Featured post

What to wear for a photo shoot in Portland

Ideas for what to wear for a photo shoot

You’ve got a photo shoot coming up and you are looking for inspiration and ideas for your photo shoot wardrobe? You’ve come to the right place. I’ve written a number of articles that give ideas for what to wear for a photo shoot in Portland. The articles are each focused on a certain type of photo shoot or a certain season. This page will serve as a resource for you and a convenient place to find all of the articles. I hope it helps!

What to wear for a photo shoot in Portland. This is an image of a client choosing a formal dress with Rayleigh Leavitt, the photographer for the Tualatin, OR photography studio, Photography by Rayleigh

A Fall Photo Shoot

Ahhh… the time of year I look forward to most! I know some of you ladies treasure your sunny days, but all summer long, I’m dreaming of the day when I can don my cozy Fall attire. Whether you are doing a family photo shoot or an individual beauty, boudoir, or maternity session, you may be wondering what to wear for a Fall photo shoot in Portland, OR . Here are some ideas to give you inspiration.

What to wear for a Fall Photo shoot in Portland, OR. This is a boudoir image of a woman wearing a sweater off the shoulders.

A Winter Photo Shoot

If you have a Winter photo shoot planned, you might be looking for some ideas for how to dress for the season. These ideas can give you inspiration for a family, boudoir, beauty, glamour, headshot, couples, maternity, or senior portrait session.

What to wear for a winter photo shoot in Portland, Oregon. This image shows a family photo shoot with a mother and her two daughters.

A Maternity Photo Shoot

If you are reading this, it’s likely that you are neck deep in planning and preparing for your sweet baby to arrive on the outside, all while having pregnancy brain. It’s a lot! I get it and I’m here to help. Here are some ideas to help you decide what to wear for a maternity photo shoot.

What to wear for a maternity photo shoot in Portland, Oregon. Beauty and Maternity photographer.

A Pin-Up 50’s style Photo Shoot

I’ve pulled together some images from a few of my past 50’s inspired photo shoots to give you a little inspiration for your own retro pin up session. It may seem daunting at first to come up with a few outfits, but it’s actually pretty easy to find some really cute pieces online. You may even find that you have some things in your own wardrobe that will work. Here are some ideas.

What to wear for your 50's retro shoot - Portland Pin Up Photographer. This woman is wearing a button up blouse with a cherry print and red nail polish.

Coming Soon

I’ll add more articles to this resource as I write them. I intend to add some articles soon about wardrobe for Spring and Summer sessions, a modest boudoir session, and a bridal photo shoot. Please sign up for my emails, if you haven’t already, to be sure to get that info when it comes out.

Let’s chat!

Is there anything else you want help with? Just let me know. If you are ready to book your photo shoot, I’d love to be your photographer. Please send me an email and we can chat!


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What to wear for a photo shoot in Portland, OR. A Victorian inspired boudoir photo shoot.

Victorian Inspired Boudoir

What to wear for a photo shoot in Portland, OR. This image is a from a boho (bohemian) inspired session.

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Free Guide to Preparing For Your Shoot

Featured post

Why you shouldn’t do a photo shoot

Trust me, I get it.

You’re considering a portrait session but there are so many reasons why you shouldn’t do a photo shoot. You are thinking one or more of the following thoughts…
– I need to lose 10 pounds first
– I’m nervous to be in front of the camera
– I can’t afford this
– I’m not photogenic
– I’ll never look as good as the ladies on your website

STOP.

Just reading the above thoughts is some tiring stuff.

I want you to repeat after me, “I’m perfectly imperfect.”

Why you shouldn't do a photo shoot. Addressing common concerns. A before and after collage of a woman doing a beauty portrait shoot. She is wearing a blue sparkly formal dress and an intense gaze and serious expression. Her hand with red nail polish is in her hair. It's a close up head shot with a white background. These images are taken by Photography by Rayleigh. For more info, please visit byrayleigh.com
Before After

Why you shouldn’t do a photo shoot

It sounds like you have a lot of reasons NOT to do a photo shoot. But it’s time to start thinking positive thoughts and start living your life now. Don’t wait until you become the person you think you should be. These concerns are so common, though, so let’s take a minute to address those.

I need to lose 10 pounds first

Wow, I REALLY get this. I think this thought often (except it’s usually more than 10 pounds, let’s be honest). But I want you to know that you don’t have to have a “perfect” body to feel beautiful. You can enjoy a photo shoot and feel amazing right now. Besides, I can do more with posing and lighting than you can do in 6 months in the gym. So there is always that! Perfect posing is my strength and that means helping women of all shapes and sizes look their best. Accentuating the curves you love and downplaying the curves you don’t love.

I’m nervous to be in front of the camera

Pretty much every client that comes in to my studio is nervous at first. But try not to worry because my past clients will attest that the nervousness goes away so quickly. My hair and makeup artist will have you feeling confident and gorgeous. You’ll feel comfortable, you’ll have a blast, and you’ll leave wondering what there ever was to be nervous about. If you haven’t already had a chance to read my blog about what to expect when you do a photo shoot, you should definitely check that out.

I can’t afford this

It’s true that I provide a luxury service and it may not be a priority over something like, say, paying the rent. But I do believe that every woman should experience what it’s like to look and feel beautiful. I offer easy payment plans for this reason. I read a great article about the importance of investing in yourself that included marking things off your bucket list. So let’s chat about how we can make this happen. It’s worth the investment! I promise!

Why you shouldn't do a photo shoot. Addressing common concerns. A before and after collage of a woman doing a maternity portrait shoot. She is wearing a lace dress and holding her belly bump and looking down while standing against a white wall. These images are taken by Photography by Rayleigh. For more info, please visit byrayleigh.com
Before After

I’m not photogenic

“Not photogenic” women are some of my most favorite clients because I LOVE the reaction I get from them when I prove them wrong and they see their wonderful photos. If you think you aren’t photogenic, you probably just haven’t experienced a shoot with the right photographer, yet. 

