Rachel Karnes Photography - Chester County PA Portrait Photographer: Blog https://www.rachelkarnesphotography.com/blog en-us (C) Rachel Karnes Photography - Chester County PA Portrait Photographer (Rachel Karnes Photography - Chester County PA Portrait Photographer) Mon, 04 Sep 2023 17:52:00 GMT Mon, 04 Sep 2023 17:52:00 GMT https://www.rachelkarnesphotography.com/img/s/v-12/u854837637-o701293922-50.jpg Rachel Karnes Photography - Chester County PA Portrait Photographer: Blog https://www.rachelkarnesphotography.com/blog 120 120 Greenmore Farm Animal Rescue Adoptable Dogs with Santa https://www.rachelkarnesphotography.com/blog/2021/12/greenmore-farm-animal-rescue-adoptable-dogs-with-santa This past weekend Greenmore Farm Animal Rescue had an open kennel day where community members could come to the farm, get a tour of the property and kennels, have some fun Christmas treats, and see what that beautiful place is all about! I am regular volunteer there and it's a just a lovely facility doing wonderful work placing dogs in forever homes. In addition, we had Santa visit, albeit late, but while he was there people were able to have their dog's photos taken with him for a donation to the rescue. We also had some of current adoptable dogs take photos with Santa. We are pretty sure each and every one of them asked him for a family of their own for Christmas. That's why I want to share some of these photos...well that and they are adorable! If you are interested in any of these sweet dogs, please click the photos to view their individual listings and Greenmore's adoption process! 

This is gorgeous chocolate lab mix is Amie 147147Amie

This Beautiful Blue Heeler Mix Puppy is Cindy

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This little love bug is Autumn

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This handsome fella is Drew. He is deaf and that doesn't slow him down one bit!! 

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This little guy is Ryder


This shaggy happiness is Teddy

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This hunk of love is Bo

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This sweetie is Leo...he was a little unsure of Santa but he's actually a super fun, happy guy! 

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This gorgeous guy is Olaf

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Nothing sweeter than a Sugar Cookie

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This beautiful beagle is Rose


This is her cute sister Jasmine


This handsome Labradoodle is Scooby 


This is Stuart...there was a lot going on! 

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This beautiful black lab puppy is Biscotti

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Holly giving Santa some love

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Our Nicholas with Saint Nicholas


Sweet Sally


This pretty lady is Peaches 


This is the absolutely gorgeous Mariana


And Finally, this is our main man Melvin

melvin2melvin2Melvin I hope you enjoyed seeing these adorable dogs hanging with Santa! This is by no means all the available dogs at Greenmore and the farm gets new available dogs weekly so be sure to check in often in you are looking for a new best friend! And if you are looking for updated photos of your current loyal companions, Contact me! I would love chat about a photo session for you and your family or business!  


(Rachel Karnes Photography - Chester County PA Portrait Photographer) dog portraits Greenmore Rescue rescue dogs Santa Santa photos https://www.rachelkarnesphotography.com/blog/2021/12/greenmore-farm-animal-rescue-adoptable-dogs-with-santa Tue, 14 Dec 2021 21:06:05 GMT
Commercial Photo Session for Colonial Williamsburg's Merchants Square Scottish Boutique https://www.rachelkarnesphotography.com/blog/2018/3/commercial-photo-session-for-williamsburg-merchant-square-scottish-boutique Happy Saint Patrick's Day! 

With it being on a Saturday this year, there is a lot going on in Colonial Williamsburg today! While you are down there for the fun be sure to check out The Scotland House. This is a family owned and run boutique in Merchants Square that sells authentic apparel and gifts from The British Ilses. I did a commercial photo shoot for them back in the Fall to showcase some of their new inventory and it was so fun!  They have the most beautiful things in there! Seriously, all those things that we tell our clients to wear because they photograph so well - rich colors, textured fabrics, layered accessories - they have it all! So get your Irish fix today and enjoy some of my favorite images from this session! 

We turned the front of their large store into my studio for the morning. Models brought their A game! 

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We also did some of our shoot outside in front of their store on Merchant Square and some quaint side streets. 


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This is the husband and wife team that own Scotland House. They work so hard to bring the Williamsburg community and visitors a great selection of authentic products that are popular right now in those countries. And I learned they are the only US retailer for some of the things they carry! 


In addition to the gorgeous apparel, there are so many beautiful accessories and gifts to find here.

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There are way too many photos of all the beautiful things they carry in this unique boutique to share them all so be sure to check their website. Better yet, go downtown to have your Guinness today and visit these friendly people at The Scotland House to check it out for yourself

If you are a business near Williamsburg VA and would like new photos or updated head shots for your marketing needs, please contact me for a custom quote! We can work together to make sure the best you is being represented in your brand! 



(Rachel Karnes Photography - Chester County PA Portrait Photographer) accessories apparel blankets boots boutique capes coats colonial williamsburg commercial photography england fur gifts hats ireland kilt merchants square model shoot photo shoot portraits scarves scotland sweaters the scotland house ties tweed virginia williamsburg williamsburg photographer wool https://www.rachelkarnesphotography.com/blog/2018/3/commercial-photo-session-for-williamsburg-merchant-square-scottish-boutique Sat, 17 Mar 2018 16:42:53 GMT
2016 Gangs of the Mid-Atantic Competition at Crossfit Williamsburg https://www.rachelkarnesphotography.com/blog/2017/2/2016-gangs-of-the-mid-atantic-competition-at-crossfit-williamsburg CrossFit Open season is upon us once again! In a few days 17.1 will be announced!  Hundreds of thousands of Crossfitters will be in front of their devices Thursday night to see what Dave has in store for us. Some will laugh, some will cry, but all will be challenged by whatever is announced! The next five weeks will be a series of new workouts, loud cheering, and maybe a PR! If you are new to Crossfit, this is a great way to see what this amazing community is about. If you are a more seasoned athlete, you know you will certainly up your game. If you aren't registered yet or want to find out more, check it out here!

With the open brings lots of fun CrossFit hype! :) This is when I like to revisit the photos from CrossFit Williamsburg's Gangs of the Mid-Atlantic that I took this past Fall to share again and hopefully give some motivation for these exciting next few weeks!  Also girl scout cookies are being delivered right now, so if you are like me you might want an extra workout here or there... 

Meet some of the teams at this past year's Gangs of the Mid-Atlantic...

male-team-at-gangs-of-the-midatlanticmale-team-at-gangs-of-the-midatlantic female-crossfit-competition-teamfemale-crossfit-competition-team

Williamsburg-VA-crossfit-competition-co-ed-teamWilliamsburg-VA-crossfit-competition-co-ed-team gangs-of-the-midatlantic-co-ed-teamgangs-of-the-midatlantic-co-ed-team gangs-of-the-midatlantic-teamgangs-of-the-midatlantic-team male-team-toastingmale-team-toasting crossfit-competition-team-at-gangs-of-the-midatlanticcrossfit-competition-team-at-gangs-of-the-midatlantic One of my favorite team names...Chalk Dirty To Me! 


