Stefano | Vacaville Senior Portraits

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Stefano | Vacaville Senior Portraits

The first stop on Stefano’s senior session was Vacaville High School where he played on the football and rugby teams. He incorporated his love of both sports onto the field as well as some photos in front of the entrance to the stadium with his beloved car. We were dying in the afternoon heat but it was worth it to get these photos!

After Vacaville High School we headed to the coast for some photos on the beach with his pup. The weather wasn’t ideal when we got there and we weren’t sure if we would even be able to get the shots that we came there for. It was extremely cloudy and sprinkling rain off and on the entire time BUT we made the best of it! With the combination of the two locations I think we checked all the boxes for his senior session: we captured his sporty and masculine side that he wanted as well as his sensitive and softer side that mom wanted.

Despite the numerous speed bumps we hit along the way, he was such a good sport. He was constantly making us laugh throughout the entire day. One thing I always do with my seniors on sessions to loosen them up is - I will say a random word and have them say the first thing that comes to mind. The word I gave him was “Taco Bell” and his immediate response was “farts”— we were all dying laughing and I got some good shots of him in the process.

There were so many things I loved about Stefano’s senior session, but here are a few of my favorite:

  • His pug named Destiny— which he named after a video game

  • His popsicle, pug, and sumo button up shirts

  • His sporty and quirky sense of style

Stefano is a great person with many talents, I’m so happy I got to shoot his senior session. I can’t wait to see where life takes him!

For more information about booking a custom senior portrait experience, pricing, or details, inquire here.

For more information about booking a custom senior portrait experience, pricing, or details, inquire here.

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Claire | Vacaville Senior Portraits

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Claire | Vacaville Senior Portraits

When Claire, her mom, and I sat down to discuss their ideas for her senior portraits I was so excited to hear that they wanted to try to do somewhat of a European theme because they had just done a huge Europe trip over the summer and wanted to incorporate that experience into her photos. The colors that we went for with Claire’s session were very soft and feminine and we were able to infuse that style into the photos with both of the locations and her outfits. 

As we were talking about locations, Yountville was the first place that came to mind. There is a European inspired bistro that I knew would be adorable as a backdrop for her shoot. For those of you who don’t know, Yountville is a small town with tons of beautiful architecture and adorable cafés. It was the perfect location for her European inspired shoot.

We started off the morning during sunrise in the Vineyards; the hills in the background made for a beautiful setting. Fun fact: Claire is very into art and painting, so we decided to incorporate that into her senior session. She brought along some supplies to use as props and we set up her easel and took some fun photos of her painting in the vineyards. We finished her senior session at the bistro I mentioned earlier. While we were shooting, Claire and her mom got so excited when we saw a sign on the side of the bistro that was the name of a street they has visited while in France. It was such a special moment to watch them relive the experience they had in Europe.

For more information about booking a custom senior portrait experience, pricing, or details
Please inquire here

For more information about booking a custom senior portrait experience, pricing, or details
Please inquire here

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How Early Should You Book Senior Portraits?

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How Early Should You Book Senior Portraits?

Your senior year is full of exciting moments - from Friday night football games and homecoming, to college admissions and prom. And of course, graduation.

The one thing you’ll have to keep forever, after all is said and done, is your senior portraits. And no, I’m not talking about your yearbook photo. I’m talking about the photos you will put on your grad announcements and in the senior page of your yearbook, the portraits that will hang in your grandparents living room, the photos that will live in a gorgeous album on your parents coffee table, and the images that you will post online each week for #seniorsunday.

The one question I get the most from upcoming seniors and their parents is,
“When is the best time to book?”

Most photographers get booked up quickly for the popular months (June - November), and you’ll want to leave enough time for researching photographers, contacting/meeting with them, planning your session ideas and locations, shopping for outfits, finding a makeup artist, shooting the session itself, and viewing/ordering your portraits.
This entire process can take anywhere from 2-4 months!

Some photographers may offer payment plans, and you’ll want to consider if you’d like to take advantage of that. If so, booking early will give you a few extra months to pay off your photos. 

With all that being said, my recommendation is to start thinking about your senior portraits now - get ahead of the game and get it planned! We typically book seniors for their portrait session 2-4 months in advance so be sure to contact us soon! Once the rest of your senior year obligations start coming your way, you’ll be glad you did it early! 

If you are currently in your junior year, this is the perfect time to start researching and contacting photographers that you may want to work with. Start looking around at who others have booked, ask for recommendations, and find a photographer that fits the style you are envisioning for your own senior portraits.

For more information about booking a custom senior portrait experience, pricing, or details.
Inquire here

For more information about booking a custom senior portrait experience, pricing, or details. Inquire here

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Video Promo Shoot

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Video Promo Shoot

So much goes on behind the scenes here at the studio with our team and with our clients that you aren’t able to see. Between the early mornings, wardrobe styling for clients, hair and makeup artists making our girls feel like models, and our sporadic dance offs, you could say we kinda love our jobs. I’m trying to share more of those moments because I know people love seeing what happens when the curtains are pulled back!

