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Extended Family Granchild Photos

Extended Family at Coronado | San Diego Professional Photography

The Baldwin family is such a joy to photograph! This good-looking group knows just how to dress, and they listen so well that we got SO MANY great candid and posed portraits during their session — even though there was a 3-year-old in the mix! Bailey answered my questions about their session, and I loved hearing about it from her point of view:

“Our entire family of 17 were lucky enough to spend a week together in San Diego, thanks to the Nana and Papa of our family! We took the same trip three years ago, and it was such a wonderful time, I think we’d all be happy making it a life-long tradition! We stayed on Mission Beach and loved being able to walk to the water or down to the shops and eat. It was relaxing for the adults and perfect for the kids.”

Extended Family Photographer | San Diego Coronado
Extended Family Photographer | San Diego Coronado

During our trip 3 years ago, we had family pictures taken with Amy and they turned out beautifully. It’s not easy to photograph 17 people, 9 of which are kids from ages 13 to down 3! So we knew we would love taking pictures with her again… (and we did! 😊)

Grandchildren are Blessings | San Diego Beach Photos
Grandchildren are Blessings | San Diego Beach Photos
Grandchildren are Blessings | San Diego Beach Photos

We gals worried about EVERYTHING going into the session. Haha! We had spent a lot of time deciding what to wear, and it always feels stressful to take photos with kids. Plus it was a pretty windy evening! But Amy is warm, quick, and fun, and she has a way of coaxing smiles out of little ones by being silly but still stern enough to keep them in their spot. She also somehow made it look like the wind wasn’t blowing us away!

Grandchildren are Blessings | San Diego Beach Photos
Grandchildren are Blessings | San Diego Beach Photos
Kids on the Beach | Coronado Beach Photos
Kids on the Beach | Coronado Beach Photos
Kids on the Beach | Coronado Beach Photos
Kids on the Beach | Coronado Beach Photos
Kids on the Beach | Coronado Beach Photos
Kids on the Beach | Coronado Beach Photos
Kids on the Beach | Coronado Beach Photos

Favorite memory of the session? “Amy captured the personalities of each child individually and then as a group, and I know that they’ll treasure the pictures of themselves with their cousins forever.”

San Diego Photography | Coronado Beach Kids
San Diego Photography | Coronado Beach Kids
San Diego Photography | Coronado Beach Kids
San Diego Photography | Coronado Beach Kids
San Diego Photography | Coronado Beach Kids
San Diego Photography | Coronado Beach Kids
San Diego Photography | Coronado Beach Kids

My very favorite image from the session is of Larry and Vicki (Nana and Papa). They’re standing at the water’s edge walking toward the camera, Larry is looking at the camera with a completely genuine smile on his face and Vicki is smiling toward Larry. The sun is going down in the background and the lighting is gorgeous. It is so authentic. They just celebrated their 40th Anniversary and that photo beautifully captures LOVE.

Purely Love | 40 Year Anniversary Photo
San Diego Photographer | Coronado Beach Kids

The whole family is planning to use these images for their Christmas cards, as well as hanging them in their homes. One benefit of an extended family session is that we get all the great “big family” shots but also (especially with older, cooperative kids like these) plenty of nuclear family photos, candids, and children’s portraits, too. Here are a few more favorites from this session:

San Diego Photographer | Coronado Beach Kids
San Diego Photographer | Coronado Beach Kids
San Diego Photographer | Coronado Beach Kids
San Diego Photographer | Coronado Beach Kids
San Diego Photographer | Coronado Beach Kids
San Diego Photographer | Coronado Beach Kids
San Diego Photographer | Coronado Beach Kids
San Diego Photographer | Coronado Beach Kids
San Diego Photographer | Coronado Beach Kids
San Diego Photographer | Coronado Beach Kids
San Diego Photographer | Coronado Beach Kids
San Diego Photographer | Coronado Beach Kids
San Diego Photographer | Coronado Beach Kids
San Diego Photographer | Coronado Beach Kids
San Diego Photographer | Coronado Beach Kids
San Diego Photographer | Coronado Beach Kids
San Diego Photographer | Coronado Beach Kids
San Diego Photographer | Coronado Beach Kids
San Diego Photographer | Coronado Beach Kids
San Diego Photographer | Coronado Beach Kids
San Diego Photographer | Coronado Beach Kids
San Diego Photographer | Coronado Beach Kids
San Diego Photographer | Coronado Beach Kids
San Diego Photographer | Coronado Beach Kids
San Diego Photographer | Coronado Beach Kids
San Diego Photographer | Coronado Beach Kids
San Diego Photographer | Coronado Beach Kids
San Diego Photographer | Coronado Beach Kids
San Diego Photographer | Coronado Beach Kids
San Diego Photographer | Coronado Beach Kids

