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February 9, 2016

Outdoor Family Portraits in Los Angeles

I was in Los Angeles recently and had the good fortune to photograph this stunning family at Paramount Ranch. What luck to spend the afternoon at such a beautiful location, with a family full of incredibly stylish people!


I just love this sweet photo with the sunlight peeking behind the hill…


The happy grandparents!


Picture perfect family…


The handsome guy below is the proud uncle — love these smiles!


They couldn’t have done a better job picking out their clothes for this session!


I shoot in Los Angeles at regular times through the year, so if you’re interested in scheduling a shoot in the area, give me a call at 916.933.8352 or email at

November 4, 2013

Best of Fall Photography Sessions

Here is a fun “Best of Fall Photography Sessions” post for all of you out there who have been thinking about booking a photo shoot for your family this autumn. Sacramento is such a beautiful city for capturing the colors of the changing foliage. It truly is quite magical when the temperature starts to drop and the leaves turn yellow, orange and red…

Let’s go run around this Midtown park in the afternoon sunlight…

brother and sister holding hands and running through the autumn trees

Or maybe you’d like a local session walking around your own neighborhood?

family portrait in front of red volkswagen on a fall day and red sweater

Visit your kid’s favorite playground and get some candid pictures with dad

daddy pushing his son on a swing on a crisp fall day

For all of you dog-lovers out there, autumn is the perfect season for having a pet photography session with your pups.

autumn pet portraits in front of colorful yellow tree

Childhood almost doesn’t seem complete without apple orchard family photos!

family fall photographs at the orchard with apples

Play fun games with dad, running through the fallen leaves…

daddy chasing his son through the autumn leaves

Incorporate your pumpkins from Halloween…

baby with big orange pumpkin for her portraits

It’s not quite Sacramento, but maybe you’d like to capture some family portraits in front of the Golden Gate Bridge?

san francisco fall family pictures

What better way to celebrate your pregnancy than with pictures? Capture your baby bump this fall with stunning autumn colors.

tree leaf over pregnant belly and orange dress

Who wouldn’t love to get all of the cousins together for a fall kids photography session on a farm.

ring around the rosy with cousins

Let’s meet up Downtown at the State Capitol for your baby’s one-year session.

yellow sweater fallen leaves wagon

Don’t forget our fur-friends! Capture some fun family autumn photos that include your dog.

family pictures with pup in front of red tree

Do you have some ADORABLE outfits you’ve been dying to dress the kids in?

brothers at the apple orchard sweaters and hats

Document your kids’ natural expressions for their photo shoot at Apple Hill

brother and sister in the orchard picking apples

Show the world how much you love each other with some cozy family portraits in a big pile of leaves…

cozy family picture in the fallen leaves

Kick your shoes off, relax, and let those smiles shine…

feet kicked up in the afternoon sun

Let’s scamper off to your local park where all of that great fall color is just waiting to be captured!

autumn colors fall leaves with sweaters for fall

If you’re looking for examples of beautiful fall family outfit ideas, here’s a great one to check out:

great outfits for fall family photo

If you’re due to have your baby in the fall, why not incorporate the lovely colorful surroundings at the same time? We used this darling vintage basket and walked around the family’s property, working the fallen birch leaves into the pictures.

newborn baby in a basket in the fall leaves

Get cuddly in front of the stunning fall foliage and add some color to your walls!

white fence yellow leaves autumn

If you’ve been thinking about doing senior portraits, El Dorado Hills offers some beautiful fall colors.

senior portraits in the orange sunset sky

Want to see more? Here’s another fun autumn family portrait session in El Dorado Hills.

Recognize these two? This image was selected for the cover of the November 2012 issue of Sacramento Parent Magazine.

magazine cover for sacramento parent mag jill carmel 2012

And who could resist this adorable family in front of the Volkswagen? They were selected for the October 2012 issue of Sacramento Parent Magazine.

red and stripes for sacramento parent  magazine jill carmel 2012

Here is a recent love note from a long-term client:

“AMAZING!!!….that’s all I can say! One would think after working with you for 5 years and knowing your talent and dedication, I would still not be surprised by your talent every time we receive the gallery but I am. You never cease to amaze me. I love them all!  Thank you for being a part our lives and capturing our kids special personalities. It means the world to me! Thanks again for all of your hard work and dedication to providing us with exceptional pictures and service!”  — Jaime

Call or email to book your fall family portrait session today! Connect with us at or call 916.933.8352.

