Our Sedona Getaway at the lovely Los Abrigados Resort & Spa

        This weekend we spent a much needed relaxing weekend at the Los Abrigados Resort & Spa celebrating my mom's 59th birthday. As a surprise we booked a weekend getaway for my mom , so she could relax and have fun. As a kid, we frequently visited Sedona during the hot Arizona summers so this place holds a lot of special memories.  As a family we began walking through the lovely shops located in downtown Sedona and took a look at all the amazing artwork from local artists. 

Yup, that’s my son with his yummy scorpion lollipop...

After viewing all the amazing art pieces, we traveled to the gorgeous Chapel of the Holy Cross , there we viewed the fantastic Sedona redrocks and lit a candle inside the church as a reflection of our many blessings. 

  After all of our walking and a delicious lunch at  The Oak Creek Brewery  we settled at our resort and enjoyed the beautiful Sedona Oak Creek for an impromptu photo session. I happened to take our camera to snap images of our family and decided since we were all in a beautiful location what better time for a family photo right? 

Let me introduce my loving, crazy and sometimes probably a little too loud family. 

_DSC4475.jpg

 With the past few months being our busy season and add in a trip to the Dominican Republic, Miami, celebrating our sons 12th birthday, the holidays and battling a nasty cold, our family photos were placed on hold. We might not have planned this session and coordinated fancy outfits but I think we did pretty good, wouldn't you agree?

   What a great trip and wonderful way to celebrate my mom! Without getting too emotional or sappy, I will just say this, my mom is the BEST mom. She raised us to always have confidence, faith & empathy towards others. My kids are the light of her life (My brother and I are convinced she likes them more than us). Mama, growing up with you as my role model has taught me so much and continues to teach me on a daily basis. I have learned that being a mom is the one and only job that matters and I intend on doing it as well as you . Love you mom, "To infinity and beyond". 

Sina & Michael's classic wedding

 I first met Sina at a local Starbucks on an early Saturday morning, she walked in gave me a huge hug and grabbed herself a nice caffeinated drink. We immediately clicked, she is the warmest and funniest girl I have met in a long time. We quickly began discussing her upcoming wedding details , she glowed as she talked about her groom to be and gushed over their love story. 

Time flew by as we talked and before we knew it an hour had flown by, we had sat and talked about her upcoming wedding and life in general like we had known one another for years. She immediately booked her special day with myself and we went on our way. The months flew by and before we knew it, it was time for her big day. 

As December 2nd approached, I anxiously geared up for this wedding, I just knew the wedding party and couple were going to be one to remember. 

I entered the beautifully decorated Sheraton Cresent Hotel  and immediately entered Sina's room to find this stunning bride casually walking around with her friends, forgetting she was the most beautiful woman in the room. She gave me a warm greeting and I was on my way to elegantly document her day. 

_DSC2937.jpg
_DSC3233-2.jpg

Sina & Michael thank you so much for allowing me to document your very special day. You two were one of the absolute best couples to work with and definitely know how to throw a great wedding! I wish you so many happy years to follow and can't wait to watch you grow as a married couple. 

XOXO, 

Lisa 

 

Venue: The Sheraton Crescent 

Dress: Her mother's , yes you read that right, that gorgeous lace number is her mother's gown!

Cake: Adie's Cakes

 

 

 

 

Keairah's Senior Session

   Every time I photograph a senior session, I am reminded of the good old high school days from oh so long ago. I remember the football games, my pom poms (Yes I was a cheerleader & dancer) , pep rally's , lockers and those crazy uniforms, I forgot to mention I went to private school so we all looked alike on campus. It is so refreshing photographing a high school senior and just listening to their excitement for the future. The education plans they have, the various career choices they would like to make and the tiny bit of sadness you can hear in their voice because the end is near.  

   Senior photos have vastly changed since I was a senior , we won't say how many years ago but let's just say 'Nsync was a big deal. I remember heading to a chain studio for photos, running into half of my classmates and taking photos leaning over a giant number representing our class year. They were so cookie cutter and borderline cheesy, now senior sessions are so unique and glamorous. Mariah was introduced to me by her godmother who gifted her this photo session as a graduation gift , she was nervous at first but after 10 minutes she was a natural model, just take a look!

  Gorgeous right? I told you! It's hard to believe she was nervous when we first started, she truly came out of her shell and towards the end she had to take a selfie of course. 

Wishing this beauty the best of luck as she exits high school and enters her college days, enjoy them as they go quickly. 

xoxo, 

Lisa 

 

 

 

 

 

Creativity Project

          As a photographer, every week I typically photograph a family session, senior session, wedding or a child's milestone moment. Once in a while I need to break my routine and just have some freedom with my Nikon. I had this idea about a year ago to use colored smoke bombs and somehow  use their colors to create an artistic photoshoot.  I met with my GORGEOUS model at a remote desert location, we quickly set up our smoke bombs and just photographed the results. 

