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Archive for the ‘family’ Category
November 20, 2013

November Family Pictures in the Rolling Hills

I adore this family. They bring it all to their session: fun ideas, personality, intimate moments, stories, silly games for making their daughter giggle… That, plus of the little details that mark this moment in time as different from the others. I’ve been working with them since their little girl was still in mommy’s belly and it’s been such a joy to get to document their growth as a family year after year.

We always try out a new location together and this November we went for a little hike up in the rolling hills of Fairfield. The sun was setting and the light was skipping off the trees and dry grass in the most delicious way.

princess hands with daddy up on the hill

We discovered a fun bridge along the way, perfect for running on!

running on the bridge at rockville park in fairfield

They never fail to make each other laugh. I swear they are secretly models and just haven’t told me yet…

mommy makes her daughter giggle for their family portraits in fairfield


fun natural candid family portraits

Taking a little break at the top on an obliging picnic table. Look how the sun washes down in little rays from the right. It’s a small little detail but one of my favorites.

chin in hands, dylan relaxes with her pomeranian pup armani

Cuddling in the tall grass… Can you believe how cute their Pomeranian is? His name is Armani and he easily wins the prize for the easiest dog in the world to take pictures of. He listens well and always looks perfect when it’s his turn. Armani, can you tell all of the pups out there to be just like you???

the family cuddles together in the tall grass at rockville park fairfield

They always get their Seattle Seahawks picture in – I love it!

seahawk fans family portraits

Can’t wait for next year!

November 15, 2013

San Francisco Family Portraits

I adore this family. I’ve been working with them since their oldest boy was a few months old. It’s fun for me to look back at when I started my business here in Sacramento and spot those families who were with me from the very start and are still loyal clients today. I’m so grateful for those that return year after year, trusting me with their most important memories. I think I enjoy so much because we get to develop a relationship where I know them and they know me and it shows in the images. It’s hard to describe it exactly, but everyone seems to smile a little bigger, laugh a little longer and the kids really open up. Each year, this mom says that she loves the most recent collection of pictures the most, and I’d have to agree with her because each year, we grow and develop that really beautiful connection between client and artist.

For 2013, we went to San Francisco for our session and our first stop was the Legion of Honor. The columns there are so visually striking and make the perfect spot for family portraits.

legion of honor family portraits between the columns

Plus, I think the boys had a pretty good time running along the colonnade.

legion of honor pictures with kids

Next stop: Crissy Field with its big, sprawling grass lawns and the Golden Gate Bridge in the background.

everyone together for a family picture at Crissy Field

Up on the ridge with the city sprawling behind them — I think you can see the Palace of Fine Arts on the right there.

Up on the ridge for family pictures at Crissy Field

When we arrived at this spot, there were a whole bunch of people fishing off the dock. The seagulls were going crazy for the bait, flying in from everywhere.

birds flying around with the golden gate bridge in the background

Once we were about three-quarters of the way through, we headed on down to the beach, knowing that if the kids got their clothes wet, it would be okay…

family holding hands walking on the bridge in front of the golden gate bridge

And, boys being boys, they promptly did…

feet in the water at the beach

And loved every second of it!

dad holding son's hand at the beach all dressed up

I’m already looking forward to my next adventure with these fun people!

November 11, 2013

Learning to Walk | Family Portraits

You may recognize this family from their magazine cover and their darling family photography session from two years ago. Since then, they’ve added another awesome member to their crew: sweet little Eva who was just learning to walk when we did their family portraits this fall.

one year old learning to walk with pink dress

She would walk a few steps and be so proud of herself — that big smile and clapping hands are just adorable.

little one year old girl claps with a smile while she stands in her pink dress

Gorgeous family and a gorgeous home. What a stunning example of old California style architecture.

family portrait in front of their  old california style home

Their front door archway made the perfect little alcove for cuddling up next to one another.

family sits in archway of their old california style home for their family portraits

The property in the front of the house was a beautiful park-like setting that was perfect for a little game of football with Dad.

Father and son play football in front of their house

The autumn leaves were just beginning to show on these Japanese maples, making the perfect backdrop for this casual family portrait.

lounging by the pool for a family picture with chinese maple tree in background

I’m always trying to get kids to kiss each other — it’s too cute not to — but Wilder took it to the next level with a big two-handed smack-er-roo right on the mouth…

big kiss on sister's face with parents staying close by

And he was so pleased with the results! Oh my gosh – how I adore this child!

brother laughs after kissing sister


November 8, 2013

Fun Family Photography at the State Capitol

I think I could safely wager that the California State Capitol is one of top five most popular spots for a family photography session in Sacramento. It has such a large variety of backdrops from its big granite steps to perfectly manicured lawns and gardens.

This fun family was so wonderful to work with — I just loved how willing they were to let their fun-loving individual personalities shine through in their pictures. These steps are the perfect place to start, with the boy’s sliding down the railings.

Family picture sliding down the railing with mom and dad in the middle

They begged to have their picture taken high up on this ENORMOUS tree branch. In the end, it was one of my favorite shots.

boys in blue shirts love to climb trees for their pictures at the capitol

The family all together for their big group portrait on the stairs

The results of playing a game of “see who can lean on each other harder”. Ha!

brothers wrestling on a black and white checkered floor in front of a big wood door

Can you see the dome of the Capitol building in the background?

husband and wife picture and another with son on dad's shoulders

It was all cuddles on the grassy lawn that afternoon.

family cuddles and tickles in the grass with natural smiles

At the end of the day, it was clear to me that this family just really, truly enjoys one another. They are each other’s best friend. Who could ask for more than that?

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.