I’ll never look as good as the ladies on your website

The ladies on my website are not models. They are just regular women who treated themselves to a day of pampering. The thing I love about beauty and boudoir photography is that it levels the playing field between magazine models and regular women. You will still look like you in the photos. But a more famous version of you. 

Why you shouldn't do a photo shoot. Addressing common concerns. A before and after collage of a woman doing a boudoir photo shoot. She's wearing black lingerie and red lipstick while while standing against a black wall. These images are taken by Photography by Rayleigh. For more info, please visit byrayleigh.com
Before After

Are you ready to do this?

What do you say? Are you ready to take the plunge and have the experience of a lifetime at my studio near Portland, OR? Or do you have any other concerns? I’m here for you and I’m happy to answer any questions you have. Let’s chat about your shoot!  I can’t wait to hear from you.

Featured post

What to expect when you book a photo shoot

If you haven’t, yet, experienced a beauty shoot in my studio or if you’ve never done a shoot as glamorous as this before, you might be wondering how the process works. I’d love to share with you what to expect when you book a photo shoot with Photography by Rayleigh near Portland, OR.

First, I invite you to watch my video below (created by Ambient Sky) because it’s a really great way to get a feel for what the experience is like. Then we can go over the steps of the entire process.

Now let’s go over the details of the process from the time you book, to the time you hold your luxurious album or folio box in your hands.

BEFORE THE PHOTO SHOOT

Ultimate Guide to Preparing for your Photo Shoot

If you haven’t received my prep guide, you can click here to get that sent to you. It’s loaded with info to help you…

  • Prepare for your session
  • Know what to expect when you book a shoot
  • Learn how to feel relaxed during your shoot 
  • Put your outfits together
  • Know what NOT to do!

Session Consultation

In addition to the detailed prep guide, we can also have a phone, video, or in-person consultation to go over details and specifics for YOUR photo shoot and to go over any questions or concerns you might have. The more prepared you are, the less nervous you’ll feel.

YOUR SESSION DAY

Come as you are

All of my sessions include professional hair and makeup by my talented hair and makeup artists. This is done in my studio in Tualatin (near Portland, OR). All you have to do is show up with a clean face and hair. Then relax, sip on some wine, if you’d like, and listen to music while we all chat and have a great time. If you have ideas for how you want your hair or makeup, you are welcome to bring pictures to show her. Otherwise, you can just sit back and let her do her magic. Hair and makeup typically takes about 60-90 minutes. Although pin-up styles can take longer.

What to expect when you book a photo shoot. This is a behind the scenes photo of my makeup artist and my client. My client is sitting in the makeup chair, having her eye makeup done. The background is my pink wall. This is the studio of Photography by Rayleigh. For more info, please visit byrayleigh.com.

Your photo shoot

Don’t worry about knowing how to pose or how to look good in front of the camera. That’s my job! My strength is perfect posing to help every woman look their best. Accentuating the curves you love and downplaying the curves you don’t love. Just relax and trust me!

How many outfits?

I don’t have a specific limit to the number of outfits you can wear during your shoot, but we typically shoot for about an hour and in that time we can fit in about 3-5 outfits. I recommend bringing a variety of outfit styles (casual, dressy, formal, etc).

What to expect when you book a photo shoot. This is a before and after portrait. This girl is in a sitting pose, wearing a casual sweatshirt and legging against a white background. She is smiling with her hand in her hair. Photo by Photography by Rayleigh. For more info, please visit byrayleigh.com.

CONFIDENT NEW YOU

the ordering session

The ordering session is where you get to view all of your gorgeous photos and choose your favorites. You’ll be shocked at how much you can LOVE a photo of yourself! I am sometimes available to do this immediately after your shoot! But if there isn’t time in the schedule for that, we can do the in-person ordering session within a few days of the shoot.

Images can be purchased individually, however, the best value is in my packages that include gorgeous presentation products that are truly the top of the line in the industry. I offer high quality wooden folio boxes and luxurious Queensberry albums. All images purchased come with the digital copy of the image, which gets sent to you shortly after your ordering session. The printed products take a few days to a few weeks to receive, depending on the product you choose.

What to expect when you book a photo shoot. this is a photo of the album I offer my clients after their photo shoot. The image in the album was taken by Photography by Rayleigh and is a picture of sisters wearing white t shirts and jeans in a sitting pose. For more info, visit byrayleigh.com

Wall art is another way to display your stunning images. I’ll be your personal designer, helping you to design a beautiful display of images for you walls.

What to expect when you book a photo shoot. The image in the frame was taken by Photography by Rayleigh and is a picture of an Indian woman in a pink formal dress sitting on the back of a white couch. The rest of the bedroom photo is a stock photo I purchased and have permission to use. For more info, visit byrayleigh.com

Now that you’ve learned what to expect when you book a photo shoot, I hope you can see that a photo shoot with me is more than having your photos taken. It’s an amazing experience that can help you change the way you see yourself. Do you have questions? I invite you to check out my blog that goes over some common concerns that my clients have before their shoot. Also, I’m happy to answer any questions that you have. Let’s chat about your shoot near Portland, OR!

My Experience with Portland Microblading

What’s the deal with eyebrows?

Ladies. Can we take a minute to talk about about eyebrows? I’ve lived most of my life without them. For a while it didn’t bother me because I was just used to that being my normal face. But at some point I realized that faces are supposed to have eyebrows and I started feeling a little self conscious about mine. It took me a while to decide to go for it, but I finally took the plunge to get myself some eyebrows. I’d love to share with you my experience with Portland microblading.

