PA Holiday Portrait Session: The Powder Mill Village

This sweet family is back on the blog and I could not be happier about it. They recently welcomed a baby girl and I was so excited to get a glimpse at their new addition!

For the third year in a row, I had the opportunity to shoot their session right in their backyard. These guys live in a cozy little corner of the Powder Mill Village area and I just love shooting  at this location. Each year, they surprise me with a different backdrop and each year, it just gets more beautiful. I can totally see why they chose to set up camp in the mountains!

Their eldest baby girl has grown so much and watching her grow over the years is one of the best parts of my job. Somehow, she gets more adorable year after year. This time, I got to see her in a brand new role, big sister! She was definitely a fan of her mini-me!

In the past, we have shot at night time and ended up with some amazingly moody winter shots (check out that session here) but this time, we chose to shoot in the morning and we got a completely different look and feel for their session. It was vibrant and bright and simply gorgeous out!

Their first request of the day blew me away. Their neighbor, a close friend, had recently passed away and they wanted to get photos taken on his front porch with a teddy bear that was made from one of his flannel shirts. I could have cried it was so sweet. And the house was the absolute perfect place to start our shoot. It was a small, white cottage tucked away in a quaint corner of the village.

We spent the better part of the morning walking around their property before taking off for the Powder Mill Village Nature Reserve. As usual, this sweet family blew me away with their appreciation for Mother Nature! I am thinking play dates for their sweet girls and our little Lucy ASAP!

Laurel Highlands Holiday Portraits: The Shipley Family

We’re back!!  I recently took an extended leave from photography to welcome our new baby, a little girl named Lucy, but we are officially back and the holiday portrait season is in full swing! To usher in the end of my maternity leave, I choose to offer a limited number of Mini Sessions during our visit to Pennsylvania and let me tell you, those sessions did not disappoint. To kick off the holiday season, The Shipley Family is back up on the blog.

I was so happy to have this sweet family back in front of my camera mainly because this time, Dad, Jake, got to join in on the fun and the kids were so excited to have both Mama and Daddy there for a fun day of running around at the park!

This session was also a whole lot of fun because little Olivia just turned 1`the week before and Andrew had just celebrated his 3rd birthday! It feels like just yesterday that we were shooting this little man’s 2nd birthday photos!

Last year, we met for Andrew’s 2nd Birthday Photos and all that chasing around put his Mama into labor. The Shipley’s welcomed their sweet baby girl just days after our shoot! I was so sad to have missed it but their sweet Mama made sure I got to meet her little love during our Spring Mini Sessions and little Liv was just as cute as promised.

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This time, we met at Keystone State Park in New Derry, Pennsylvania for a quick shoot with the whole gang! Mama, Emily, may have provided a few bribes to keep the little ones spirits up but otherwise, these guys were perfect!

We caught the tail end of the fall foliage in southwestern Pennsylvania and with the change of season brought the chilly weather! Thankfully, this gang came prepared. The Shipleys all wore warm coats and comfy boots to run around in!

We ended our shoot by setting a blanket down in the sand and letting this group just love on each other! As usual, these kiddos were full of personality, just how I like em! To check our their Spring Mini Session, head here. I love seeing how much the kids have changed in just a short 6 months since their last portrait session!

I had a blast with the Shipley Family and I look forward to seeing them again in the future! Stay tuned for more behind the scenes from our Pennsylvania Holiday Portrait Sessions!

PA Mini Sessions: Abbie & Gabby

OK, y’all, it’s about to get sentimental up in here. These are my baby sisters. Yes, I said baby sisters. They don’t look it though, right? I know…because they are so grown up. It’s kind of breaking my heart. I want to go back to the days of Hannah Montana karaoke in the living room and Barbie dream houses. You know, when they were in diapers and they idolized me. Click here for a sneak peek of those days! But, those days are gone. Now, these buttheads are all about making fun of me for wearing skinny jeans and tennis shoes and I kind of hate it.

I blinked and now the both of them are about to make their way to the adult table and I’m just so “shook” by how fast the time has gone. I swear I could’ve cried when I saw them during this last trip home. I just cannot believe they are 11 and 13.