Santa Hats on the Beach

Santa Hats and Baby Curls

Every year around this time, I get to do the most FUN photo session with Kendra, Gabe, and their growing family. This year, there were some special baby curls to photograph, because little Max (2) is about to have his first haircut. Kendra wanted me to be sure to get Max’s sweet curls before his big-boy cut!

Photographers in San Diego

Kendra is an amazing San Diego mom, a photographer herself, who keeps up with her three boys like a champ and always has creative ideas for their photo session. I love that their family sticks with the consistent beach location at the Hotel del Coronado, boys decked out in matching dark green OshKosh overalls and the special Santa hats knitted with care by their Auntie Megan.

Boys in a Wagon | Beach Photos for Christmas
Photographer San Diego
Photographer San Diego

Kendra and Gabe’s kids are all boys, ages five, two, and one.  She shared that getting ready for the session can sometimes be stressful. You wouldn’t know it! She is a graceful and patient mom who goes with the flow and allows things to unfold naturally. She said this year at naptime Elijah (5) was so excited to go to the beach he wouldn’t go to sleep. Max (2) fell asleep and then woke up after 20 minutes, and Rafa (1) wanted to sleep and was super grouchy at first, but he finally started having fun and cooperated well!

Christmas Beach Photos | San Diego Photographer
Christmas Beach Photos | San Diego Photographer
Christmas Beach Photos | San Diego Photographer

We all had high hopes for the Santa hats, but Kendra said, “Rafa is a summer baby and apparently I didn’t train him to wear hats!” Eli and Max loved theirs, though, and they did a great job of keeping them on.

Family Photography San Diego

Kendra said, “Eli loved running in the water, pulling Amy’s new red wagon, playing on the lifeguard tower, and running down sand mountains. He asked if we could come back soon when we can go swimming (and we did, we took them all last Saturday!)”

Professional Photography in San Diego
Professional Photography in San Diego
Professional Photography in San Diego
Professional Photography in San Diego

“Max is our middle boy. He will turn three in January and Daddy is making me cut the curls off I am dreading it, but Daddy says it is time! I really wanted to remember his beautiful curls and Amy got the best pictures of his hair in the sunset, running, wearing the Santa hat from front and back—-so we have it memorialized even though I will be sobbing soon when the day comes to cut it!”

Christmas Beach Photos | San Diego Photographer
Christmas Beach Photos | San Diego Photographer
Christmas Beach Photos | San Diego Photographer
Christmas Beach Photos | San Diego Photographer
Christmas Beach Photos | San Diego Photographer

Kendra said, “Gabe loves Amy’s photo sessions because she doesn’t overshoot—she is quick and efficient and not overly posy so the photos always surprise us, how did she possibly nail all these great shots with our rascals??!?”

San Diego Family Photographer
San Diego Family Photographer

“We often walk in the neighborhood with the kids after dinner. We call it ‘The Moon and The Stars Walk.’ It helps transition to bedtime, sometimes even puts the baby to sleep in the stroller. The moon came out and Max said, ‘The moon!!!’ Amy got a sweet photo of Max, the moon, and the ocean.”

San Diego Family Photographer

Kendra is usually the one taking pictures of Gabe and the boys, so she loved having photos of herself and the baby, and herself and the boys where they were super connected.

Mother and Child Photos Coronado CA
Mother and Child Photos Coronado CA
Mother and Child Photos Coronado CA
Mother and Child Photos Coronado CA
Mother and Child Photos Coronado CA
San Diego Photography | Christmas Card Photos

When asked about her favorites, Kendra said, “I love the family shot of us in the water and the tide is getting us all wet. I also like the family shot of us on the sand mountain and Max just took off down the hill in front of us. He is very independent and loves being outside.”

