Windy Wedding | Wedding Photography Portland Oregon

The Kinslands had a beautiful outdoor peacock themed wedding ceremony and reception planned at a park in Corvallis, OR. Some rain threatened their beautiful day, but what really did them in was the massive wind that tried to blow their special day away. So at the last minute, they had to move their wedding to a nearby bar, called  Jack Okole’s Bar & Grill .   I was amazed at how good the bride took such a last minute change in plans. It was definitely one my most challenging weddings to photograph because bar lighting isn’t anywhere near ideal for good photographs. And I really don’t prefer having neon beer signs in the background, haha! Also, the room was such a small space to hold all their beloved friends and family. But we all did the best we could with a difficult situation. The bride and groom and the wedding guests had a great time. No matter what the location, their love was the same and it was a beautiful ceremony to unite two people who adore each other. Thankfully, we were able to squeak in some outdoor formal photos and  Bruce’s Starker Arts Park, where the wedding was originally supposed to be held, and I’m so glad, because I absolutely love the photos we got outside.

wedding photographer portland oregon

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Rayleigh Leavitt : Portland Wedding Photographer
Tigard and Portland Wedding Photography and Video
503.828.2973     info@byrayleigh.com

A Journey | Beauty Photography Portland Oregon

Boudoir Photography Portland Oregon

I really admire my client, Kathy. Not only has she been successful at her weight loss goals (something I really struggle with), but she didn’t wait until she was the “perfect size” to celebrate her beauty and enjoy being a woman. As she began her weight loss journey, she decided to do a sort of “before” photo shoot. The photos would be a gift to her loving husband, but she also did them for herself, to document her looks at that time in her life and, of course, to have a fun day of pampering and to feel beautiful, no matter her size.

A year after her first shoot, Kathy came in for a second shoot to celebrate her 48 pound weight loss success and to document the next stage of her journey. Since she’s still working her way toward the finish line, she plans to come again a year after her second shoot, and I can’t wait to see how far she’s come. But for now, I’m excited to share with you the photos from her first two sessions with me.

 

Kathy’s first shoot –   2013

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“I happened upon Rayleigh’s website and was HOOKED. Rayleigh’s website was awesome from introduction to conclusion. By the time I read through all the information and viewed the pictures I was convinced I wanted to have photos done by her. And on top of all that it was clear she catered to women of ALL sizes and was going to make sure I (as a BBW -Big Beautiful Woman) was as comfortable as possible. She did not disappoint!

I arrived at Rayleigh’s house and immediately felt comfortable. She’s a personable and lovely young woman and had a perfect set up for boudoir photography. Never once was I uncomfortable or uneasy. I brought my own clothes but she had some nice pieces in her own collection that I was welcome to use.”

 

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“The most fabulous make up artist came in to do my make up. All I can say is that after she was done and I looked in the mirror I immediately thought “Holy Sh*t!!!” (I think I blurted that out too! LOL) The make up was incredibly beautiful and I almost started to cry happy tears. I had never felt so glamorous, EVER!

The photo shoot proceeded on schedule and in every pose I was asked to do I felt completely at ease. Rayleigh was a great coach in teaching me how to look at the camera lens to convey a sincere and ‘sexy’ look.”

 

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Kathy’s celebration shoot – 2014

 

Boudoir Photography Portland Oregon

After Kathy’s second shoot, I asked her a few questions.Describe your body in 5 words

Describe your body in 5 words
Soft Big Beautiful Fair Worthy

How do you feel about your body?
Sensitive, Self-conscious at times, confident in health

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Do you think your age (53) affects how sexy you truly are?
At times, yes. But it’s important to get the negative thoughts out, and bring in the positive ones. Confidence is sexier than anything else.

What gets better with age?
You really start to believe in your own worth/value.

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Did this experience change the way you see yourself or the way you think of beauty?
Yes, I could see in my smile a look of confidence.

What does “beauty” mean to you?
Having self confidence is a great feeling. And when you feel good, you glow/radiate a kind of beauty that isn’t just physical.

What does “sexy” mean to you?
Desirable, Admirable, Confident

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What was your favorite moment of the whole experience?
There wasn’t just one. I loved the prep session with the makeup and hair stylist and the chance to chat with her and Rayleigh. And having a glass of wine while prepping was awesome, too!

How did you feel after seeing the photos we created?
I love them!

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Any advice for ladies thinking about doing a photo shoot?
Do it! It’s one of the most fun experiences you could do for yourself. When you see how beautiful they turn out your ego and attitude will get a boost! Drink plenty of water in the days preceding your shoot and make sure you get a good night’s rest the night before.

Anything else you want to share about your experience?
I loved the payment types Rayleigh offered.