I’m a really late bloomer when it comes to my own makeup and far from being an expert. That’s exactly why I hire a highly skilled professional makeup artist for photo shoots in my photography studio. She makes my clients look fantastic. If you are like me, though, and you are not super “in the know” when it comes to makeup and things of that sort, I hope sharing about my experience with microblading in Portland is helpful to you.

Are eyebrows really important? I’ll just put this funny Anne Hathaway meme right here and let you decide for yourself. This meme made me laugh because I could relate so well to the non-eyebrow image.

An Anne Hathaway meme on a blog about my experience with Portland microblading.
source: unknown

Blonde eyebrows

I’m a red head with strawberry blonde hair (under the darker red dye). My natural eyebrows are virtually non-existent. I technically do have eyebrow hair. They are just such a light blonde that they are basically invisible. Below is a cell phone photo of myself and my natural eyebrows, before having microblading done.

The before picture on my blog about my experience with Portland microblading. I'm a red head with blonde eyebrows.

My previous attempts at giving myself eyebrows

For a while I just tried to use my bangs to cover up most of my forehead so my eyebrows were hidden. But that only worked when my bangs would lay just right and my hair was cooperating perfectly. We all know that lasts about 5 minutes.

So I started coloring my eyebrows with an eyebrow pencil. Trying to draw on the right eyebrow shape was something that caused me stress every morning. I just never knew if I was drawing the line too narrow or too thick. Or with the right arch and angle. And don’t even think about getting my two eyebrows to match.

Once I had my eyebrows drawn on (imperfectly), it usually worked okay for a few hours. But then the pencil would start to rub off and I’d be left with half an eyebrow. Or striped eyebrows. Not the look I was going for!

So, this is what lead me to microblading.

What is microblading?

Microblading is a cosmetic tattooing procedure. It differs from a traditional tattoo in that the artist uses different tools and a smaller amount of pigment. An esthetician uses a microblade tool to apply color pigments that look like real hairs. If you choose the right esthetician, it looks pretty natural. Microblading tattoos usually need to be touched up after a year, or so. They aren’t permanent like a traditional tattoo.

My experience with microblading in Portland, OR

It took me about 7 years to finally go ahead and do microblading because I was afraid that whoever did my eyebrows wouldn’t do a good job and it would look terrible and unnatural. However, I’m so glad I found Erik Berntsen of Permanent Cosmetics NW. He had great reviews and my experience was top notch. I trust him and highly recommend him for anyone in the Portland area.

Does microblading hurt?

I won’t lie. It did hurt. An anesthetic cream was used and it did help. But I felt quite a bit of pain in the beginning, before the anesthetic had fully kicked in, and then again at the end, as the anesthetic cream started to wear off. I’ll also note, though, that a common feature that many red heads share is that anesthesia doesn’t work quite as well (this was confirmed once by an anesthesia technician who knew I would require extra anesthesia for a surgery I was having). So it’s possible that non-red heads may not feel it as much as I did.

How does microblading look with blonde eyebrows?

Microblading for someone with blonde eyebrows is tricky. The procedure doesn’t color your real hair. Just the skin underneath. If your eyebrow hair is thin but dark, the new ink blends in beautifully and gives you a fuller look. However, if you add darker ink under blonde eyebrows, it kind of just gives your blonde hair a dark backdrop and makes the blonde stand out in a weird way. For this reason, Erik made sure not to go too dark for the ink color, even though I color my head hair a darker color. The photo below show what my eyebrows look like with my blonde eyebrows and the tattoo.

The "after" picture on my blog about my experience with Portland microblading. I'm a red head with blonde eyebrows.

Did you throw away your eyebrow pencil?

This completed look (microblading with blonde eyebrows) wouldn’t bother some people. Erik, the expert, feels that my eyebrows look great, as is. A couple of my friends said the same. Even so, I choose to use an eyebrow pencil over my tattoo, in order to color my real hair. The one I use is from Mary Kay.

I know, I know… you are probably asking, “What is the point of getting a tattoo, if you are just going to use a pencil over it?” And that’s a valid question. But I absolutely love having the tattoo, in spite of preferring to still use a pencil.

For one thing, the shape is already there for me. It’s so fast and easy to color my eyebrows in the exact shape that Erik created, in his expertise. No stressing or wondering if I got the shape right. Having that shape tattooed on also helps me when I’m removing the extra hairs outside of the shape I want (although I honestly hardly ever do that because you can’t even really see the natural hair, anyway).

Secondly, when the pencil starts to rub off in spots, as it inevitably does, it’s not super noticeable. I no longer peek in to the mirror and end up feeling totally embarrassed that I’ve been walking around in public with half an eyebrow.

Thirdly, on days when I don’t feel like putting on makeup, I just leave my eyebrows alone, and it’s fine. I’m happy to have the tattoo so my face doesn’t look totally colorless and washed out.

The "after" picture on my blog about my experience with Portland microblading. I'm a red head with blonde eyebrows.
An eyebrow pencil was used over my microblading tattoo.

My experience with Portland microblading

If you are looking in to microblading in Portland, I hope this article is helpful to you. Especially those of you who have red hair or just light blonde eyebrows. I’m really happy with my decision to have microblading done and my only regret is not doing it sooner!

The "before" and "after" pictures on my blog about my experience with Portland microblading. I'm a red head with blonde eyebrows.
Before Microblading After Microblading

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The "prep guide" link on my blog about my experience with Portland microblading.

Free Guide to Preparing For Your Photo Shoot

What To Wear For A Maternity Photo Shoot

Pregnancy brain is real!