Abbie is all attitude but in the best way possible. No one is going to tell her what to do. She has a mind all her own and she isn’t afraid to let you know how she feels. She is kind and generous, constantly thinking of others. I find myself in awe of her more times than not. During this shoot in particular, I was so proud of how she took charge. She was constantly corralling the younger girls with a patience and grace that I wish I had at her age.

And, then there is Gabby. She is still my wild child of a baby sister. She is constantly climbing trees and barns and about anything she can find. I really hate that she is growing up. All these years, she’s been the baby and now I’ve got to find a way to stop treating her like one because the fact of the matter is, she isn’t one anymore. She’s this ridiculously smart and charismatic kid who is on the brink of the dreaded JUNIOR HIGH! Though life is moving so fast all around her, she still manages to stay grounded, holding on to that unyielding sense of humor and I just love this about her.

This shoot was a little different than most, in that Jaime Lonigro of Lonigro Photography , was along for the ride. She set us up at the most amazing backdrop, her aunt’s farm in Marguerite, PA and brought her camera along so we could take advantage of second shooting for each other. Boy, was I glad she was there. I am always snapping photos of the girls but I never get any of the 3 of us and Jaime made sure to snap a bunch of us three together.

We worked our way up to the field above the farm for some photos in that golden wheat. It wasn’t the prettiest of days but the fall foliage was lighting up the trees and those cloudy skies cut the afternoon light and really created a different mood for the shoot. We told them to dance together and they interpreted that as square dance together. lol That’s Southwestern Pennsylvania for ya!

Before we finished up, I had Gabby pose with the umbrella for a few shots. The result was magic. Though we ended up missing the rain, the umbrella against her blue dress and the overcast sky made for an incredible portrait.

I was so thankful for yet another wonderful shoot with these girls. It is always a blast when I get to let them skip school and have a few photography lessons with me and it really melts my heart that they have taken a liking to portraiture. This year for Christmas, I hooked them up with their very own camera. They have been such a huge help with my shoots every time that I come back home and I just love watching them enjoy the process of posing clients and knowing which lens to use in which situation. I cannot wait to see where their camera takes them!

For information on how to book your unique Portrait Session here in Texas or when I am traveling in Pennsylvania, inquire with Angelina at therustienailhead@gmail.com. I would love to hear what you have in mind!

PA Portrait Session: the Greece Family

Hey guys! We’re back with more of our Portrait Sessions from our Pennsylvania Trip. The wild and crazy Greece Family is no stranger to the blog. In fact, I had the opportunity to photograph these guys twice last year. Our first portrait session took place at Winnie Palmer Nature Reserve in Latrobe, PA.  You can check out all the adorable photos from their summer session here.

This time around, we met at Twin Lakes Park in Greensburg, PA for a huge family shoot. My Uncle Mark (Elliana and Jake’s Grandpa) had reached out about getting new Family Portraits taken of their whole crew and I was happy to oblige. I will soak up any chance I get to snuggle my precious Goddaughter and her big brother!

I knew this bunch would be a breeze. My Uncle Mark and Aunt Jackie have spent the last 40 some odd years putting their hearts and souls into being the best parents possible and it is such a joy to see them take on the challenge of being Grandparents! Needless to say, they’re naturals. Both Jake and Ellie wouldn’t know what to do without their Mimi and Popop.

We managed to snag a few photos where everyone was looking at the camera but I really fell in love with the one of the whole crew looking at Jake. He just has the biggest smile on his face. It was so wonderful to see them all interacting together and I cannot believe we fit all their BIG HEADS in one shot.

Next up, Uncle Mark and Aunt Jackie. I am always over the moon when Grandma and Grandpa want to jump in on some photos so I made sure to get some of just the two of them together. I had them both giggling when I told them to pose “prom-style”. These were by far my favorite images of the bunch. I even cried a little bit. They’ve been through a lifetime of ups and downs and they’ve still got each other to lean on after all these years.

