…always have a ton of fun at the beginning of the session – but as we get closer to the water and the waves become oh-so enticing it becomes a bit more difficult to keep their focus.  This little boy was no exception: he laughed, he touched mom’s belly, he rode on dad’s shoulders – but let’s be honest, those things can’t compete with the lure of getting soaking wet in the ocean!  Natalie came with me on this shoot as the baby wrangler, and half the time she spent just chasing this little boy down as he took off running towards the water!  My favorite photo is the second one in this gallery where the little boy is being squished between dad and mom’s belly.  He is just so joyous and loving it that you can’t help but smile when you look at his face. We captured these images at the Santa Monica Pier – one of my favorite spots for really colorful and vibrant images.

I think that some great tips can be learned by looking at this family’s outfits: I generally recommend that families should wear colors that are not found at the beach like pink, green, purple, etc. so that they pop against the background. I have found that navy blue is the exception to the rule – it does look really nice at the beach. Of course I know that many people have grown up with those traditional “everyone is wearing white at the beach” photos and aspire to have their own family photo like that…. which is fine…. I just find that color is such a valuable storytelling and mood-setting tool for us to use in a portrait. This mom’s lime green top is not a color that everyone can pull off – but I think that she really did. What I like about this family’s photos (and what I coach all of my clients to do when preparing for their photo session) is that they picked two colors total for their outfits, with the boys is different shades of navy blue, and then mom wore her bright pop of green with the blue and green skirt that tied in the boys’ outfits. This way there is a nice harmony to the color palate of the images, plus it looks like everyone got dressed together (as opposed to one person is in green, the other in blue and then the third person in white). Creating a subliminal harmony in an image so that your eye goes right to the people’s faces and looks at the relationships, emotion etc. is really key. If your eye is getting distracted by a red plaid t-shirt, it’s hard to focus on how cute the family looks!

The light at the Santa Monica pier beach is just so pretty, warm and glowing! It is the perfect place to capture your family or maternity photos!