Ahhh… sweet new life. There is just nothing more amazing, precious, and life giving, as the birth of a baby. And those first few precious days can be a haze. It is absolute euphoria of bring this amazing miracle into your life. They will never be quite that small again. These are moments that go by in a flash that you never want to forget.Those tiny fingers, that soft newborn hair, those little lips.
While I love the posed newborn photos of a traditional newborn session, the candid lifestyle feel of this type of natural photography are what tug on my heart strings. Real life. Raw moments. Being a part of watching a family grow.
I went to visit sweet Veda just one day after she was born at the Outer Banks Hospital in Nags Head NC. It was a last minute idea, so we didn’t capture her two older siblings in this particular photo session, but we were able to photograph a few details of her first day of life with her gorgeous mama. That sweet newborn smell and those cuddles… it’s enough to give you baby fever. Isn’t Veda absolutely gorgeous!?
While a birth session may not be for everyone, a Fresh 48 session can still capture so many amazing moments without having the intimacy of birth documented.
Fresh 48 takes place within 48 hours after baby is born and typically in the hospital. It’s lifestyle, natural and a great way to include siblings and other family members getting to know the new baby.
These special hospital (or home birth) newborn sessions are now one of my all time favorite things to photograph. Bring on all the babies!
In the heart of winter, I am thinking back on photo sessions from the past year (and my lack of blogging them)… and one of the first was an early Spring wedding at an oceanfront beach house Nags Head NC. It ended up being very chilly and so incredibly windy that the the ocean waves crashed so far in that there was hardly a beach to stand on at all. There was a threat of rain and so with that and the blustery weather, Nick and Nicky decided to get married right on the oceanfront deck of their Nags Head beach house rental. They took the weather in stride though and the excitement was contagious. I think it really says something about a relationship and a person’s character when you are able to let something like inclement weather just slide off your back. The couples main focus was vowing a life together along with a newly formed family… just as it should be. Although it was windy (a typical Outer Banks experience) the rain held off and it was a beautiful wedding.
Nick and Nicky were so obviously in love and the groom was overcome with emotion just before the ceremony. He had happy tears in anticipation of spending the rest of his life with his lovely bride. And capturing emotion? That makes for a very happy photographer.
Nick has a bit of a traditionalist in him and didn’t want to see his bride before the wedding, so the couple opted for a “first touch” as opposed to a “first look.” It was touching to document them sharing an intimate moment while holding hands around the corner of the beach house. Nick was misty eyed again and you could just tell the depth of his love for his bride.
After the ceremony it started to sprinkle rain and we took some quick portraits of the couple on the beach. I’m glad we were able to get a few images of them in front of the gorgeous ocean! I think that the ocean is beautiful on any given day…it just has different moods. I’m honored that I was able to be part of such a special day. Congrats to Nick and Nicky! (soon to be happy 1st anniversary!)
The bride left this review on my facebook page: “You are amazing, our photos are gorgeous!! thanks for making our day memorable!! ”
Thanks for the glowing review Nicky! Hope to see you and your beautiful family when you are on your next vacation in the Outer Banks of North Carolina!
Well, there is no denying it, I did not keep up with any kind of blogging for the past year. I always have the best of intentions..but many of you know how it goes when you are trying to keep up with two young kids and being a girl boss at the same time. While I still intend to go back and blog a few favorite sessions from the past year, I figured I’d pick a “few” highlights of the year. Of course, going through all of my sessions and picking out the top ones is like telling someone to choose their favorite child. Pretty impossible to do..so I just went for it and still left plenty out of the mix. I’m already having regret to leave out so many. I might have to do a “best of” personal photography blog next. I thought this first image was good for a “looking back” post. It’s a favorite local family’s kids looking out to the ocean. Looking back or looking forward? I think it works both ways.
In the past year I have photographed numerous families, a business, and a few weddings ranging all over the Outer Banks of North Carolina the way from Corolla, Duck, Southern shores, Kitty Hawk, Nags Head Woods, and the beaches Nags Head NC. I even had one destination photo shoot up in the historic battlefields of Manassas Virginia at the very end of year. I am always willing to travel to more exotic destinations like Hawaii (hint hint). Heck, I’d even take Charlottesville, VA. I was also highly honored this year being named “Best of the Beach” for 2016 in the Outer Banks of NC. https://outerbanksvoice.com/2016/11/04/and-now-the-winners-of-2016s-best-of-the-beach-polling/ Thank you to all who voted and have supported me through out the years..I cannot tell you what it means to me!
Without further ado – here are some of my favorites from 2016. You will recognize many photographs if you follow studio nassetta on facebook..but there are a few that you probably have not seen. I have noticed that many of my favorites involve sweet little girls. Maybe that’s because I’m always photographing my own two crazy little boys and it’s so much fun to have a change of pace and capture a girl and her tutu! I also noticed that many of my favorites happen to be black and white. Usually I tend to edit photos in black and white to highlight the expression in the photo and let it stand on it’s own without distraction. It’s a personal artistic preference..but I just love a good black and white photograph. Unless it’s a gorgeous pink tutu with a flower crown. Then it’s color all the way…
What are your favorites? I’d love to know!