San Diego Photography | Christmas Card Photos
San Diego Photography | Christmas Card Photos
San Diego Photography | Christmas Card Photos
San Diego Photography | Christmas Card PhotosChristmas Beach Photos | San Diego Photographer

“We always do a big xmas card thru Minted and a calendar. I am a photographer so I have made a few Graphistudio albums from past Amy Gray family sessions, One year I made a collage print on the Minted website. It’s hanging above our fireplace.”

Reflection Photo at the Hotel del Coronado
San Diego Photography | Christmas Card Photos
San Diego Photography | Christmas Card Photos
Silhouette Sunset Christmas Photo at the Hotel del Coronado

Vacation at Paradise Point and Photos at the Hotel del Coronado

I was pretty sure I would love working with Tressa from the moment she contacted me, and I was right! She is so kind, and I love how she recounts her family’s experience in San Diego and in our photo session! I’ll let her tell her own story:

“We traveled to San Diego with our three young children for my cousins wedding. The trip was so special because the entire extended family attended and it gave us time to catch up and spend quality time together. It was so fun to see my younger cousins spend quality time with our children. The laughter, smiles and joy will be imprinted in our minds for a lifetime. We stayed at Paradise Point and it couldn’t have been more perfect for a young family or wedding venue. The setting was absolutely beautiful and the staff was incredibly helpful and kind. Traveling across the country with three young children can be stressful, but arriving at the beach and being with family made it so worth it. I vacationed in San Diego as a child, so it brought back so many wonderful memories. We plan to make it a tradition!

Coronado Photographer | Reflection Photos
Coronado Photographer | Reflection Photos
Coronado Photographer | Reflection Photos
Coronado Photographer | Reflection Photos

We hadn’t done a formal family photo session in two years and the kids have changed so much. We planned to do a session in St. Louis but as soon as we found Amy’s Instagram page, we knew it MUST be done at the beach. Our entire home is very much styled “California decor” (think Serena and Lily) so the photos would be a perfect compliment.

Coronado Photographer | Reflection Photos
Coronado Photographer | Reflection Photos
Coronado Photographer | Reflection Photos

We also wanted to capture each child’s individual personality as they are truly coming into their own right now.

Coronado Photographer | Reflection Photos
Coronado Photographer | Reflection Photos
Coronado Photographer | Reflection Photos

I’m a perfectionist by nature so I tend to overthink everything, and I had a lot of concerns going into the session. What were we going to wear? Was it going to be sunny? What if it’s windy? Will the kids be too tired from the wedding the night before? How would we get ready, travel forty minutes without anyone falling asleep, and transport three carseats in an Uber? Would any of the kids be shy with the water?

But it worked out! OH MY GOSH, there are just so many favorite memories! The biggest one was probably Hunter (5) falling in the ocean midway through the session. It was the moment you either want to cry because “the pictures are going to be ruined” or you embrace it and roll with the tide. Literally! I think we all held our breath a bit when he surfaced, not sure of the reaction. When he popped up, said “I’M OK”, stripped off his shirt, and kept on running, we knew the pictures were going to keep us laughing for a lifetime. Amy calmed us down and took control, forcing all of us to just get WET!

I think the neatest memory is how clearly the entire shoot is imprinted into our minds and hearts. Remembering every smile, giggle, pose, and twirl during the session. Watching each child smile into their daddy’s eyes had this momma’s heart melting. And taking a moment to just walk on the beach with Troy while watching the kids just be kids….you can’t put a price on those moments!

It’s incredibly difficult to just pick one favorite! So many images truly capture the heart of our family! All of the individual pictures of Troy and the kids just melt my heart.

Photographers in San Diego | Professional Photography Hotel del Coronado
Photographers in San Diego | Professional Photography Hotel del Coronado
Photographers in San Diego | Professional Photography Hotel del Coronado
Photographers in San Diego | Professional Photography Hotel del Coronado
Photographers in San Diego | Professional Photography Hotel del Coronado
Photographers in San Diego | Professional Photography Hotel del Coronado

And the incredible individual and action shots of the kids are perfection.

