Let's Talk TICKS {insert itching} | Batavia, N.Y. Family Photographer


As you all know I love me some unpolished foliage. Give me a field full of overgrown beautifulness and I am happy as a clam! Unfortunately, that also comes at a price. Winter is generally “off-season” for family photographers in Western, N.Y. simply because it just becomes too challenging to keep the little ones happy in the colder temps, so that means that everyone who is looking to update their family photos are typically having them done between the months of March and, at the latest, November. As you all know ticks are basically demons that live earth side and can cause some serious health issues. It is, as a mother and family photographer, incredibly important to me that I do everything in my power to protect the families who entrust me with the safety of their precious littles, and so I have decided to compile a list of things to do before and after your family photo session with your Batavia, N.Y. family photographer in attempts to prevent tick bites.


-Treat the clothing you will be wearing for your session with a repellant containing Permethrin. This product is typically good for up to 7 washes.

-(From the CDC website) Use Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)-registered insect repellentsExternal containing DEET, picaridin, IR3535, Oil of Lemon Eucalyptus (OLE), para-menthane-diol (PMD), or 2-undecanone.

  • Do not use insect repellent on babies younger than 2 months old.

  • Do not use products containing OLE or PMD on children under 3 years old.


-Take a lint roller (sticky kind) and run in all over yourself and your child(ren).

-Change your clothing asap!

-While I do suggest a constant check during your session, it is incredibly important to do a full body check right after your session. This means both yourself and your child(ren). In addition to the main areas of your body, be sure to check under your arms, in your hair, private region, and belly button. I would also suggest showering up to 2 hours post session as to remove any unattached ticks and to run your body check.

Also note: The transmission of Lyme Disease only occurs if the tick has been attached for 36-48 hours, so it is paramount you do an immediate check to prevent the spread of Lyme disease.

Now that I am all itchy just thinking about this, I hope that this post offers some valuable information for you and your family before, during, and after your next outdoor family photo session.

Why Your Batavia, N.Y. Family Photographer is so NOSEY!

Hilchey Family - Oakfield, N.Y. Family Portrait Session

Western NY Family Photographer

Many of times I get inquiries for sessions that look like this-

“Hi there! How much for a session?”

Listen! I’m not “Portrait Innovations” or “The Picture People”. One price does not fit all. There are many elements involved to decide what price your specific session would be. When you book with me you are booking a CUSTOM portrait experience. Now, what does that mean exactly?

Well, for starters I am not selling you this pose and that setup. I am creating images that are unique to you and your family. That includes, but is not limited to, clothing, location, “props”, desired images, etc…. You will find that when booking with me I ask A LOT of questions. Not just before booking but even during the planning process. Even more-so if I’ve never met you before. Every family has different needs and expectations for their session. That said, not everyone knows what to expect from a session. It is my job to educate you on what experience I offer and vice versa- to find out what experience you are looking for. I don’t do in-person, pre-consultations and so it is very important for me, and I hope my clients value this part of my service as well, that I learn as much about your family as I can so that I can capture genuine and unique images that tell your story. Simply put, it’s like commissioning an artist or even an interior designer. It’s important that you are specific about what you are looking for so that they can see your vision and produce the product.

This photo is a great example- Had mom never mentioned that her husband wanted a photo done at his fire department, I would have never thought to incorporate it into their session. As the daughter of a service woman (veteran/EMT), I know the impact that images like this can have. God forbid anything were to happen to him during a call they now have this photo to remember his dedication to the department and to the community.

So, if you book a family photo session with your Batavia, NY Family Photographer, aka- ME, please be extra transparent with your specific needs/wants. These images are special, but let’s make them a little extra special just for you!

Why Your Color Photograph Doesn't Look as good in B&W | Batavia NY Family Photographer

Do you love Black & White photographs?

I know I do! There are times when I get special requests to convert a color photo to black and white. You see, when I edit my photos, I give every family their gallery in all color edits with the exception of a few that I will convert to Black & White, but only if I think the photo can handle the conversion. So, because of the way I edit and the requests I’ve received, I decided to do a little write up about my “why” I don’t convert all of my images to Black & White.

To start, we need to define Dynamic Range- Dynamic Range has to do with, but is not limited to, the light being captured in a photograph. Simply put, an image created with a lot of light and a lot of shadow would be considered an image with a great deal of dynamic range (high contrast). These types of images covert to Black & White beautifully!

If you look below I have shown 2 examples. One has great dynamic range while the other, even though it’s a great shot, is 1000% better in color!

With that said, I will do a Black & White conversion if requested but, if you truly love Black & Whites and want them in your gallery, please let your photographer know this before your family portrait session. This way they can be fully prepared to photograph your family for the Black & White conversion.

Black & Whites are created in camera with the light and the location.

Oh Baby Boutique | Oakfield, NY Photographer

I had the opportunity to have first eyes on an adorable little shop located in downtown Oakfield, NY. I had a wonderful time chatting with the store owner about her goals for this little shop. You see, the store owner is affiliated with Project Stork and 100% of the profits will return to Project Stork. If you are unfamiliar with Project Stork,

“Project Stork Inc. is a 501(c)3 non-profit corporation. We provide guidance, support, and resources for pregnant and/or parenting teenagers without judgement. We believe that investing in teen pregnancy prevention and services for young parents supports the development of healthy families and strengthens our surrounding communities.