All images shot with my trusty Canon 5D Mark III. Also a new addition to the studio nasetta family this year!
It’s that time of year again. Another set of high school seniors will be graduating. One of my own nieces will also graduate this year in Northern Virginia (I have 13 nieces and nephews along with a great nephew and two great nieces….so there are a few)! My own little man will “graduate” from preschool this May of 2016. (pass the Kleenex!) It’s a time of transition, a time of change, of exciting opportunities and endless possibility. It’s the perfect time to capture some images before all of the big changes that lie ahead. Senior photo sessions have been popular for several years now and I think it’s a great tradition. Personally, my senior school head shot with a splattered paint shirt is not exactly a flattering memory. Nothing could have been flattering with that sun-in streaked hair and late 80’s style..but natural light photos with a professional photographer might have helped. But I digress. 😉
This photo session is a throw back to the class of 2014. This is Kelsey and she is the daughter of a girl who went to high school with ME! I chose this session because it just feels like it pulls it full circle when you are photographing your high school classmate’s kids!
We started of at Nags Head FIshing Pier and captured a few images there and then headed down to Coquina Beach (across from the Bodie Island Lighthouse) to get some gorgeous beach shots. Kelsey was so great to work with and was up for anything. Some of my favorite photos are when she got in the surf for some fun ocean shots. Luckily she came with a change of clothes. 😉 Kelsey rocked her photo session like a model and I’m sure she is killin’ it a CU!
Had to capture one image of mom and daughter at the very end of the session Beauty runs deep in this family!This image below is the front side of a graduation announcement that I designed for Kelsey. I’m also a graphic designer, so it’s fun to incorporate my photography and design skills to come up with press printed products.Hope to see you back in the OBX soon…
As a photographer in the Outer Banks, I love capturing the love between families. But I especially love photographing children and the spontaneity of emotion that they bring to the table. Sometimes it’s a bit terrifying..but it’s exhilarating too. Genuine. Honest. Free spirited. Raw. Little ones are nothing if not that. So when I saw a pic of a friend’s son (a local boy from Kill Devil Hills NC) in his amazing Halloween costume late last year, I was inspired to take images of him in a little fantasy dress up photo shoot. It was fun to have complete creative control and set up – with this fun “Where the Wild Things Are” styled shoot for Turner near his 2nd birthday! This first photo below was recently entered on a whim to a photo contest for Shoot and Share. This particular image came in better than the TOP 1% of children and toddler photos – and as a personal project is a favorite of mine as well.
Maurice Sendak is a favorite illustrator of mine and I’ve always had a special fondness for the children’s book Where the Wild Things Are. In fact, back when I went back to school for graphic design, one of my award winning 3D art projects was called Max meets Magritte. It combines a surrealist painting of Margritte and incorporates it with the illustrations of the children’s story. Must be a lucky book for me.
“that very night in max’s room a forest grew.
…and grew… and grew until his ceiling hung with vines… and the walls became the world all around”
Turner’s big sister Lily also got in a little of the action too.This giant number balloon (above, right), was provided by The Flower Field in Kitty Hawk. It was his 2nd birthday after all…so we wanted to get one shot to celebrate that fact. Turner’s mom works with the Flower Field..and it happens to be a great place to pick up an amazing arrangement or a flower crown for a special photo shoot (hint hint!).All of these images are back in the Nags Head Woods Nature preserve. This little bridge seemed like a fun backdrop for the kids to play..and dance! Hugs from brother “Max.”
“And Max the king of all wild things was lonely and wanted to be where
Sometimes I get so busy as mom (also Princess Leia or Rey around these Star Wars obsessed parts) that I forget to take out the camera for everyday moments. Truly, those are the memories I want to keep. Elias jumping on our bed in the morning…and writing me notes and drawing pictures that say “for mom” several times a day. My 7 year old Noah in his imaginary world – shooting missiles at the bad guys (and not listening to mom). Snuggling in their pjs reading stories (with me and to each other). But we are busy living life (as it should be) and miss capturing some of these moments. Whether you capture a simple video on your iphone or grab your point and shoot for few images…don’t forget to take a few photos so that you can look back and remember when they were this little. My goal is to capture more of these everyday moments that are not posed but just real life. I want to start getting in the photo more myself as well..but that is another post for another time about self timers and shutter release cables and getting in the photo even when you are having a bad hair day. One step at a time.
Yesterday I lived in the moment but still managed to grab my camera and 50mm lens for a few shots of decorating Easter eggs…and even got a chance to dye 3 of them myself. Final touches to be done at Grandma’s house in Northern VA this weekend – so the Easter bunny can use them to hide for the boys. Happy Easter Blessings to you and your family..and be sure to enjoy those everyday messy moments!
