have grown! This year we went to a park in downtown Benicia, then moved to the nearby fishing pier for the second half of the shoot.

kids jumping at the park Benicia CA family portrait kids running at the playground girl at the park boy looking up at the camerafamily portrait at the pier Benicia CA family portrait at twilight Benicia CA

Children’s Dance Photography Session at Lake Temescal, Oakland

kids ballet photograph Oakland

We recently had a fun photo shoot at Lake Temescal in Oakland with a young ballerina.  She’s been in dance classes for several years and had a great time dancing and posing her way through the park!

outdoor ballet photo session

It was a beautiful afternoon and the light was fantastic. I had been thinking of doing some sort of dance inspired photo shoot at Lake Temescal for a while now, and I love working with kids so the timing of this photo session could not have been better!

There is a trail that loops around the park so we started at a grassy field at the front of the park and worked our way around the loop during the session to get a variety of backgrounds during this one hour session.

child ballerina in nature Lake Temescal Oakland

The duck REALLY wanted to be a part of the shoot!

black and white childrens dance photo

child ballerina dancing outdoors

Whenever possible we tried to integrate the natural setting into the shoot by incorporating the trees and rocks into the posing.

outdoor dance photography ballerina in nature


We also stopped to pet all the dogs we met along the way!

girl dressed like ballerina playing with a dog


child dancer on rocks


We ended the session on the giant rock formation at the head of the lake with an homage to Maxfield Parrish.

ballet dancer at Lake Temescal Oakland


This photo shoot was so much fun and it is always wonderful working with young artists. Do you have a favorite picture from this session? We love hearing from you, so please leave a comment and let us know what you think!




Sausalito, CA Family Portrait Session

One of the perks of being a photographer is you never have the same day twice. One of the perks of being a photographer in the SF Bay Area is that we have an amazing and endless supply of locations to shoot at. We recently did a shoot with this gorgeous family in Sausalito and took advantage of the beautiful light and scenery to get these fun and dynamic shots.

Cavallo Point Family Photo

Family Photo with Mom and Teens Sausalito California

Mother daughter photography Sausalito California

Golden Gate Bridge Family Portrait

Family Portraits at The Gardens at Lake Merritt – Oakland, CA Portrait Photography

It’s really wonderful to work with a family over time and see how everyone grows, changes, and yet is still exactly the same over time. We met this lovely family last year, when there were only three of them, and caught up with them earlier this month to meet their newest addition!

garden at lake merrit family photo

Because everyone had such a great time here last year we shot again at the Gardens at Lake Merritt, which is definitely one of our favorite spots in Oakland for a photo shoot. And we got to meet this little cutie who is just so perfect she doesn’t even need funny hats or fancy headbands to look adorable.

garden at lake merrit family photo

We love shooting at the Gardens because there’s so much variety here, so there’s something for everyone. And, no matter what time of year it is there is always something gorgeous in bloom. The paths are wide and neat so there’s plenty of room for the kids to run and play. It’s also just really fun having your photo session be a walk through a beautiful park!

mother holding her baby

Oakland, CA child photography Oakland, CA child photography

How To Know When To Update Your Business Head Shot

We talk a lot about business head shots here. That’s partially just because we do a lot of them, but mostly it’s because we see so many bad head shots out there and really want to help! 90% of our head shot clients start their sessions by telling us that they hate having their photo taken, but by the end of the session they let us know how much fun they had! And having shot hundreds of professional head shots over the years, we’re kind of experts on what does and does not work. So, how do you know if it’s time to update your business head shot? There are a lot of ways to tell, but today we’re sharing the top three that we see all the time.

1) If your shot looks like it could be from a different decade, it’s time for an update! We get that almost nobody is truly excited to have their professional head shot done, but if your photo is still showing off your hairstyle from the 90’s it’s probably a good idea to have a new photo done. A great business head shot showcases your professional persona and should be current to the fabulous person you are today. Sure, 2002 you was awesome, but don’t you think 2013 you is way better? Let everyone else see that too!

2) The expression in your current shot is forced and makes you look fake. You know who you are!! Yes, a lot of people find sitting in front of the camera to be incredibly awkward, so it’s easy to end up with a forced smile that makes you look fake – or worse yet, wearing that deer caught in the headlights look! The solution to this is using a photographer who understands that not everyone is supermodel comfortable in front of the camera, and will guide you step by step for a natural looking result. Let us know a little about you and the professional image you are trying to convey so we can guide you through a range of poses designed to loosen you up, find your best angles, and show off the real you!

3) You’re professionally active on social media and you’re worried your profile pics are getting stale. If you’re all over LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter and other social media sites, but have been using the same profile pic forever it’s time for an update! If you’re bored of your current photo, chances are everyone else is too! But when you’re using social media for professional purposes the photos from parties or family portraits that many people put up just aren’t appropriate. A good solution for you is to develop a library of professional images that you can draw upon to swap out your profile pics with something new every so often. Work with your photographer on a longer session that would show off a wide range of outfits and locations so you have a lot to choose from, and can always keep it fresh. Or, make a commitment to yourself to go in for shorter sessions more frequently, and try something different at each session! Regardless of which option you prefer, the key is to get a bunch of great shots that show off the friendly, approachable and professional you!

We’ve posted some of our favorite business head shots below. As you can see, we’ve achieved natural smiles and expressions and are really showing off the unique personality of each individual.

Creative Professional Head Shot Business Head Shot Dentist Head Shot Female Executive Head Shot Office Staff Photo Business Portrait Executive Head Shot Professional Head Shot