Aunt Jackie was worried that I wouldn’t be able to get any photos of them with their Grandchildren because Jake and Ellie are movers and shakers. With that in mind, I told them to just play with them instead of posing them and I love the way these turned out. The three images above are a true testament to what a day with their grandparents look like; a whole lotta love and even more laughs!

Last but not least, the best picture, these 2 goofballs. They wanted a photo of them posing like the Stepbrothers DVD cover and how special are they?!? We call this “Real Brothers”! I always have so much fun with these guys! We’ve spent a lifetime growing up together and I love knowing that we will always have each other!

Dallas-Fort Worth Holiday Portrait Sessions: Reece, Katie & Rose

Up next on the blog are some of my favorite people in the whole wide world! Meet my brother-in-law Reece, his wife Katie and my absolutely adorable baby niece, Rose! Katie and Reece reached out about having their Christmas Card photo taken and I was so stoked to have a chance to snap a few photos of them with their little angel!

We met at their house in Dallas and proceeded to head to Flagpole Hill. Katie is a Portrait Photographer as well and had been doing a few of her sessions there this season. She was loving on all that afternoon light and considering this is just around the corner from their house, it was the perfect spot to set up shop!

Right out the gate, we managed to snag a bunch of photos of them just loving on their baby girl. Katie was loving the dark greens that were scattered around the park and against her purple dress and Rose’s pink cheeks, the fall foliage would serve as the perfect backdrop. They even managed to recruit a friend, Kristen, to come along and sing songs for my niece and keep Rosie in stitches during our shoot.

Last year’s photo featured this adorable rocking chair and Katie wanted to make sure we got another one of Rose sitting in it. I love the progression images. It is so neat to see just how big Rose has gotten over the last year. It is crazy to think she is going to be TWO soon. Time really needs to slow down. As much as we love watching her grow,  I just want to freeze her at this perfect age. She’s starting to talk and running all over the place but she still wants to be held and she never leaves home without her “WUBY”.  She is seriously the sweetest baby girl.

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Their Golden Retriever, Dutch, aka Rose’s best pal, managed to make his way into a few photos and I am so glad he did. We weren’t sure about bringing him along just because he’s a bit of an adventurer but I am so glad he came. This pup has been with Reece and Katie since I first met them and I couldn’t imagine their family without him.

We ended the shoot by taking a small stroll up the hill and stopping for a few images of this trio in a huge clearing amongst the tree line. I am so thankful for this opportunity because I have always admired Katie’s work and I consider them asking me to be their photographer a great honor. I have never met more driven and passionate people than Katie and Reece. Whatever obstacle they choose to tackle, they put their whole hearts into it and I am inspired daily by their commitment to God, family and hard work.

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To check out what this Mama has been up to, head to www.fotolanthropy.com. Katie heads a nonprofit organization, FOTOlanthropy, in Dallas, Texas that devotes time and energy into capturing stories about those who have overcome adversity.  Browse their site for more information on how you can nominate someone for their next story or purchase anything from the shop (genuine leather camera straps, tote bags, luggage tags, journals) and 10% will be donated toward their cause!

Reece and Katie recently made headline news when their documentary, Travis: A Soldier’s Story was released on Netflix! If you haven’t seen it, make time and get tissues. It’s uplifting and light-hearted and totally inspiring; definitely worth watching with the whole family! For more information on this film, Travis Mills and his story, check out our  previous blog. It’s jam packed with exciting news about the Mills Family and what they’ve been up to recently. Besides being on Ellen!!! and meeting the President, the Mills Family recently welcomed their 2nd child, a baby boy, appropriately named Dax, after the two medics that saved Travis’ life overseas.

 

Dallas-Fort Worth Holiday Portrait Sessions: The Fogle Family

Meet the Fogle Family! These guys are longtime friends. In fact, Mr. Norris and I vacationed with these guys long before their two little ones were a part of the picture. We met Cassie and Zach almost 10 years ago on my first trip to Texas.