The formation of Project Stork Inc. is in response to Orleans and Genesee Counties disproportionately high teenage pregnancy rates. Our corporation helps teens (ages 15-21) navigate and balance pregnancy, parenting, education, and independence. Teenage parents need an avenue to empower themselves to succeed for both parent and child. Our programs encompass every phase with assistance, resources, initiatives, and support.

Project Stork Inc. is also very invested in preventing and delaying teen pregnancies and/or subsequent births. Our NYS Certified Health Educator, covers lessons on abstinence, ways to avoid and/or reduce risky sexual behaviors in order to prevent pregnancy, HIV/AIDS, and STDs/STIs; as well as how to develop and maintain healthy relationships. Our goal is to empower young people to make healthy decisions about relationships, sex, and life.”

This little shop offers a blend of new and old. They carry Infant, toddler, Preschool, and Maternity clothing. Over 1,000 excellent, pre-loved, name brand clothing items and 200+ boutique items, of trendy new fashions too! In addition to clothing items, they also have baby gear, manipulative toys, just plain cute stuff, maternity items, mom groups, toddler story time, and prenatal classes.

Every Tuesday at 11:30 am and 6:30 pm she will hold FREE mini classes in the areas to meet moms and shop 10% off, Toddler Story Time, Breast feeding Q & A, and Newborn Care. If you would like to attend these events, please follow them on their Facebook Page to pre-register.

In addition, her boutique is breastfeeding friendly, and includes a space for moms to feed and/or pump. Oh Baby Boutique is the FIRST recognized breastfeeding friendly shop in Genesee County, through the Orleans and Genesee Breastfeeding Coalition. They also provide a changing area for babies to be cleaned up, fully stocked with diapers and wipes. A small activity table is loaded to keep your little one engaged and entertained while you chat and shop!

Have a look below to have a little sneak peak before her grand opening on April, 16th from 12pm-8pm!!!

Marie Bohn is a family and baby photographer based in Batavia, N.Y. providing a custom portrait experience to families from Buffalo, N.Y. to Rochester, N.Y. and surrounding areas.

My Job is not Important......or is it? | Batavia, N.Y. Family Photographer

I love being a family photographer, but I always wanted to do something that made a difference in this world. Someone that helped people. Those jobs, to me, present themselves in the service form; military, nurse, doctor, social worker, etc. I began to ponder about my position as a family photographer, and I started to think long and hard about how my job might help others. You see, the other day I was chatting with a mom about their family photo session and in her client questionnaire I notice she mentioned that her husband is a firefighter. I told her about my family members who also volunteered and that I could relate to that anxious feeling when your loved one heads out with no promises of returning. It was then that a light bulb went off. I DO help people. Being a family photographer DOES make a difference in this world!

  • Where do you turn to when you’re feeling a little sad about your children growing up so fast?


  • How about when you lose a loved one?


  • The loss of a family pet?


“We take photos as a return ticket to a moment otherwise gone.” -Katie Thurme

As your Batavia, N.Y. Family photographer I document special moments in your lives for you to cherish and to reminisce over for years to come; family photos, maternity photos, newborn photos or birthday celebrations.

True story- I was given a photo of a baby a few years back. I didn’t know this baby nor did we know his mom or dad. This photo was given to me by a family member whom we are friends with. They gave us that photo to hang on our refrigerator to serve as a reminder to offer daily thoughts and prayers. This baby was born with a heart defect if I’m remembering correctly. He had undergone multiple surgeries to ensure his survival in this world. Unfortunately, at about 6ish months, he underwent his final surgery; it was fatal. Should that baby have survived, he would be the same age as my youngest son (age 3). I STILL have that photo! I can’t bring myself to toss a photo of a sweet little baby I never knew but thought about daily. Photos are incredibly powerful and I’m so glad I get to be the one to put them on your walls and in your photo albums!

This Baby Shower was ON POINT! | Rochester Ny Family & Event Photographer

Tyshala’s Baby Shower

I walked into this baby shower and the first words I uttered were, “it looks like a wedding reception!” I mean, what a way to celebrate a sweet, little baby’s pending arrival. The decor was elegant and tasteful, and we won’t even mention “the bling”! Ashley Gray from Kaleidoscope Events is top notch when it comes to planning your special day. From baby showers to weddings, she’s your girl! The way she transformed this space from drab to fab is inspiring. The Lodge at Martin Luther King Jr. Park in Rochester, N.Y. is a fairly large space to house your special event. However, it does need some love to really bring the space alive, and Ashley did just that! Have a look at the before and after.

That Tree has a Story to Tell | Batavia NY Family Photographer

Bohn Family Christmas

Batavia NY Photographer

Do you see that tree right there? That tree has a story to tell.