If you are reading this, it’s likely that you are neck deep in planning for your sweet baby to arrive on the outside. Among the 1,345,567 things you have to think about when expecting a baby, planning a maternity photo shoot is one more thing to add to the list. And let’s be real, pregnancy brain is a total booger. I get it and I’m here to help. I’ve put together some ideas to help you decide what to wear for a maternity photo shoot in Portland, OR.

what to wear for a maternity photo shoot in Portland, OR. This is an image of a pregnant woman wearing white lingerie while sitting on a couch.

What to wear for a maternity photo shoot in Portland, OR

In my studio, we usually have time for 4-5 outfits. So I recommend bringing several items, in varying styles, and I can help you decide which pieces would photograph best. Below, I’ll list out some different options to consider.

A formal dress

I don’t know about you, but I personally don’t get very many chances in life to dress up in a formal dress. A baby on the way is certainly a reason to celebrate and a great reason to get fancy. My hair and makeup artist will have your hair and makeup looking amazing, so a formal dress will fit right in with your look.

What to wear for a maternity photo shoot in Portland, OR. This is an image of a pregnant woman standing in front of a hotel room window with backlighting. She is dressed in a formal gown.

Intimate attire

On the other side of the spectrum, I also really love maternity photos that look quiet and intimate. Pregnancy is such a personal and vulnerable experience. This look captures that side of motherhood. Wardrobe can include, pajamas, nightgowns, robes, and lingerie.

A loose flowy dress

Light flowing fabric is so feminine, which is obviously a good trait to have for maternity photos. The minor downside is that you have to always have a hand under your baby bump to bring the fabric in. Doing this reveals the cute shape of your bump, while fabric just loosely hanging down would make a woman look larger but not necessarily pregnant. This “downside” isn’t that much of a set back, though, because having a hand or two on your belly is great for showing connection to the sweet life you are carrying.

What to wear for a maternity photo shoot in Portland, OR. This is an image of a pregnant woman posing with a flowy gown in a studio with a white wall.

Dresses that are specifically designed for maternity photo shoots often have a slit in the front so that you can reveal your bare tummy. That’s another great way to get variety in your portraits. These types of dresses aren’t something you can find just anywhere. But you can find them easily on Etsy or Amazon.

What to wear for a maternity photo shoot in Portland, OR. This is an image of a pregnant woman posing with a flowy gown in a studio with a white wall.

A form fitted dress

A dress that fits snugly around your belly is great for revealing the size and shape of your beautiful baby bump. While we are at it, we can celebrate your other feminine curves, as well. One benefit to a snug dress is that we can have more variety in hand placement as your hands aren’t having to tuck the dress in under your bump.

What to wear for a maternity photo shoot in Portland, OR. This is a black and white maternity boudoir image of a pregnant woman, in a floor pose, lying on her back on a fur rug in a black form fitted dress.

Soft and sheer textures

I love fabrics with textures, such as lace, for all my shoots because they provide visual interest without being overwhelming to the photo in the way that bright colors or bold patterns can be. For maternity portraits, sheer fabrics, such as lace or chiffon are especially great if you want to be able to see through to your baby bump.

What to wear for a maternity photo shoot in Portland, OR. This is a maternity boudoir image of a pregnant woman standing in front of a window in a sheer lace form fitted dress.
What to wear for a maternity photo shoot in Portland, OR. This is a couples maternity photo. The woman is dressed in a form fitted lace formal dress. They are laying on a chase.

Another texture I love for maternity photos is softness. To me, a soft texture speaks of nurturing, gentleness, femininity, and comfort. All good things for a portrait of a mother. Oh, I know, there is nothing comfortable about the third trimester of pregnancy. But we can try! Soft cardigan sweaters and robes are a go-to in my studio.

Let’s talk about colors

I’ve already mentioned that bright colors and bold patterns aren’t my jam. They don’t tend to photograph well or fit with my portrait style. So I usually recommend solid colors and I prefer neutrals or pastels.

Pastels are particularly good for maternity portraits because babies also look so sweet in pastels. I do make exceptions occasionally for a pretty floral print and that can look beautiful in a portrait. But I do try to stay away from stripes, polka dots, or any other bold pattern, if possible (unless we are talking about pin-up photos).

What to wear for a maternity photo shoot in Portland, OR. This is a close up belly photo of a pregnant woman wearing a flowy pink dress with a flower belt.

I think it’s kind of sweet to have a pink outfit if you are having a girl and to have a light blue outfit if you are having a boy, if you want to pay tribute to the baby’s gender (if you know what it is). But really any pastel color look gorgeous. And it’s more than fine to wear pink, even if you are going to have a boy.

In addition to pastels and lighter neutrals, the color black works, as well. It doesn’t give the same feeling of brightness or softness. But in black, your curves really stand out against a light background, which is pretty cool.

What to wear for a maternity photo shoot in Portland, OR. This is an image of a pregnant woman posing against a white wall in a studio.

For a totally different look

The tips above apply to a regular maternity session in my studio. However, I’d also like to share with you a totally different look that I also love. 50’s pin-up inspired maternity photo shoots. They aren’t for everyone. But if you want something a little different, you may be interested. You can read more about those here.

What to wear for a maternity photo shoot in Portland, OR. This is a maternity pin up studio image.

Let’s chat about what to wear for your shoot!

I hope this articles gives you some great ideas for what to wear for a maternity photo shoot. I have an awesome studio wardrobe closet with a number of maternity pieces that are available for you to use and to supplement what you bring in. Send me an email and we can start planning your maternity photo shoot near Portland, OR!

My studio is in Tualatin, OR, however, I have clients who come to me from Portland, Beaverton, Vancouver, Salem, and Lake Oswego.


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A Valentine’s Day Wedding for Book Lovers

Did you know that February is Library Lovers month? When I discovered this recently, I just HAD to share with you some photos from a wedding that I photographed a few years ago. This wedding just so happened to be a Valentine’s Day Wedding that was held at the public library in Hillsboro, Oregon! Do you see why I had to share these photos today?

