Category Archives: Beauty/Glamour

How to dress for a Fall photo shoot

Are you looking for ideas for how to dress for a Fall photo shoot in Portland?

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. Fall is my jam. It’s also my favorite time of year for photo shoots, I love how Fall outfits look in portraits. If you have a photo shoot coming up, you may be wondering how to dress for a Fall photo shoot in Portland, OR . Here are some ideas to give you inspiration.

Sweaters

Sweaters, sweaters, and more sweaters. My favorite kind of wardrobe to photograph, happens to be trusty sweater. Their softness brings out the softer side of a woman’s personality, which is so lovely . I particularly love the comfy, long sleeves against her face.

I recommend a sweater that is more on the light weight side. A chunky, bulky sweater can add weight, which is something my clients typically aren’t hoping for. lol

For a beauty photo shoot, slouchy, off the shoulder sweaters look good on everyone. If you like this look, make sure your sweater has a wide neck or deep v neck. Cardigan sweaters work great for this, too.

Leggings or ripped jeans pair well with a sweater and look fun and casual. Skip the pants all together for a more intimate look. Add a tutu or other skirt to glam up your sweater for a dressy vibe.

A sweater poncho or shawl gives an even higher level of comfy-coziness. (Is that a word?) Your photos can feel like you are relaxing at home on a chilly day, watching the leaves fall from the trees out your window. If you are looking for an outfit that’s slimming, I wouldn’t choose a poncho or anything that is too oversized. But they can look really cute if you aren’t worried about that.

Have you ever worn a sweater dress? That is another way to add femininity and dress-uppiness (there I go making up words, again) to the sweater look.

Fall Colors and Textures

It probably goes without saying, but Fall colors are always great and so obviously reminiscent of the season. Orange, brown, black, tan, green, maroon, mustard yellow, and gold. In addition to the softness of sweaters, corduroy is another texture that shouts Fall. Knits, lace, tweed, and wool are other ways to add texture. Wool can get pretty warm, though, so you may want to avoid that if you run warm.

Ideas for how to dress for a Fall photo shoot. Photography by Rayleigh in Portland. This woman is wearing a black sweater and brown corduroy skirt while lying on a fur blanket on a chase. For more info, see byRayleigh.com.

Layers and Texture

One of my favorite things about a Fall wardrobe is the ability to add layers to outfits, which always adds interest. Scarves are a great way to do that. I recommend a solid color or subtle print. We wouldn’t want a bold pattern to distract from your face.

I love bare feet in portraits, but for Fall, a pair of knee-high or thigh-high socks are also so cute. Boots are a great way to add an additional layer over your pants this season.

Halloween Attire

If you’ve got something special, Halloween costumes can be fun to photograph. We just want to be careful not to cross over to the cheesy side.

Ideas for how to dress for a Fall photo shoot. Photography by Rayleigh in Portland. This woman is wearing a Black hooded cape and black lace gloves while standing in front of a black background. For more info, see byRayleigh.com.
Ideas for how to dress for a Fall photo shoot. Photography. This young girl is wearing a Little Red Riding Hood costume outside next to a tree with Fall leave on the ground. For more info, see byRayleigh.com.

This beautiful Mother (below) has a shirt to match her daughter, which is so fun to do sometimes. What I like even more, though, are outfits that are coordinated but not too matchy-matchy. For family photos, start by choosing Mom’s outfit. Then find 2-3 coordinating colors for the other family members that compliment each other.

Ideas for how to dress for a Fall photo shoot. Photography by Rayleigh in Portland. This family is wearing orange and black shirts with jack-o-lantern faces while sitting in a pumpkin patch. They backlit by the setting sun. For more info, see byRayleigh.com.

Football Jerseys

When you think about Autumn, is football what comes to mind? If Football is your thing, it can be fun to incorporate your love for the sport in your Fall photo shoot. Showing support for your team is one way to share your unique personality and interests in your photos.

Now you have some ideas for your Autumn photo shoot wardrobe

I hope these images provided some inspiration for how to dress for a Fall photo shoot in Portland. If you’d like more ideas, Pinterest is always a wealth of inspiration! If you don’t already have a photo shoot booked, I’d love to chat with you about scheduling something. Please send me an email! I can’t wait to hear from you.