Elias was very patient this year (one day away from 5 years old!) and waited until the eggs got super dark! waiting… Oh…and Elias’ birthday is today…so super close to Easter this year. I made these cute Easter peep cupcakes for his preschool class!
The community of locals on the Outer Banks of NC has truly a small town feel with amazing folks. I moved down to Nags Head NC ten years ago and one of the first true friendships I developed was this amazing gorgeous woman, Patty McKenna. We met for the first time at a small book club group that met one evening at the Outer Banks Brewing Station in Kill Devil Hills. Sometimes when you meet someone for the first time you just click without even having had much of a conversation at all..and that is the way it was for me and Patty (at least on my end!). Without even knowing each other well, she was courageous enough to join me on an all girls surf camp trip tin Mal Pais, Costa Rica. We went on what was a big birthday trip for me to a surf camp called Pura Vida Adventures ~ Costa Rica Surf & Yoga Retreats. www.PuraVidaAdventures.com It was an amazing experience to say the least. Back then Patty wasn’t a yoga instructor and I didn’t have kids. A lot has changed since that trip. I now have two crazy and adorable boys (who I prayed for on that trip) and have started my own photography business, and Patty, among other things, is now an amazing kite-boarder and is now a certified yoga instructor. While she teaches classes at other local Yoga studios in the Outer Banks, she is starting her new venture Yoga To You OBX. Whether on the beach, by the pool, in the great room, at the park. Any size group.
So, to help get her get up and running yogatoyouobx.com (site coming soon), we took advantage of the unseasonably warm evening in March and got some photos to put up on her website. Here are a few of the images that we took up in Southern Shores the other evening at sunset. Thanks to friends and family who came out to support! If you are looking for an amazing instructor with plenty of laid back fun…check out Patty and book her for a session. You won’t regret it!
I admit it, big family groups used to make me a little nervous. The thought of coordinating everyone at the same time including the littlest of the bunch into one photo where no one is closing there eyes, sneezing, hitting their brother..etc… was an overwhelming task. But the reality is, while it take s a bit longer to set up the big extended family shot, it really usually comes together fairly seamlessly and then there is the good old fashion head-swap in Photoshop if we are really desperate. And the reality is family groups are really just a few smaller families bunched up together…and showing the intimate relationship between family members is my favorite thing to take photos of.
This family was referred to me by a local friend and it could not have been a nicer group of people. Sometimes you come across a family who’s story resonates with you even before you meet in person..and this was such a group. When you connect with with a family and share intimate details during emails before the photo session it can make the photo shoot all the more meaningful. Sometimes it’s a family member with a terminal illness, or a mother’s birthday, or an anniversary of sorts. Often it’s just a rare family reunion where everyone can get together for one big shot. When I connect with a family I am better able to tell their story through photographs. All I know is that I connected with this family in a special way and I wish we could hang out as friends. I think if a few of them lived closer perhaps we would. I like to think so anyways.
These images were taken this past September at Coquina Beach in Nags Head, NC. They are special to me and I hope the family cherishes them for years to come.
I have two young boys. I’ve had a family photo session for my own family. Of course I take photos of my own kids. I know what it’s like when your little one isn’t happy or cooperating when you desperately want them to. Toddlers are unpredictable, on their own timetable and not easily manipulated into a fake smile. Honestly, a fake smile is not really what I strive for anyways. And that’s what I love about little children anyways… the genuine response, the real moment they give you. I have a few tricks up my sleeve to coax a genuine happy face or emotion out of a child though – so I’ve never had a photo session with an out of sorts kid that didn’t end up with some truly joyous images in the end. Usually it surprises my client to no end when they receive their gallery. “He or she was so cranky… how the heck did you get these photos?” is usually close to the response.
This little man was 6 months old and our sunset photo session on the beaches of Corolla was right when he was supposed to be in bed for the night. He was not a happy camper. Still, we managed to capture the essence of this sweet young family and even a few happy smiles for the camera. The best thing about this is that now they have images that speak to who they were as a family at that time… and life is not all about posed shots and fake smiles. Real life is about connection, about snuggles with mama when you are feeling sleepy and out of sorts, it is raw, messy, joyous, and always uniquely you.
The biggest blessing was when I received this review after delivering the images…it couldn’t make my heart any happier than knowing I’ve truly captured the essence of a family on “film” and that a client will treasure their images forever!
from the Dad: “Lauren was incredible for our family shoot! Our six-month old was none too pleased to be up so late trying to take pictures, but Lauren was calm, cool and collected as she adapted to the circumstances and worked with our fussy baby. And, at the end of it all, she produced some incredible images that have so much life and character, and you wouldn’t even know the uphill struggle of the shoot! If you’re in the OBX and looking for some great photos, we would definitely recommend her!”
xoxo – Lauren
If you want to book your own family photo session in the Outer Banks of NC, please email me at email@example.com
After moving to Nags Head NC, a few years later in 2008 I was pregnant with my first child. After a long journey of thinking I many never have children, Noah Ryder was a miracle anticipated with a special joy … Continue reading →