Action Photos on the Beach | Kids Playing
Action Photos on the Beach | Kids Playing
Action Photos on the Beach | Kids Playing
Action Photos on the Beach | Kids Playing
Action Photos on the Beach | Kids Playing
Action Photos on the Beach | Kids Playing
Action Photos on the Beach | Kids Playing

Pics of the three kids bring tears of joy to our eyes!

Sibling Beach Photos | Sandcastles
Sibling Beach Photos | Sandcastles
Sibling Beach Photos | Sandcastles
Sibling Beach Photos | Sandcastles

The picture of Troy helping me down from the lifeguard tower represents his true dedication to teaching our boys how to treat a lady.

Sibling Beach Photos | Sandcastles

The picture of us running down the hill represents how active we are together as a family, always laughing though it….

Family Photos on the Beach | Coronado Photographer

The picture of Hunter coming up after falling in the ocean just makes me giggle.

Wet Family Photos on the Beach | Coronado Photographer

Photos of just Troy and me are such good reminders of how this amazing family came together. Mom and Dad…! So thankful Amy captured those somewhat quiet moments.

Engagement Photos on the Beach | Couples Portraits Coronado
Engagement Photos on the Beach | Couples Portraits Coronado

We will definitely use the photos for our Christmas card this year! We will also use them in our photo gallery upstairs in the kids hallway and in our entryway frames. Grandparents have already requested theirs! Oh, and they are scrolling on our computers constantly while at work. 😊”

Coronado Photographer | Reflection Photos
Coronado Photographer | Reflection Photos

I LOVED reading all this from Tressa, and I can’t help but add a few of my favorites of this lovely (inside and out) mama. Isn’t she the sweetest? And isn’t that the most gorgeous dress?

Coronado Photographer | Reflection Photos
Coronado Photographer | Reflection Photos
Coronado Photographer | Reflection Photos
Coronado Photographer | Reflection Photos

Tressa and Troy are associated with Residential Real Estate Team – Coldwell Banker Gundaker in the St. Louis, Missouri, area. Check them out if you’re in that area and need real estate assistance!

Little Boys in a Christmas Wagon on the Beach

Christmas Photos on the Beach | San Diego Photographer

San Diego local Melissa had waited a few years between sessions, and it was great to see her family again – this time on Coronado.

Here’s a photo from a few years ago at Crystal Pier, when they “only” had three kids:

San Diego Beach Photographer Crystal Pier

Melissa said of her feelings about this year’s session: “With four children, we were worried about keeping everyone’s attention and getting at least a few shots where we were all looking in the correct direction!” Definitely a legit concern, but we totally worked it out!

Christmas Beach Photography San Diego

Her favorite memory was “when we went into the water and all of the kids were giggling about getting their clothes wet.”

Family of Six Reflection | San Diego Photographer

Her favorite pose was “Our four year old with his hands in his pocket, such a cute pose!”

Suspenders Four-Year-Old | San Diego Photographer

With a ton of images to choose from, Melissa and her husband have decided to order a large canvas for over the fireplace and a wall display. I hope they’ll send a photo of the finished projects my way! It is always so rewarding to see images printed and hung in my clients’ homes!

Check out all the fun things we did in that one short hour on the beach:

Christmas Beach Photography San Diego
Little Boys in Suspenders | Hotel del Coronado
Little Boys in Suspenders | Hotel del Coronado
Hobby Horse in the Sand | Little Boys in San Diego
Suspenders in the Sand | Little Boys in San Diego
Suspenders in the Sand | Little Boys in San Diego
Lifeguard Tower on Coronado | Christmas Cards at the Hotel Del
Lifeguard Tower on Coronado | Christmas Cards at the Hotel Del
Family Photographer San Diego | Christmas Cards at the Hotel Del
Family Photographer San Diego | Christmas Cards at the Hotel Del
Family Photographer San Diego | Christmas Cards at the Hotel Del
Red Wagon | San Diego Beach Photographer
Red Wagon | San Diego Beach Photographer
Mother and Son | San Diego Beach Photographer
Mother and Son | San Diego Beach Photographer
Mother and Son | San Diego Beach Photographer
Mother and Son | San Diego Beach Photographer
Ring Around the Rosy | San Diego Beach Photographer
Brothers and Sisters | San Diego Photographer
Family of Six Reflection | San Diego Photographer
Little Girl Poses | San Diego Photographer
Walking on the Shore | San Diego Photographer
Walking on the Shore | San Diego Photographer
Walking on the Shore | San Diego Photographer
Traditional Family Portrait | San Diego Photographer
Little Boy with a Sailboat | San Diego Photographer
Little Boy Jumping a Wave | San Diego Photographer
Couple Goals | San Diego Photographer
Sweet Face | San Diego Photographer
Daddy-Daughter | San Diego Photographer
Sunset Silhouette San Diego | San Diego Photographer