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What to wear for a Fall photo shoot. For more info, see byRayleigh.com

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What to wear for a Fall photo shoot. For more info, see byRayleigh.com

Session Tips

What to wear for a Fall photo shoot. For more info, see byRayleigh.com

Free Guide to Preparing For Your Shoot

Bald Is Beautiful – Breast Friends

I had the pleasure of working alongside Breast Friends, based in Tigard, OR, for a unique experience. Breast Friends is a wonderful organization dedicated to supporting women through the trauma of cancer. Part of their program includes an opportunity for the women they support to have a makeover with a professional makeup artist and a portrait shoot with a photographer who volunteers their time. We called them Bald is Beautiful portrait shoots.

Bald is Beautiful

Bald is Beautiful. Photography by Rayleigh in Portland, OR

Bald Is Beautiful portrait shoots are for women who work with Breast Friends and who have lost their hair due to chemo. The complimentary session provides a little pampering and beauty in the lives of women who aren’t feeling their best. The experience also serves as a memento that the women can look back on. A reminder to themselves of how strong they are and what they’ve been through.

Bald is Beautiful. Photography by Rayleigh in Portland, OR

I love looking through theses photos and remembering all the strength and beauty that came through my doors. I’m honored to have had the opportunity to be part of my community in this way. I stopped volunteering after a couple of years, when I had my babies. I needed to take a step back from some of my obligations to take care of my little ones. But I’d love to work with Breast Friends, again, one day.

Bald is Beautiful. Photography by Rayleigh in Portland, OR

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Free Guide to Preparing For Your Shoot

Back to YOU special!

Attention: Beautiful Moms! (And by that I mean ALL MOMS!) The kids are back in school. It’s time for you to appreciate how gorgeous you are! I’ve got a PORTRAIT SPECIAL for you! My annual Back to YOU special.

Beauty Photography by Rayleigh. This backlit, color, glamour photo is of an Indian woman sitting on the back of a couch in a formal dress. For more info, visit byRayleigh.com

For just $99, you’ll get hair and makeup artistry, a wardrobe consultation, and your very own one hour long Beauty Portrait Shoot!

I am giving away unlimited sessions at this value from September 16-20, 2021. Please pass this email on to your mom, sisters, and friends to share the news!

ALSO, the first 5 people to book will receive a bonus gift. With your portrait order, you’ll receive our hot seller, the modern 8×10 Folio Art Frame (valued at $264).

Please contact me at info@byRayleigh.com and mention this promo to book your shoot.

Back to YOU special! My special includes this modern 8x10 Folio Art Frame by 3XM. The image in the frame is a beauty photo of an Indian woman posing against a wall with a white background. For more info, visit byRayleigh.com
Folio Art Frame by 3XM.

Teach your daughter what true beauty is

Ever wonder what your daughter thinks about beauty when she looks at her mother who is her definition of love, warmth, and beauty? Does her opinion of beauty change as she sees you talk badly about your own looks? How will she learn if you don’t teach your daughter what true beauty is?

Teach your daughter what true beauty is. This mother-daughter image is of a young child, smiling at her mother while hugging on a chase in my photography studio. Photography by Rayleigh. For more info, please visit byRayleigh.com

It’s not just your looks that make you beautiful

I came across a great article on Offbeat Mama that I would love for you to read. It talks about how it’s not just your looks that make you beautiful. It’s your actions. The things you do. The efforts you make.

Redefine beauty

It’s helpful to look at our definition of beauty. It’s not just the reflection we see looking back at us in the mirror. That’s a small part of it. In fact, that beauty is fleeting. The beauty that your daughter sees in you is beauty that comes from the heart. How do you treat people? How do you show love? At a glance it might seem like this post is about self love. But it’s actually more about how you love other people that makes you beautiful.

It’s so easy to focus on our flaws or other negative things in our lives. One of my favorite verses in the Bible talks about, instead, focusing on lovely things.

Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is purewhatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things.

Philippians 4:8
Teach your daughter what true beauty is. This mother-daughter image is of a young child, smiling at her mother while lying on the bed in my photography studio. Photography by Rayleigh. For more info, please visit byRayleigh.com

Teach your daughter what true beauty is

Teach your daughter what true beauty is. Start telling your daughter that you are beautiful so she will learn to recognize beauty in herself. I know this is such a hard thing to do as you look in the mirror and count all your flaws. I want my two daughters to believe that they are beautiful. Not in a prideful way. Just in quiet confidence, knowing that they were created by the maker of the universe and they are lovely.

