Maui Beach Family Portraits

These guys.  They are such magic.  I feel so lucky that they found me, and that they hired me.  And then that they hired me again.  I love having a running illustration of how families grow up together.  Here's them, last year.

And here's them, this year!

Maui Beach Family Portraits



One Strong Mother...

My blog has been neglected lately.  But I'm happy to say that that's because I, myself, haven't been.  I've been working my booty off getting my divorce finalized, getting my house ready to go on the market, working a ton, taking care of kids... and taking care of... wait for it...  MYSELF.  I know... crazy right?  That's actually a priority now.  And I'm getting really good at it.

I learned a valuable lesson from self neglect.  You can say whatever you want to your kids about loving themselves, but they're going to do what they see.  And if you don't put yourself first and take proper care of yourself, physically and emotionally, there's a good chance they're going to mimic that pattern.  

So, to all those moms out there, I'd like to say...  "Screw Mothers Day!"  Be good to yourself EVERY DAY.  Your kids will be so much better for it.  And so will you.

Big love to all you mammas out there!



Boulder and Longmont... I'm coming for you!  March 22-29, 2018 I'm offering special rates on family shoots.  Check it out and get a further 10% off if you refer a friend and they book too!

Hope to see you there!  Click below to get details and book a spot before they're all gone!


$495 for up to a half hour of shooting
All edited files included

Oahu Family Photographer

Ya... so.... you guys... Jonathan freakin' Canlas hired me to shoot his family photos!!!  I'm still tripping.  I mean, people are people right... and I don't really care who you are as long as you're a good person... but this guy is like... the guru of film... super amazing photographer (I hired him for my family shoot last year)... super amazing business man... owner of my film lab... key to bringing film shooting back into the industry... and he's just unapologetically himself and that is one of my favorite qualities in a human.  

You know what else he is?  

Kind.  Heart of gold.  I feel so incredibly grateful to know him.  And for the opportunity to witness and capture him, his angel-eyed-wife and their six... that's right SIX... amazing kids.  They helped carry my bags.  They helped load film in my camera.  And they were totally okay with the fact that I couldn't keep track of who I'd photographed cause... ya... SIX kids.

They were all so sweet, and so fun, and I now have a photo of Jonathan Canlas pulling his nose hairs...

A little bit messy is real... and that's DEFINITELY where my sweet spot is.  
L  I  F  E   +   L  O  V  E   +   F  I  L  M

Family Photographer | Love These Peeps!

I feel like if I have one true gift, it's connecting with the best people.  I, honest to goodness, get the best clients.  I notice it.  My second shooters and assistants notice it.  I just luck out.  And I don't know how.

And I doubly luck out with repeat clients, who are also awesome people in my life.  People I get to see, and hang out with, and laugh with, on a daily basis.  Being able to document their families as they grow up is such a gift to me.  So grateful to be a family photographer.

Family Photographer

Interested in booking a family session with me?  Check out details on my Full Family Sessions and newly offered and more affordable Half Family Sessions...


I've been mulling this over for a while now.  I had some unbelievably epic mini sessions over this holiday season and found that I was able to deliver an insane number of solid images in a really short period of time.  So this got me thinking... do I really need a full hour to capture a family?  

And the truthful answer is yes... in the way that I truly want to capture families... yes... in the way that yields the level of work that you see on my instagram and website, yes.  In fact an hour is IDEAL.  Kids eyes start to glaze over at the hour mark, and I run out of film and ideas at that point, and the moments I'm able to capture in that time cover everything from the formal look and cheese that you want for your holiday cards, to the more meaningful and real moments that come with that comfort that sets in during the second half of a full hour session.

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HOWEVER.  I know not everyone can afford a full session with me.  And the families that I work with each year during family mini session season always blow my mind and leave me wondering what I'm missing out on the rest of the year.  

So I have this idea.  And it might not work... but I'm going to give it a whirl and see what happens.

I'm now offering HALF FAMILY SESSIONS.  

Pretty straight forward concept.  Half the shooting time, half the film, half the photos, half the price.  There are some restrictions though... 