When seniors inquire about doing their senior portraits with us, we always invite them and their parents to come into our studio so we can sit down and talk about all the details, hear their ideas for their pictures, and paint a picture of what that day will look like for them. Explaining the process to a client DOES give them an idea of what will happen, but I’ve been dying to SHOW them— so we made a video to do just that!

A couple months ago, I sat down with Darin Reyes and told him what I wanted to do. He had lots of exciting ideas for our video and we collaborated on this project together. With one and a half days of shooting, and lots of back end work at his studio, he made our vision come to life. 

We brought in a few of our clients to film along with our entire team, and we had a blast during our fun-yet-exhausting 12-hour shooting day. We wrapped up shooting on one additional day in our studio, and were lucky enough to bring in a couple more clients and their parents to help! 

See all the behind the scenes pictures from when we were filming, and scroll to the bottom to watch the full video!

For more information about booking a custom senior portrait experience, pricing, or details. Inquire here

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County Fair | Themed Model Shoot

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County Fair | Themed Model Shoot

Every year the Dixon May Fair comes to town and I always miss my opportunity to shoot there before the weekend is over! So this year I was determined to plan ahead and make a shoot happen at the fair with my Class of 2020 Senior Models.

Our models met up with us towards sunset and we had a blast taking photos with all the colorful and unique locations like the rides, the food stands, and of course - the big ferris wheel. The girls arrived in fun outfits and we tried not to melt away in the summer heat, ha!

The attendants at the game booths were kind enough to let us shoot at a couple of them and they even let us use some of the stuffed animal prizes as props. My favorite area to shoot was by the big ferris wheel. We thought about taking a ride and shooting from a different point of view, but we chickened out! The fear of heights was too real for me that night.

You can’t go to the fair without eating all of the yummy snacks obviously. So we grabbed some ice cream cones, popcorn, and cotton candy to use as props for some of the photos which was cute and gave the girls something to do with their poses.

The best part about shooting for the last couple of hours near sunset was being able to shoot with some of the girls earlier in the day when it was bright and colorful and then shoot a totally different look after the sun went down when all the lights of the fair came on.

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TuesdaysTogether Vacaville | Virtue Juice

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TuesdaysTogether Vacaville | Virtue Juice

This month we held our monthly TuesdaysTogether meetup at Virtue Juice Bar in Vacaville. If you haven’t been to this new hot spot in town, you’re missing out! They describe themselves as “a cross between a fast-casual restaurant and a wellness resource center” and are actively creating a culture of health, inclusion, creativity, and personal excellence. Their menu includes non-dairy and gluten-free options as well.

Virtue Juice Bar offers enriching smoothies, organic espresso elixirs, acai bowls, gourmet toasts, and the most delicious cold pressed juices made-to-order. My favorite is the Tropical Breeze - a refreshing mix of pineapple, apple, cucumber, kale, and lime.

Our topic for this month was Video Marketing and we had the ever so talented Darin Reyes, the owner of both Darin Reyes Productions and Dragon Roll Media, present as a guest speaker on the importance of incorporating video into our marketing efforts to get our businesses noticed. I’ve personally worked with Darin recently when we hired him to create a promotional video for Brianna Gamble Photography and the results were amazing - check it out for yourself!

We had a great discussion and brainstorm with our small group about ideas for incorporating video into our businesses including: doing Facebook lives on topics that will educate clients, staying current and relevant by using Instagram stories daily, creating a promotional video with a professional like Darin, sending videos to clients with preparation info for working with us, getting clients to give testimonials on camera, and ways to utilize our iPhones (the camera that’s always at our fingertips!) to capture behind the scenes moments of our business that we can share with our audience.

The biggest takeaway was: done is better than perfect. Just START.

To read this month’s guide about Video Marketing and get ideas for your own small biz, head to this link here.

And if you aren’t already in our TuesdaysTogether Vacaville Facebook group, join us now. It’s where we post all information about upcoming meetups and stay connected! All small business owners and creatives in the Solano County area are welcome.

A huge thank you to Virtue Juice for hosting us, Darin Reyes for speaking, James Young for being our door greeter, and Iris of Northern Grace Photography for these amazing photos below!

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Wedding Sneak Peek

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Wedding Sneak Peek

As many of you know, I’ve been planning our intimate desert wedding for over a year now and I’m happy to say - it was everything we had hoped it would be!

On April 12th, 2019 we said “I do” in front of 30 of our closest family and friends among the red rocks of Southern Utah. The most special part of the day was incorporating our three kids into the ceremony with our family vows, and having our entire day put together by the people closest to us.

I’ll share more details (and more photos!) soon about our big day, but we got some sneak peeks from our photographer that I wanted to share for now! 

Our amazing, talented and hilarious photographer was Laurken Kendall, based out of Washington. Laurken and her adorable assistant, Ruthie, made our whole day flow more smoothly, kept us laughing and stress free, and made me feel like an absolute queen.

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Brooke | Vacaville Senior Portraits

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Brooke | Vacaville Senior Portraits

Brooke | Vacaville Senior Portraits

We traveled to Montara State Beach in Pacifica for Brooke's senior session and it was absolutely breathtaking driving along the coast, watching the waves and singing along to our favorite songs. We love being able to take our clients to the beach and getting that California summer glow for their senior portraits!