 Those were before the blood, sweat and tears...here are some of these legit athletes doing their thing! 



female-athlete-doing-chest-to-bar-pullups-at-Crossfit-Williamaburgfemale-athlete-doing-chest-to-bar-pullups-at-Crossfit-Williamaburg chest-to-bar-pull-ups-at-crossfit-Williamsburg-Competitionchest-to-bar-pull-ups-at-crossfit-Williamsburg-Competition

female-athlete-doing-deadlift-at-williamsburg-competitionfemale-athlete-doing-deadlift-at-williamsburg-competition crossfit-heavy-snatch-at-williamsburg-competitioncrossfit-heavy-snatch-at-williamsburg-competition crossfit-competition-relay-race-at-gangs-of-the-mid-atlanticcrossfit-competition-relay-race-at-gangs-of-the-mid-atlantic

crossfit-heavy-clean-at-williamsburg-boxcrossfit-heavy-clean-at-williamsburg-box female-on-rower-at-gangs-of-the-midatlanticfemale-on-rower-at-gangs-of-the-midatlantic male-athlete-heavy-snatchmale-athlete-heavy-snatch toes-to-bar-at-crossfit-williamsburgtoes-to-bar-at-crossfit-williamsburg crossfit-burpee-bar-hop-at-crossfit-williamsburgcrossfit-burpee-bar-hop-at-crossfit-williamsburg crossfit-williamsburg-athletes-doing-pullupscrossfit-williamsburg-athletes-doing-pullups female-athlete-burpee-bar-hopsfemale-athlete-burpee-bar-hops

male-athlete-snatching-at-crossfit-competitionmale-athlete-snatching-at-crossfit-competition double-unders-being-judged-in-crossfit-competitiondouble-unders-being-judged-in-crossfit-competition front-squat-at-crossfit-competitionfront-squat-at-crossfit-competition male-athlete-in-front-rack-position-with-heavy-barbell-at-williamsburg-competitionmale-athlete-in-front-rack-position-with-heavy-barbell-at-williamsburg-competition male-althete-doing-double-unders-at-crossfit-competitionmale-althete-doing-double-unders-at-crossfit-competition female-athlete-heavy-clean-at-crossift-williamsburg-competitionfemale-athlete-heavy-clean-at-crossift-williamsburg-competition

front-squat-at-crossfit-competitionfront-squat-at-crossfit-competition crossfit-competition-snatch-in-williamsburgcrossfit-competition-snatch-in-williamsburg Pretty impressive stuff, no? They work hard and play hard - sometime at the same time. If there was one word I could use to sum up this past year's Gangs competition it would be fun. Don't believe me? Lots of smiles and joking around out there!

having-fun-at-gangs-of-the-midatlantichaving-fun-at-gangs-of-the-midatlantic male-athlete-smiling-on-rowing-machine-at-crossfit-competitionmale-athlete-smiling-on-rowing-machine-at-crossfit-competition




male-athlete-smiling-doing-toes-to-barmale-athlete-smiling-doing-toes-to-bar male-athlete-smiling-on-crossfit-air-assault-bikemale-athlete-smiling-on-crossfit-air-assault-bike


Of course none of this would happen so seamlessly without our hard working volunteers and judges! 

crossfit-competition-judges-at-gangs-of-the-midatlanticcrossfit-competition-judges-at-gangs-of-the-midatlantic crossfit-competition-volunteers-in-williamsburgcrossfit-competition-volunteers-in-williamsburg crossfit-competition-volunteerscrossfit-competition-volunteers crossfit-competition-volunteers-cleaning-barscrossfit-competition-volunteers-cleaning-bars gangs-of-midatantic-butchergangs-of-midatantic-butcher

crossfit-competition-judges-in-williamsburgcrossfit-competition-judges-in-williamsburg gangs-of-the-midatlantic-volunteersgangs-of-the-midatlantic-volunteers 2016-gangs-of-the-midatlantic2016-gangs-of-the-midatlantic It takes a lot of work to have this much fun! One of my favorite things to see in these competitions is the teamwork, cheering, and celebration of each other's accomplishments. And I also love to catch the exhausted, crumpled up, and sometimes worse for the ware mess! 

celebrating-one-rep-max-snatch-at-williamsburg-crossfit-competitioncelebrating-one-rep-max-snatch-at-williamsburg-crossfit-competition crossfit-competition-team-huggingcrossfit-competition-team-hugging male-teammates-hug-at-williamsburg-competitionmale-teammates-hug-at-williamsburg-competition

WOD-aftermath-at-gangs-of-the-midatlanticWOD-aftermath-at-gangs-of-the-midatlantic one-rep-max-snatch-celebrationone-rep-max-snatch-celebration cheering-on-team-at-crossfit-competitioncheering-on-team-at-crossfit-competition And just a special shout out to these two athletes who did all 100 reps of pull-ups for their team in the third WOD

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And remember than blood, sweat, and tears thing I mentioned? 


So the first open WOD is going to be announced tomorrow. What do you think...one arm dumbbell snatches? Pistols this year? Bring ring muscle ups back?  Whatever it is -or the rest of them for that matter - it'll be an exciting few weeks! Hopefully you'll register and take part in the madness fun.

Whether you take part in the open this year or not, if you are new to competitions and are looking for a gateway event, check out this competition for first timers HERE!  

If you want to learn more about my CrossFit photos or portrait sessions, contact me here!  

(Rachel Karnes Photography - Chester County PA Portrait Photographer) 5K air assault bike chest to bar clean and jerk CrossFit crossfit competition crossfit open crossfit teams crossfit williamsburg deadlift gangs of the midatlantic kcals one rep max pull-ups rowing snatch thrusters toes to bar Williamsburg https://www.rachelkarnesphotography.com/blog/2017/2/2016-gangs-of-the-mid-atantic-competition-at-crossfit-williamsburg Wed, 22 Feb 2017 04:53:37 GMT
Williamsburg Portrait Studio Christmas Sessions https://www.rachelkarnesphotography.com/blog/2017/1/williamsburg-portrait-studio-christmas-sessions While I love providing beautiful printed products and wall art to my clients, I know during the Holiday season gorgeous Christmas Card images are also needed!  In a effort to help with that, I offered a special in my newsletter. I did a handful of children's simple studio Christmas card sessions in plenty of time to get the cards ordered and mailed for Christmas!

Here are a few of my favorites from these sessions!

She was my perfect little model when I was deciding to offer these!



If you know me or have had previous sessions with me, you know I am not really into props.  I love simple to focus on the amazing faces in front of my camera. Sometimes I am graced with glimpses of personality and my favorite thing is to catch real smiles. Sibling shots are so fun! 





Sometimes relationships shine in simple photos and it's THE best! These two... I mean no words! 



And then there was this gorgeous girl. Her dress, her hair, her smile...so so lovely! 


If you participated in these sessions, thank you!  They were a lot of fun! If you would have liked to participate in these, be sure to get on my newsletter HERE so you don't miss out on hearing about any specials I have throughout the year! 

If you love simple studio sessions, I do offer them all year round with several beautiful backdrops to choose from. These are perfect for the winter months if you don't want to brave the cold weather! Contact me to plan yours today! 



(Rachel Karnes Photography - Chester County PA Portrait Photographer) children portrait Christmas Christmas card Christmas portraits holiday holiday photo shoot photo shoot photography studio photos portraits sibling portraits studio portraits Virginia Williamsburg Williamsburg Photographer WIlliamsburg photography studio https://www.rachelkarnesphotography.com/blog/2017/1/williamsburg-portrait-studio-christmas-sessions Mon, 09 Jan 2017 18:58:04 GMT
Beautiful Fall Family Portraits in Colonial Williamsburg https://www.rachelkarnesphotography.com/blog/2016/10/beautiful-fall-family-portraits-in-colonial-williamsburg This was one of my favorite Fall shoots from last year!  This couple are both William and Mary alumni. They were here in Williamsburg for William and Mary Homecoming weekend with their beautiful daughters. They also took them on a campus tour as the oldest was a senior looking at potential colleges. They contacted me to try to fit a family photo session in their very busy weekend and I am so happy we worked it out! Early morning light, quiet streets, and Colonial Williamsburg made this session gorgeous! 



Their outfits and colors were so perfect for Fall! 