1.  Limited to 5 or fewer people
2. Limited to 9am on select weekdays only
3. Limited to select, preset, upcountry locations

So, ya... limitations.  Cause something's gotta give in order to make this happen, and it can't be my sanity.  But I think this could actually work out pretty well.

So, if you're interested, I'd say book... like now.  Or... like soon.  Cause it could end up that I'm about to bite off way more than I can chew, so this could be short lived.

To view details, or book a session click here!

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In Home Photography | Maui Lifestyle Photographer

So there's all kinds of "style" terms in photography and so many of them are subjective and unclear.  One of those terms is "lifestyle photography".  Some people consider this a dark and moody editing style, some people consider it the location where you shoot, others consider it an approach to shooting itself, and LOTS of people use it that I personally don't think should.  I figure, since I use that term to describe my photography, I should be really clear what it means to me.

I want to capture "life".  Real life.  Real connections.  Photos that feel like how you live.  Photos that are memories.  And though I try really hard to create those types of photos wherever we are... the beach... a park... there's something next level about the photographs I take in peoples homes that makes me want to do more and more of it.  Easy to capture memories when you're in the place that most of your favorite memories are.

To me, lifestyle photography is an approach that I attempt to apply whether I'm in someones home, or on a beach, whether we've got lots of dreamy light or not much light to work with.  It's creating and capturing memories and having them look and feel as close to what they were in reality as possible.  

And I really, really want to do more of it in peoples homes.  And the following are just a couple snaps to show why...


Little Kisses | Maui Lifestyle Photographer

I attended another Yan Fam Way Workshop... pretty much the only photography workshop I'll attend (aside from Film School with Jonathan Canlas which I'm dying to go to for any of you looking to get me a belated birthday gift! ;) )  

Here's what I learned:

1.  Baby pigs are my kryptonite.  This was a gorgeous mamma, super hot dad, totally beautiful and rad, super friendly kids, at a gorgeous home, with the perfect kind of love filled chaos that is my favorite.  And instead of photographing them for every glorious moment, I sat and snuggled one of their tiny baby pigs.  For like an hour and a half.  I only shot like 2 rolls (and like three of those shots were of the baby pig).  So now I can add "baby pigs" right next to "cocktails" as "things that shouldn't be handed to me if you want photos".  

2.  I WANNA PHOTOGRAPH FAMILIES IN THEIR HOMES YOU GUYS!  I keep getting these rare opportunities to shoot families in their houses and it's rocking my world.  I want to photograph the guts of peoples lives... and that's so naturally present when people are in their own space.  But how the heck do you do that when most of your clients are people who've travelled to Maui, aren't anywhere near their homes and kinda want the beauty of Maui as their backdrop?  Ya... good question.  Haven't quite figured that out yet... but maybe that just means I need more Maui families to hire me??!!  Or maybe more families need to fly me to their homes??!! HINT HINT.  

3.  Gratitude is key.  Listening to this family's story was both heartbreaking and heart lifting.  And something this mamma said that she does to help her get by is by recognizing "little kisses from God"; the blessings, the smallest of things that go right even when so much feels it's going wrong.  This family makes an effort to keep their focus on the positive and appreciate all the little kisses along the way.  And there were plenty of little kisses going on... and they weren't just from the pig... ;)

So stay positive.  Focus on the good.  And if you live on Maui and are interested in having life's little moments artfully captured in photos, BOOK ME!  I really, really wanna!!

Maui Family Photographer

This family hadn't done family photos in many, many years.  With one of their daughters heading off to college in the fall, they decided it was finally time.  

I love it when you can feel the love that families have for each other in the photos.  Every frame with these four was so filled with laughter and play and love.  Must.Share.

Maui Family Photographer

Maui Maternity Photographer

A few of my recent family shoots have given me the opportunity to shoot inside, either at the clients home, or their condo/hotel room prior to moving on to the beach, and I have to say I am SUPER digging on this.  It gives such a real feeling to everything.  Most people that come to Maui and hire me are wanting photos that showcase the beauty of Maui.  This process of starting in home (or hotel, or condo) first presents some unique opportunities.  