That tree saw my husband and me through our 1st Christmas in TN. Our apartment was just under 500 sq ft so an actual Christmas tree was just not going to work, but the apartment had a cute wood burning fireplace so that was a total perk! Plus, we were dirt poor so there were no plans of any big expensive gifts going under it anyways. Year after year, this little tree has been tucked into a storage bin and pulled out again, and each time it requires a little bit of love to get it looking presentable. The branches are always twisted and bent. The base has since been lost and broken. It even tips to one side a little, but I sort of like that. Not only was this our 1st tree, this tree was also there when all of our children had their first Christmas’ as well. This little tree has seen us through 5 moves, and one of those moves was a loooooong 13 hour trip from TN to NY. But you know what is so great about this tree? It stands tall every Christmas ready to take on the season. I have never changed the lightbulbs, nor have they given me a hard time to shine oh so bright!

You might wonder why I decided to tell you about our little tree that (I think) we paid $15 dollars for 10+ years ago? Well, I was pulling all the Christmas decorations out of the basement just like years prior. First, I pull everything out of the box and start to plan my decor for the new season. It typically starts out as organized chaos (or so I’d like to think). Then I begin to get a plan together, and I move things around about 40 times until it feels right. I step back to take a look, and usually by this point I’m moving furniture around because why not?!

Well, this year I did just that! I finally got everything situated in my living room and now it was time to work on the staircase. I knew my little tree would go in this spot just as it does every year. I went to my bins and pulled out the bag in which this tree was stored in. It was still decorated from last year which never happens, but last year was not the same as years prior. Actually, this tree had another job to do last year. This tree did not spend it’s season in my hallway last year. Actually, this tree spent 2017 Christmas in the Genesee County Nursing Home. My mother-in-law fell ill in the weeks leading up to Christmas. We weren’t actually sure if she would even pull through. We knew that she would need a miracle. I missed seeing her buzz around the kitchen baking cookies and prepping for their annual Christmas Eve Party. Waking up and opening gifts together. Listening to my in-laws bicker at each other while they prepped Christmas dinner. I just knew we had to find a way to bring Christmas to her! My husband was on his way to go and visit her when I decided to pluck the tree from its station, I bagged it up, and sent it with him to place it near her bedside. The next day I had the opportunity to go and visit her. I walked into the dark, sad room. Unaware of what I was going to experience, and while my mother-in-law was incapacitated, that tree stood tall and filled the room with it’s warm glow. The days and weeks went by and everyday she became stronger and more alert. The staff was baffled by her recovery! She eventually was well enough to return home to finish up her healing.

Fast forward to one year later {12/18}- I pulled this tree out just as I did years past, but this year this tree holds a new meaning for me; hope! It honestly didn’t even dawn on me until I started to dress the tree. It started out in a box sitting on a shelf somewhere with no story and no life. Just a price tag and hope that it would go home with someone that holiday season. I love to see things go full circle. What’s even more crazy…..this little boy celebrated his 2nd birthday in that very nursing home room with that little tree.

It’s things like these that get me excited to photograph families! Every family has their own story. Their own experiences. Do you have any holiday decor that has a special meaning? If so, I’d love to hear. Share your stories in the comments. I can’t wait to read about them!

Family photographers night ends in flames | Batavia NY Family Photographer

LeFort Family

Many who know me, know that I am not a religious person. I don’t attend church. I don’t pray often, but I will say, the last time I prayed hard for something my prayers were answered. That said, I do believe there is something greater that us out there. What that is, I’m not sure. I don’t know if it’s a sixth sense, an angel looking out for us, the universe sending me signals, but there’s something. I’ve experienced, on multiple occasions, messages sent to me. Once it was a blip of the future that I saw and then shortly after it happened but I was able to save this person from any injuries. Another time it was a feeling. A feeling to be extra cautious before I backed my car out of my garage. This time it was a thought. See, on Tuesday I photographed this very sweet family. They were so laid back and fun to work with. I really enjoyed my time with them. Their session was to be held the Sunday prior but the weather was less than ideal (especially for a 5 month old). I also knew they hadn’t had luck with past sessions. I really wanted their experience with me to be perfect so I asked to switch to Tuesday instead. They were more than accommodating! Mom’s email reads as follows……

My husband and I just had our first child, a little girl. She is currently 3 months old and we have no pictures in our home. Our wedding photographer lost half of our films so not much to choose from there. Tried newborn session but she screamed cried through two attempts. So, third time is a charm right? Lol. Fall is my absolute favorite. Im hoping to hang some magic on my walls. We live in Attica and would likely need location ideas and wardrobe suggestions. :)

Because of the day switch, mom even offered to have her family come to Batavia instead. I chose this really beautiful location out in Dale. I had never shot there before and wanted to use it, so we kept that as our location. The day of their session arrived. It was beautiful just as expected. The location was amazing. They were amazing. At the end of our session together my last words to the family were “Drive safely home. There are a lot of potholes on this road. Have a great night!”

My night on the other hand, did not end as I had hoped……

Photo Credit: Doug Yeomans


I don’t know what happened. At this point it’s all just speculation. I pulled off to call a tow truck, and before I went to run down to the intersection to see what cross road was ahead of me, I decided to grab my camera. I NEVER leave my camera bag in the car, but this time as I went to grab it I thought “just leave it. You are in the middle of nowhere. Who is going to take your bag?” I decided I should take it anyways. See, I think the people who are most receptive to those underlying messages are the ones who are given them; those are the people who listen to their gut every time!

