June 2018

Sneak Peek | 3 Tips for Perfect Outdoor Summer Photos

Sunday I met up with this adorable little trio for some updated family portraits. Kerrie and her kiddos Lana and Ryan were a blast to work with. I know, I know, that sounds cliche. But it's true. Ryan was game for almost anything (no holding hands, MOM!) and Lana was as sweet as pie. 

Of all the adorable shots I captured, I had to somehow choose one to share as their Sneak Peek. This one won the contest. If it wouldn't be totally corny, I'd draw little hearts all over it. I LOVE this photo! Perfect smiles, perfect hugs, perfect capture of this moment in their lives.


Our time together made me think... a lot of people will be together for the 4th of July holiday week and many family photos will be taken. Whether you're using an iPhone, a point-and-shoots or a big fancy DSLR, I want you get the best shots you can. Here are some tips to help you get there.

3 Tips for Perfect Outdoor Summer Photos

  1. BE SHADY.  Making your sister stand in the bright sunlight and squint at the camera is no fun for anyone.  (Plus, who wants raccoon eyes?) Find a spot under a leafy tree or on the shady side of a building. 
  2. GET ORIENTATED. The orientation of the camera (horizontal or vertical) makes a huge difference - especially when you're photographing a group of people. A general rule of thumb - go horizontal with three or more people in the shot. 
  3. BUZZ OFF. Must. Use. Bug. Spray. Let me put it to you this way: after Sunday's session, I immediately went to Tar-jay and bought a super-sized can of mosquito repellent. And a giant tube of anti-itch cream. 

I hope these ideas save you from bad photos and hungry mosquitos. 

If you'd rather a professional handle the photography end of things, give me a call and let's chat! I'd love to capture your family this summer. (BYOBS.... bring your own bug spray.)

Sneak Peek | Surprise Father's Day Photos at The Landing

Friday night at The Landing in Wauwatosa is an absolute MUST DO! It's a family friendly outdoor beer garden attached to the Hoyt Pool, bike trails, and a beautiful wooded park. If you are looking for something to do on a Friday night, come out and listen to some music, have a drink, order a pizza.

I may be biased because I 100% love Tosa, but it really is the place to be. 

This past Friday night, I met a special family there as a surprise Father's Day session. It was different than anything I'd ever done for a portrait session... and I loved it! 

I caught a mix of candids and posed portraits. Much to Mama Dee's delight (who organized the surprise), I photographed each of her kiddos, different combinations of the family members and her father-in-law who was visiting from Florida. They will all LOVE the photos! 

For now, here's a little sneak peek. I'm saving the real goodies for the Big Reveal. (tee hee)

Cheers to Father's Day!


Does this sound like your type of family session? Contact me right away to reserve your Friday (or other night) at the park. Or maybe you want a little more privacy? Let's talk. I want your family photo experience to suit your needs and desires.

closing a chapter of the class of 2018 | congrats haley

This is it. This is my last Ode to Class of 2018 Seniors. And I'm ending with a session that I loved SO much. 

This is Haley. She graduated at the end of May. And she is so stinking adorable. Those two facts are completely unrelated but equally true. (So there.)

girl on a bridge laughing

Haley Hauk Landon

Kettle Moraine Lutheran High School

long hair blowing while walking

My favorite subject is English because I love to read and write.

My favorite teacher is my history teacher, Mr. Haferman, because he's the teacher I've learned the most from during high school.

Being able to perform in Disney with my pom team, being captain of the cheer team, being a member of National Honors Society

I'm a member of the cheer team at my school.

Drs. Landon and Sirotinski Dental

I like to spend time with friends and family, shop, and read.



Light blue

Haley will be heading off to Florida State University next year. I think I may have to visit her in the winter when I get sick of the snow. (just kidding!)

Good luck with your beautiful, bright future! I can't wait to hear all about your adventures!

cheerleader with green and white ponpoms

Class of 2019, it's your turn now! Let's talk about your senior portraits, what you want to include in them (a prop? a uniform?) and where you'd like to have them. 

congrats to jack | what to expect when you show up for a photo shoot

First and most importantly, congratulations to another one of my awesome class of 2018 seniors. Here is Jack, who graduated from Wauwatosa West High School earlier this week. Wahooooo! 

autumn portrait in a park near wooden fence

I've gotten to know Jack a little better in the last year and I'm so glad I did! 

When we met up for his session, I had a feeling he wasn't quite sure what to expect. Sometimes, no amount of pre-session prep can fill in ALL the blanks. 

I talked him through the process before we got started. I could see his demeanor relax as I talked. I'm not one for surprises (unless it's a party or a free gift!) and I don't expect my clients and subjects to like surprises either (again, unless it's a party or a free  gift!).

So here are some of the things Jack got to experience...


1. I'm human, you're human. I just happen to be holding a camera and you just happen to be standing/sitting/walking in front of said camera.

My #1 goal when I show up is to get my subject to relax. I chitchat with them and reveal that I can be a bumbling fool (in case they didn't already know) and I can make mistakes, feel awkward and forget to take off my lens cap. (Raise your hand if I've raised up my camera to photograph you with the lens cap on... ah, yes. See? That's a lot of you.)

2. You will pretty much be standing around a lot.

That's not so hard, is it? We will walk and talk and stop and take some shots. We will walk some more. I'll ask you to stand right there. No, over one more step. And off we go again. The model life is SO HARD. (It might be, but this Intro to Modeling 101 so it's not so bad.) Just stand here... Sit there... you got this!

Speaking of being a model...

3. You are not a model and that's totally ok.

You are not trained in proper posture and posing technique. I know this. Which is why I will tell you exactly what to do. I will help you understand how to stand, sit and walk. I will help pose you. I may adjust you. I know what the camera sees so if you can trust me, I swear I won't make you look bad. That's a promise. Plus, living in the digital age does have its benefits - if you were to blink or if I caught you talking, there's this amazing little button called DELETE. No need to worry.

senior boy in plaid shirt leaning on brick building

You will look amazing and brilliant in your photos. All your friends will love and like and wow your images on Facebook. After they complement you and all your awesomeness, they will ask where you found such an incredible photographer. (And you'll tell them, right?) 

But first, before any of that can happen, you need to click this little button right here.

Congratulations to you, Jack! You did a great job at your session. I really had fun with you walking around the park and finding fun little spots to stop and press the shutter. Good luck to you in your future endeavors! 

congratulations to dominic | tosa east hs class of 2018

We have only THREE days left of school! 

Well, let me clarify... the UNDERCLASSMEN have three days left. The Wauwatosa East High School class of 2018 graduated on Sunday so... THEY. ARE. OUT. OF. HERE!!!!!!

Before he runs off for the summer, allow me to introduce Dominic, proud graduate just two days into his big, giant future.

in studio senior portrait of a boy in a chair with grey shirt

Are you mulling over location options for your senior photos? Dominic and his sweet mom and I met out at a local park and then afterward, when it got dark, we headed back to my studio for some indoor shots.

See if you can count all the locations we went to... 

I'm up to three....


As a side note, Dominic was super easy to work with. He's a laid-back kid and, like most of us, cannot be judged by his cover. He's such an interesting kid and I can't wait to see what he does in the future!

Congratulations Dominic on your graduation! 

P.S. If you were counting, we used SEVEN locations. Or did we?.... A magician never tells his secrets. (wink wink)

CLASS OF 2019 - You're up! Let's talk about where (and when) you want to get your senior portraits done. I'm here for you!