How can I convince them of that if they know that I don’t believe that I am beautiful, too?

Yesterday my 4 year old daughter said to me, “When I grow up, I want to look just like you.” My insides wrestled with that statement because, like so many women, I struggle to look past my physical flaws. I had to resist the urge to start listing off all my physical flaws to her, discrediting her comment, and convincing her that she shouldn’t want to look like me. Instead, I gave her a the most beautiful smile I could muster and told her what a sweet thing that was for her to say.

Teach your daughter what true beauty is. This image is of a young girl, lying on her tummy on a chase in my photography studio. Photography by Rayleigh. For more info, please visit byRayleigh.com

Want to see more?

I invite you to see more of my beauty portrait photography by visiting my website galleries. If you’d like to chat about booking a family or beauty photography shoot near Portland, OR, I’d love for you to contact me!

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? 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.

What to expect when you book a shoot

If you haven’t, yet, experienced a 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 shoot with Photography by Rayleigh.

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 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 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. 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.

What to expect when you book a 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 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 so pleased to offer same day ordering! After your session, you can head out to lunch while I process your photos. After lunch, you get to come back and view your photos!

Images can be purchased individually, however, my clients love my image collections 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 couple of weeks to receive, depending on the product you choose.

What to expect when you book a 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 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 shoot, I hope you can see that a 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!

Christmas Pajama Sessions

For the first time, ever, I’m offering a day of limited edition Christmas pajama sessions. You won’t find me offering these types of “mini” sessions often. So if you have been wanting to book a shoot with me and you are looking for a lower cost option, this might be the opportunity for you! These shorter sessions will be held on one day only and there will only be 6 spots available.

Limited Edition
Christmas Pajama Sessions
November 23, 2019

Slots will be in 30 minute increments between 10:00-1:30

Christmas pajama sessions. This is an image of a girl wearing red plaid Christmas pajamas and a red winter hat. She's hugging a red pillow and sitting in front of a Christmas tree. Image by Photography by Rayleigh. For more info, visit byrayleigh.com

What is different about these sessions?

  • The session fee is waived! (Usually $690)
  • Professional hair and makeup is not included but is available as an add on
  • Photo shoots are 20-30 minutes long
  • Special pricing! If you purchase two individual photos, you get one free. I will also have a small package available to save even more money. This special package is only available for these limited edition sessions.

Who are these sessions for?

These sessions can be scheduled for individuals (beauty or boudoir) or families.

Do I have to wear Christmas pajamas?

Although, I think a Christmas pajama session is such a fun idea, you can opt to wear something different. Just make sure your outfits go with the Christmas theme. Red, green, gold, gray, beige, and white are the best colors for this Christmas set. Pastel colors, like light pink, can go well, too, if we take out the reds in the set up. By the way, if you do wear pajamas, they don’t have to be red “Christmas” pajamas. They can be neutral colors, too. Any of the colors mentioned above would work fine.

Christmas pajama sessions. This is an image of a little girl wearing red plaid Christmas pajamas. She's holding a glass of milk and a teddy bear, next to a plate of cookies, and sitting in front of a Christmas tree. Image by Photography by Rayleigh. For more info, visit byrayleigh.com

What is the special pricing?

Photos can be purchased individually, which means you get the full size digital version of the photo, as well as a complimentary print of the photo (your choice of 5×7 or 8×10 print). Photos are $250 each. For these limited edition sessions only, if you buy two photos, you get one free!

For the highest value, consider purchasing a package of 10 photos, which includes the full size digital versions of the photos on a crystal USB drive and an heirloom quality album. The special price for this package is $1200.

Can I get professional hair and makeup services?

Professional hair and makeup services are available at an additional cost. That cost is subject to change depending on the hair and makeup artist. So please ask me about that when you book your shoot. There are only 3 slots available that will allow time for hair and makeup services, so you’ll want to grab one of those spots quickly.

Christmas pajama sessions. This is an image of an Asian mother with her daughter, lying on the floor ans smiling. They are wearing sweaters and matching pink winter hats. Image by Photography by Rayleigh. For more info, visit byrayleigh.com

What if I’m not available on November 23rd?

If the mini session day doesn’t work for you, please consider a booking full size session. Full size sessions can be booked on a day that is convenient for you and includes a more full experience compared to a mini session. Pricing will be regular pricing. The Christmas set will be available until mid-late December.