After meeting these guys, we all jumped on a plane and headed out on a weeklong adventure in the Panamanian rainforest. Cassie and I kayaked the Canal, Zach and Russ drank at the swim-up bar and we all hiked to the Ya-Ya Waterfall for a dip in the heart of the jungle. That trip was so fun because we all got to get to know one another in such a fun setting. It was a trip full of memories that I will cherish forever and I am so glad that all these years later, we all get to still hang out!

Cassie reached out not too long ago about booking a Family Portrait Session at their home and I was happy to oblige. I love in-home sessions because everyone is so relaxed and natural in their own setting. The bonus is that the Fogle Family Home is so awesome. These guys are adventurers and their two little ones (Falin and Finley) have a plethora of  fun stuff to do right in their own backyard.

We started out in the front yard. Cassie and Zack had built some pretty amazing Christmas decorations including a huge tree and a bunch of candy canes that would be perfect for a Christmas Card photo. Mom and Finley even busted out a little “watch me Whip, Watch me Ney-Ney” moves.

The kids were adamant that every member of the family should be in the shoot so as their cat, Boomerang and their pup, Leiney, made their way over to us, we made sure to snuggle them both for a few photos. I love that the kids wanted to take so many photos with their pets. Falin said to me at one point, “Can you please take a picture of me and my dog? Doesn’t he look so cute right now?” And yes, he did.

AND I TOTALLY FORGOT…They have CHICKENS! So, of course, we had to include them in the shoot. Popcorn made his way over and once the kids had chased them down, it was time to love on these hens for a little bit. Finley had me cracking up. She even threw the chicken at me at one point but no joke, it’s my favorite photo of the bunch!

Once I had grabbed enough photos of just the kids, we moved onto Mom and Dad. Cassie and Zach are so cute it’s crazy.  These smiles are genuine and I love that after all these years, these two still have that magic together. And yes, I may or may not have asked Zach to whisper the ABCs in her ear as seductively as possible.

After these two were done fooling around, the kids and pets all jumped in for a few more family shots around their fire pit in the backyard. We were nearing the end of the kids’ patience so we had to hurry but I just love the way these turned out. Zach and Cassie built an enormous pergola with swings all the way around their fire pit and it played the perfect backdrop to end our session.

As usual, I had a blast with these guys! I always look forward to spending a little time with them and I really look forward to watching this family grow in love! Keep a lookout for another feature because Mom, Cassie, and I did a little side project after their shoot and I cannot wait to tell you a little but more about Cassie and what she’s been up to these days!

DECEMBER ONLY SPECIAL: $100 Portrait Session Gift Certificates that you can use in 2018 towards a 30 minute session, print release and online gallery with downloadable PIN and a Blog Spotlight for sharing with Friends and Family! Email Angelina at therustienailhead@gmail.com to inquire purchasing and packages!

Dallas Fort-Worth Holiday Portrait Session: The Auten Family

Hey guys! We are back with another Dallas Fort Worth Holiday Portrait Session! This time around, I met the kindest family at River Legacy Park in Arlington, Texas for an early morning Holiday Photo Shoot!

Mom, Victoria, reached out in the fall after having won a Rustie Nail Gift Certificate in an auction at a Save-the-Boobies event to raise money for Breast Cancer Research. My good friend, Cassie (who is about to be up on the blog with her adorable family and maybe even a few chickens), helps coordinate this event each year and I am always happy to donate a Portrait Session to help raise money for this cause.  I was over the moon that this family had bid and won so I wanted to make sure they had a great experience!

It was an early Saturday morning when we met and I was….wait for it…..late. I HATE BEING LATE!! Seriously though, it is the worst especially after Mom had warned that the boys would be cranky having to have gotten up so early on a Saturday. I even left my house super early so I could scope out the scene and check my lighting but go figure, Dallas-Fort Worth traffic got in my way. Thankfully, these guys were so great about it. They were calm and cool and ready to go from the beginning.

I met their youngest, Vaughn, first. He is a quiet little guy. Like most guys, he’s not too keen on smiling. He’s content being himself and confident in the way he presents himself which is something I really admire about him. Big brother, Josh, has the craziest head of curly hair and a really great smile when he busts it out. This guy is on the precipice of adulthood and you can totally tell that he’s ready for the next adventure.