A bride and groom almost kissing during their couples photo shoot at their Valentine's Day Wedding. The wedding was held at the library in Hillsboro, OR near Portland.

A Library Lovers Wedding on Valentine’s Day

If I’m being honest, when I’m thinking of wedding venues near the Portland area, a public library isn’t typically what first comes to my mind. However, I was pleasantly surprised to find a beautiful landscape behind the library with a pond and fountain. The event room worked perfectly for their intimate ceremony.

A wedding party smiling for a wedding photo. The posed portrait was taken outdoors behind the Hillsboro public Library near Portland, OR. This was a Valentine's Day wedding.
A bride and groom smiling at each other during their Valentine's Day Wedding ceremony. The wedding was held at the library in Hillsboro, OR near Portland, where they also had their couples photo shoot.

Unique Couples Photos

What interested me the most about this venue was the opportunity to do their couples photo shoot in the book aisles. That is something I’d never done before. I just love how unique these photos turned out. Such a fun idea for book lovers.

A bride and groom kissing and holding a book during their couples photo shoot at their Valentine's Day Wedding. The wedding was held at the library in Hillsboro, OR near Portland.
A bride and groom smiling at each other during their couples photo shoot at their Valentine's Day Wedding. The wedding was held at the library in Hillsboro, OR near Portland.

A Valentine’s Day Wedding

It’s so fun when couples choose a theme for their wedding to make it that much more memorable. Valentine’s Day is such an appropriate theme for a romantic wedding, don’t you think? I love how they incorporated hearts in to so much of their decor.

A tray of heart shaped cookies at a Valentine's Day wedding at the library in Hillsboro, OR, near Portland.
A pair of wedding rings, scrabble pieces, and heart shaped cookies at a Valentine's Day wedding at the library in Hillsboro, OR, near Portland.

It was an honor to be part of this sweet wedding. Happy anniversary, J and A! And Happy Valentine’s Day to all who are reading my blog.

A bride standing against a white wall at her Valentine's Day wedding at the Hillsboro, OR public library near Portland. Part of a couples photo shoot.

Couples Photo Shoots

My focus has since shifted to portrait photography, more so than weddings, and I absolutely love photographing couples. If you are interested in doing a couples photo shoot near Portland, Oregon, please send me an email and we can chat!


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A studio couples photo shoot in Tualatin, OR near Portland. The couple is snuggling close while lying on the bed.
An older couple, embracing for a couples photo shoot in a studio in Tualatin, OR near Portland.

Anniversary Portraits

50’s Style Maternity Photography- Portland Pin Up Photographer

The best compliment I can receive in my studio is a returning client. So I’m thrilled to have had this beautiful Mama in my studio for all three of her pregnancies. The first two maternity sessions were done in my usual “beauty” style. For her most recent pregnancy, however, we decided to do 50’s style maternity photography. As a Portland Pin Up photographer, I was, of course, super excited for this creative idea.

50's Style Maternity Photography - Portland Pin Up Photographer. This is a retro inspired maternity portrait taken in a studio in Tualatin, OR. The pregnant woman is holding a pan of cookies.

A quote from the lovely Ms. C

“Rayleigh is so great at making you feel comfortable and relaxed. She is extremely attentive to details and a delight to work with. I’ve been photographed me 3 times by Rayleigh and I will definitely go back again. She is very talented and I would highly recommend her!”

50's Style Maternity Photography - Portland Pin Up Photographer. This is a retro inspired maternity portrait taken in a studio in Tualatin, OR. The pregnant woman is holding her belly and blowing a bubble with bubble gum.

Ms. C wasn’t sure what to wear, so I picked out this blue 50’s vintage looking dress for her on Amazon. The dress isn’t designed to be a maternity dress, but it worked great, anyway. I’m looking forward to using some of the other colors that they have for future pin up photo shoots.

50's Style Maternity Photography - Portland Pin Up Photographer. This is a retro inspired maternity portrait taken in a studio in Tualatin, OR. The pregnant woman is lying on her back on the bed.

50’s style pin up hair and makeup is so much fun because it’s not something we do every day. My professional hair and makeup artist, Kerrin, stayed long enough to put Ms C’s hair up half way through the photo shoot, so that we could have two different looks.

This red gingham crop tank top was ordered on Amazon, as well. It worked great!

Another thing that makes 50’s style maternity photography so characteristic is the use of props and accessories. I have a number of props, hats, gloves, purses, and more in my studio that really make these portraits fun, glamourous, or sassy, depending on what look we are going for.

50's Style Maternity Photography - Portland Pin Up Photographer. This is a retro inspired maternity portrait taken in a studio in Tualatin, OR. The pregnant woman is holding her belly with a wide eyed smile.

50’s style maternity photography – Portland Pin Up photographer

While you are celebrating a pregnancy and are looking for a Portland maternity photographer, I’d love to discuss this unique look for you. Please send me an email and we can plan your amazing retro 50’s pin up photo shoot!

If the 50’s era isn’t your thing and you want a different look, we can chat about that, too. You can check out my beauty style maternity portfolio using the link below.

My studio is in Tualatin, OR and I also consider myself a Sherwood maternity photographer, as well as a Lake Oswego maternity photographer, serving clients from all around the Portland area. I even have clients come from Salem, OR and Vancouver, WA.