How do I book my shoot?

Spots are limited! So contact me soon to ask any questions and to book your limited edition Christmas pajama session. A deposit of $250 is required to hold your spot and that deposit goes toward your photo purchase.

Christmas pajama sessions. This is an image of a girl wearing a gray striped night gown. She's holding a glass of milk with a plate of cookies, and sitting on the floor in front of a Christmas tree. Image by Photography by Rayleigh. For more info, visit byrayleigh.com

Muffin Top

Famous Dave's cornbread muffin top. Rayleigh is a beauty and boudoir photographer with Photography by Rayleigh. For more info, visit byrayleigh.com

The muffin top is where it’s at

From the minute we pull in to the parking lot of Famous Dave’s BBQ, we are hooked. That amazing smell wafting in to the car, I can hardly get inside fast enough. We order our usual, a split order of chicken tenders with a side of broccoli, a side of mac and cheese, and that oh-so-amazing cornbread muffin. If you’ve ever eaten at Famous Dave’s you know that this is not just any corn bread. This is I’ve-died-and-gone-to-heaven cornbread. And the muffin top is the best part.

The only problem with splitting a meal, like we usually do, is that we only get one cornbread muffin, which is never enough. I joked with my husband, Nate, that I wouldn’t mind as much, splitting the muffin in half, if we were cutting it in such a way that I were getting the top half. So my husband, being the sweet guy that he is, gave me the top half of the muffin. Now that is love.

What does this have to do with photography?

When I pose my clients, I pose them in a way that celebrates the parts of their body that they love and I downplay the parts that they don’t love as much. If you have a sweetie, I’m sure he loves you for all of you. But I totally get wanting to focus only on your favorite parts. Now that I think about it, though, “muffin tops” aren’t always a good thing. Am I right?

That time my makeup artist got in front of the camera

I have a handful of wonderful hair and makeup artists that are a huge part of my beauty and boudoir shoot experiences. One of them is my makeup artist, Dallas Merkley.  I want to share with you some photos from the time Dallas, got in front of my lens and I also want to tell you about her YouTube channel.

A before and after collage of a beauty headshot. Photography by Rayleigh. byrayleigh.com

I love love love the white lace dress that Dallas brought for the shoot. White makes for a nice soft look. And lace adds some texture and character.

Beauty Photography by Rayleigh. A sitting pose and headshot. For more info, visit byrayleigh.com

Dallas is gorgeous and also extremely talented with hair and makeup. She’s also funny, as a bonus. So it’s always great to have her in my studio as a makeup artist or as a client.

Beauty Photography by Rayleigh. A sitting pose and headshot. For more info, visit byrayleigh.com
Beauty Photography by Rayleigh. This image is of a woman wearing a white lace dress in front of a white background. For more info, visit byrayleigh.com
Beauty Photography by Rayleigh. This image is of a woman wearing a white lace dress in front of a white background. For more info, visit byrayleigh.com
Beauty Photography by Rayleigh. This image is of a woman wearing a black dress in front of a black background. For more info, visit byrayleigh.com

Want to see more?

To see more of my beauty photography, please visit my beauty gallery.

Sisters Session

hughes 006..

One of the most beautiful bonds in the world is the bond between sisters. When I was growing up, my sister and I used to fight constantly. I didn’t want her in my room or touching my stuff. But as an adult I can’t imagine life without my sister. We talk on the phone almost every day and she’s my very best friend.

It’s been way too long since my sister and I have done a sisters session together so we should totally get on that! Sister shoots are so much fun and create the most amazing keepsakes. They make a great Mother’s Day gift, too.  Ooh, I just gave myself a great idea for a gift for my Mom this spring. Haha!

Beauty Photography by Rayleigh. These image is of a teen girl standing in front a white background in a Sue Bryce inspired pose. For more info, please visit byrayleigh.com
Sisters session. Beauty Photography by Rayleigh. These images are oft two teen girls standing in front a white background in a Sue Bryce inspired pose. For more info, please visit byrayleigh.com
Sisters session. Beauty Photography by Rayleigh. These image is of a teen girl standing in front a backlit background in a Sue Bryce inspired pose. For more info, please visit byrayleigh.com

Want to see more?

Click here to see more beauty portraits and click here to see my senior portrait gallery.