Winter brings out the wonder and inner child in all of us.

Many families overlook winter as a time to schedule a photography session. There are many amazing activities to document. Sledding, snowball fights, building a snowman, family bonfire, hot coco, or a simple photo like above taken from inside of your home. You might even get a head start on next years holiday card.

I had the pleasure of photographing a black background session of this beautiful horse from KMH Sport Horses LLC at Centurion Farm. The Equine portraits were taken during the Warrenton horse show this fall. My client ordered a gorgeous canvas and had it wrapped under the tree as Christmas gift to the owner.

I provide a variety of poses when I do a black background session for equine.

The details of the horse are also fun to photograph and they can be very artistic.

I love the expression in this equine portrait. To create this image I had the rider stand to the side and make a familiar noise which grabbed his attention. There are many tricks that help get a beautiful equine portrait. Each horse is different and will react in their own way.

This portrait captures the horses profile.

Although I love the back background sessions my true passion is horse and rider sessions in a beautiful location.

Don’t you love it when you look at a portrait and it does not look staged? These types of portraits are considered lifestyle portraiture. It’s when you take images of the people interacting and being themselves. The only thing is you have to know the tricks to make this come to life during a photo session.

Natural interaction and smiles

Here is the same pose but I asked them to look at the camera. Which do you prefer? The great part about providing clients both options is that one creates the natural smile and the other captures it!

Here is another where the girls are interacting with the family dog during their family portrait. This is more of a lifestyle shot.

And this is more of a posed portrait with the family dog.

I used the tree in the background of this image to help frame the father with his two sons.

When people wear glasses sometimes it is nice to do a few photos with the glasses on and some with them off.

A great family portrait taken in this families backyard in Waterford, Virginia

I photographed this family at their home just outside of Leesburg, VA. This was the first weekend in November just after the peak of fall colors. Luckily there were still a few leaves on the tree. We photographed close to sunset which gave us the perfect backdrop.

Such a sweet image of the parents holding their daughter’s hand as she walks carefully along their field stone wall.

The leaves frame this portrait of mother and daughter! Such love and joy captured in this photo.

Sometimes you capture a natural smile when you least expect it.

Such a great family portrait with these German Shepherds.

Its important to provide your client with a variety of images to choose from including father and daughter together.

This is why photographers love to photograph at “Golden Hour”.

This is the last image taken during our session. It is filled with warmth and happiness and the joy of childhood.

I recently did a newborn session in Leesburg, Virginia for a family who welcomed their first son home to meet his big sister. Capturing the bond and creating magic moments is what I love to do! We did a mix of lifestyle portraits as well as some creative newborn poses. This family lives in a beautiful equestrian community and we were lucky to have a beautiful day to take some images outside in one of their fields.

My client had a beautiful window recess. I turned it into a cozy area for this older sister to bond with her new baby brother. We also captured the family dog in this portrait.

I love the high-key look and the innocence captured in this image of the sister snuggling with her new baby brother.

The baby boy was awake for much of our portrait session but we managed to get a few images of him sleeping soundly.

I love capturing the connection between mom and daughter.

The whole family is engaged with the new baby. The older sister is playing with her brothers baby toes.

The fence in this equestrian community made for beautiful lead in lines that draws your eye across the image.

Sometimes its the simple artistic portraits that are the most beautiful.

I love to watch new parents interact with their newborn baby.

I enjoyed photographing this beautiful family of five at their historic home in Loudoun County. The barn and silo made for a perfect backdrop for a family portrait. Being a boy mom, I know how important it is to make the photo session carefree and fun! We got some lifestyle moments of dad wrestling with the boys and some posed shots of the family.

I always love this pose taken from behind the family as they walk into the sunset.

This would make a great holiday card

Which do you prefer the posed portrait…

or a moment captured in time. Also known as lifestyle session.

It was important to the mom to highlight the character of the historic stone home.

You can feel the joy in these smiles.

I enjoy touring my clients property because I am able to identify great spots for portraits. I am always looking for

lead-in lines. This old tree is a great example. See how your eye is drawn across the image by following the trunk.

I brought some vintage suitcases to use as props with the youngest boy. Don’t you just love his teddy bear!

I had the pleasure of attending the Warrenton horse show for a few equine portrait sessions with a black background. Here is a portrait of Chance who won many ribbons at the show.

I bring lots of props to help draw the horse’s attention to the camera and the ears forward.

I like to focus on the details that make artistic shots. This horse was show ready with perfect braids.

Here is a different look with a warm linen textured background.