Firstly, it sets the tone that the shoot is no big deal for kids.  If it starts mellow, it stays mellow.  And mellow, unstressed kids equal happy kids (most of the time).  And I think starting on their turf, helps kids to let me in to their world a bit quicker.  (this also seems to apply to husbands)

Secondly, it creates a real feeling in photos.  My favorite photos of me and my kids are much less of me sitting at the beach with them all dressed up, and more of me carrying my kid through our hallway to their room, or tossing them playfully on to laundry couch (a fixture in our home since 2010 because I don't like, and can't ever seem to keep up with, folding the laundry).  They are more of us just being us.  So with a start at home, we get those moments that mirror every day life, and then we head over to the beach and get the ones you want for your holiday cards.  It's kind of a best of both worlds deal.

This Maui Maternity session was exactly that.  We hung and out played for a bit at the house, and then played at the beach.  It was super mellow.  It was simply playtime... for the kids (and for me).

These photos feel like my childhood summers in Cape Cod.  We would spend, literally, all day at the beach... come home salty and sun burnt... and when we peeled off our suits, it revealed a pattern of plastered-on seaweed that had clung to our skin in the shape of our bathing suits.  We would have jellyfish wars... throwing the gelatinous blobs at each other (makes me feel bad now... and also super grossed out).  We didn't know at those times that we were making permanent memories.  It was just the simple every day for us.  But those are where most solid memories are formed.  In the simple every day of playing with our siblings, and hanging at the beach getting sand in our butt crack.  Having the opportunity to document the simple every day, feels like such an honor.  And the thought that I was possibly able to give a tangible voice to those lasting memories for this family makes me feel like I've done something really worth while.

Maui Maternity Photographer

Photography Giveaway | Honoring Single Moms

All moms are amazing.  It's the hardest job ever.  Legit.  So all us mom's need to give ourselves a big pat on the back for getting in done.  But there's a specific group of moms that I feel have it harder than most... single moms.  I know this, because I was one.  And though I'm not one anymore, I look back on that period of my life and often question how the hell I did it.  How I made it work.  Because being a mom is hard enough... but doing it on your own?  CRAZY hard.

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So this Mother's Day, I want to honor single mammas.  Because:

1.  That shit is hard
2.  Single mom's rarely have it in their budget to do ANYTHING extra, and when they do, they always get for their kids... so a luxury item like a photo shoot is rarely something they splurge for
3.  Single mom's are such a huge fixture in the lives of their kids, sometimes the only one, and yet there's often not a lot of photos with these mom's with their kids, or a documenting of their lives together... and this feels like such an important thing missed for mom's and their kids.


So I'm doing a giveaway of one Family Shoot to a single mamma and her kiddos.  The winner will be announced this Mothers Day (Sunday, May 14, 2017).


How to Enter:

1.  Enter a comment below with the mom's name and why you're nominating them.  
2. Send an email to with the mom's name and their email address. (so I can contact them if they're the winner). 

That's it.  I'll then pick at random on Mother's Day and announce the winner on the blog.



Can you nominate yourself?  Hells to the yes!  In fact I think you should.  Ain't no shame in actually doing something for yourself for once right!

Only real rules are are:

1.  Have to be a single mom to be nominated or to nominate yourself
2. Have to be on Maui in Upcountry, North Shore, South Shore or West Side.  (sorry Hana mammas... I can't drive to Hana on my own because I'm a fraidy cat...)
3. Have to enter with a comment and an email.
4. Have to make use of the shoot within the next 6 months

So if you know a mom who works her booty off for her kids and who would love to win a free photo shoot with her kids, enter her to win!!

Maui Family Photographer




Maui Family Photos | Beach Session

Okay, okay.  I have this thing with the beach.  I kinda don't like shooting at it.  Ya... I know... way to live in a place where everyone, rightfully, wants beach photos.  But my past few sessions at the beach have rekindled my love affair with getting sand in my pants (remind me to tell you about that time I got stopped at airport security for that very reason).

I love the energy of these Maui family beach photos so much, that it's actually been driving me crazy to not share it.  And it's only been like a week since I got the scans.  

Happy to share a few favorites from this Maui Family Beach Session.