On to Mom and Dad…these two are seriously so ga-ga for one another. When I ask most couples to impromptu dance in a field, they hesitate and fumble with how to hold one another or spin around but not these two. From the minute I asked them to pair up, they began twirling and laughing together. The way Norman looks at Victoria reminds me of the way Noah looks at Allie and I kinda love it. (#theNotebookisstilltheBESTmovieEVA)

After running around near the paddling trails of the Trinity River, we started making our way towards an open field with a few Christmas trees because I freaking love Christmas and these guys came prepared to hike around with me!

Again, these two with the dancing. Could they be more adorable?

Once we’d manage to snag individual shots of everyone, I wanted to make sure  we got good ones of Mom with her boys! This was the moment that Vaughn gave me the biggest smile. His Mom just gave him a big bear hug from behind and low and behold, the boy was grinning from ear to ear!

After snagging a few shots of Dad with his boys, I set out the blanket that Mom and Dad had brought along so we could grab a few more of this sweet family all together. You would never have guessed it but we are right next to a major highway and that’s another thing I love about this job. Sometimes it is about creating an illusion and other times its’ about overcoming that obstacle but regardless, I love the challenge and this sweet family had the notion to trust my vision.

As we came to the end of our session and we were making it back to the car, we stopped one last time to take a few photos in front of the changing leaves. Fall in Dallas-Fort Worth doesn’t last very long and Victoria kept that in mind while planning her session so I made sure to get her some really bold photos with those golden leaves in the background.

I could not have dreamt up better clients to take a hike with on a chilly fall morning in Texas. Thank you to the Auten family for allowing me to document this special time in your lives and thank you for your generous donation for Breast Cancer Research. Every little bit helps and we are so thankful for people like you who donate your time, energy and love towards a cause that affects us all.

If you would like to donate to Breast Cancer Research or to inquire how you can help at next years Save the Boobies event….head here.

Dallas-Fort Worth Portrait Sessions: Pida & the Girls

IF YOU THOUGHT THE GIRLS’ SHOOT WAS CUTE JUST WAIT…

THIS TIME, THEIR MAMA, PIDA, JUMPED IN ON ON THE FUN! We met for a bohemian styled shoot on the outskirts of Fort Worth, Texas and these girls brought their A game.

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Ever the fashionistas, these girls came prepared. Decked out in Kendra Scott bling, a super cozy vest and one fabulous flannel, these girls were ready to brave whatever came our way. In the past, these shoots have always become a sort of adventure and I was excited to see how this would turn out!

The thing I love the most about working with my friend Pida is that she seriously gets me. And thank God for that. I can tell her the crazy plan that I have been dreaming up and she somehow has this way of bringing my vision to life for me. She always has the right extra touch that makes the photos that much more cohesive. Truth be told, I am constantly asking her to style my shoots for me. Can we all just start petitioning for that?

In all seriousness though, these girls are never short on love for one another. I can’t tell you how many times I have seen this group of women uplift and support one other. As a single mom, their Mama Bear has done a great job of making sure that they look at life with eyes wide open, ready for whatever challenges might come their way. It’s awe-inspiring to see that kind of joy in real life and these Ladies emanate it.

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Ummmm…..Flawless. That’s all I’ve gotta say about that.

Seriously, how cute are these guys? I brought this blanket scarf along because in the past, we’ve had some posing issues. I know, I know. It’s hard to believe but usually by the time, Pida, jumps in the photos, the girls are whooped. They are in a position to have used up all their giggly, fun energy but this time would be different. I made sure Mom jumped in early and the product was simply perfect. This set of photos is probably my favorite of the bunch simply because they look so relaxed.

And, then the tickling happened and these girls just let loose. Once they started making faces and attempting to do the worm, I knew I had lost control but really in the best sort of way. In all my shoots, I hope that my clients feel free to actually be themselves. To make fart noises and do impressions of their Mom behind her back and to really have a good time. A few back handsprings later, we called it a wrap on this Mommy+Me boho shoot.

