Sometimes the ones you love don’t all live under one roof anymore. It’s then that photographs as wall art are even more important.

We ventured to Half Moon Bay for this extended family portrait session.

Mina & Paul Cole have three handsome grown sons, a gorgeous and sweet daughter-in law, one incredibly adorable grandson and a beloved nearly-daughter-in-law. Their hearts are full to say the least.

Mina, loving matriarch of the Cole family, found us on a very special day in her life, the wedding of her eldest son. (See our blog post of their wedding here)

During the reception, she told us she’d be calling us for family portraits someday, and she was absolutely true to her word.

We scheduled the on-location family session for a bit of a destination for all of us, Half Moon Bay. Mina’s husband is an Assistant Fire Chief and works with Cal Fire in Half Moon Bay so they have lots of fond memories of visits through the years, especially at one beach spot.

Mina envisioned portraits of her favorite people at her favorite place, decorating her home for years to come. An extended family portrait session specifically geared towards wall art. That’s exactly what we love to hear and were excited to help make happen.

We met up with the Coles about an hour before sunset and took a short walk to a beautiful bluff overlooking the ocean. The weather was a bit misty, which is characteristic of Half Moon Bay, and we all hoped the sun might make an appearance on the horizon eventually.

We started off with some posed group photos to warm everyone up.

Half Moon Bay extended family portrait

 

We had a mental list of groupings that were important to Mina, and started in right away. Getting a photo with all the gentlemen in her life.

Half Moon Bay extended family portrait

 

It wasn’t long before the boys had loosened up and their personalities started to shine through.

Here, loving on their mama

Half Moon Bay extended family portrait

 

Cracking themselves up

Half Moon Bay extended family portrait

 

This is the image they decided to order as a 24″ x 20″ wall portrait.

Half Moon Bay extended family portrait

 

On Mina’s request, Mischa artistically retouched this family portrait image beyond the look of a traditional photograph. This is the version that will grace their walls in a gorgeous custom frame:

Half Moon Bay extended family portrait

 

It was time for an outfit change and a walk down to the beach. So we had a few minutes to photograph the family interacting. This image made the final cut and will remind us all how small little Paulie was last Fall. (personally, it also reminds me how many times I sang “the Itsy Bitsy Spider” during their session to get his attention and make him smile)

Half Moon Bay extended family portrait

 

How gorgeous is this family and this beach! This is another one of the images they chose to print and display in their home. Rather than change the aesthetic of this image, they decided to leave it natural. It has a custom frame as well and is more than just a photo on the wall at 60″ x 30″.

Half Moon Bay extended family portrait

 

We took advantage of the empty beach and increasingly beautiful light to capture some individual portraits of Mina & her family.

This one of Mina got a special artistic treatment before printing. Here’s the original:

Half Moon Bay extended family portrait

 

Here’s the artistically retouched version, following Mina’s request for “purples” and the freedom to design an art piece without being confined to reality:

Half Moon Bay extended family portrait

 

Working together with our clients to create the art pieces that they want for their homes is so fulfilling. Getting to collaborate and use our talents to inspire daily happiness when they see these images, is what it’s all about for us.

Shooting is a really good time too. You can see how seriously we take ourselves in the expressions we get from our subjects.

extended family portrait

 

And you can see that the sunset finally cooperated too. This was one of  the last images of the night. A stunning image for a very special family.

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Not long after this session, we found out that this family is expecting a new member in 2016, a little girl, Mina’s first granddaughter. She will grow up seeing these images on the walls of her grandparents’ house and we couldn’t be prouder.

We hope you enjoyed this Half Moon Bay extended family portrait session and that it inspires you to decorate your own home with images of the ones you love.

Families are ever changing. Little Greg and his family scheduled a photo shoot to capture the last days before he’d become a big brother. Little Greg’s daddy is a fireman, so we visited him at work for a fun, fire station themed session.