As I was on the phone with the tow truck company, my car went up in flames. In the moment I wasn’t thinking about how grateful I was that I had grabbed my camera. In fact, it didn’t even dawn on me that I had it. Within about 30 minutes I noticed my back was starting to hurt so I shifted my bag because it was weighing on my shoulder. This is when I said, “Oh. My. God! That family’s photos are here with me!” I then remembered mom’s email and how important this session was to her (insert tears). Out of all the sessions to have saved on that day, it was theirs! I legit have the chills. You see, the photos I document for your family are not only special to you but to me too! I remember every single session I’ve ever shot. Every frame I look at I can remember the exact moment. Your story is also mine. This is a day I will NEVER forget. Look at that beautiful little face. That makes this all worth it for me.

Attica NY family photographer

Love is all you Need | Penfield NY Family Photographer

Love is Easy to Photograph

Family Photographer in Rochester NY

I was invited to document a very special party for a very special couple; they both turned 70. Don't they look GREAT?!  I'd be lying if I said I wasn't nervous to be the photographer at this event. I would also be lying if I said I didn't spring a few leaks during it either (I'll explain that later).

When I arrived I did my thing. I introduced myself, scouted the building, and grabbed some detail shots. Then the guest of honors arrived. This is when it all went "downhill". The party was supposed to be a surprise but it was found out days prior, so instead, I WAS THE SURPRISE! I will never forget their faces when I was introduced as their photographer for the day. Pure joy! Actually, this photo represents the look on their faces very well. Her hands were clutched and held close to her face in excitement and extreme gratefulness.

As the day progressed, I couldn't keep my eyes off the couple. After all these years and 2 boys later, they were still so smitten with each other! The constant caressing of her back and gentle kisses upon her head just left me in awe of their love for one another. When I document parties like this I don't prompt families, I just stand back and scan. I scan the room and look for moments happening. I am very good at seeing a moment and knowing what will happen next. I can honestly say there was never a moment these two were not together. He would be rubbing her arms or she would be playfully dropping confetti atop his head. If one left the room, the other was sure to follow.

I had multiple people approach me and say, "I feel like we need to be doing more activities to get you some great shots." This family could have been partying in a junk yard and I STILL would have great shots. The love they have for each other is evident. The only tears I saw were happy tears (including myself). There was a moment when they were thanking all of their guests and I stood behind my camera just blubbering (silently, of course). The love and laughter that this family shares is something I am so honored to have witnessed and documented. 

I've said it before and I will say it again.....LOVE IS EASY TO PHOTOGRAPH!

Emoji Birthday Party | Rochester, NY Event Photographer

As a Mom who enjoys throwing parties for my children (minus the chaos of it all), I have mixed emotions about having my camera in hand during said party.

Obviously I LOVE documenting the day! I love capturing all the little details and the moments in between. All the hugs from family members as they wish our little one a happy birthday. The look of amazement (or embarrassment) as we sing happy birthday to them just before they pucker those lips, close their eyes to make a wish, and finally, blow out their birthday candles. The pure joy in their face as they open their gifts and fly off their seat and hug their new toy that they've been "dying" to have. I love it all! I get to look back at these photos and remember exactly how old they were on that day, what they looked like during that age, and all the fun they had celebrating with their friends and family. 

Here's the part I hate, and yes I'm aware that hate is a very strong word to use, but it's the right word given what I'm about to tell you. I HATE looking back at all of those photos and the only thing that "proves" I was there are the photos I took. I'm not in ANY of them! My children will know that those photos exist because I took them, but not only was I not in them, I was too busy making sure I documented it all for them, I didn't get to fully enjoy the party myself. I didn't get to really celebrate my child that day. I was "working". 

Because of this "revelation" I decided it was time to offer a service to all of the parents out there "working" during their child's celebration. This is all still in the works, but I've been working along side Ashley Gray, event planner at Kaleidoscope Events in Rochester, NY., to document some really special parties; even baby showers! Working with her allows me to build a portfolio for you to see how I photograph these types of events. In addition, understand the "work flow" if you will, of each type of event including the needs of each unique family. I have really enjoyed getting to see her event setups and the versatility she offers from one event to another. Currently I am only working events through Ashely so if you have an event coming up that you need planned, I highly recommend getting in touch with her for all your party planning needs. She is versed in baby showers, birthdays, and even weddings! Take a look below at this awesome emoji party she put together for these brothers. I think she did an amazing job! 

**Feel free to leave a sweet message for her in the comments section. Also, if you'd like to be notified when I release information on photographing parties please sign up for my newsletter HERE**

Cookies by Shells Sweets, Henrietta, NY.

Happy Birthday Baby C | Batavia, NY Family Photographer

Baby C is ONE

I had the opportunity to document this little guy turning 1. What an honor! As a Mom who is in many Mom groups on social media, I often see parents ask if they should "make a big deal" about their little one's birthday. Especially ages ranging from 1-3. The typical response is "nah, they'll never remember it, or why waste the money, they don't care." 

