Matthew | San Luis Obispo High School | Class of 2018 | High School Senior photographer

Matthew and I went on an adventure for his senior portraits. We decided to shoot at the Pismo Beach Pier, which is under construction!

We actually went around the construction and found great locations where he could be photographed. We found lots of pillars (wood and metal) to give us different textures in the images.

In speaking with Matthew, he wants to go to university to study engineering. We are so fortunate in San Luis Obispo that our local university is in the Top 3 for Engineering and Architecture. Since he loves San Luis Obispo and Engineering, his dream school is our local university, Cal Poly (www.calpoly.edu)

Best of luck with Senior year Matthew. Let me know which college you choose. (wink, wink).

Luca | San Luis Obispo High School | Class of 2018 | High School Senior photographer

“His name is Luca…” Does anyone know of this song by the singer, Suzanne Vega? When I initially saw this high school senior’s name, I started humming the song. Sad song, but uses a cool name.

I had a fun time with Luca. He was very specific on the area where he wanted to be photographed, so I took on the challenge. We came to an agreement and I think the images came out great!

I was excited to hear what Luca wanted to do post-graduation. He plans on being a politician. This is a really tough job, but we need strong young leaders right now. I am confident that he will succeed. He is currently an officer in Youth and Government (just like one of my previous seniors, Eva).

Y & G gives high school students an introduction to legislation (researching, writing bills and implementation among other parts of the political process).

Best of luck with Senior year Luca. Let me know which college you choose.

Michael | San Luis Obispo High School | Class of 2018 | High School Senior Photographer

I am proud to say that I photographed the last three Moore sons for their high school senior portraits!  

Michael plans to study Business with a Sports Management concentration. He will do well in this field due to his love of sports (and making money!) .  His brothers and he played Varsity basketball at the high school and he and one other brother played Varsity football.

I had a feeling that Michael wasn’t too interested in having his portraits taken, but he did very well during his session and I tried to make it as painless as possible for him.

Michael, let me know which university you choose! Have a great senior year! I may see you again to photograph YOU at a basketball game!

Eva | San Luis Obispo High School | Class of 2018 | High School Senior Photographer

Eva and my daughter were high school participants of Youth & Government. I loved hearing young adults learning about and wanting to get involved in the political process. 

I had a BLAST with Eva! She totally rocked it. The location she chose had fun geometric shapes and so did her clothing! She had a vision and it worked out well.

I love it when students have some idea about what they want to study at university.  Eva wants to study the Humanities. I do see law in her future as well. Okay, enough of my future predictions. Eva, have a great Senior year and let know which Liberal Arts college you choose.

Vicente | Arroyo Grande High School | Class of 2018 | High School Senior Photographer

What a fun duo, Vicente and his mom! Vincent modeled well, we laughed a lot, and had a really fun time. Vicente's ideal job is to become a photographer, so of course I talked his ear off about photography poses, lighting and his educational plans. I was so excited to hear about an up and coming photographer!

Best of luck with Senior year Vicente and let me know if you want to go on some practice shoots!

The Erbys | San Luis Obispo Family photographer | Surprise Baby Announcement | San Luis Obispo

Katie wanted to surprise her husband LaDell alerting him in an original way that she was pregnant with their 3rd child. I called it a baby-posal! I was SO EXCITED to be part of the surprise. This was photographed in early July, but I had to wait until the end of her first trimester to blog these beautiful images.

Katie gave me the plan:

  1. She would tell LaDell that they were taking family photos (only).
  2. At the end of the family session, I would tell him that I wanted something special for my website and for him to write 3 things on a placard that he loved about her…and she would write three things that she loved about him…but Katie’s message would not quite give her 3 things, but that he was going to be a dad again!
  3. When we were done with the traditional family session, I followed the plan. LaDell was so cute carefully writing the three things that he loved about Katie. Luckily, their younger daughters could not read the placards or they would have blown the surprise.

The couple were facing back-to-back. When I finally asked the two to turn around to face each other, the first thing LaDell said was “you didn’t write down three things!” (You'll notice his thinking pattern in the images.) When he finally read Katie’s sign, he wasn’t sure if it was true and when she said it was true, I had tears in my eyes. It was the sweetest family moment. Their two daughters, ages 4 and 2 were not quite sure what was going on, but all of the adults were so excited!