After getting her hair and makeup professionally done at the studio by our in-house stylist, Edith, we jumped in the car to head out on our adventure.

The weather, the sunset, her outfits - it couldn’t have been better. When we first arrived there was a beautiful field of yellow flowers blooming on the cliffs overlooking the beach, which I thought would be perfect for her adorable overalls outfit. I love me some cute denim!

Brooke’s sister, Sam, came with us to her session which made it even more fun because Sam is one of the awesome BGP employees! She was one of my senior clients back when she graduated, was a part of my Senior Model Team, and is now in charge of the studio’s entire production process. The three of us had a blast chasing the sun, finding fun locations and trying not to get pummeled by the ocean waves.

Want more information about how to get a senior portrait experience like Brooke?

Click the button below to request information about all of our session types!

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The Best Month for Senior Portraits

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The Best Month for Senior Portraits

One of the most frequent questions I get is, “What is the best month to take my senior pictures?” Sit tight and read on because I’ll break it all down for you so you can pick the most perfect month for YOUR senior portraits!

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Galentine's Party 2019

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Galentine's Party 2019

This past Sunday, we hosted our annual Galentine’s Day Party for our Class of 2020 Senior Model Team. The evening was filled with laughter, food, and lots of super fun games. This was the very first event for our Class of 2020 Senior Models, and we had so much fun getting to know all of the girls!

The party featured a “Babes Who Brunch” themed food area with a full spread of donuts, croissants, fruit, muffins, danishes, and mini cinnamon rolls (which were my personal favorite). They sat and ate at a flower covered low table with floor seating under an instagrammable sign. We even had a “bubbly bar” where the girls clinked their glasses of sparkling cider with their new friends!

In the other room there was a card decorating table where the girls made cards for their friends and colored Galentine’s Day themed pages. We also had multiple photo-ops including a “Girl Gang” letter balloon sign, a pink confetti filled backdrop, and a Parisian inspired cafe setup with a sign that read “You, Me, Oui”, where the girls took the cutest boomerangs and photos for their Instagrams.

Throughout the night we had the girls do some hilarious games that made for some great candid shots. The most exciting games were our Instagram Scavenger Hunt and Musical Chairs where the winners won Dutch Bros gift cards.

The models received their custom calendars that had all of their model shoots and events that they will be participating in throughout the year. We split them up into groups so they could meet some of the other girls that will be on the shoots with them!

All in all, the Galentine’s Day Party Meet + Greet was a HUGE success and we can’t wait to work with our models and their families this year. Check out the adorable photos from the party below!

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Reflections on 30 | What I've learned this year.

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Reflections on 30 | What I've learned this year.

When I was a kid, I would plan out my birthday parties months in advance. I’m talking like a full 11 months before, I would start a countdown and constantly remind my family of my upcoming birthday while I dreamed about how I wanted to celebrate. 

Some of my most memorable parties include a tea party that I planned with my grandmother, using ideas from my American Doll Parties Book, a wild and crazy get together at an indoor trampoline park before trampoline parks were really a “thing”, complete with a bucking bronco and Britney Spears’ latest album on repeat, and a small get together with friends in our newly built 50’s themed diner room, decked out with black and white tile floors and red booths, that quickly turned into a full blown house party that I spent hours cleaning up after - right after the sheer embarrassment of my MOM doing the worm…in front of all my friends. Yes, you read that right.

You could say that I had my share of exciting birthdays.

But like most of us, as I got older, life got busier and parties seemed useless. I mean who wants to spend money on a party for themselves when you can drink wine on the couch and watch Netflix, amiright?

But turning 30 seemed big. Really big. Not in a depressing way, but an exciting one. I was turning my back on a decade that saw my marriage (and later…divorce), the birth of my son Bentley, my Air Force career, my college dropout, the creation of my photography business, friends lost, friends gained, the failures, the break throughs, and everything in between, and was embarking on an entirely new chapter of my life. It only seemed fitting to celebrate in a big way.

The Big 30 weekend consisted of a belgian waffle breakfast at home with my little family, an ice skating adventure where I tried my hardest not to break any bones, dinner out in Davis with some friends, a party at our house with lots of friends, and a hot air balloon ride in Napa that ended with a champagne breakfast. My super talented friend Amy of Loves Landing Photography was there to capture most of our weekend and I’m super thankful for these photos!

As I look back over this past year, these are some of the nuggets of wisdom that 30 has thrown my way:

  • Every person in your life has a purpose. They aren’t all meant to come and stay forever, but each is there to teach you a lesson.

  • Goals aren’t accomplished by chance, and you have to make real changes to see real results.

  • Your mental health is as important as your physical health, if not more.

  • If you want something you have to go for it! Take life by the horns and act purposefully.

  • Investing in the people and the passions that make you happy, and removing anything and anyone who isn’t adding something to your life, is crucial.

  • As cliche as it sounds - do whatever makes you happy. Have the party, don’t have the party. Eat the cake, go on the vacation, cut the loose ends, say “no”, enjoy every moment.

Now I’m off to end my 31st birthday weekend with some wine and Netflix on the couch…you with me?