Maybe I'm the odd one out but I disagree! We should be so lucky to live in a country and time period where our children have health care and clean drinking water (among other things) to thrive well into adulthood. In the 1800's the global average child mortality age was 43.3%. To put that in perspective, roughly every 2nd child died before the age of 5. Could you imagine?! 

So I say YES, make a big deal of your child surviving another full year! I think people often assume a celebration means a party, and that's not the case. It doesn't matter how big or small the celebration is, all they need is something to really make them feel special on their day. The day they took their very 1st breath of air. The day you became a parent. The day you survived labor and delivery together. Maybe it's a party, a simple sleepover, a special dinner to celebrate them, or a photo session to document how much they've grown *wink, wink*. Whatever you do, remember that it's not "just" a birthday, it's a celebration that they've made it another year. 

Happy Birthday, baby C. One down, many more to go!

Baby Shower for Baby J | Rochester NY Baby Shower Photographer

Y'all, I photographed the most beautiful baby shower!

Theme: Baby Elephants and Flowers with a pink, cream and gold color scheme.

Ashely Gray from Kaleidoscope Events  executed it beautifully! I have worked with her a couple of times now, and the very first thing I noticed about her is that she is super detail oriented. Aside from being able to see that in these photographs, she demonstrates it in her assembling process. She approaches it similarly to a chef plating their food. She gets down to eye level to adjust and perfect the vision. You can really see that she cares about her clients and loves what she does. Plus, she works with some really amazing vendors! Check out the detail on these sweet treats! I couldn't believe how beautifully crafted they were. I stood there and stared at them for a good 20 minutes. Those bakers have a steady hand, a great eye, and clearly enjoy their job.

Cookies by: From Our Home To Yours- Rochester, N.Y.

Strawberries by: The Queen in Me Sweet Treats and Eats- Rochester, N.Y.

I'm not even going apologize if I made you run to the nearest sweet treat! I had to manage the evil sweet tooth in person, so now you it's your turn.....(in my best evil laugh)muahahahaha! 

Now available- B+W Mini Sessions | Batavia NY Family Photographer

An easy way to document every year of your child's life!

A friend of mine, who is also a photographer, had been talking about using my studio to take a few photos of her children for a wall display in her home. I was totally on board. I welcome every opportunity to hang out with like minded people. I crave "shop talk" often. What was funny about her vision is that I actually had the same idea for my wall at home but couldn't find a good place in my home to complete the "project". HELLO.........you have a studio with a clean, white wall! It just didn't even dawn on me until she asked to borrow the space. It took me 3 separate attempts to get each child their own photograph but I completed my images in the following weeks. Now I await my prints......

So Why B+W Minis?

My goal with these portraits is to simply capture the individual personalities of each child. I wanted to keep them clean and simple so that I could really focus on who they are as a person. An image that would scream "I am________, and I like to_______, this year I_______." While gathering up all the "things" that are unique to each of my children I thought, I bet other families would love to have a portrait like this for their children, too. So after much consideration I decided that I wanted to open up mini sessions like this for YOU!  These portraits will only come in b+w. It's important that we keep them as simple and timeless as possible. In addition, something that will be cohesive year after year.  These sessions will be for children only. No group shots. The purpose for these minis is to offer you an easy way to update your child(s) portraits yearly and for your children to showcase their individuality. It's so common for families to hire a photographer for big events in their lives such as pregnancy, newborns, 1st year, and then again for senior portraits. Those middle ages typically get thrown to the wayside. Well, not anymore. Read on for session details.

Mini Session Details.

Date: July 21st starting @ 8:00 a.m.

Location: The Harvester Building (56 Harvester Ave, Batavia).

Investment Fee: $125 and

Includes: 15/20 minute session, 5 digital files, print release, and wardrobe consultation. 

**The first 5 families to book will receive an additional 3 digital files!**

Scroll to the bottom if you would like to hear more about my "why" for each of my children's portraits.


Meet Rylan

My oldest is in the "pre-teen" (age 10) stage where he is super opinionated, always has an attitude with a side of occasional kindness. He loves his jogger pants and cool t-shirts. He's growing his hair out to donate to Wigs for Kids, and this is his headband he wears to school and soccer. We purchased it at Headbands of Hope because it falls in line with his goal for his hair. For every headband purchased, a headband is donated to a child with cancer. Y'all, they have some really cute headbands, too!  I felt it was important to document all of this in his portrait. He's not dressed in a button down top with a bow tie because that's simply not who he is right now. Soon he will out grow his clothing, what's "in" will change, his hair will eventually be cut, and hopefully his grumpy "tude" will change (for the better, hopefully). 

Meet Kason

My middle son has always been super silly (He's "dabbing"). Those dimples are definitely his signature feature, that and his eyes. That one tooth he's missing was pulled because he had an extra adult tooth on that side. After 6+ months we're still waiting on it's pending arrival. His wardrobe is a total reflection of him at this stage in his life. Honestly, I should've found something less matchy because he's a 6 year old that likes to pick his own clothes out. He loves Black Panther, and you can see that on his hat. We actually picked it up right before his session because he graduated 1st grade on this day. The hat was his prize for doing such a great job this year and those light up shoes he's wearing were on high request when we were buying clothes at the beginning of the school year. So much so that he coincidentally "lost" his 1st new pair he picked out. This kid, while he has him moments, is so sweet, funny, snuggly, and kind. He is the only one of my children who will apologize to me without a request if he did something he wasn't supposed to. 