Williamsburg-Custom-Family-PhotographerWilliamsburg-Custom-Family-Photographer Sisters-by-Colonial-Williamsburg-fence-photoSisters-by-Colonial-Williamsburg-fence-photo Couple-by-fence-in-Colonial-WilliamsburgCouple-by-fence-in-Colonial-Williamsburg Williamsburg-Fall-Senior-Portrait-SessionWilliamsburg-Fall-Senior-Portrait-Session

While the leaves were just showing a hint of color, the lush greens this time of year are so pretty in the Colonial Williamsburg Gardens.

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The Palace Green, Governors Palace, and charming side streets are always a great backdrop for Williamsburg Photos.




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This family is certainly efficient in how they managed to get so much in that Homecoming weekend! I enjoyed spending time with them this absolutely gorgeous Fall morning in Williamsburg. I am happy to say so many of these beautiful images are being enjoyed on the walls of their home. 

I would love to take beautiful images of your family and help you display them on the walls of your home too! Contact me to plan and schedule your custom family photo session with me! 

(Rachel Karnes Photography - Chester County PA Portrait Photographer) Colonial Williamsburg custom photo session family photos family portraits photo shoot photos portraits Virginia Williamsburg williamsburg children photographer williamsburg family photographer Williamsburg Family Photography Williamsburg Photographer williamsburg senior photographer williamsburg vacation https://www.rachelkarnesphotography.com/blog/2016/10/beautiful-fall-family-portraits-in-colonial-williamsburg Tue, 11 Oct 2016 01:52:40 GMT
Williamsburg Extended Family Photo Session at KingsMill Resort https://www.rachelkarnesphotography.com/blog/2016/10/williamsburg-extended-family-photo-session-at-kingsmill-resort The older I get the more I realize that time is one of the most precious gifts we have. Sure, getting stuff is fun, but when virtually every minute of my day is accounted for I crave more time than anything else. That makes vacations and time with my family priceless to me. I love seeing families take vacations together here in Williamsburg and I am honored when they ask me to take their family portraits while they are here. They know this rare time when everyone is together is precious and worth remembering in a special way . 

I take a lot of care preparing to assure my clients can relax and let me do the work when it comes to their photo sessions. Sometimes that means I have to anticipate the weather, make a call,  and react - especially when they are from out of town and just rescheduling down the road or another weekend won't work. We had to move this session for a forecast that looked like rain, rain, and more rain for our original time. Thankfully we were all able to be flexible and still make this happen! 

They were staying at the beautiful Kingsmill resort along the James River and we pretty much did this session in their backyard there. Sometimes a simple location, happy family, and killer lighting are all you need for a beautiful photo session! Williamsburg-extended-family-photo-sessionWilliamsburg-extended-family-photo-session These grandparents were thrilled to have all their grandchildren in one place!! 

grandparents-with-grandchildren-in-williamsburggrandparents-with-grandchildren-in-williamsburg This beautiful couple, their children, and their familes...

grandparents-portrait-at-kingsmill-resort-grandparents-portrait-at-kingsmill-resort- parents-with-adult-children-in-williamsburgparents-with-adult-children-in-williamsburg williamsburg-extended-family-photo-sesssion-at-kingsmill-resortwilliamsburg-extended-family-photo-sesssion-at-kingsmill-resort

kingsmill-family-photo-session-in-williamsburgkingsmill-family-photo-session-in-williamsburg couples-photo-at-kingsmill-resortcouples-photo-at-kingsmill-resort Williamsburg-custom-family-photo-sessionWilliamsburg-custom-family-photo-session brothers-at-kingsmill-resort-in-williamsburgbrothers-at-kingsmill-resort-in-williamsburg Couples-custom-photo-session-in-williamsburgCouples-custom-photo-session-in-williamsburg Family-photo-in-williamsburg-vaFamily-photo-in-williamsburg-va siblings-at-kingsmill-resort-williamsburg (2)siblings-at-kingsmill-resort-williamsburg (2) Couple-at-williamsburg-kingsmill-resortCouple-at-williamsburg-kingsmill-resort This family had a long, full day before our photo session as we were adjusting schedules for the weather. These kids were troopers! Still running around and full of silly energy! Of course this one was a grandparent favorite!

I know my vacationing family clients have full days of Colonial sightseeing, Busch Gardens fun, and resort swimming. So I am super grateful when they not only chose to fit in a photo session to remember their beautiful Williamsburg vacation together , but trust me with their precious time as well!

Whether you are here for a relaxing vacation or are lucky to live here like I do, I would love to capture your precious time too! CONTACT ME and we can plan your next family photo session for you together! 


(Rachel Karnes Photography - Chester County PA Portrait Photographer) extended family Extended Family Photos family photos family portraits James River kingsmill resoort photo shoot photos portraits Virginia Williamsburg Williamsburg Family Reunion Williamsburg Photographer https://www.rachelkarnesphotography.com/blog/2016/10/williamsburg-extended-family-photo-session-at-kingsmill-resort Mon, 03 Oct 2016 12:41:35 GMT
William and Mary Alumni Pregnancy Announcement https://www.rachelkarnesphotography.com/blog/2016/7/william-and-mary-alumni-pregnancy-announcement Reaching back a few months to blog this session...

I got an email from the sweetest girl who graduated from William and Mary along with her now husband. It was just before Mother's Day and she really wanted to have a fun pregnancy announcement photo session. Did I mentioned her Dad was a William and Mary Alumni too?

Having since moved away from Williamsburg, we worked to find a time for them to come down for a session before Mother's Day where they could share their wonderful news with family and friends. A little drizzle wasn't going to put a damper on our morning! They came prepared with the cutest sign  (Our Tribe is Expanding!)  and I learned a thing or two about some William and Mary traditions! 

The Wren Building is iconic, beautiful, and the perfect backdrop for our first photos of the morning. 

The Crim Dell bridge is such a romantic spot! 

Thomas Jefferson needed to get in on the fun and I think he approved!

This was such a fun session and I wish this couple nothing but happiness on this next chapter in their lives!  I would love to help you remember this chapter of your life too! Contact me to find out more information on my custom photo sessions! 

(Rachel Karnes Photography - Chester County PA Portrait Photographer) Alumni Colonial Williamsburg couples photo session Crim Dell Bridge portraits Pregnancy Announcement sunken garden William and Mary William and Mary Campus Williamsburg Williamsburg Photographer Wren Building https://www.rachelkarnesphotography.com/blog/2016/7/william-and-mary-alumni-pregnancy-announcement Fri, 29 Jul 2016 01:41:25 GMT
Spring Family Photos in Colonial Williamsburg https://www.rachelkarnesphotography.com/blog/2016/6/spring-family-photos-in-colonial-williamsburg Colonial Williamsburg is always the perfect setting for family photos. Colonial Williamsburg in the Spring though...well that's is an extra treat! Lush greens, blooming gardens, and gorgeous light create backdrops like no other. This beautiful family has a new journey ahead, but before the boxes and moving trucks we set out to enjoy one more evening strolling around this pretty place. 

 Oh and their pug joined us too! Such a handsome fella! 

And speaking of handsome...these boys! 

This couple had the most fun, playful relationship.

Yeah, and romantic too. 

I wish this family all the best on their new adventures! I would love to capture your family during your Williamsburg adventure too! Contact me to discuss your next photo session! 

(Rachel Karnes Photography - Chester County PA Portrait Photographer) Colonial Williamsburg family photographer in Williamsburg VA family photos family portraits photo shoot photos portraits Virginia Williamsburg Williamsburg children photographer Williamsburg couples photographer Williamsburg Family Photographer Williamsburg Photographer https://www.rachelkarnesphotography.com/blog/2016/6/spring-family-photos-in-colonial-williamsburg Sat, 25 Jun 2016 02:41:21 GMT
Preserving memories with Mom in Williamsburg https://www.rachelkarnesphotography.com/blog/2016/5/preserving-memories May is a pretty big month for me. It's my birthday, Mother's Day, and the month I became a mother myself as it's my oldest child's birth month too. It's Spring, which means it's hopefully getting warmer and greener out. As a photographer, that's a big deal for me too! I want to focus though on Mother's Day, or just moms really, but this seems like an appropriate time. 