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What to wear for your 50's retro shoot. Portland pin up photographer. This image is of a woman lying on her tummy on the bed, wearing a vintage birdcage hat and 50's inspired dress. She's holding a blue vintage fan for her prop. Photography by Rayleigh. For more info, please visit byrayleigh.com

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What to wear for your 50's retro pin up or beauty photography session. Portland Photographer - Photography by Rayleigh. For more info, please visit byrayleigh.com

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A Valentine’s Day Gift Idea – Portland Photographer

A Valentine’s Day Gift Idea – Portland Photography

Are you looking for a great Valentine’s Day gift idea for your sweetie that is something different than the usual flowers and chocolates? Hiring a Beauty (Glamour) or Boudoir Photographer in Portland is definitely a way to create a gift worth treasuring. The amazing bonus is, it’s also a gift for yourself. An experience with Photography by Rayleigh gives you such a boost of confidence and you will leave the shoot feeling on cloud 9. The fact that you can also give the photos as a gift to someone special is a win-win.

A valentine's day gift idea. Portland boudoir Photographer, Photography by Rayleigh. This woman is wearing all red and has red hair, which was a creative theme for this photo shoot.

A Unique Session

These unique photos that I’m sharing with you today are from a shoot that I did just for fun. As a Portland Photographer, I sometimes like to branch out and do something a little different than my usual work, just to stretch those creative muscles. I thought an all red themed shoot would be gorgeous. Red is a very glamourous and stunning color. Fun fact about me… I chose a red ballgown for my wedding dress. I just thought it looked better on me than white.

I reached out on my Facebook page to see if there were any ladies with fire engine red hair who would like to model for me and the lovely Aarielle volunteered.

Valentine’s season seems like a perfect time to share my red themed session.

A valentine's day gift idea. Portland boudoir Photographer, Photography by Rayleigh. This woman is wearing all red and has red hair, which was a creative theme for this photo shoot. In this photo she is having her makeup done by a professional hair and makeup artist.

Hair and makeup for this themed shoot was done by the super talented, Tracy Schulz. She is very experienced with all kinds of looks, including costume looks, so I knew she’d be perfect for this shoot.

A valentine's day gift idea. Portland boudoir Photographer, Photography by Rayleigh. This woman is wearing all red and has red hair, which was a creative theme for this photo shoot.

I’m dying over those perfect ringlets. I love them so much!

A valentine's day gift idea. Portland boudoir Photographer, Photography by Rayleigh. This woman is wearing all red and has red hair, which was a creative theme for this photo shoot.

What do you think of this Valentine’s Day Gift Idea?

You certainly don’t need to do an all red shoot, if that’s not what you are drawn to. My shoots are catered to each individual to create an experience that suits each of my clients.

A valentine's day gift idea. Portland boudoir Photographer, Photography by Rayleigh. This woman is wearing all red and has red hair, which was a creative theme for this photo shoot.

Let’s chat!

Do you have a unique idea for a portrait shoot? Or do you want to do something that is more like my usual work? If you are ready to book your shoot, please send me an email and we can chat!

I am a portrait studio photographer in Tualatin, and I serve clients from Portland, Lake Oswego, Beaverton, Salem, and Vancouver.

A valentine's day gift idea. Portland boudoir Photographer, Photography by Rayleigh. This woman is wearing all red and has red hair, which was a creative theme for this photo shoot.

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A Christmas Mother-Daughter Session – Portland Family Photographer

A Christmas Mother-Daughter Session – Portland Family Photographer

I’m excited to share with you these images from one of my favorite shoots. I absolutely love doing Mother-Daughter sessions. Don’t get me wrong, men are great. Family sessions with the Dads and sons are wonderful. But there is something special about an shoot for just the ladies. These gorgeous gals came in for a mini session when I was offering Christmas Mother-Daughter Sessions (Portland Family Photographer).

My Christmas Set

This cute little Christmas set was in a corner of my studio for a few December shoots that I had. I wanted a soft, relaxed, comfy feel for the set.

A Christmas Mother-Daughter Session - Portland Family Photographer. An Asian Mom and her young daughter in front of a Christmas tree, wearing winter hats. For more info, visit byRayleigh.com. Photography by Rayleigh

Wardrobe

For this shoot I suggested pajamas for their wardrobe. The family bought some really cute outfits online. Big Sister’s pink pajamas were purchased on Amazon. That style of pajamas is very photogenic and they come in a bunch of different colors, which is great for photo shoots.

One might not typically think to wear shorts for a Christmas themed family photo shoot, like this mom did. However, I love how they give off a comfortable “relaxing at home in front of the fireplace” vibe.

I love when moms and daughters (or sisters) wear matching accessories. It’s one way to be matching without having the entire outfit be too matchy-matchy

Colors

Pink and white for colors instead of the typical red that you would normally see for Christmas themed photo shoots was an idea that I had and I’m glad we went that direction. I thought it would be fun to do something a little different and a little more girly. I absolutely love the outfits they brought and I love how the pink and white looks with my gold, cream, and beige Christmas set. Neutral colors were intentionally used for my set so that it would go with any color of wardrobe and it worked so great with these particular outfits.

A Christmas Mother-Daughter Session - Portland Family Photographer. An Asian baby and her sister in front of a Christmas tree, wearing winter hats and pajamas. For more info, visit byRayleigh.com. Photography by Rayleigh

Sisters

Little Sister wasn’t too interested in smiling but, as you can see, she’s still absolutely adorable. Those cheeks! Big sister was a champ and her sweet smile is so perfect.

A Christmas Mother-Daughter Session - Portland Family Photographer. An Asian Mom and her young daughter lying on a bed of blankets and gold pillows, wearing pink winter hats. For more info, visit byRayleigh.com. Photography by Rayleigh

Wall Art

I have this picture (above) as a large print in my studio with a gorgeous antique looking white frame. I love how sweet these two lovely ladies look together. As a bonus, the pink and gold matches my studio colors.