Meet Oliver

And then there's my youngest son. He doesn't care what he wears, actually. No opinions on it at all. I'm sure we're getting close to the stage where he will care but for now I'm going to continue to enjoy picking out what I like him to wear. He is definitely the 3rd child. He knows what he wants and will scream NOOOOOO until he gets it. Says thank you for everything. Not evening kidding you! He thanked himself one time for opening the door. Bahahaha! The only way I was able to get photos of him was if he could hold that star in his hands, and one of his favorite things right now (among other things) are "birdies". We actually made him a "birdie" cake for his 2nd birthday. Plus, to hear him say "birdie" is so darn cute, that and "I'm cute". So to get this shot I actually told him to look out the window to see if he could find any birdies. This little guy often makes me wonder why I want to have just one more, but then I get those sweet little "muggle" (snuggle) times and then I remember why. I just wish he would just slow down on growing up.

Each Child is Unique | Batavia, NY Family Photographer

Balonek Family

There's always one. You know.....the sibling that has their own agenda. I'm sure he's plotting his next move in this photo. I went with it, though, because this is the stage he's at in his life right now. In my experience with this family, baby J has always been true to himself. He will do what he wants, when he wants. I have never been able to convince him that "sneezing", throwing grass on my head, or running around like a lunatic was ever funny. I quite like that, because he challenges me more than most children I've worked with. It forces me to really learn about the individual personalities of each child. It's important to remember that even though siblings have the same upbringing, they're still their own little entities, and what works for one may not work for the other.

I want families to know that if your child(ren) is not performing as you expected, THAT'S OKAY! I'm willing to adapt. I'm a 33.....I mean, 29 year old grown adult and I hate being photographed. I'm not sure why, but I just know I don't like it. Now imagine being a small child in this situation. I'm like the Aunt, Uncle, Grandparent.....who lives in another state that they only see maybe once or twice a year. There's a level of trust that needs to be built before they are willing to participate in any silly games I have in mind for them.

As a Batavia, NY family photographer, babies and children are my 1st priority. I'm really working for them. Hahahaha!

Family Photographer

I'm Okay with NOT Being your Photographer | Batavia, NY Family Photographer

Choose Your Photographer Wisely.

Family Photographer in Batavia, NY


I contemplated writing this article for many reasons. For starters, I'm sure it's been written a million times, but also because I wasn't quite sure exactly how I was going to write it. Pricing is a big factor when it comes to selecting a photographer, and it is a super touchy subject in the photography community. Some get offended, while others are extremely helpful. I wanted to write this article with an open mind while still offering solid information to you as the consumer. I hope I didn't fail you. 

I often wonder if families who inquire about a portrait session with me are annoyed with my bazillion questions. I mean, are you? 99 out of 100 inquiries with me typically start like this.....what is your pricing? Which is fine, but I just wish people were a little more creative with their questions. I need solid information to know what you're looking for. Imagine for a second that you want to re-do your kitchen. You message a contractor with "what is your pricing?" What in the world are they supposed to do with that? Maybe what you want is something they don't offer. They have no idea what you're looking for, the finishes you wish to see, the measurement they're working with, and so on..... Now, I can't say this is a complete comparison, but I do feel it's similar.

As a family and newborn photographer in Batavia, NY, I thought it might be fun to share some tips on finding the right photographer for YOU. I would like to say that at the end of this article the photographer for the job was me, but that's just not realistic. Instead, it's my job to help guide you through the process by asking questions to make sure that we as a team have similar end goals. 

There are so many factors involved when selecting a photographer for your family portraits, and I'm sure there are a few you didn't even consider.  The photography industry is just swarming with brilliant talent, that I can absolutely understand how daunting of a task it is to find one that is just right for you. Here are a few bullet points to get you started. Read on to understand why each is crucial in the photographer selection process.

  • Budget
  • Style
  • "Meet" the Photographer
  • Services


The obvious starting point would be budget, or so you might think. You can pretty much find a family/newborn photographer from free to upwards of $2000+. So, basically there's a photographer available for every budget. As much as I'd like to educate you on why the price range varies so much, I can't. There are just too many factors involved to make an assumption as to why a photographer's price is what it is. Being that the price range is so wide, I think that having your budget as the starting point is all wrong. Instead, I think the actual starting point is deciding what kind of experience you're looking for. This brings me to the rest of the list starting with style.....