The older I get, the more I realize how immensely lucky I am to still have my mother in my life. That might sound dramatic, but its true. Especially having daughters reaching their teens - I feel like I need her now as much as ever! I am raising my children in a different world from the one my mother raised me in and it's scary. Everything is different. The schools, the activities, the sports, the friends, the non-friends, the technology... Oh the technology! It's wonderful and I hate it all at the same time. Here I am working on it, but just a few tabs over is social media that I can waste hours on. I watch my children turn into zombies in front of their devices and I seriously want to throw them out the window sometimes. But I digress...my point is, I am so thankful that I have my mom to talk to. To vent to. To get advice from. This parenting thing is hard and I know no matter how trivial or giant my issue is, I have someone that cares about it almost as much as me. 

So what does any of this have to do with photography? Well, everything! While my mom is a phone call away, she's also 12 hours away. I don't get to see her in person even kind of enough. Photos have always been important to me of the people I love. They are important to my children as well as they've only ever see their grandparents a handful of times throughout each year of their lives. I also want them to have evidence of when their parents were young(ish)!   

Relationships are what life is about. Photographs that preserve the memories of those relationships are priceless. Whether it's with a professional or your phone, be sure to capture those special times together once in a while. Get in a photo with your kids. Take a selfie with your mom if you are lucky enough to be able to. You won't regret it looking back on those photos in the days, months, and years to come. And I'll bet you smile when you do. :)  

Thank you to all my wonderful clients for trusting me with their memories! 

Happy Mother's Day! 


Contact me for more information on your customized photo session! Let's preserve your memories too! 

(Rachel Karnes Photography - Chester County PA Portrait Photographer) Mothers Day Williamsburg Williamsburg VA family photos family portraits memories mom photos portraits portraits with mom preserving memories https://www.rachelkarnesphotography.com/blog/2016/5/preserving-memories Sat, 07 May 2016 19:50:08 GMT
Williamsburg Studio Watch Me Grow First Year Baby Portrait Plan https://www.rachelkarnesphotography.com/blog/2016/3/williamsburg-studio-grow-with-me-baby-first-year-portrait-plan This guy...

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He holds a special place in my heart. :)  He is the first baby to go through all the milestone sessions with my "Watch Me Grow" year baby plan. I also got to sneak in a few Fresh 48 (the first days in the hospital after he was born) photos of him too! 


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He still has this little swirl in his hair! ​I have the pleasure of seeing him almost everyday to get my baby fix and I love that I was able to document his first year in milestone photo sessions. See that smile...I think he was pretty happy about it too. 


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His two beautiful siblings. I can't get over how little they all look a year ago!  williamsburg-newborn-with-siblings-photo-shootwilliamsburg-newborn-with-siblings-photo-shoot

So Sweet! His three month shoot was so adorable! Just starting to hold his head up and ALL smiles! 

three-month-old-on-floakati-rug-in-beeniethree-month-old-on-floakati-rug-in-beenie williamsburg-three-month-photo-shootwilliamsburg-three-month-photo-shoot

williamsburg-custom-family-and-children-photographerwilliamsburg-custom-family-and-children-photographer williamsburg-studio-three-month-baby-photowilliamsburg-studio-three-month-baby-photo three-month-old-baby-laughingthree-month-old-baby-laughing I have to admit, six month photo sessions are some of my favorites! Happy babies, sitting up, dressed up, with no place to go! ;) 

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Nine months, standing, and getting big!

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nine-month-old-baby-in-rocking-chair-in-williamsburg-studionine-month-old-baby-in-rocking-chair-in-williamsburg-studio baby-in-fedora-in-williamsburg-photo-studiobaby-in-fedora-in-williamsburg-photo-studio nine-month-old-baby-bottomnine-month-old-baby-bottom And just like that he's a year old!! His mama made his this onsie...so stinking cute!

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She also made him this pretty cake! YUM!


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Nothing wrong with a happy baby boy covered in cake!

That year went fast!  His family blinked and he is one, but I know they will truly treasure these photos. 

That's the best part of my job - providing you with memories you can hold for years to come and think of this happy time. My Watch Me Grow Plan includes a gorgeous album at the end of the year full of images that YOU choose from all your baby's sessions.  You can rest assured that you will have a beautiful heirloom you will cherish forever. This year goes so fast, contact me for more information on preserving it for you!  

Is your baby is already into their first year? No worries, I provide milestone sessions independent from the baby plan as well! :) 

(Rachel Karnes Photography - Chester County PA Portrait Photographer) Baby first year photos Fresh 48 photos Grow With Me baby plan Watch Me Grow baby plan Williamsburg Williamsburg baby photographer baby baby portraits family portraits newborn newborn photos nine month baby photos one year baby photos photo shoot photos portraits six month baby photos studio baby photos three month baby photos https://www.rachelkarnesphotography.com/blog/2016/3/williamsburg-studio-grow-with-me-baby-first-year-portrait-plan Thu, 10 Mar 2016 19:25:00 GMT
CrossFit Williamsburg's 2015 Gangs of the Mid-Atlantic Competition https://www.rachelkarnesphotography.com/blog/2016/2/crossfit-williamsburgs-2015-gangs-of-the-mid-atlantic-competition It's February (already), which means it's almost time for the 2016 CrossFit Open to start! Like in two days about to start. Have you registered yet? Check it out and get on it HERE!  This will be my third year participating, and it's a lot of fun. It's always exciting to hear that WOD announced live, watch some amazing elite athletes perform it, and participate in it that weekend for yourself!  

This was also my third year photographing CrossFit Williamsburg Gangs of the Mid-Atlantic...again, lots of fun! There is always great programming, impressive performances, and strong camaraderie. 

This year there was just about every division you can think of spanning over two days. Naturally, there were a lot of athletes competing!!



Whether you are looking for motivation for signing up for The Open or just to make it to class tomorrow, enjoy! :) 


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These competitions would  not happen if not for the volunteers! They judge, help with equipment, clean up, and generally make sure this all runs smoothly for the athletes. 





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No question these athletes are working super hard. Sometimes it is your teammates' cheer which gets you through that last rep...then they celebrate with you. This sport notoriously supports it's fellow athletes. I love that so much. We're all in this together...it's much more fun to celebrate each other's successes! 


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Feel like running out to do your WOD today or sign up for the open? Have you ever been in a competition before? No?! Well then, from the creators of "Gangs of the Mid-Atlantic"  (so you know it'll be good! ) comes a competition strictly for beginner athletes that have NEVER participated in a competition! Find out more HERE!  

Contact me for information on CrossFit photos or my portrait sessions. See you soon! 





(Rachel Karnes Photography - Chester County PA Portrait Photographer) airdyne bike box jumps burpee bar hops" clean and jerk cleans CrossFit CrossFit Competition CrossFit Photos deadlift front Gangs of the Mid-Atlantic hand stand push-ups portraits relay rope climb rowing shoulder to overhead snatch sprint squats" Williamsburg https://www.rachelkarnesphotography.com/blog/2016/2/crossfit-williamsburgs-2015-gangs-of-the-mid-atlantic-competition Tue, 23 Feb 2016 14:35:18 GMT
Couple Celebrates 40th Anniversary in Colonial Williamsburg with Family https://www.rachelkarnesphotography.com/blog/2016/2/couple-celebrates-40th-anniversary-in-colonial-williamsburg-with-family A few months ago I was contacted by a lovely young woman telling me about her family's plans to celebrate her parents 40th Wedding Anniversary in Colonial Williamsburg. They were looking for a photographer to do a photo session with the family during the weekend they were spending here. Thrilled to be part of their celebration, we decided on a late afternoon session just before their dinner reservations at Fat Canaray in Merchants Square

We had an absolutely gorgeous evening.  Let me tell you, they were dressed to impress! 