As usual, I had a blast hanging out with my girl, Pida and her two childlike-wildlike wonders. To see some of their past adventures with the Rustie Nail, head here.

Don’t forget, we have our Dallas Fort Worth Holiday Mini Session Special going on throughout the month of November. The package includes a 30 minute session at a TBD location within DFW, electronic delivery of downloadable gallery + the print release. These are perfect for Christmas Cards, Newborn Sessions, Senior Photos! Email therustienailhead@gmail.com for booking inquiries and details!

 

Laurel Highlands Holiday Mini Sessions: Kaison

Hey guys! We’re back with yet another adorable baby. He is wild and crazy like his Mama and tough and bull-headed like his Daddy. Ya’ll Meet Kaison Bolish! I had the pleasure of snuggling on this goofy little guy while I was back home visiting in the Laurel Highlands of Pennsylvania! With that devilish smirk and his sweet dimples, this little charmer is about to drop a CUTE bomb!

This little stinker was featured on our Blog last year for his first ever Holiday Mini Session. I met with his Mama and Papa at Grandpa’s farm for a bunch of maternal family portraits! We had the whole gang out for a fun day on the farm. You can check it all out here. Grandma and Grandpa Stickle even got caught sneaking a few kisses during the shoot!

This shoot would be a little different than the last. My longtime buddy, Kendrick aka Kaison’s daddy, was out hunting deer so Mama would be bringing baby boy by Twin Lakes Park in Greensburg, PA for a quick and easy shoot while all the leaves were  still changing colors.

Kelly showed up early with her little guy looking handsome as ever. Seeing that he had a slight case of the sniffles, we chose to keep his session short and sweet. Babies run out of fuel after about 30 pictures anyway so we just let Kaison run around the park while I snapped away! And yes I did say run. The last time I saw this little ham he was just learning how to crawl! How is this child running?!?!?

In all seriousness, I need time to slow down. Kaison is already a year and a half old!! And, I swear he gets more handsome daily.  I love watching his Mama’s Snapchats and seeing what this little butthead is up to all the time. Thank God for FaceTime and SnapChat and all the wonderful technology that allows me to still be apart of Kaison’s life even when I am 1800 miles away.

What’s left to day? He is the cutest. You know it. I know it. Everybody knows it. Heck, even HE knows it! Now let’s just hope Mommy and Daddy give this handsome fella a baby sister sometime soon so I can photograph her too! 🙂

 If you would like to inquire about booking a session when I am visiting in Pennsylvania, follow along on Instagram @therustienail for Travel Updates or email me at therustienailhead@gmail.com!

Ellie’s Newborn Session: Part II

And, they’re back! Mama Carly, Baby Ellie and I had so much fun doing Ellie’s Newborn Shoot that we decided to extend their session so Daddy could join in on the fun. We met at Twin Lakes Park in Greensburg, Pennsylvania so we could capture a few photos of this adorable Trio!

Fall was really starting to kick in and you could feel the temperature dropping as we got closer to sunset so we decided to keep this shoot sweet and simple. I love shooting Newborns outside in the natural light because every little wrinkle and dimple is so perfectly exaggerated during that golden hour but I had no intentions of letting Baby Ellie get a cold. I assured first time parents, Carly and Jesse, that we would make it quick!

Because Mommy and Baby had a chance to do a full on photo shoot together already, I wanted to make sure got some photos of Daddy and his little lady. After snagging a few Family Portraits, I told Mama to hand Baby Girl over to Dad!

So he of course grabbed her up like a football and began snuggling his newest little nugget. Ellie was as happy as a clam cozied up to her Daddy!

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Did someone say Daddy’s Girl? Just look at the way she is looking at her Papa Bear!

TETKOSKINEWBORN-26But as cute as Daddy is with his little girl, my all time favorite images from this set are the ones of these three together! Jesse and Carly are naturals. You can tell that they are over the moon with joy and Ellie seems all too pleased to be along for the ride.

This session was so fun and so easy. I had these 3 in and out of the park in less than 20 minutes! I had the best time getting to hang out with this adorable trio and I look forward to seeing them again! Congratulations Jesse & Carly!