What does "style" mean when discussing photographers? Let's start with posing. At the end of the day every photographer has a similar end goal; a happy family. How they go about it is the difference.  Do you want traditional, posed portraits or laid back, in the moment portraits? For me, in the moment portraits always win, but that's just my personal preference. It's important you understand what YOU want. Next up, location. Think about selecting a location that speaks to your personal style. Do you like the studio look (backdrops, sets, props), outdoors, or in your home? And finally, editing style. Every photographer has an editing style that signifies their brand. For me, it's rich tones and dramatic lighting. There is also light and airy as well as, heavily composited photos, or in other words, artsy and whimsical. What style fits with your family dynamic and will best tell your story? How to decide which editing style best fits your personality is to consider your wardrobe selection and home decor.  Typically you will find that the photographers who guide their clients to wear rich tones, typically have a very colorful and bold editing style whereas, photographers that edit light and airy usually work with a lot of earth tones, neutrals, and pastel type colors.  The whimsical, artsy type photographers are something I would use for a special project. Maybe a large piece of artwork in a kid's bedroom or a special birthday theme of sorts and so on. Often times these photographers also offer regular sessions, so just be sure to check out ALL of their work.  Keep in mind though, that reviewing a photographers work is not enough research to decide if a photographer is right for you. 


I can't stress this enough, READ THE PHOTOGRAPHER'S ABOUT ME PAGE! This may seem pointless, but so is doing all the other research, showing up to your session and your personalities clash.  I personally want a photographer who is upbeat, fun, laid back, and can take on my potty mouth and dirty humor (under my breathe, of course). You might have different expectations for your photographer. You will be spending quite a bit of time with this person, and they may even be the photographer you choose for all of your portrait needs. Many of the families that I work with have actually become close friends of mine. I think that is just the coolest thing. A couple of other ways to learn more about the photographer is to check out reviews that other families have left. What do they have to say about their experience with this person? And finally, request a consultation via phone, Skype, Facetime, or in person to ask them questions. As the photographer, the more I know about the families I get to work with, the better. I am able to capture true personalities because I've taken the time to find out what the family loves to do together.  Sometimes I get inquiries from families mentioning how terrible their last session went with another photographer. You will never hear me slander another photographer because I wasn't there to understand what happened. It might be just something as simple as the family didn't do their full research on said photographer. It might even come down to what I previously mentioned; a clash of personalities. I don't know. I can only advise you to do your research! 


Finally, services. I'm not just talking about what type of photography they offer, rather, how they deliver your portraits. How do you want your portraits to be delivered? Prints or digitals? Being in the digital age, I think people often forget that some photographers offer prints and products as part of their service.  When I started out, I just offered digitals because that's what I thought families wanted. I soon found out that families don't really know what they want. I was doing it backwards! It's my job to educate you on what's available, research different products that are on the market, and understand why the products are important for archiving your treasured memories. I spend more time helping families try to download files, find different products, places to print and making sure the labs know that I've given them permission to print, that why not just relieve them from the stress of it all and do it myself.  I also didn't feel like I was completing the service. To me, it kind of feels like I'm handing families the negatives and they have to finalize the work. Also, if I'm being totally honest. I am being a little selfish as well. I can't tell you how much joy it brings to me to see Mom and/or Dad's face when I deliver them their prints. It really is the icing on the cake for me. I do still offers digitals, but I have decided to add in a print credit so my families have both options.  Decide what's important to you and your family when choosing which photographer best fit for your needs. 

In closing, the reason why I'm OKAY with not being your photographer is because I'd rather send 50 families to a photographer who will provide them with the service they're looking for, than photograph 1 family who will ultimately be unhappy with the results of their images. In addition, often times I only get ONE chance at getting the images right. I'm not willing to take a chance on your memories because I "thought" I could do the job. I hope this article has offered you a little insight into the selection process of your family/newborn (or any) photographer. And, if you do find a photographer that you love and have to have, but they're out of your price range, ask if they offer a payment plans and if so, their guidelines involving the payment plan. Another thing to consider is do your research well before you need a photographer. Many book families a year in advance. That will give you plenty of time to save up and plan. Please let me know if you have any questions or comments. I thank you for your time. 

Lots of Love,


Congratulations to my newborn contest winner!


Newborn Session GIVEAWAY! | Batavia, NY Newborn Photographer

Newborn Portrait Session Giveaway!

Click play on the audio track for all the "feels"!

Hi there, friend!

Thanks for stopping by to check out my most recent giveaway. I have decided to start offering FREE newborn lifestyle portrait sessions or fresh-48 sessions to families who book my baby plan. Your baby grows and changes so much in their 1st year of life it would be a shame to not capture as much of it as possible. This is where my baby plan comes in. In the baby plan you will get 4 sessions to document your baby from birth to 1 year. That's right, FOUR!

I figured what better way to kick off this new collection than a giveaway for a newborn session?! You will have the choice between a Fresh-48 Session or a Newborn Lifestyle Session.  Read on for details regarding these 2 styles of newborn photography to decide which is the right fit for YOU!

A Fresh-48 session is when I document your family with your new baby in the hospital (usually the day after birth). The hospital might not seem like the most ideal location for a session, but there's just something so special about those 1st moments after the birth of your baby.  The newness of your little one, the excitement of siblings getting to meet "their" new baby for the 1st time, and just the ability to stamp an exact date on a photo without having to even think about it. I know that when I look back at photos from when my children were born I know how old I was, what the weather was like, all of the moments leading up to that day, and I remember the exact feelings I had that day; that time in my life. During this session we will capture your FIRST family photo, photos of all the details; hospital blanket, going home outfit (if you have one), hospital bands, bassinet, etc....all the things that you want to remember from that time in your life!