Boudoir Photography Portland Oregon

Rayleigh Leavitt : Boudoir and Glamour Photography, Portland, Oregon
503.828.2973     info@byrayleigh.com

 

Beautiful Baby Bump | Maternity Photography Portland Oregon

I’ve never been pregnant, myself, but I can imagine that towards the end of the pregnancy when your walk is more of a waddle and you feel uncomfortable and…let’s just say it… huge, you might not feel like the most glamorous lady. That’s why I love when Moms-To-Be come in for a special pampering maternity photo session. Not only are they documenting a beautiful time in their lives, for them and for their child, but they are taking some time to feel less like a baby oven and more like a beautiful woman again. Pregnancy IS beautiful. And these maternity photos of the gorgeous, Mara, capture that perfectly.

 

 

 

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A great time to schedule your maternity session is when you are around 7 months along. So contact me to get your shoot on the books!

 

Rayleigh Leavitt : Boudoir and Glamour Photography, Portland, Oregon
503.828.2973     info@byrayleigh.com

For Her Groom | Bridal Boudoir Photography Portland Oregon

Danielle wanted to keep most of her bridal boudoir photos for 0nly her man to see, which is an option that all my clients have and I always respect. But she didn’t mind sharing the photos that were more anonymous, so I’m happy to be able to show you those ones. Danielle brought in her wedding garter and wedding shoes for the shoot. Aren’t those shoes gorgeous? Her fiance received the photos as his wedding gift, and of course, he loved them! I haven’t met a Groom yet who wouldn’t love a gift like that.

 

Bridal Boudoir Photography Portland Oregon

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“I absolutely loved working with Rayleigh on my boudoir photos. The photos were a surprise wedding gift to my husband and Rayleigh could not have been more wonderful throughout the entire process.   She is able to create a comfortable and relaxed atmosphere and her work speaks for itself; she is truly talented!   My husband absolutely loved his gift and thinks the photographs are amazing.  

Like most women, I was nervous about taking the photos. I also had “concern” areas and Rayleigh was amazing in taking photos to compliment my body and what I was comfortable with.   During the shoot, I felt completely comfortable and actually had fun with Rayleigh.   If you are looking for someone who is professional, will make you feel comfortable, listen to your needs and concerns, and take beautiful photos, Rayleigh is perfect. I would recommend her to anyone I know.”   –Danielle

 

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Are you getting married? A bridal boudoir session would make for an excellent gift for you Groom. Contact me today and we can go over details.

Rayleigh Leavitt : Boudoir and Glamour Photography, Portland, Oregon
503.828.2973     info@byrayleigh.com

Hilltop Wedding | Wedding Photographer Portland Oregon

Jason and Stephanie were married at The Anderson Lodge Hilltop House in Ariel, Washington. It was a beautiful venue with gorgeous views. There wedding was simple, yet classic and warm. I felt like part of the family and it was an honor to be there and capture their precious memories. Isn’t Stephanie’s dress gorgeous?

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If you are getting married in Portland, Oregon or a nearby location, I’d love to chat with you about your wedding. Contact me to schedule a free consultation.

Rayleigh Leavitt : Portland Wedding Photographer
Tigard and Portland Wedding Photography and Video
503.828.2973     info@byrayleigh.com

Couples Portraits | Engagement Photography Portland Oregon

I love photographing couples. Traiz and Jen are a beautiful couple and I loved capturing the loving closeness they feel for each other. Since the time of their shoot, they have become husband and wife. I’m thrilled for them. Maybe I can get them to come back again for some anniversary portraits!

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Rayleigh Leavitt : Boudoir and Glamour Photography, Portland, Oregon
503.828.2973     info@byrayleigh.com

My New Studio | Boudoir Photography Portland Oregon

I am so thrilled to be able to share some photos of my newly remodeled photography studio. My studio is in my home. I had a 519 sq ft “bonus” room upstairs that was my studio space for about 3 years. It worked great but I was feeling quite cramped and wanted some room to breath. It just so happened that on the other side of one of my studio walls, was a huge open attic space with nothing but rafters and insulation. Why the original home builders didn’t finish it off for usable space, we may never know. But I pinched pennies for 3 years to save up to turn that space in to an amazing addition to my studio. Below is the before and after photos of the extra space. We added just under 300 sq ft of space and with that space I got a 14×14 room for my hair and makeup station and two shooting sets, a small bathroom, and a huge walk in closet/dressing room to store my studio wardrobe. All of that (minus the bathroom) was crammed in to the original space which now holds two shooting sets (including a queen size bed and my poly-board backdrops and reflectors), a computer station for clients to view their photos and place their orders, a props closet, and room to breath! 2015-03-04_0028

 

Here is what the new space looked like to start with. The man pictured below is our contractor, Brent Wright with Wright Home Builders. He did a great job and he’s an awesome guy that we trusted and felt really comfortable with, which is important when you are shelling out all kinds of cash to someone so they can do a job you know nothing about.

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Here is the view from my old space, looking at the hole punched in the wall to create the door between the old space and the new space.

 

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Here are just some progress shots along the way. My dog was inspecting everything and making sure they were doing a good job. 😉

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They added a 5×5 window in the side of the house. I requested a window that was high up from the floor, with a wide window sill so I could have clients sit in the window or lean up against it.