Williamsburg-custom-family-photographerWilliamsburg-custom-family-photographer Am I right?! They were such a sweet, charming family and we had a lot of fun walking around Colonial Williamsburg taking photos.  Mother-and daughters-in Colonial-Williamsburg-GardensMother-and daughters-in Colonial-Williamsburg-Gardens

A beautiful mother and her beautiful daughters. But we can't leave out the boys...they just look so dapper. 

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This is one of my favorite little corners of CW to take photos. Their dress colors look AMAZING against the beautiful green here. 

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One of the fun things about Colonial Williamsburg is that there is beautiful scenery around every corner. 

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This image makes me want an updated, dressed-up photo with my Dad and Sister! 


40 years of marriage looks pretty darn good! 


After a really fun-natured photo session, they headed off to dinner. I want to mention that having not been to the Fat Canary yet since moving to Williamsburg, I asked them to let me know how it was. A few days later I got an email with this: 

"Just wanted to let you know that I STRONGLY suggest Fat Canary!  Our server was a delight.  They had a menu signed by all the waitstaff for my parents, they put us at a great table, and most importantly - the food was outstanding.  Superb. I hope you get a chance to celebrate there sometime!"

So there you go! It doesn't get any better than that!

I am so glad that I got to provide them beautiful memories of what was clearly a very meaningful evening. I would love to provide you with beautiful memories like these too! Contact me today and let's plan an unforgettable  photo session for YOUR family! 

(Rachel Karnes Photography - Chester County PA Portrait Photographer) Anniversary Anniversary photo session Colonial Williamsburg Fat Canary Virginia Williamsburg Williamsburg Photographer extended family family photos family portraits photo shoot photos portraits https://www.rachelkarnesphotography.com/blog/2016/2/couple-celebrates-40th-anniversary-in-colonial-williamsburg-with-family Wed, 10 Feb 2016 20:30:19 GMT
Williamsburg couple and dogs photo session https://www.rachelkarnesphotography.com/blog/2016/1/williamsburg-couple-and-dogs-photo-session Before it gets too far into the new year, I had to share this fun couples session that happened just before Christmas. This gorgeous lady contacted me for a session with her husband and their adorable little dogs. After changing locations dues to conflicts with Colonial Williamsburg's Grand Illumination, we settled on a field setting where we were graced with some amazing late afternoon light. I think we made the right call! 

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This is one of those photos that they didn't even realize worked out, came out adorable, and was one of her favorites from the session! 

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We moved to a slightly different place at this location for photos without the fur babies. There was still just a hint of color in a few trees we wanted to capture! 

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Seriously, how cute are they!? Who doesn't love a pretty Mistletoe? Love it! 

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We did a few individual portraits as well. Clients don't have to do these of course, but I ask and the ones that do are always glad they did! An updated head shot, or something for your spouse to put on his or her desk at work is always a nice to have. And look at hers...It's stunning! 

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This was a fun session with a lovely couple! Their cute little dogs did awesome too! CONTACT ME HERE TODAY for more information on couples, family, or children session...fur babies optional! 

(Rachel Karnes Photography - Chester County PA Portrait Photographer) couples photo session dog photos dogs in Christmas sweaters Field mistletoe photo session in field photo shoot photos portraits Virginia Williamsburg Williamsburg Photographer williamsburg portraits https://www.rachelkarnesphotography.com/blog/2016/1/williamsburg-couple-and-dogs-photo-session Wed, 13 Jan 2016 15:52:05 GMT
Canvas Gallery Wraps or Standout Prints? https://www.rachelkarnesphotography.com/blog/2015/10/canvas-gallery-wraps-or-standout-prints My job is not done after I've only taken your pictures at your photo session. I am a full service studio that provides a finished printed product to my clients. I color calibrate my editing monitor to my professional printing labs and vendors to ensure accurate and consistent printing results. Why does this matter? Because I want to deliver you a beautiful product ready to hang on your wall, put in your favorite frame, or that you can turn the pages of to enjoy your images. You deserve that level of service and quality for your memories! 

For my local clients, I show you what these products look like with the samples I bring to your viewing and ordering appointment. I can even show you how they will look in real size on your actual wall! How cool is that?! For my out of town clients, I do the best I can with technology to give you this same experience in helping you choose the right sizes and products for your home. 

Two types of Wall Art that I offer are Canvas Gallery Wraps and Standout Prints. The question I get asked the most from out of town clients that I can't physically bring my samples to, is what is the difference between them. I wanted to write this post to help explain the difference. 

Both are great choices for wall art. I have both hanging in my home and love them for different reasons. It most likely comes down to your decor and which look you prefer with where you are displaying your images. Canvas can look a more traditional whereas I think Standouts tend to look more modern. Both come ready to hang and neither requires a frame. 

Canvases have a little more formal elegance to them in my opinion. This is a sample of a 20x30 Canvas. 

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Canvases have beautiful, rich colors which look lovely on the textured material. They have a protective coating that allows them to be wiped clean for dust.

The image wraps around and is stretched around the 1.5" edges of the canvas.

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The canvas is finished with plain black backing. Depending on the size, they will come ready to hang with either a wire or sawtooth hangers. They also come with small clear bumpers you adhere to the four back corners of the back to protect your wall. This is my sample that gets knocked around in my sample bag, so I just hadn't put those on. :) 

Standouts have a very clean look to them and are more economical than a canvas. Your print is lustre coated for protection and mounted onto a .75" lightweight, stiff foamcore board.  This is a sample of a 16x24 standout print. 

The sides of the standout boards are protected by a black or white smooth matte paneling which gives your standout a fully finished and sealed look. 

The back panel contained pre-drilled holers making them easy to hang on simple nails or screws. 

Here is a side by side comparison of an 11x14 size canvas and standout. 

Notice the canvas will standout further from the wall with the 1.5" edges versus the .75" edge of the standout. 

Either of these products will display your images beautifully in your home. If you have more questions, want to see more samples, or want to plan your session with me to create the gorgeous images for these products, please contact me! 






(Rachel Karnes Photography - Chester County PA Portrait Photographer) art canvas canvas gallery wrap family photos family portraits photo shoot photos portraits standout standout print wall Williamsburg https://www.rachelkarnesphotography.com/blog/2015/10/canvas-gallery-wraps-or-standout-prints Thu, 22 Oct 2015 19:28:36 GMT
Extended-Family-Celebrating-50th-Anniversary-in-Williamsburg https://www.rachelkarnesphotography.com/blog/2015/10/extended-family-celebrating-50th-anniversary-in-williamsburg I feel like this was summer of 50th wedding anniversaries here in Williamsburg! And I was thrilled so many families saw this as such a beautiful occasion to have documented. Even more thrilled they chose me to do it for them! This family contacted me as they had some ideas of celebrating their parents' anniversary, but a lot of their plans were unfortunately not coming together as they had hoped. Our session, on the other hand, came together perfect! They were staying at the beautiful Historic Powhatan Resort and we had a beautiful morning to shoot there. 

Here is the whole gorgeous crew! 

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This is the happy couple! 




So Sweet! Fifty years of marriage looks good on them, no? 


With such a beautiful morning and location, we certainly wanted to take advantage of all the families getting some fantastic new family portraits. 


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It was so fun hearing about this family's plans for the rest of their vacation here. I believe Busch Gardens was on the list for this day after our session. These cousins don't all get to see each other all the time living in different places, so it was cool to see them all spend this special time together.