Congratulations Erby family! I look forward to meeting the littlest one in 2018!

Venue: Cuesta Park, San Luis Obispo, CA

Girls dresses:  DotDotSmile

Katie’s DotDotSmile Page

Maya | High School Senior Portrait Photographer | San Luis Obispo High School | Class of 2018

As a photographer, you never know if a high school senior is going to have a great look in front of the camera. I am always pleasantly surprised when these seniors SLAY their sessions. I have been so fortunate that each one does an amazing job!

Maya is no exception. She came dressed in a Free People "esque" dress and was amazing! So great, that I felt inspired to blog her pictures in black and white to make an even greater statement! I also loved her freckles, so kept them in each image.

Maya is regal and confident. She knows what she wants to do for her career…and she will be one of the individuals improving our society and our world.

She is my 3rd or 4th student that aspires to be a doctor! This means lots of schooling, and very challenging classes. The San Luis Obispo Class of 2018 has really impressed me so far, and school has just started!

Best of luck during your senior year Maya and please let me know which college you choose!

Amber + Red | Non-traditional wedding photographer | San Luis Obispo

Photographing intimate weddings, weddings lasting less than 5 hours and with less that 50 people is something I truly enjoy. Although I photograph many traditional weddings, my newest clients, Amber + Red had a totally different concept about their special day. Their wedding was a Faery themed wedding. The guests dressed as woodland creatures, while others dressed in really fun costumes.

Amber and Red met years ago through friends in San Luis Obispo, CA. Although they have now moved to the Pacific Northwest, San Luis Obispo is still one of their favorite places. They shared their love of this town through this special ceremony.

Wishing you both a lifetime of happiness!

Lukas | San Luis Obispo High School | Class of 2018

Lukas!!!!! I had such a great time with Lukas. As a mom, I appreciate courteous and communicative people. Lukas is one of those individuals.  During our session, we inadvertently blocked walkways and he greeted almost every person before he moved out of the way.

Lukas plans to study Pre-Med and will go out into the world to help his community. He is good at Math and Science, but also has the proper communication skills to work in the Pre-Med profession. I cannot stress the importance of bedside manner when one wants to possibly become a doctor. By the way he treated the general public during the session, he will be a great physician.

Best of luck Lukas. Let me know which university you choose and best of luck with your noble career.

Elizabeth + Ryan | 1950’s Vintage Destination Wedding | Atascadero, CA

As a wedding photographer in San Luis Obispo, each wedding is different and beautiful in its own way. I enjoy photographing non-traditional as well as traditional intimate weddings. Elizabeth and Ryan’s wedding was a 1950’s inspired destination wedding. The couple enjoy visiting San Luis Obispo county so it was perfect for them to have a casual home wedding in this area.

The happy couple met working together at a community college in Southern California. Both were sign language interpreters who interpreted a German class for a Deaf student. The rest…was history…

In addition to their love for sign language, the couple love crafting. The cactus canvas image, created by our groom Ryan, was for guests to sign in. Cacti paintings created by Ryan were all over the grounds, which were really beautiful. In lieu of traditional flowers, one of Elizabeth’s friends created her paper bouquet as well as paper flowers for Elizabeth’s veil and Ryan’s boutonniere.

The wedding ceremony and reception were emotional, and full of support and love from the couple and their guests. During the ceremony, the couple created a time capsule that was buried on the grounds and the couple would come back in 10 years to celebrate.

I also enjoy seeing the bride and groom’s culture infused into the wedding ceremony.  The couple incorporated an Indonesian tradition of joining the bride and groom’s hands, which was beautiful as well. They also included the red cord around the bride’s ring with a small sentiment of Ryan’s blessing to her.

All guests and couple had a great time. Congratulations Elizabeth and Ryan!

Caterer:

Choco's Mexican Grill

Bridal Gown:

Modcloth

 

Britney | Senior Photography | SLOHS | Class of 2018

As soon as I walked onto the Avila Pier, I noticed Britney and her parents looking over the side of the pier. Unfortunately we didn't see any whales that evening.  It is my goal to arrive at least 15 minutes early to every session. It was a very bright evening, so I was excited to have two photo assistants (aka parents) and kept them busy working while watching their beautiful and confident daughter have her photos taken. Britney was the perfect model! She smiled on cue and could “smize” (smile with her eyes) whenever I needed her to.

