Spring is here!

Finally….what a long, hard fought winter we’ve had. Had a great session in Rock Creek with this lovely little (4 kids!) family. They were so spirited and full of laughs – it was a great morning!

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A Welcome Home Shoot

A Welcome Home Shoot

Welcome home to Sydney, just two weeks old. And welcome home to me. This is my first Stacey Vaeth Photography shoot this month, as I took a bit of a break to focus on a personal project.

A confession: Newborn sessions are not typically my favorite shoots. I feel a combination of trepidation and inadequacy when doing a newborn session, because of the plethora of gorgeous and serene baby in a basket/bucket/pumpkin images out there (i.e. on Pinterest and in Anne Geddes calendars).

I feel that my clients expect this shot; this perfect, soft dumpling of a baby in an adorable, albeit totally unnatural pose. So I’ll strive for it. But when I follow my true inner vision, the expression of what I think that I’d feel like were I a mother, what I want to shoot is more like this. Exactly like this.

Feelings of inadequacy and imperfection are probably the hallmarks of an artist. It is the bane of our existence, and simultaneously what makes us who we are. Those instincts, untested and not-yet-vetted, are what makes any creation so scary. It can be really, really bad. An idea can stink. But the risk is: if it’s not out there, you’ll never know if it’s great or awful. Like making a souffle, it can fail to rise, or be a perfect, soft, dumpling of a thing.

So, as a New Year’s Resolution, I’m going to work more on trusting in my vision, on doing something different, on capturing the spirit of my client (and myself). Therefore, if you see me hedging on a thought, on a pose, on an idea, and you like what I do, please urge me that it’s okay to suggest it. Something very personal and really great might emerge. Then again, the idea might stink (or sink). And we will probably survive.

After all, there’s always a pumpkin that we can stick that baby in.

Best Laid Plans


Death Valley I had all sorts of wonderful intentions of putting together a year-end photo gallery, documenting the wonderful families, companies and couples whom I have had the pleasure of working with throughout 2013. It remains on my to-do list, where it’s been residing for months. While this lack of presence on this blog and on Facebook ironically convey that I’ve been twiddling my thumbs and eating bon-bon’s, it’s in fact the opposite. This fall was one of the most fun, the most dynamic, and the most packed that I’ve had since beginning this little business in 2008. So much fun, so cold, so pretty, so stressful!

So, with that un-done to-do list (well, the really important stuff is done), I’m off! I’m headed off-line for a personal project and a little personal restoration. I’ll be out of the office for the larger part of January, but don’t worry, you’ll be in great hands! Should you need anything, feel free to contact us. Scheduling for the remainder of the year is still taking place.

Until we chat again, may you have a fantastic start to 2014. Here’s to a great year.



Sometimes they are reluctant…

And sometimes they’re totally into it. Little Alex was of the latter. His mom had told me that they didn’t want any posed shots, which freed me up considerably to just capture this cute family as they are. As it was freezing out, we opted for the Hirshorn Museum as our unique backdrop. What a fun morning!  DSC_2472-2 DSC_2779 DSC_2753 DSC_2743 DSC_2689 DSC_2602 DSC_2588 DSC_2573 DSC_2561 DSC_2551 DSC_2546 DSC_2541 DSC_2537 DSC_2535 DSC_2533 DSC_2522 DSC_2515 DSC_2496 DSC_2484 DSC_2480 DSC_2457 DSC_2435 DSC_2421 DSC_2419 DSC_2398 DSC_2344

Fall Family Session, Bon Air Park, Viriginia

I loved working with Lisa and her family again this year. Her girls have this amazing sister-connection that is just magic to witness. And how fun for them to now have a new baby brother!
Shoots like this make me miss my family, spread all over the country!


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Emily and Michael – Old Town Alexandria

How much do I love a couple who does a portrait session AFTER they are married?! So much.  How often do we go back and look at our collection of photos, only to discover that we have NO recent photos taken that weren’t on a iPhone? What a treat to shoot this low key session with Emily and Michael in Old Town, Alexandria.

0067 0074 0075 0080 0083 0086 0091 0094-2 0095 0098 0105I also love the pit crew, who cared for their greyhound when he wasn’t in the shot. So much fun.


Getting Busy

This time of year always comes around and I lose my mind a little. I forget that the fall is a packed schedule, it’s peak wedding season, holiday card and family portrait go-time, and pre-New Year corporate projects. Every single year. I forget. I think that it looks like a loose schedule in August and September, and that, well, maybe this year it’ll be a little slow. I get a little panicked. Maybe everyone went with someone else this year? And then October rolls around and the calendar gets booked so tight that a rain date feels like total disaster because the calendar is a game of very advanced Jenga.

And without fail, every year something at this point comes to a head to add a little fire to the fury. This year, my camera bag with $10,000 worth of equipment in it got stolen from an outdoor shoot. On Halloween. I was distracted, working, and lost track of it. And off it went.  Mind you, this never happens in February, when all of my tasks involve some variation of cleaning out some closet, virtual or real.  So before my three shoots on Friday the day after the theft, and my wedding on Saturday, and three shoots on Sunday, somewhere within that tight window, I had to cobble together a new kit. I rented and purchased and filed a police report and called the insurance company and…thank god….had my workhorse lens and favorite camera body and memory cards of the current shoot in hand at the time that the bag went walking.

And so it goes. It’s glorious and fast paced and really, really unpredictable. But this business is mine and something that I love beyond anything. I feel so proud to create these moments for, and with, my clients. I feel honored to be a part of their lives and to be the one who gets to capture cherished memories as their kids grow up, their marriages get formed, and their businesses grow.

It’s a little early for Thanksgiving, but I’m giving thanks tonight for a full schedule, insurance, a supportive family, and these hilarious pictures, shot this past week. These are not my portfolio pieces, probably not even the pics that get printed, but they are the quirky ones that I always cherish. Jeez, this gig is rough 🙂


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