G. Family | Ashburn VA Maternity Photographer

Although I don’t really advertise myself as a ‘portrait photographer’ anymore, every now and then a project comes around that I can’t refuse.

Plus I totally miss photo editing.  Something about unwinding after a long day with a gorgeous image in front of me awaiting my artistic transformation is super relaxing. Ahhhh…

(Pssst….want to learn how relaxing this can be firsthand? I’m teaching a free week long photo editing lesson online starting August 12th — learn more and/or register HERE)

This project was one of those ‘can’t refuse it’ type of deals.

Since ‘going pro’ with my photography I’ve had a dream of being part of a birth and getting to document it. My day job held me back from making this dream come true for quite some time.

Then, the mama-to-be here, who I shared an office with all last school year, found out she was pregnant with her first baby the day she took my DC/MD/VA Momtographie Class back in February. With the decision to quit my job this summer also came the decision to make this personal project of mine come true.

Thank you friend for inviting me in for what will surely be a special day in your life.

You two are absolutely glowing in these images and I can’t wait to meet your daughter with you in a few short weeks! xo.

Come relax with me and learn about the #1 editing technique I’m constantly asking to spill to moms Join me starting August 12th for a completely FREE week long online based photography class, Shades of Me.  Indulge in some self-care behind the lens while also learning a new editing technique in the process. Click HERE now to get yourself registered.

W. Family | Fairfax VA Family Photographer

Even though I’m not really ‘doing photo sessions’ anymore, sometimes a past client does the right amount of arm-twisting (like having an adorable 2nd baby) that it convinces you to go on out and try shooting again for a change. Baby Audrey was just a precious 3 days old when I got to her and was pure baby bliss to photograph. I can’t believe it was only 2 years ago that I was doing this same thing with big sister Charlotte!! This family was one of the first clients I had when I began my business and to this day I’m forever grateful that they trusted me behind the lens and allowed me to capture some beautiful memories their family. I have so many more images to share with you guys — hang on tight the rest will be on the way real soon!! xo.



G. Family | Gainesville VA Family Photographer

This post is a little bittersweet for me because it’s a sneak peek of my last scheduled family session for the foreseeable future. If you haven’t heard yet, I’ve decided to put sessions aside for the time being to peruse my photography teaching journey. Come find me over at my new home: Beryl Ayn Young if you feel so inclined.

But today the spotlight is on the G. family.  And if I have to leave you with a session, this is the one to leave you with! You see, Kerri was my first one-on-one photography mentee. My first official private student. And I am so proud to share that she is rocking the camera skills she learned with me over at With Love Studio. I also must mention that she has an AMAZING outdoor studio at her home. There is lots of land and beautiful light on her private street. And it’s just a hop, skip, & jump away from railroad tracks! We decided we would experiment with them for the shoot.

We looked for the trains but no matter how hard we searched we couldn’t find any. Big brother T. was super concerned that a train might run us over.  I assured him that if a train was coming we’d surely hear it!

I love how close these two brothers are! They were so content and happy playing together and didn’t hesitate when I asked them to give one another a BIG bear hug.

And, I am sure it comes as no surprise that baby girl K. truly has mom and dad wrapped around her little finger.

Towards the end of the shoot the kiddos were WIPED OUT, but dad still had enough energy to play toss. I am already envisioning what a FANTASTIC wall display these photos are going to make!

Gibbs family thank you for inviting me to your home and giving me a glimpse of what it’s like to be a part of such a loving energetic family of 5.  It’s been such a joy getting to know you during the past year and I feel honored to be the one to document your life in photos. xoxo.

M. Family | Ashburn VA Family Photographer

Little A. took her mom, dad, me & miss twinkle bear for story time and music time in the park.  It was a cool yet beautiful fall day and we laughed, we danced, we had fun.  This family is one I am so grateful to say I’ve known for the past 8 years. The things they are doing to empower women and teach them confidence through Mary Kay skin care is incredible. They even have the pink Cadillac to prove it. Love you M. family. Enjoy your preview from our morning together!

Reaching for Creativity

It’s amazing what a little bit of creative energy can do for the soul.  This morning (in my “other life” as an elementary technology teacher), I walked into a room of 18 quiet subdued fourth graders taking lunch count and gearing up for another predictable school day. When the teacher announced my arrival and shared that we’d be spending the morning in our computer lab collaborating and creating the students cheered and gave me a round of applause. (P.S. – I so wish everyone could start their day with a cheer and round of applause, the world would be a much happier place indeed!). The students were so engaged, so invested, so aligned with the lesson presented to them that they hardly realized all the learning also taking place in the process of them working together and making digital art.

“It is the supreme art of the teacher to awaken joy in creative expression and knowledge.”
Albert Einstein

I’ve always thrived on creativity energy.  But, two years ago when we lost our first daughter, she ignited a passion in me to create behind the lens of a camera. She inspired the birth of Be Young Photography and I’ve never looked back.  Building this family portrait business from the ground up has been one of the hardest, most mentally exhausting, yet rewarding things I’ve ever done. And I’m certainly not done yet.

But, for a long time now I’ve felt like I’m reaching in the wrong direction.

Because in my heart of hearts I need to not only be a photographer, but I need to be a teacher too.

The work I’ve done over the past 9 months mentoring aspiring photographers, teaching local momtographers, and providing photo therapy online to grieving mothers has been incredible. And the feedback I’ve gotten from each of you who have taken part in one of these ventures has been like a constant cheer and round of applause for the help I am able to provide.

You’ve been asking for more classes. More assistance. More help.

But I can’t keep reaching in all of these directions. A full time teaching job, energetic toddler, husband, portraits, in person and online classes. Something has gotta give. Something has to go.  My own creative energy is being stifled and if I don’t do something soon I’ll be running on empty and they’ll be nothing left to give.

So, beginning today I am taking a break from portrait work. I am no longer booking portrait sessions for the foreseeable future. 

(If you are already booked, don’t worry I’m not going to leave you hanging – and if you are currently looking to hire someone fabulous for your family portraits please please go check out my good friend and fellow photographer Kelly Nelson at Kelly Nelson Photography. She does amazingly incredibly awesome lifestyle work).

It’s time for my creative sabbatical. I need to start reaching in all the right directions for where Be Young Photography is going next on this creative journey. I need to refuel. Fulfill some of my own creative goals. And make room for some amazing new opportunities for YOU. For the next few weeks it’ll probably be pretty quiet around here.  But I promise if you’re patient and stick around for the next chapter, you won’t be disappointed.


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