Summer Love and Sweet Family Portrait in Leesburg, Va.

Family Love and Summer Portrait in Leesburg, Va.

Summer Love and Sweet Family Portrait in Leesburg, Va.

Bridle Paths: Equine Assisted Activities and Therapies

I had the pleasure of spending some time at the amazing non-profit, Bridle Paths in Leesburg, VA. They were hosting students from The Auburn School and I got to photograph the students’ faces light up while grooming the horses. Bridle Path offers educational opportunities like this, as well as therapeutic riding and equine assisted therapy. Katie Fallon and her staff have created a very warm and welcoming space for the community to learn, grow and heal with horses. To view the full gallery of images, please visit: http://shootphotoinc.photoshelter.com/gallery/Bridle-Paths/G0000pyn6zi7zMHo

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Five Tips for your Mother’s Day Portrait: The Real Deal is Love

While I appreciate all of the portrait photography tips online regarding clothing and posing, I would like to shift your focus to what I consider to be the most important ingredient of a great portrait – LOVE.

I’ve been photographing families in the DC area for over 10 years, and without a doubt, the images my clients cherish most are the portraits that show love, connection and authenticity. Here are five tips to help you achieve this in your Mother’s Day portrait.

  1. BREATHE. When posing for a portrait or when feeling anxious about how you look, it’s very common to hold your breath. If you can come back to relaxed breathing, you’ll immediately feel your energy relax. As a result, you’ll look much more natural in your portrait and feel better too. All of my clients have heard me say at least once, “let’s take a few deep breaths here”.
  2. FOCUS. When you focus on the LOVE you have for your family, it will come through in your portrait. Try not to focus on whether your little ones are listening to the photographer (or you) for that matter. You have a limited amount of time to be in front of the camera, so you’ll want to be sure that your love will be front and center. If not, you’ll be really disappointed that you look frustrated in all the pics (even if your daughter is smiling right at the camera).
  3. LET IT GO. Okay, I realize this is much easier said than done. Because you have hired a professional photographer – you can essentially put your family in our hands for the hour and trust that we’ll deliver the images you hired us to create.
  4. EMBRACE THE CRAZY. This goes without saying as a parent, but sometimes you have to embrace the crazy. Some portrait sessions can get a bit wild, high energy and chaotic (depending on the age of your children). Again, trust your photographer to plan the session to meet your expectations.
  5. CHERISH AUTHENTICITY. You can do everything “right” such as dress well or tell the kids they will be rewarded for good behavior after the session, but in the end little Johnny might end up running in circles around you rather than participate in the session. If you had a really fun portrait experience and each of your children got to show their little personalities – I guarantee you will be happy with your authentic family portrait.

I wish you all a lovely Mother’s Day and a happy portrait experience. I look forward to photographing your family soon.

  1. Mother's Day Portrait, Portrait Photographer Washington DC, Portrait Photographer Northern Virginia, Julie McCarter

    Mother’s Day Portrait, Portrait Photographer Northern Virginia, Julie McCarter, Shoot Photo Inc.

In honor of Mother’s Day….

We are gearing up for our Mother’s Day portrait gift certificate season! To celebrate, we are offering one free lifestyle or studio portrait session for one lucky mom and her kiddos.  In order to win, simply go to our facebook page and hit “like” and then comment under the post with this photo with your name or nominate a mom you would like to see win.  So often, moms are the ones behind the camera – let’s get them SEEN in photos!  Good luck.

Leesburg, VA Mother's Day Portrait Gift Certificate

Leesburg, VA Mother’s Day Portrait Gift Certificate

Sweet sisters… love ’em.

I so enjoyed photographing these sweet sisters! My sister and I were just about the same age difference as these girls and it brought back great memories of being totally “goofy” with my sis way back when.  Great Falls National Park in Potomac, MD was the perfect portrait location too.

Family Portrait Session, Potomac, MD

Family Portrait Session, Potomac, MD

Photographing Ride-on Ranch

I so enjoyed photographing the lovely ladies who make great things happen at Ride-on Ranch, an equine assisted therapy non-profit located in beautiful Western Loudoun County.  Their mission is to provide therapy to as many people as possible with cognitive, physical and psychological disability by building social, physical and emotional skills through the use of therapeutic horse back riding and other equine=assisted activities.

Corporate Photography, Political Photography, PR Photography

Corporate Photography, Political Photography, PR PhotographyCorporate Photography, Political Photography, PR Photography

Sweet Siblings

These two cutie pies were such as blast to photograph…I just love capturing the love between sweet siblings.  They made each other laugh at the drop of a hat and showed each other such genuine affection.

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Family Portrait in Leesburg, VA

Family Portrait in Leesburg, VA