I enjoy taking the time to speak with every senior during the session. In speaking with Britney, her goal is to attend university and become a CPA. I was so impressed with her goals and aspirations. I see her getting involved in the college accounting clubs as well as other business clubs. I know she will be very successful in all that she chooses to do.

Britney, wishing you the best of luck in your senior year and let me know which university you choose!

Unkee | Pet Portrait Photography | San Luis Obispo

I was truly honored to be asked to photograph 14-year old Unkee.  Unkee is so sweet, and calm around children, adults and other dogs. Due to his age, my client asked if I would have a mini-session with him and his buddy, Danny. Although Unkee had a little difficulty getting up in some instances, he was still full of energy and spirit. Thank you for allowing me to photograph you Unkee!

Shane | Senior Portraits | San Luis Obispo High School | Class of 2018

As a former Academic Advisor and now photographer, I enjoy speaking with High School Seniors about their future. Although my clients fill out a brief questionnaire before the photo session, it is always a goal of mine to speak with High School seniors at the beginning of the session to get to know them a little better, to find out some information about me and to feel comfortable in front of a camera. Shane was great!

1.     He has very high expectations of himself and his next steps in life.

2.     He had the GQ look down!

3.     He felt comfortable doing whatever crazy requests I had for him.

Best of luck with your Senior year and let me know which college (of the many you will apply) you choose!

Lemmy | Senior Portraits | St. Joseph High School Senior | Class of 2018

Although I have lived in San Luis Obispo for many years, it wasn’t until I became a photographer that I started to venture out into our community to scout out interesting locations for High School senior locations. San Luis Obispo County people, you MUST get out and see our area’s beautiful surroundings! Lemmy and his family hadn’t visited our location before. Now, they have a new place to visit and enjoy.

Lemmy, have a great Senior year and let me know which university you choose!

Riley | Senior Portraits | SLOHS | Class of 2018

One of the reasons that I love photographing seniors is their excitement about the next chapter of their lives. Riley is no exception. This aspiring actor will do extremely well in Hollywood.  He has the personality, looks, charisma and eagerness to learn everything about the business.

He is also a Varsity Water Polo player, can you see those blonde highlights!

Riley, have a great Senior year and please let me know which university you select!

Allyson + Ryan | Coast Guard Destination Wedding | San Luis Obispo, CA

Don’t you love hearing the stories of how a couple meet and how the proposal takes place? Call me too inquisitive, but those two questions are the two that I usually ask.

Allyson & Ryan met while working together on a Coast Guard ship. The military doesn’t allow outward relationships, so they had a hidden relationship for about two years.

Allyson and Ryan were the cutest and calmest couple on their wedding day. If they were nervous, one never knew. The two do not live in the area, so their wedding was a San Luis Obispo destination wedding.  Allyson still serves in the Coast Guard so planning, especially a destination wedding would seem problematic, but she made it look easy. As their San Luis Obispo wedding photographer, we communicated a few times on the phone and online to ensure their photographic ideas were honored.

It was a beautiful day in July 2017: the sky was clear and the golden hills of San Luis Obispo were ready to celebrate with the happy couple and their families. The venue, The Prefumo Crest Inn stands at the top of Prefumo Canyon with 360 degree views of San Luis Obispo, Morro Rock, the golden California hills and the ocean. The fog did roll in heavy during the reception.

It was an emotional wedding. The couple presented each other with wedding gifts before the ceremony. Allyson received a beautiful kite and infinity necklace while Ryan received a completed journal written by Allyson. The ceremony was beautiful, but the couple more than anything wanted to celebrate this great event with their families.

One surprise of the day was the gift given to Allyson from the Chavira sisters (Ryan’s sisters).  It was a Coast Guard jacket with her new married name that she could wear while on the ship serving her country.

When the fog rolled in from Avila Beach, the sky turned grey,  jackets came on and blankets were shared, so Allyson’s new jacket was perfect to wear during the reception.