Whether you are visiting beautiful Williamsburg, or you are lucky to live here, I would love to document your family too! Contact me today to plan your session! If you are local and want to hear about any specials or fun news I have, please sign up HERE for my newsletter! 

(Rachel Karnes Photography - Chester County PA Portrait Photographer) 50th anniversary extended family family photos family portraits family reunion Historic Powhatan Resort photo shoot photos portraits Virginia Williamsburg https://www.rachelkarnesphotography.com/blog/2015/10/extended-family-celebrating-50th-anniversary-in-williamsburg Sat, 03 Oct 2015 00:26:23 GMT
What to Wear for Fall Family Portraits https://www.rachelkarnesphotography.com/blog/2015/9/what-to-wear-for-fall-family-portraits Tell me it isn't already September! I am gearing up for another busy fall season here in beautiful Williamsburg.  One of the things I get asked the most from clients is what to wear for a photo session. When you book a session with me, this is a part of our consultation process.  However, there are some general guidelines that are always good to keep in mind. As I was putting together a blog post to shout out to some of my Fall Family Sessions from last year, I thought I would use some of these photos to show examples of good ideas when coming up with outfits for your family's session! So while you are enjoying images of my beautiful clients, I will mention how they have done a fabulous job with choosing their session clothing. 

Fall is all about COLOR! The foliage is gorgeous, but you still want to be the center of attention. Wearing color makes you standout. 

what to wear for fall photos what to wear for fall photos As vibrant as the colors are, their clothing still stands out

fall family photos in williamsburg fall family photos in williamsburg I love the pop of blue color against the neutral backgrounds

PATTERNS are also great! You just don't want too many different patterns at one time. A good idea is to pick one pattern and coordinate everyone else's outfits around it.

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ACCESSORIES really pull an outfit together. When choosing what to wear, remember the outfit as a whole to include hair, jewelry, and shoes. Sometime a great pair of boots is all you need! wear accessories for family photoswear accessories for family photos

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TEXTURES AND LAYERS also photograph beautifully. Sweaters, scarves, fitted jackets, vests, legging and tights are great pieces to add some depth and interest to your wardrobe in photos. 

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One of THE biggest bits of clothing advice that you've already seen in all these images, is to COORDINATE. You don't have to all wear the same thing to look like you are all pulled together. You want to coordinate colors and clothing style as a family, but you do not need to be matchy-matchy to do it. I also recommend staying away from words and logos on clothing. They can be distracting and take away from the photo. 

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Put all that together and you will have lovely family photos just like these! 

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See what a great job my clients have done!! 

While it is always my intention to blog my individual sessions, life happens and I get behind. But, as I am getting ready for this year's Williamsburg Fall photo sessions I could not pass up the chance to show off some of my gorgeous sessions from last year. I hope you enjoyed seeing how to pull your family's look together. My Fall schedule fills up quickly, so contact me today and let's use some of these tips when planning your session this Fall!  



(Rachel Karnes Photography - Chester County PA Portrait Photographer) Colonial Williamsburg Williamsburg fall photo session family photos family portraits photo shoot portraits what to wear for fall photo session what to wear for family photos https://www.rachelkarnesphotography.com/blog/2015/9/what-to-wear-for-fall-family-portraits Thu, 10 Sep 2015 16:04:48 GMT
50th Wedding Anniversary Extended Family Photo Session in Williamsburg https://www.rachelkarnesphotography.com/blog/2015/6/50th-wedding-anniversary-extended-family-photo-session-in-williamsburg 50 Years of marriage is nothing to sneeze at! I got a phone call from this couple's proud daughter wanting to surprise her parents with a photo session as their family was having a little family reunion in Williamsburg celebrating their anniversary. What a sweet couple and fun family! I was so thrilled to document such a wonderful occasion! 

Cheers to this beautiful couple! 

What a gorgeous, happy family!

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We seriously lucked out with weather as it started sprinkling as we were finishing up. We got in some gorgeous family images in the beautiful Spring gardens of Colonial Williamburg. 

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Generation photos are so special. These are four and three generations of this family. 

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What better way to celebrate 50 years of marriage that documenting the beautiful family that you created! I would love to document your beautiful family...contact me to plan your session today! 


(Rachel Karnes Photography - Chester County PA Portrait Photographer) 50th wedding anniversay Colonial Williamsburg Family generation photos Williamsburg, Virginia extended family family portraits family reunion photo shoot portraits https://www.rachelkarnesphotography.com/blog/2015/6/50th-wedding-anniversary-extended-family-photo-session-in-williamsburg Wed, 24 Jun 2015 20:14:45 GMT
DIY Prop Chair Makeover https://www.rachelkarnesphotography.com/blog/2015/6/diy-prop-chair-makeover I am trying to think more outside the box when it comes to purchasing props for my photography. I have been wanting a cute simple chair with arms and I found this one at Goodwill. I bought it for $4.25!!!  Thankfully my husband is usually game for a project! We did this all on a Sunday at home. 

"Before" "Before"

This is the "before" picture the way I purchased it. We took off the seat and took out nails that were keeping in old vinyl cover. I cleaned the grimy cloth seat and let dry in the sun.

Beer and music make it feel less like work, which is important when convincing your husband this is a good way to spend Sunday afternoon. 

I didn't want to sand the wood - or let's be honest, I didn't want to ask my husband to sand the wood. So we got a primer + paint in white to just paint over the finish on the chair. 

This is after the first coat of paint. It dried pretty fast in the sun and we ended up needing three full coats.

This is the vinyl material I purchased at Joanne's for $6.99. It's technically "table cloth", but I liked the pattern and it was inexpensive.

We cut the material and used a staple gun to fasten it to the base of the seat. Some of the corners required a little cutting to stretch and fit the funky angles. 

The finished product! I am pretty happy with how it turned out and proud of us for doing it...I am not always the most crafty person and it probably wouldn't have looked half as nice had my husband not done everything he did! 

Cute subject to model the finished product! If you are in the Williamsburg area and want of a photo session of your cute subject  (we don't have to use my new chair LOL)  contact me today!! 

(Rachel Karnes Photography - Chester County PA Portrait Photographer) Before and after makeover Chair reupholster DIY DIY Photography Prop Furniture painting Photography Prop Williamsburg Photographer https://www.rachelkarnesphotography.com/blog/2015/6/diy-prop-chair-makeover Mon, 08 Jun 2015 15:22:57 GMT
Gorgeous Album...See for yourself https://www.rachelkarnesphotography.com/blog/2015/4/see-for-yourself If you've had a photo session with me, you know I want your beautiful images printed! We look at your finished photos together, I show you gorgeous high quality samples, and help you determine what works best for your home. Last year in addition to prints, canvases, and standout wall art, I also offered albums. My clients loved them and it is a wonderful way to have your beautiful session at your finger tips to enjoy and share whenever you would like.  This year my clients are in for a treat as I am offering an even more beautiful quality album. 

I opened this sample the other day and squealed it was so gorgeous! This is a distressed onyx leather cover 8x12 lay flat album. The detail, color, and quality is gorgeous and I am so excited to offer this to my clients! 

These pictures don't even do this album justice! I look forward to putting this beauty in your hands and let you see and feel for yourself.  I know this is something you will be thrilled with!! I do offer it in a smaller size as well and several options of the leather covers.  This is wonderful way to have all your beautiful photos in one place. And the creation process is easy - my clients chose their photos, I design and deliver your finished album. Simple as that! Don't worry, if albums aren't your thing, rest assured I still have a wonderful selection of prints and wall art I offer as well! Contact me to plan your next photo session and you'll soon be enjoying your own beautiful images! 