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I picked out some laminate flooring from Lumber Liquidators and then hired a couple of nice guys to install it for us.

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Here is my amazing hubby, tediously painting stripes on the walls by my request. The stripes looks SO GOOD! But they were not easy to do, that’s for sure. We decided to do the painting ourselves to save some money. Boy was it a lot of work.

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And finally….. drum roll please…….. The new space!!!!

Along the pink striped wall is my hair and makeup station. I have a salon chair which is adjustable height (so nice for the makeup artist). And I have a directors chair as a back up. I use that when I have more than one client getting hair and makeup done at the same time, such as for a mother-daughter shoot, or two friends having boudoir photos done on the same day. The door to the right leads to the new bathroom/dressing room/closet area.

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The blue couch area is a set used for photography. But it’s also nice to have extra seating for me and for friends/family who are there while the client is getting her hair and makeup done.

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More views of the hair and makeup station. I’m thinking of getting a new rug. I think I need something lighter colored. This old rug doesn’t seem to match my new space very well.

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This corner with the chaise is also a set used for photography. This happens to be my dog’s favorite spot to sleep while my client is in hair and makeup. Haha! I LOVE the vaulted ceiling on this side of the room.

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Now, going through the door that is to the right of the chaise, you’ll find my studio wardrobe closet, which is also a dressing room, and the half bathroom.   My clients used to have to go downstairs in to the main part of my house to use the bathroom so it’s really nice to have a dedicated bathroom in the studio. The tray of supplies seen below is sort of like an emergency supply for my clients to use. I have nail polish remover, mouth wash, lotion, makeup remover (for those who are surprising their husbands with a boudoir shoot and can’t come home looked all glammed up), wrinkle remover (for clothing, not for faces, haha), and scissors. I also have some granola bars for if they get hungry.

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This is the view from the “old” space, looking in to the new space through the gorgeous french doors (which I do plan to use for photos, yay!) Next is the view of the older space where you can see the queen bed and the computer station. In the far corner is a props closet.

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beauty photography portland oregon

Next to the window is where I store and use my poly-board backdrops and reflectors. That table along the wall is there as a leftover from my Grand Reopening. But I couldn’t move it because I’m using it to hide all the paint supplies which we can’t put away until we finish our paint touch ups. Haha!

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This is where I store all my props. I also have a mini fridge full of drinks that I can offer my clients when they come for their shoots.

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And that’s all, folks!   But I just thought I’d end by showing some photos of my old space when I had everything crammed in to the one room.   Back then, I spent more time moving furniture around between shots than I did taking photos during the shoots!   Not shown here is my old “viewing and ordering room” which was in a bedroom downstairs. Since I now have room to move all that up to the studio, I get to use that bedroom as a crafting room. Bonus!!!

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I just held a super fun Grand Reopening party to celebrate the new space. You can check out photos from that here.

Thanks for taking my studio tour! I hope you like my new space. If you’d like to come check it out and do a portrait shoot of your own, just contact me and I’d love to go over details with you!

 

Rayleigh Leavitt : Boudoir and Glamour Photography, Portland, Oregon
503.828.2973     info@byrayleigh.com

Grand Reopening Fun| Boudoir Photography Portland Oregon

A couple of weeks ago I had the enormous pleasure of celebrating my new photography studio remodel/expansion with a Grand Reopening Celebration! It was such a fun event with about 25 guests. There was a raffle with tons of fun prizes, which were all donated by local businesses. We had mini makeovers done by my girl, Stephanie, from Salon Mariposa.   We also had chair massages by Brian at At Ease Massage Therapy. I hosted a photo booth, complete with lots of crazy props and costumes. After looking through these fun party photos, you can also check out my blog about my new studio space to see some better photos of the actual space.

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Here are some of my favorites from the photo booth photos I took and then emailed to the guests afterwards.

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Below are some cell phone photos taken by a couple of guests at the event. They were nice enough to send them to me.

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A special thank you to the kind sponsors who donated gifts and services to make my celebration so much fun!

Rayleigh Leavitt : Boudoir and Glamour Photography, Portland, Oregon
503.828.2973     info@byrayleigh.com

Couples Portraits | Couples Photography Portland Oregon

couples photography portland oregon

I met Jess while she was waitressing at our favorite restaurant, Famous Dave’s, when my husband and I were just dating. She said that my husband and I were her favorite couple and she called us her “famous couple.” She loved us so much that she actually came to our wedding. It was awesome! She thought were were an adorable couple. But I think Jess and Stephen are incredibly cute together as well. I loved photographing them. I love the closeness and intimacy you can see in their photographs.     They aren’t engaged, yet, but they’ve been together a long time so we can send well wishes their way for a beautiful future together.

 

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Do you have someone you love? Why not capture your relationship in some beautiful photos? Contact me today to schedule your own session.

Rayleigh Leavitt : Boudoir and Glamour Photography, Portland, Oregon
503.828.2973     info@byrayleigh.com