Instead of a wedding cake, the happy couple decided to have a pie that they loved, pumpkin pie as the dessert of choice. It was a great day. Congratuations A + R!

Vendors:

 Florist | Ellen Benner, Burlap bouquets

Caterer | The Rib Line

Bridal gown designer | Wine Country Bride | Santa Rosa, CA

Venue: | Perfumo Crest Inn |San Luis Obispo, CA

Cal Poly Black Commencement | Special Events Photography | San Luis Obispo, CA

For the past 29 years, Cal Poly (San Luis Obispo) has celebrated the graduating African American students by honoring them with a Black Commencement ceremony held on the Friday before the larger commencements. At Cal Poly, the African American student population has been less than 1% of the general student population (147 students of21,300 students according to the Cal Poly 2017 PolyView) for a few years now. The graduating committee worked really hard to make this event a success for this small and prestigious group. The theme for this graduating class was “Love, Integrity and Enlightenment.” The event started off with the Sitkoto Drummers. Their style of African drumming shaped how the rest of the commencement would be, soulful and lively. The keynote speaker was Bri Blue. Her keynote and take-aways for the graduating seniors was not just for the students, but for all who attended. One nugget of information that I will remember is “flowers wilt, be the tree” in all that you try to accomplish. The students are always so excited to receive their stoles made of kente cloth woven from Ghanaian craftsmen.The traditions of this commencement like many of the other cultural commencements (Chicana-Latino, Native American, Middle Eastern, Lavender and Asian Pacific Islander) are very heart felt and family focused. I look forward to next year’s festivities.

Tyler | Headshot Photography | San Luis Obispo, CA

As a portrait photographer, I always enjoy photographing clients who are excited with the outcome of their images. Tyler has always been that way, vivacious, strategic when posing, enjoys life and can’t wait until her online gallery is up!

Tyler is an actress who updates her headshot images bi-annually. I enjoy when she visits San Luis Obispo to hear about the fun things she is up to. During the storytelling process, I enjoy living in the moment with my clients, being that "butterfly" on the wall.

Tyler enjoy your Southern California summer, audition frequently, and let me know when you’ve scored that TV pilot or film! If there are any casting directors reading this, consider Tyler for a possible part in your project.

tyler_renodacampbellphotography_headshotphotography_photosbyrc.com

Film vs Digital photography - which do you prefer?

When my father passed away, he left me one medium format film camera Mamiya 645. I had it looked over, cleaned and was ready for use; until I didn't touch it for YEARS! That beautiful camera loved by my dad stayed on my shelf. This was the time when people were putting down their film cameras and going digital all the way. I felt he would prefer for me to purchase a digital camera and use it frequently vs. using a film camera sporadically. I unfortunately sold the camera to purchase my first digital camera.

One of my former graduate students was a camera collector. When he moved from the West Coast to the Mid-West, he gave me his Mamiya 645! I cried, knowing my dad would be happy that I have the camera that he loved. I did not have it cleaned this time, and it stayed on the shelf for 3+ years before I wanted to start a relationship with it.

When I sold the first Mamiya, digital images did not have the caliber or look of a film picture. I succumbed to the digital way of life and after years of shooting digital, I am interested in using film again. There are quite a few wedding photographers in my area and in California who shoot a hybrid of half-digital/half-film and I am leaning towards that way of shooting weddings. 

I purchased my first light meter last week, so that I can make sure my lighting is correct, but it's really scary starting this new adventure. I am so excited to start this adventure! I am shooting a wedding on July 1 so please send your positive thoughts and prayers when I do this. Here are some images from my playing around with the Mamiya. My real test will be in two weeks at the wedding. I'll keep you posted. :)

Natalie | College Senior Photography Session | San Luis Obispo, CA

I met Natalie as a first year Industrial Technology & Packaging major for the Orfalea College of Business (OCOB) at California Polytechnic State University. From the first time that I met her, I had a feeling that she would make an impact on the university before she graduated. I got to know her best in her second year. She was always calm, composed, answered questions carefully, but in depth and had an amazing smile. Natalie worked with OCOB staff to help launch the Multicultural Business Program , and served as a Peer Advisor for the College of Business for two years. Congratulations Natalie on your accomplishments. I am so proud of you!