A lifestyle newborn sessions is rather different than your typical studio style session. One major reason is because it will be held IN YOUR HOME! The very place where life begins. We will document your family in your home sharing snuggles and kisses, moments in the nursery, playtime with siblings, etc.... These sessions are much more laid back than a studio session; they consist of simple posing techniques and highlighting your life at home.   Having a new baby can be a little overwhelming, so bringing the session to your home helps alleviate some of the stresses of packing your bags and making your way into a studio. 

Now that we've discussed the different session styles, I think it's time to announce the details for this Newborn Session Giveaway, don't you?


Follow the widget below. I will announce a winner for the session on April 20th. This contest is FREE to enter. Winner will receive the newborn session of their choice (lifestyle or fresh-48), 15 digital files, and $100 print credit ($300 value).

*Location must be in or near (40 miles) Batavia, N.Y.*

If you'd like additional information about the baby plan send me a message HERE. I look forward to hearing from you!



Hudy Family | Batavia, N.Y. Family Photographer

Hudy Family

I had the pleasure of photographing the Hudy Family just recently. They came to my studio, which is located at the Harvester Center here in Batavia, N.Y., and as you can imagine, it was a little scary for their daughter who's almost 9 months old. A new environment, new face, and she's just at that age where stranger danger is a big deal. Luckily, Mom and Dad remembered to bring some "lovies". One was a peek-a-boo elephant, while the other was a ukulele. She LOVED having the ukulele. It helped her forget that we were taking photos and made her more comfortable.  I cannot stress it enough, the importance of bringing items from home that help your littles feel safe. What would you rather have, a photo of your little one happy and content with a ratty, well loved lovey, or one of them with snot and tears running down their face? I know which one I'd choose. 

Have a look at this beauty. Doesn't she have the best eyes?! 

Currier Family | Batavia Family Photographers

Batavia, N.Y. Baker has a secret to share!

I had the pleasure of meeting Kirsten from KMC Cakes a few months back. She asked if I could photograph some display cakes for her shop.  She has some real talent, this one! Not only are her cakes super yummy, but the detail and design of her cakes are so intricate it's almost hard to believe they're edible! She made my son a Ninjago, Lego cake for his birthday and his face when he saw that thing is something I'll never forget.  She is worth every. single. cent!  She is based in Batavia, N.Y. but she works with families and wedding couples all over Western, N.Y. 

Now back to our regularly scheduled program......

Kirsten had mentioned to me that she wanted to have some family photos done, so we scheduled a date, and planned their family portrait session. Being a family photographer in Batavia, N.Y. this worked out splendidly.  Low and behold, she had a surprise for me! We had to re-planned their family session, and had SO MUCH FUN!

Sure, the bugs ate us alive at the beginning, but you'd never guess by their beautiful family photos.  I should also mention that their little 3 year old daughter was a riot.  She was so ready to show off her dance moves, running skills and bug catching.   See Kirsten's "secret recipe" below (along with all their adorable family photos). 

Greis Family | Batavia Newborn Photographers

Meet the Greis Family!

Mama invested in a Fresh-48 session around Thanksgiving last year (2016), but I didn't know until I checked my account notifications.  I was so flipping excited! Problem was, I couldn't say anything. Do you know how hard that is?!

I had the pleasure of meeting this little beauty last weekend. I couldn't be happier for their little family. Mom of course let me sneak in lots of snuggles. That's the real reason why I offer Fresh-48 sessions.  I get in my baby fix!  I love getting to work with this family because they're so laid back and fun to be around.  Mom and dad are so in love with their little ones, it's hard to not get great photos. Even Grandma and Grandpa were in a "new baby coma." It's actually a really beautiful thing to witness grandparents meeting their grandchildren for the 1st time. 

Take a scroll through their images below to see what I mean and while you're at it, see if you can guess what the family named her. 

Pietrzykowski Family | Batavia Family Photographers

Check out this adorable little family!

Mom contacted me, get this....BY PHONE! What a concept. Nobody ever calls me anymore, lol. Anyways, I was super excited to chat with her about their session.  She was super open to just about any ideas I had and just wanted some photos of them as a family.  When we finally had the opportunity to meet (the day of their session), mom mentioned to me that her and her spouse are not very photogenic.  To me, love is always photogenic.  I eased her concern with my shooting style and it was going to be more natural and playful rather than super posey.  I don't know about you, but I think they ROCKED their family session! 

There was also a little pressure since I knew that this little family had driven a loooooooong way to be photographed.  See, dad just graduated from school to be a State Trooper.  They currently reside in the Adirondacks with hopes that they will soon be able to re-locate back home. Home being here near Batavia, N.Y.  

I was so relieved when mom sent me an email after they viewed their gallery that read, "Hello! First off, I just wanted to say thank you again for capturing memories of our family. You are hands down the most enjoyable photographer that we've worked with."

That made my day!

Scroll down to see their family photos that they selected as their favorites!