If you have followed my instagram or facebook page I'm sure you have seen a few of the images I ended up snapping, but this experience was too special to keep to myself.  

_DSC5087.jpg

  This session was a break for me, after completing this shoot I realized that it is very important for myself to break away and just be artistic. This was a form of therapy, I was able to be creative in a different way than during my client sessions. Don't get me wrong, I can feel creative during weddings and etc, but this was just a different form of creative flow. I have so many ideas for upcoming shoots so stay tuned! 

 

 

Jesse & Stefanie's big day

Ending our amazing 2015 season, I shot a wedding on Dec. 5. The location, you ask? Palm Valley Golf Course - where I held my reception, ten years ago! I was so excited. Who would have thought that I would be capturing a bride’s memories at the same place someone captured mine? Things had definitely come full circle in my opinion, back in 2006 I never would have imagined that I would be photographing lifetime moments for a living , yet here I stand with my handy dandy Nikon and enjoying every moment of this adventure.

Stefanie's  pictures were to be taken at sunset immediately after her sunset ceremony,  at the time, the beautiful bride was originally discouraged due the timing of her ceremony because here in Arizona during December our sun officially sets around 5pm. I assured her she need not worry. this was her day, and I was going to make sure the shots looked amazing and would capture her wedding to perfection. The bride herself was a timeless beauty. To add the finishing touch to her look, she carried a bouquet with a pendant her late grandparents owned. 

The pictures speak for themselves, they are now amongst my favorite pictures that showcase the gorgeous Arizona sunset. Who knows, hopefully I will have the opportunity to capture more of our breathtaking Arizona sunsets. 

A huge thank you to this couple, thank you for being a relaxed ,easing going couple, thank you for being the sweetest & most of all thank you for trusting me on your biggest day !

Reflection for 2015

 

It’s hard to believe 2016 is almost here! The New Year is vastly approaching and now that I finally have the time to breathe, I’ve decided to take some time and reflect on this crazy, yet exciting year. 

Every year, I set new goals for myself. In 2015, my main goal was to shoot an out-of-state-wedding. I knew it was a big goal, but I was determined.  I did shoot an out of state engagement session and  I did book a wedding in Del Mar, Calif. in Jan. 2016! To say I’m excited is an understatement. This is such a milestone for my photography career and I cannot wait to share these photos with all of you.  Goal for 2015 check!

One of the things I love about my job is the fact that I get to meet so many new people. Whether it’s a friend of a friend or someone who found me online, I see it as the chance to not only capture incredible photos, but also to form relationships. In 2015, I was lucky enough to do both . I have met so many new families, little ones and not so little ones entering college. Clients have become friends, and I get to capture new memories they will cherish forever. What’s better than that? 

2015 was also a year of challenge. I challenged myself to work with off camera lighting and made it a priority to incorporate that into my wedding shots. While this was challenging, it was an opportunity for growth. With this, I was able to work on finding my own personal style when not only shooting, but editing as well.

 

Goals for 2016? Hmmm, let’s think…

1. Expand my knowledge!

            The world of photography is always changing, always progressing. I am constantly learning and am loving it! In March, I will be attending a photography conference in St. Louis and I can’t wait. I am hoping to learn more about lighting, shooting and expanding my business.

2. Not to compare myself to others.

 I have worked hard in 2015 and through all of this hard work, I was able to find my own personal style. I no longer want to compare my work to my role models, I instead want to take what I have learned,  and run with it. In the process I hope to continue to grow, learn & expand my confidence in photography. 

2016, I’m ready for you!

Here are just a few of what was captured in 2015 .

 

 

5 Easy Steps to a Successful Photoshoot

 

 

1.    Choose your wardrobe carefully.

There are so many options when choosing outfits that will look great on camera – but try to stick to who you are as an individual. Try to avoid trendy clothing if you are more of a jeans and t-shirt type of person. Don’t try to be super glamorous if you are more of a natural person. Be yourself! You will be far more comfortable in your clothing and it will show on camera.  Also, remember to try your outfits on prior to the shoot, you will want to keep an eye out for straps that may slip, necklaces that may twist or dresses that might be just a bit too short. Coordinate your clothing rather than matching. We all remember those ‘90s photos of families in the same stone washed denim shirts and matching pants, right? Don’t be that family. When dressing your family, make sure your outfits coordinate, meaning the colors go together. The style is similar, but not matching from head to toe.  I mean, do you wear matching outfits on a daily basis? Of course not, so why match for your photos? If you are still stumped on what to wear, you can always check my Pinterest boards for inspiration.