Are you ready for a family session of your own? I’d love to photograph you! Contact me below ⬇️

Vacation Photos Four Years Later | Photography on Coronado Beach

Amanda and her family were vacationing in San Diego for the first time in four years, and she contacted me for a “redo” of the session they had four years before. I was excited to see the changes in her boys, who were young elementary school four years ago then and are now pushing into middle school. A lot changes in four years!

Amanda said, “I always loved the images now on our walls from the photo session we had four years ago when our youngest was four and our oldest was nine, so going to San Diego and not repeating the session at Coronado Beach was a non-option.” Here are a few images from her first session, so you can see the progression of her children growing up:

Amanda’s favorite image from last time:

San Diego Photographer | Coroando Beach Photos

The whole family on the rocks. Amanda’s hubby’s hat remains everpresent. I love it!
San Diego Photographer | Coroando Beach Photos

The boys still have their fun and carefree personalities. They were a joy to photograph then, and they still are!
San Diego Photographer | Coroando Beach Photos

Here’s Amanda’s story this year:

“When we first visited San Diego four years ago, it became my favorite city in the US. I always had an urge to return there and finally, four years later, the stars aligned for us to be able to make the trip. We had twelve full days to explore, and still there are things we’d like to see or do but didn’t get to.”

Photographers in San Diego | Professional Photographers San Diego
Photographers in San Diego | Professional Photographers San Diego

“We were just celebrating being a family and marking the end of summer holidays. We spent one week downtown and one week in La Jolla – a perfect mix.”

Photography in San Diego | Hotel del Coronado
Photography in San Diego | Hotel del Coronado
Photography in San Diego | Hotel del Coronado
Photography in San Diego | Hotel del Coronado
Photography in San Diego | Hotel del Coronado

“I had chosen a color scheme for our family and managed fine with all the boys and my husband but struggled finding something for me, particularly since that color scheme is not the ‘in’ colors at the moment. I ended up bringing several options and did a quick last minute change at the beach after getting Amy’s opinion.”

Photographers in San Diego | Reflection Photos
Photographers in San Diego | Reflection Photos
Photographers in San Diego | Reflection Photos

“We had full sun at sunset last time, which created one of my favorite photos ever of our family. I had hoped for a similar ‘four years later same place’ shot, but there was a blanket of thick cloud across the lower half of the sky, which precluded such an image. Despite that, Amy flexed so well with the conditions we *were* given and worked her magic.”

Sunset Silhouette | San Diego Beach Photography

What’s a favorite memory of your session? “I was feeling so very stressed at the beginning of the session because of our parking issues and being late and losing precious light, but Amy was so calm and encouraging and swooped away our kids. Seeing them have fun and be relaxed with Amy really helped me change my headspace.”

Kids Playing on the Beach | San Diego Professional Photographer
Kids Playing on the Beach | San Diego Professional Photographer
Kids Playing on the Beach | San Diego Professional Photographer
Kids Playing on the Beach | San Diego Professional Photographer

What do you plan to do with your images? “We will do a combination of canvas and print on metal or acrylic for our home. I plan to put one of each of our kids with their parents in their rooms, as well. We’ll also use the images for our Christmas cards.”

Family Photos on the Beach | San Diego Photography
Beach Photos at the Hotel DelFamily Photos on the Beach | San Diego PhotographyEngagement Photos on the Beach | San Diego PhotographyWould you like to book a fun, memory-making session on Coronado beach? I’d love to photograph your family! Contact me below for more information.

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