Cameras: Contax 645 and Nikon F5
Film: Portra 160
Developing and Scanning: The Find Lab

Magnus 4 Life

So I'll tell you a story.  This one year, I had this thing where I'd accidentally start calling all my grooms "Alvin" mid wedding.  I don't know why.  I knew their names (and likely had them written on my wrist... photographer secrets 101).  But for some reason, I'd just start calling them Alvin and then be like... did I just call you Alvin?  And they'd be like... um... ya.  I've only had one groom named Alvin... apparently he must have left an impression on me?!  

But you know what's funny?  I hired Jonathan Canlas to come and shoot my family photos this past year, and he DID THE EXACT SAME THING!  For some reason, halfway through the shoot, he started calling my husband Magnus.  And it cracked me up so hard because 1. I'm not the only one who does this and 2.  FREAKING MAGNUS!!  We are always coming up with new nicknames in our household.  Mine has been "Porkball" for freaking 15 years (awesome).  But husband's has morphed throughout the years from Boobejaan (baboon in Afrikaans), to Gavilina, to Mr. Tight Pants (he's a long distance cyclist... hello spandex) to a myriad of others that probably aren't appropriate to share on a professional blog ;).  

Well now, he's Magnus.  Forever.

The OTHER funny thing that happened was that Jonathan Canlas was able to get my husband to take his shirt off for the last part of our shoot, which resulted in some stellar photos of the hubs in all his shirtless glory.  Photos that ended up being shared on his instagram account followed by the hashtag #magnus4life.

So I am now engaged in an epic instagram battle of the shirtless dudes.  So when I got to see one of my first wedding couples EVER again this December, along with their family, I was like... um... I have this thing with a dude named magnus and partial nudity... are you game?

Well, the ball is in your court Mr. Canlas...  Magnus4Life

Disclaimer: no one was called Alvin in the making of these photos



Puppy Love

Every new fur baby family should do a family shoot.  Because fur babies grow even faster than regular babies.

I have a super soft place in my heart for animals.  And Frenchies, specifically, seem to take a big part of that (right next to the pig and rescue dog).  

This, here, is Tater Tot.  And she will still steal your heart...

(and if you're looking for a Frenchie in Hawaii, check out The Perfect Creations.)

Full of Grace

Maui Family Photographer

When you get to shoot a dear friend and her kids end up BLOWING YOUR MIND.  The key to having a great family photo shoot, parents, is not to care... not to stress (this, from the person who shows up to her yearly photo shoots with at least 2 people in tears every time).  I get it.  Believe me.  Just getting them to wear something that isn't stained or ripped is like... a battle.  And then getting them to the shoot, without staining or ripping what you finally got them in... a bloody miracle.  

What I've learned is that the bigger of a deal we make it, the more pressure the kids feel.  And that's when kids, or husbands, or moms implode (one of the two people in tears at my shoots is always me).  So just know, a really good photographer will get good shots... even if the kid is screaming and crying seemingly the entire time (true story... I believe the parents exact words were "how the f^&* did you get those photos with what was going on?!").  All you need is 1/160th of a second.  

But this right here... this shoot had no tears... and no imploding.  And everyone was into it (most of the time).  And the light was AMAZING.  And I was smiling so big as these scans came in.  And I'm smiling pretty big now as I share some of my favorite shots from this Maui Family Photo Shoot.


Interested in booking a family session with me?  DO IT!  Email me at and let's make it happen!

Camera: Contax 645
Film: Fuji 400h
Developing and Scanning: The Find Lab

Return of the MAGIC Family

Maui Family Photographer

When we work together on a family session, be prepared to have stupid amounts of fun.  And to be totally comfortable being yourself.  I want you to so much fun, that you'll want to do it again... specifically with me.  Cause I love repeat clients... especially the MAGIC family.  I can't explain it, but they show up, I give very little direction, they just play and have fun.  And it is just pure magic...

This was a family mini session, which I do limited numbers of during the holidays; shorter session / cheaper price.  

There's still time to get yours done if you're interested.

Film Stock: Fuji 400h
Camera: Contax 645
Development and Scanning: The Find Lab