A Christmas Mother-Daughter Session – Portland Family Photographer

If you are interested in a Mother-Daughter session or other family session, I’d love to talk with you about your shoot and come up with a look that matches your taste and personality. Please send me an email and we can chat!


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A Christmas Mother-Daughter Session - Portland Family Photographer. A Mom and her young daughter in front of a Christmas tree, wearing matching red winter hats. For more info, visit byRayleigh.com. Photography by Rayleigh

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What To Wear For A Winter Photo Shoot in Portland

Are you wondering what to wear for a Winter Photo Shoot?

If you have a photo shoot coming up soon, you might be looking for some ideas for how to dress. I’ve put together some ideas here for what to wear for a winter photo shoot in Portland (or anywhere). These ideas can give you inspiration for a family, boudoir, beauty, glamour, headshot, couples, maternity, or senior portrait session.

Something to consider is what kind of feel you are going for. Winter is a particularly good time to go more formal or even to go ultra casual. Either way will make for fun winter photos. Especially if you are going for a Christmas look.

What to wear for a winter photo shoot in Portland, Oregon. This image shows a family photo shoot with a mother and her two daughters.

Pajamas

If you want a casual look, you really can’t go any more casual than this. But Christmas pajamas are so much fun. So you can’t go wrong with this cozy and comfy look for your winter photo shoot. If you are doing family portraits, matching family pajamas are all the rage right now. Why not mark this trend with a professional photo shoot?

What to wear for a winter photo shoot in Portland. This is an image of a woman wearing red plaid pajamas. She's lying on her tummy on the bed with milk and cookies. Photography by Rayleigh. byRayleigh.com

Sweaters

Sweaters are my most favorite outfit to photograph. I just love the softness and warmth they give to a photo. Plus, they look good on everyone. I recommend a lightweight sweater because a chunky or bulky sweater can make you look larger than you really are. A wide neck or v neck sweater that can sit off the shoulder looks sexy while still being modest.

What to wear for a winter photo shoot in Portland.  This is a boudoir image of a woman lying on her tummy, wearing an off the shoulder sweater. Photography by Rayleigh. byRayleigh.com

A Formal Gown

If you like sparkle and shine, Christmas is a great time of year for a formal dress for your winter photo shoot. Most of us don’t get a lot of opportunities to dress up. It’s such a treat to see the glamorous side of ourselves.

What to wear for a winter photo shoot in Portland. This is an image of an Indian woman lying on her back on a chase. She is wearing a green formal gown. Photography by Rayleigh. byRayleigh.com

Red, Gold, Green & White

Red is, of course, a go-to color for the Christmas and winter season.

Gold, white, and green are also great winter colors.

What to wear for a winter photo shoot in Portland. This is a backlit image of a young girl dressed as an angel for a Christmas photo shoot. Photography by Rayleigh. byRayleigh.com

Fur

My studio has a lot of faux fur. Blankets, pillows, and rugs galore. The softness is so feminine. I can’t seem to get enough of it! I use it all year long, but in the winter, it works even better. If we can add more fur with wardrobe, I’m a happy camper.

Santa inspired wardrobe is a way to incorporate fur and the color red for an obvious Christmassy feel.

Hats and Scarves

Winter is a great time to add layering and accessories. Hats and scarves can really add interest to an otherwise boring outfit.

What to wear for a winter photo shoot in Portland. This is an image of a young girl and her Mom wearing matching Christmas hats. Photography by Rayleigh. byRayleigh.com
What to wear for a winter photo shoot in Portland. This is an image of two young Asian girls and their Mom wearing matching winter hats. Photography by Rayleigh. byRayleigh.com

What To Wear For A Winter Photo Shoot

I hope these ideas help give you some inspiration for what to wear for a Winter or Christmas beauty, glamour, senior, maternity, boudoir, headshot, or family photo shoot in Portland. If you want more ideas, Pinterest is always a wealth of inspiration! Please let me know if you want to discuss wardrobe or anything else regarding your portrait session!


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Christmas Mini Sessions – Nativity Portrait Experience

Christmas Mini Sessions – Nativity Portrait Experience in Portland, OR

Last week I held my first ever Christmas mini sessions – Nativity Portrait Experience at Riddle Farm in Sherwood, OR. The idea for these sessions is something I had been working on for a couple of years. I hadn’t seen anything like them done before. Celebrating the first Christmas is very meaningful to me. I’m so thrilled to see my vision come to life!

I’m excited to share with you some photos from my sessions. I plan to offer them, again. So if you are interested in finding out when they are happening, please make sure you are signed up to receive my emails. You can sign up here.

Photography by Rayleigh Christmas mini sessions - Nativity Portrait Experience. Virgin Mary and an angel, gazing at baby Jesus in a stable. For more info, visit byRayleigh.com

These sessions look different depending on how many kids you have and what gender they are. In the image above there are two girls, so I dressed them as the virgin Mary and an angel.

The farm where the nativity sessions took place has two sweet cows. Sometimes they peek their heads in to see what we are working on, as you can see in the photo above.

Photography by Rayleigh Christmas mini sessions - Nativity Portrait Experience. Virgin Mary gazing at baby Jesus in a manger. For more info, visit byRayleigh.com

If your family happens to have a newborn baby, it would be so fun to have a live baby Jesus. Otherwise, a doll will do.

Photography by Rayleigh Christmas mini sessions - Nativity Portrait Experience. Mary, Joseph, a shepherd, and an angel gazing at baby Jesus in a manger. For more info, visit byRayleigh.com

The sweet family in the image above has 4 children. Two boys and twin girls. It worked out great to have a Mary, a Joseph, a shepherd, and an angel. I told their Mom that she needs to have three more kids in order to have the three Wisemen. She said that’s not happening. haha!