If there’s one thing we’ve learned from being parents to a little boy, it’s that trucks are a big deal.
fire engine themed toddler shoot

 

Little Greg is a BIG helper. Practicing for big brother duties, no doubt.

fire engine themed toddler shoot

 

The colors and textures of the fire station were fun to play with. Little Greg was happy to show off the hoses and rear-step simultaneously. He’s such a snappy dresser too!

fire engine themed toddler shoot

 

Incorporating the engine in a family portrait was a treat! Little Greg seems to be enjoying it as well. This image will be gracing the walls of their home as a 30″ x 20″ metal print.

fire station themed family shoot

 

We use a lot of different aesthetics during one session. Choosing the right lens for each image is both an art and a skill. Especially when space is tight, like in the cab of an engine. Being able to set up shots quickly and fluidly is crucial when working with kids.

fire station themed family shoot

 

Making time to have professional photos taken where your family is today means that you’ll be able to revisit these moments as your family grows and evolves.

fire station themed family shoot

Looking back at this session from just a few months ago, and their dynamic has already changed so much. This wonderful family welcomed a baby girl shortly after having their fire station themed session.

If Little Greg is anything like our boys, he’s already too big to fit into this outfit. Though she looks stunning while pregnant, Little Greg’s mama is likely relieved to be out of maternity clothes… and really glad she has photographs to remember this special day.

fire station themed maternity session

 

Studio portraits are a tradition that becomes an heirloom. These are the iconic images that hang on the walls of our favorite homes for decades to come. We love being part of these images and part of the milestones they represent. Recently, we were fortunate enough to be part of a very special studio portrait session.

We’re delighted to introduce you to Zoe.

milestone studio portraits

 

A year ago, little Zoe was born, and “little” is an understatement. At 2lbs and 2oz, Zoe was teensy tiny; and came into this world much earlier than most, at just 25 weeks old.

Her first year has been a long, tough one.

The struggles that come with being born so early keep Zoe’s mama on her toes. Zoe’s immune system is not as strong as most kids her age, so getting to come to our studio for a portrait session is a milestone and a victory in itself.

milestone studio portraits

 

Zoe still relies on oxygen so we did a combination of poses with and without her nasal cannula.

milestone studio portraits

 

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Zoe’s favorite was definitely her fancy birthday outfit. She absolutely LOVES to munch on tulle. YUM!!

milestone studio portraits

 

milestone studio portraits

 

 

milestone studio portraits

 

milestone studio portraits

 

She had mixed feelings about her cake though.

 

cake toes

 

 

 

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cake scream

 

cake munch

 

My favorite is this sequence of Zoe and her mama snuggling

snuggling mama

 

snuggling mama

 

snuggling mama

Milestone studio portraits are a tradition, and we’re proud to provide a fun, individualized experience.

We can book at either our San Francisco or Sacramento locations for these milestone studio sessions. Contact us for more information or to schedule a complimentary consultation.

Happy Birthday Zoe!!

zoe

 

 

 

 

Our hope for every session is to create art that will decorate your home, for our portraiture to have a life outside the camera and computer.

Recently, we got an email from a client who sent us this photo of his metal prints displayed prominently above the living room couch, and we couldn’t be prouder.

Portraits become art when they

 

Eric and his son had their session with Mischa in San Francisco and chose these three images as their favorites:

Pictures become art when they

 

Pictures become art when they

 

Pictures become art when they

 

Eric was looking for striking, statement images; that showed the connection he has with his growing son. We wanted to capture them as they are in this fleeting time, and include strong visuals and vibrant colors that would translate well to large scale wall art.

For our work to reach its artistic potential, it needs to be printed. Whether in a frame or as a sleek and modern frameless metal print like Eric chose. Finding the right collection, sizes, and orientation for your space is a valuable part of what we provide as full-service photographers.

Thank you, Eric, for entrusting us with your portraiture, for displaying them so beautifully in your home – and for sharing the end results with us.

~M & B