 

2.    Leave plenty of time to get ready.

Rushing around trying to get your kids ready, reassuring your husband the outfit picked for him is fine and trying to slap on a few extra coats of mascara before rushing out the door is something I am all too familiar with, believe me. Feeling rushed will definitely show up on your photos, which is something you do NOT want to happen. Make sure to give yourself an extra 30 minutes or so when getting ready, even splurge on hiring a hair & makeup guru. This will ensure you will show up to your photo shoot relaxed and most of all, feeling beautiful.  

 

3.  Save the cheese for your crackers.

We all grew up with “Say Cheese” as a staple when taking photos as kids, but how natural did those smiles look? My best advice: Relax and let your kids be their natural, silly selves. The photos will have a more natural smile versus a forced, frozen smile. Happy kids equal happy parents.

 

4.  Don’t be afraid to interact with each other.

We all want that one photo of the entire family looking at the camera, am I right? Fortunately, not every single photo needs to have every family member looking directly at the camera. The best photos are the images of the kids looking at one another, or mom looking down to her babies. Don’t be afraid to smile at each other or look away from the camera! It is usually these authentic, candid photos that are remembered the most after a session.

 

5. Have fun!

Whether it’s a photo shoot with your loved ones or just you, don’t be afraid to let your hair down! Act goofy; show your funny side because this will guarantee authentic, candid photos that are remembered for a lifetime. Always remember: photo shoots are supposed to be fun!

Joel & Tami

I first met Tami in the spring time as we shot her engagement session and got to know her and her fiance. She is the most easy going person, and within seconds of meeting her you automatically feel as if you have known her forever. Her wedding day quickly approached and I am so lucky to have photographed such a fun loving couple. We met at a local area in Gilbert, AZ at high noon, I was first afraid of harsh lighting but luckily we were able to work with the light & snapped some amazing shots. If you follow my Facebook page or Instagram  pages , I'm sure you have seen a few of their images as I have been eager to share!

 

Tami &  Joel thank you for being so trusting with your photos and I wish you all the happiness in the world.  

Hair & Makeup by Faces by Tanya 

_DSC8995.jpg

Best of luck love birds, I hope to work with you in the future !

 

Lisa

Anthony & Priscilla

 We first met Anthony & Priscilla at a local coffee shop to talk over their wedding plans , we wanted to get to know one another before their big day. Within the first 10 minutes of meeting I knew this couple was special, they both are the sweetest & down to earth people you will ever meet. We got to know Anthony's silly side during their engagement session & I just knew their wedding was going to be so much fun to be a part of  & they did not disappoint. During their big day a local carnival was taking place so the couple decided to hop on the ferris wheel and incorporate all the fun activity during their big day.  Their wedding was spectacular , here are just a few images from their big day. Wishing this couple all the happiness they deserve & would like to thank them for being such a fantastic couple to work with!

Makeup - Make Me Up Maria

Ceremony Venue - Blessed Sacrament Church 

Reception Venue - Aldea at Talaquepaque  

_DSC6854.jpg
_DSC7212.jpg

Country Maternity Session with Brienna & Josh

 For those of you who may not know, I am a big country music fan, I haven't always been a country fan but as I got older I learned to appreciate country music more & more. Every morning on my daily 45 minute drive to my kids school I listen to Arizona's KMLE Country music station.  A few months back Florence , Arizona hosted "Country Thunder" which is this huge country music event and tons of people camp out to listen to their favorite country artists perform. While this event was going on , I would listen to the cutest couple on the radio speak with the radio DJ's about how they were trying for a baby , so they tried for a "Country Thunder Baby" and were successful!!  

       After listening for a few months, I found out they were expecting a little baby girl & I really wanted to do something for this couple ....like photograph this special occasion. Let's face it baby bumps are just the best and my camera loves them, so I reached out to Steve Kramer completely feeling like a dork and thinking  my lonely little email would just hang out in email purgatory forever and I would never receive a response. But to my surprise Steve actually replied to me and forwarded my email to this lovely couple. 

 About a week later, I heard from Brienna and after talking to her I found out a few things. 

1. She was just the cutest thing ever

2. We definitely had to incorporate country into this session 

3.  We were going to have fun! 

So after chatting we decided on a location and met at sunrise , it was FREEZING but we braved through the weather and I am so thankful we did, the photos are amazing.  Both Brienna & Josh clicked with myself & my football loving husband., we walked the location , chatting and once we left we had plans on meeting again. 

Here is a look at just a few photos we captured during our little walk. 

_DSC9970.jpg

 

This was just a sample of a few of my favorites it was hard to pick out of all the photos we took. I am so happy I took the leap and reached out to photograph this couple, they are truly a wonderful couple and that little baby girl is super lucky to have them as her parents. 

 

Can't wait til we meet again Brienna & Josh!!

 

Lisa