(Rachel Karnes Photography - Chester County PA Portrait Photographer) colonial williamsburg family portraits photo album photos portraits https://www.rachelkarnesphotography.com/blog/2015/4/see-for-yourself Thu, 02 Apr 2015 12:32:04 GMT
Here we go again | CrossFit Gangs of the Mid-Atlantic 2014 https://www.rachelkarnesphotography.com/blog/2015/2/here-we-go-again Has it been a year already? Apparently so since tomorrow the first 2015 CrossFit Open WOD will be announced! Did you register yet? I did! My double unders haven't gotten any better, well maybe a little, but I registered anyways. Last year was a lot of fun and this year looks to be no different. 

This past Fall I had the opportunity to photograph the Gangs of the Mid-Atlantic for the second year at CrossFit Williamsburg. 

In honor of the CrossFit Open starting this week, I just wanted to share some highlights from that awesome event. This sport is just as much about community as it is the fitness and workouts. I hope that you feel that as you see these photos and the athletes in them. That's what this is about and why I love it so much.

Let's start with a few team photos. Gangs did it a little differently this year by having co-ed only teams. I love a good laugh and some of these teams certainly came with their sense of humor.


Are you laughing yet? They know how to play hard...and work even harder


Can you feel the love?!? The amazing comradery and support of this sport never ceases to amaze. So, you have a day to sign up for the open and experience it for yourself!! See YOU there!!


(Rachel Karnes Photography - Chester County PA Portrait Photographer) bench press box chest-to-bar climb comradery CrossFit deadlift double fitness front Gangs jumps kettlebell Mid-Atlantic of photos pull-up push row sled sprint squat the thrusters toes to bar unders wall wall ball WOD https://www.rachelkarnesphotography.com/blog/2015/2/here-we-go-again Thu, 26 Feb 2015 01:22:01 GMT
Limited Edition Williamsburg Children Valentines Studio Sessions https://www.rachelkarnesphotography.com/blog/2015/1/limited-edition-williamsburg-children-valentines-studio-sessions Limited Edition Children Valentines Studio Sessions

This past year has been wonderful and I am gearing up for a great 2015!

I am starting the New Year with a limited edition Valentines Special!

Williamsburg Children Valentine Photo SessionChildren Valentine Photo Session

These sessions are for KIDS ONLY from sitting babies to age 12 - three sibling limit.  They will take place at my studio on select dates starting January 14th through February 11th. Special price to be paid in full upon booking of $150 (plus tax) for an up to 30 minute session and includes three digital image files and one 5x7 print of your choice.  

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You will view your images with me directly after your session (they will not be put online to chose from). At this time additional digital files as well other beautiful products will be available to order at 25% off if you wish.  Additional purchase is not required if you only want the three digital images and 5x7 print you already paid for. 

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To schedule one of these limited sessions for your child contact me here or at 716-785-4387 or [email protected].  Can't wait to see your sweet little one!! 


(Rachel Karnes Photography - Chester County PA Portrait Photographer) Children photo sessions Valentines Day Williamsburg Photographer photo session" special edition photo session studio https://www.rachelkarnesphotography.com/blog/2015/1/limited-edition-williamsburg-children-valentines-studio-sessions Mon, 12 Jan 2015 19:27:25 GMT
Couple's Anniversary Christmas Photo Session at William and Mary https://www.rachelkarnesphotography.com/blog/2014/12/couples-anniversary-christmas-photo-session-at-william-and-mary Weddings at Christmas time are so beautiful! This gorgeous couple was celebrating their wedding anniversary this festive time of year.  With the backdrop of the beautiful William and Mary Campus in Williamsburg, gorgeous late afternoon light, and a fun couple, this photo session was just perfect! They even brought their sweet dog along for some of our photos, which I always love! 

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Couple with dog at Williams and Mary Wren BuildingCouple with dog at Williams and Mary Wren Building

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They wanted to do something fun and Festive during their session for Christmas...so we broke out the mistletoe! 

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What a wonderful time of year to celebrate! It's always the perfect time of year to celebrate you and your family...contact me for your next photo session!

(Rachel Karnes Photography - Chester County PA Portrait Photographer) Christmas photos Colonial Williamsburg family portraits mistletoe photo shoot portraits Virginia wedding anniversary William and Mary Campus Williamsburg Wren Building https://www.rachelkarnesphotography.com/blog/2014/12/couples-anniversary-christmas-photo-session-at-william-and-mary Fri, 26 Dec 2014 14:19:27 GMT
Williamsburg Summer Family Photo Session https://www.rachelkarnesphotography.com/blog/2014/10/williamsburg-summer-family-photo-session What does a fun mother, a kick-butt CrossFitter, and a rock star pet groomer have in common? This beautiful lady right here! When she's not with her family or in the gym (or competitions), she's making your fur baby look fabulous.  She runs Pet Utopia, a mobile pet grooming business in Williamsburg. Well this evening it was her turn to look fabulous and I was lucky enough to photograph her and her two gorgeous children. We chose a perfect spot along the beautiful Colonial Parkway with amazing light. I mean seriously...how stunning is this family! 

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Now I am not a mean spirited person, but when this next photo made mom tear up when she saw it for the first time, it made me happy. :) I love that part of my job is making people feeling such wonderful emotion when they look at their photos. 

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In case you didn't guess, this girl is quite the gymnast! I seriously think she could have leaped across this beach all evening! This family was a joy to work with from the beginning to the end where mom sent me a picture of her wall with all her beautiful photos she ordered hung. That is my favorite... when I know my clients can see and enjoy their photos every day. I want to help you enjoy your photos every day too! Contact me and lets talk about your next photo session! 



(Rachel Karnes Photography - Chester County PA Portrait Photographer) Colonial Parkway Williamsburg family family photos family portraits pet utopia photo shoot photos portraits sunset photo session https://www.rachelkarnesphotography.com/blog/2014/10/williamsburg-summer-family-photo-session Fri, 03 Oct 2014 17:31:46 GMT
Williamsburg High School Senior Portrait Session https://www.rachelkarnesphotography.com/blog/2014/9/williamsburg-high-school-senior-photo-session Have you ever met someone that had such a great look, sense of style, and was just so...cool? Well I have and she was a senior in high school! Smart and interesting, I seriously want to be like her when I grow up. But for now I am happy as can be to photograph her! We began our evening shoot strolling around Colonial Williamsburg. 

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The Gardens in Colonial Williamsburg are so beautiful. I couldn't have asked for her wear better colors!! 

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We decided to head out to some fields to take advantage of some beautiful light! 

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There's nothing like a beautiful Virginia sunset!! How lucky were we?!

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This Jamestown High School Senior was a dream to photograph! I love all the different looks we got with our locations. My Senior clients can opt for several locations with their full sessions. I am currently booking for class of 2015 Seniors and even looking upcoming 2016 Seniors! Contact me to book your senior's session to remember this beautiful and exciting time in their life! 


(Rachel Karnes Photography - Chester County PA Portrait Photographer) Colonial Williamsburg High School Senior Jamestown High School Portraits Senior Portrait Photo Shoot Senior Portraits Williamsburg Senior Portrait https://www.rachelkarnesphotography.com/blog/2014/9/williamsburg-high-school-senior-photo-session Thu, 25 Sep 2014 19:10:28 GMT
Hampton Roads Newborn Baby Boy Photo Session https://www.rachelkarnesphotography.com/blog/2014/9/hampton-roads-newborn-baby-boy-photo-session I couldn't wait for this little guy to get here! He has the most wonderful family to include a big brother and sister who are twins. They pretty much didn't want to stop loving on him at all the day I was there for his newborn photos.  I did get to snuggle with him though and he slept and slept for me too! 

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Sometimes one of the fun things about doing a newborn session in my clients' home is to find things there to use in my shoots.  Especially when they give you the green light to look around!  I brought this gray wrap I really wanted to use and then I found this textured gray crib mattress cover - score!!! 