Photography by Rayleigh Christmas mini sessions - Nativity Portrait Experience. Mary, Joseph, a shepherd, and an angel gazing at baby Jesus in a manger. For more info, visit byRayleigh.com
Photography by Rayleigh Christmas mini sessions - Nativity Portrait Experience. Virgin Mary holding baby Jesus in a manger. For more info, visit byRayleigh.com

I love that one of the cows popped in for this photo (above)! The cows aren’t cooperative models so if they happen to show up in a photo, it’s by pure luck.

Photography by Rayleigh Christmas mini sessions - Nativity Portrait Experience. A shepherd holding baby Jesus in a stable. For more info, visit byRayleigh.com

Unique Christmas Nativity Portraits in Portland

I’m so pleased with these Christmas mini sessions – Nativity Portrait Experience and I believe these families will treasure their unique and meaningful photos. The kids had fun visiting the farm, as well.

Be The First To Know When I’m Holding These Sessions, Again

These sessions were held in November this year, however, I’m considering holding them in the summer next year. That way the ground won’t be so muddy, the weather will be warmer, and the photos will be ready with plenty of time to get Christmas cards out.

If I get enough interest, I’d love to hire some petting zoo animals for the shoot. Wouldn’t that be so cool?

If you’d like to stay in touch so that you can hear about these sessions and my other types of sessions, please sign up for my email list.


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A Pregnancy Announcement Idea: A Photo Shoot With a Twist

A Fun Surprise Pregnancy Announcement Idea for Daddy

The moment you find out you are pregnant, your to-do list becomes 10 miles long in a single instant. So many things to plan for and to prepare for. I know from experience that one of the first things many mamas start planning is a fun way to tell people that they are expecting. I was so honored to be in on this fun surprise pregnancy announcement idea. Chelsey asked me to photograph them as she told her husband that he was going to be a dad during a couples photo shoot in Portland, OR.

What He Thought Was Happening

Micah thought that they were helping me out with a photo shoot idea for couples. The idea that was described to him was that they would each write on their chalkboard something that they love about the other person. He loves her “sweet heart.”

Pregnancy Announcement Idea: A Fall rainy day photo shoot. A pregnant woman is surprising her husband and letting him know his he going to be a Dad. They used chalkboards while holding umbrellas. For more info about maternity portraits, visit byRayleigh.com Photography by Rayleigh

What Was Actually Happening

Micah had no idea that Chelsey was not following those directions. She had written, “We’re having a baby,” on her chalkboard. She also held her pregnancy tests as a sign that she was serious, in case he thought it was some kind of joke.

Pregnancy Announcement Idea: A Fall rainy day photo shoot. A pregnant woman is surprising her husband and letting him know his he going to be a Dad. They used chalkboards while holding umbrellas. For more info about maternity portraits, visit byRayleigh.com Photography by Rayleigh

The Surprise Pregnancy Announcement

They stood with their backs facing each other. On the count of 3, they turned around to show each other their chalkboards. I got to snap photos and capture his reaction. His shocked expression is priceless!

Pregnancy Announcement Idea: A Fall rainy day photo shoot. A pregnant woman is surprising her husband and letting him know his he going to be a Dad. They used chalkboards while holding umbrellas. For more info about maternity portraits, visit byRayleigh.com Photography by Rayleigh

They were both so happy to start this new chapter in their lives. These pictures are actually a few years old (I’m finally getting around to blogging them), so I can tell you that they are both the sweetest parents.

Pregnancy Announcement Idea: A Fall rainy day photo shoot. A pregnant woman is surprising her husband and letting him know his he going to be a Dad. They used chalkboards while holding umbrellas. For more info about maternity portraits, visit byRayleigh.com Photography by Rayleigh

Outdoor Fall Photo Shoot in the Rain

The timing of their pregnancy was perfect for doing a Fall photo shoot with gorgeous colors all around them. Fall is definitely a favorite time for a lot of people to do outdoor photo shoots. But in Portland, Oregon, a Fall outdoor photo shoot means that you often have to deal with wet weather.

Pregnancy Announcement Idea: A Fall rainy day photo shoot. A pregnant woman is surprising her husband and letting him know his he going to be a Dad. They used chalkboards while holding umbrellas. For more info about maternity portraits, visit byRayleigh.com Photography by Rayleigh

Their photo shoot was time sensitive and Chelsey didn’t want to put the photo shoot off until we had nicer weather (for obvious reasons). So when we found out it was going to be raining, we just went ahead and did the photo shoot in the rain. Chelsey brought some clear umbrellas, which worked out perfectly for keeping them, and their chalkboards, dry.

Pregnancy Announcement Idea: A Fall rainy day photo shoot. A pregnant woman is surprising her husband and letting him know his he going to be a Dad. They used chalkboards while holding umbrellas. For more info about maternity portraits, visit byRayleigh.com Photography by Rayleigh

The umbrellas are so cute and perfect for a rainy day photo shoot with Oregonians who aren’t afraid of a little rain. Since they are clear, they allowed light to come through them. Solid colored umbrellas would have created unflattering shadows on their faces.

Pregnancy Announcement Idea: A Fall rainy day photo shoot. A pregnant woman is surprising her husband and letting him know his he going to be a Dad. They used chalkboards while holding umbrellas. For more info about maternity portraits, visit byRayleigh.com Photography by Rayleigh

Pregnancy Announcements and Maternity Sessions

If you love this idea and would like to set up a pregnancy announcement photo shoot of some kind, I’d love to chat with you and come up with something really fun.

Then, when you are about 30-35 weeks along, that is the perfect time for a maternity portrait session. So we can talk about setting that up, as well!

I invite you to send me an email and we can get the ball rolling on those things!


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A couples maternity portrait in my studio in Portland. For more info about maternity portraits, visit byRayleigh.com Photography by Rayleigh

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