September 26, 2013

What to Wear | Fall 2013 | Neutrals + Color Pop

Don’t know where to start when it comes to picking out what to wear for your fall photo shoot? The theme for this season is neutrals and, if you’re feeling a little wild, you can toss in a pop of color for some added visual interest.

A few quick tips to keep in mind when putting your family’s wardrobe together:

1) What colors would look good on your walls? Look around your home and think about where you might display your portraits. Notice what colors would complement the decor in those rooms and use that as a starting point for your clothing palette.

2) Pretend you’re creating a single (slightly busy) outfit. Lay all of the clothes out on the bed (or a neutral background like a sofa or your carpet) to make sure everything is playing well together.

3) Use your favorite piece as an anchor. It could be a blouse for mom or dress for your daughter, but you can use it as an anchor for the outfits for the rest of the family. Let’s say it’s a cute blue and white polka dot dress for your youngest daughter; you can build your other pieces off of that: a dark gray sweater for dad, a white blouse for mom and navy blue shorts for your son.

Combining neutrals is a simple, yet classic, option when dressing your family for their photography session. Plus, the resulting images will easily fit in with your home decor.

what to wear clothing outfits wardrobe fall 2013 photo shoot for mom

what to wear clothing outfits wardrobe fall 2013 photo shoot for dad

what to wear clothing outfits wardrobe fall 2013 photo shoot for girls

what to wear clothing outfits wardrobe fall 2013 photo shoot for boys

what to wear clothing outfits wardrobe fall 2013 photo shoot baby

Want to add a pop of color? Pair neutrals with one of these on-trend color options.

what to wear clothing outfits wardrobe fall 2013 photo shoot family emerald green

what to wear clothing outfits wardrobe fall 2013 photo shoot family red


You can also throw in some added color with a hair bow, fun socks or a scarf!

Happy shopping!

— Jill

*Images via Little Nest Pinterest


September 13, 2013

Baby Boy Pictures in the Park

With the last day of summer (September 22nd) right around the corner, I wanted to celebrate the closing of a wonderfully warm season and bring in the busy fall with some darling baby boy pictures in the park.

Today is Bennie’s birthday – he is one year old. I first met little Bennie when he was still in his mommy’s belly (who was one of the cutest pregnant ladies I’ve ever seen). Then I got to see him again for his newborn session, and, most recently, he completely rocked my world with his celebrity smile and baby blue eyes.

mommy and baby having fun and laughing at the davis arboretum

Mom killed it with her on-trend outfits: denim on denim, bright lipstick, lace shorts and strappy metallic sandals. Plus, her name is Jill, so we’re pretty much sisters, right?

taking a few steps with mom and her awesome denim shirt at the davis arboretum

Giggles in the grass. One of my favorite shots.

tickles laughs and fun at the davis arboretum for summer portraits with mom

That smile. It’s KILLS me. Oh my goodness.

little boy in denim overalls sitting on a bench laughing

Yay, Bennie! You are such a handsome stud. Happy Birthday!

jcrew white necklace and denim shirt for family portraits at davis arboretum

September 12, 2013

Family Portraits in a Grassy Field Filled with Oak Trees

Each year I add a few more amazing locations to my “rolodex” of spots, and one of my newer favorites is this spot for family portraits in a grassy field filled with oak trees. It’s beautiful all year round, even in the middle of summer when the grass is dry – I think I may even like it best when the grass is dry because of the beautiful golden light that gets splashed all around.

This adorable family first came to me for their maternity pictures and I got to learn all about how they met and their plans for the future. After another session for their new baby boy, I feel so lucky to see them again for their six-month session before they whisked themselves off to their new home near the coast a few days after this shoot.
blue and white outfits for fall portraits in sacramento field with oak trees

It can be fun documenting the interactions between siblings – these two just adore each other!

big sister makes her little brother laugh in his baby tweed suit

Mom did an amazing job on the outfits, perfectly mixing patterns, textures and colors. Her floral dress crossed with sister’s polka dot leggings and brother’s little tweed suit – love it!

big sister runs around and gets a piggy back ride from her dad amongst the oak trees in sacramento

Both mom and dad work for VW, so we had to include some beetles in the pictures (check out the blanket he’s lying on). And that face with those rosy cheeks — oh my goodness!

little brother giggles on a blanket covered with vw bugs

She started off a little shy, but turned into little miss model after she saw how much fun we were having.

gorgeous big sister with curly hair and cute white tank top

Such a fun family! I can’t wait to see them again for their one-year shoot!