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So he slept, but then got adorably bright-eyed on me! And then slept some more...


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Look at how fun this wall is in his nursery! 

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Oh this session was so sweet and I adore this family.  This is one loved little boy!! If you are expecting, the best time to get squishy, sleepy photos like these is within the first two weeks of your baby being born. Contact me to schedule a newborn session for your little one! Of course, these little bundles arrive on their own schedule, so rest assured we will adjust to be sure to get your session in the right time frame. These babies grow fast so don't wait!! 

(Rachel Karnes Photography - Chester County PA Portrait Photographer) Williamsburg baby baby boy hampton roads newborn https://www.rachelkarnesphotography.com/blog/2014/9/hampton-roads-newborn-baby-boy-photo-session Thu, 11 Sep 2014 01:56:10 GMT
Jamestown High School Senior Portrait Photo Shoot https://www.rachelkarnesphotography.com/blog/2014/8/jamestown-high-school-senior-portrait-photo So when you are a high school senior and you babysit for my kids, I am gonna take your picture! This beautiful Jamestown High School Senior and I had a fun evening and perfect light for her senior photo session. It almost rained, but not quite, then the sun came back out at just the right time! Special thank you to my friends at the Warhill Inn in Williamsburg who let us use their gorgeous grounds for some of our shoot.

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We hopped in the car to find an open field to finish up our session when the sun started to come back out before it set. Oh golden hour was perfect! 








It was difficult narrowing images down for this! Gorgeous senior, gorgeous locations, gorgeous light!  Senior session are so fun!! I am currently booking seniors for class of 2015.  Please contact me to book yours! 

(Rachel Karnes Photography - Chester County PA Portrait Photographer) Jamestown High School photo shoot Senior senior photographer senior photos senior portraits Virginia Warhill Inn Williamsburg https://www.rachelkarnesphotography.com/blog/2014/8/jamestown-high-school-senior-portrait-photo Fri, 29 Aug 2014 15:28:10 GMT
End of Summer Special https://www.rachelkarnesphotography.com/blog/2014/8/end-of-summer-special  In an effort to get a head start on keeping my busy Fall schedule organized I am having end of summer special!

If you book a session to take place sometime in the remaining year 2014 BY September 1st, all of your session fee will be applied towards your order! You can schedule your session to take place for anytime during the months of Sept, Oct, Nov, or Dec. that I have available.  All you have to do is book it - with session fee paid and contract signed - by Sept. 1st and the $125 session fee will all be used towards your order of prints and products. You get early pick of my most sought after Fall dates AND save...its a win-win!! 

Williamsburg Fall Family Photo SessionWilliamsburg Fall Family Photo Session

First, send me a message that you are interested in a photo session by either emailing me at [email protected] or call  me at 716-785-4387.  I will send you my full pricing guide and ask that you give me a few dates that you are interested in.  Weekend or weekdays…please keep in mind when looking at your calendar that I do my family sessions outdoors in the evenings about 1-1.5 hours before sunset. If you have really little ones where an evening session just won’t work, let me know and we can try to work around that with location choice and a time of day that works better for your family.

Once we are set on a date, I will send you my contract to fill out electronically and you will have the option to pay your session fee through Paypal, with a credit card, or you can send me a check.
That’s it! After you are booked, we will discuss locations, clothing, and anything else to make your session personalized and fun!

Williamsburg Family Photo SessionWilliamsburg Family Photo Session

My newsletter subscribers have been offered this special for two weeks now (get on my list to get my deals first here!!) and my Fall calendar is starting to fill up - so don’t wait too long to get the date you want and be sure to book by Sept. 1st to  get this special offer!

I am excited for a busy, beautiful Fall and I look forward to hearing from you soon!! :)

(Rachel Karnes Photography - Chester County PA Portrait Photographer) Virginia Williamsburg fall family photos family photos photo shoot summer photo special https://www.rachelkarnesphotography.com/blog/2014/8/end-of-summer-special Mon, 25 Aug 2014 23:50:13 GMT
Posh Salon of Williamsburg Grand Reopening https://www.rachelkarnesphotography.com/blog/2014/7/posh-salon-of-williamsburg-grand-reopening Posh salon of Williamsburg has a new face and a new look!! Meet Nadia Duncan, the new owner of Posh!  Owner of Posh Salon of WilliamsburgOwner of Posh Salon of Williamsburg

Nadia has been in the industry for 14 years. She is a graduate of the Aveda Fredric's Institute in Ohio. She was also a former educator at the Aveda Institute of Denver and has enjoyed working for several salons throughout her 14 years. She has been married to her husband, Major Clayton Duncan for 12 years and they have two kids, Vera (7) and Charlie (6). It has been a lifelong dream of hers to become an owner of an Aveda salon. Thanks to the support of her husband and kids her dream has finally come true. 

Nadia has made some beautiful changes to Posh Salon and is inviting you to come see it at Posh's Grand Reopening this Saturday August 2nd. 

Posh Salon of Williamsburg Grand ReopeningPosh Salon of Williamsburg Grand Reopening

The lovely and talented ladies of Posh Salon would love to meet you!

This is going to be a great event with discounts on Aveda products, refreshments, and giveaways which will even include a special treat from me! Be sure to check out Posh's new look and don't let yours go to waste!! Book your next photo session for after your next hair appointment. Schedule your family photos, senior portraits, or a new fabulous headshot after the ladies of Posh have worked their magic. Contact me and we can make it all come together! 

(Rachel Karnes Photography - Chester County PA Portrait Photographer) Aveda Aveda products Aveda salon Posh salon of williamsburg family portraits hair hair salon headshot posh salon grand reopening salon senior portraits williamsburg williamsburg hair salon https://www.rachelkarnesphotography.com/blog/2014/7/posh-salon-of-williamsburg-grand-reopening Mon, 28 Jul 2014 18:36:11 GMT
Six Year Old Studio & Location Birthday Photo Shoot in Williamsburg, VA https://www.rachelkarnesphotography.com/blog/2014/7/six-year-old-studio-location-birthday-photo-shoot-in-williamsburg-va Spring seems to be full of Birthdays doesn't it?! Especially May, which is when mine is. :) It's also when this cute guy turned six...on the same exact day as one of my children's birthdays. See, I told you!  This blue eyed handsome fella's mom has his and his sister's pictures done for each of their birthdays every year for a special wall in their home. Can I just tell you how much I love that! I have been a lucky photographer to have photographed these beautiful children several times.  We opted for a little in-studio simplicity and then a few out door photos at the lovely James City County Chickahominy Riverfront Park in Williamsburg.

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Studio sessions are perfect for milestones! Can't decide if you want studio or on location for your child...we can do a little of both! Contact me to plan your child's session today! 

(Rachel Karnes Photography - Chester County PA Portrait Photographer) birthday Chickahominy Riverfront Park photo shoot sibling six year old Spring Studio Williamsburg https://www.rachelkarnesphotography.com/blog/2014/7/six-year-old-studio-location-birthday-photo-shoot-in-williamsburg-va Fri, 18 Jul 2014 15:14:40 GMT
Pretty Little Princess Photo Shoot https://www.rachelkarnesphotography.com/blog/2014/6/pretty-little-princess-photo-shoot Fun News!!

I am partnering with Pigtails and Crewcuts of Williamsburg for a Pretty Little Princess Photo Shoot! 




















The Royal Treatment:

Saturday June 28 at Pigtails and Crewcuts of Williamsburg 

$125 for one princess gets her

  • an up-do by the salon
  • usage of princess dress and accessories
  • photo shoot with choice of one of the two backdrops seen in these photos 
  • two 5x7 prints














Reserve your time slot through Pigtails and Crewcuts at 757-603-6193. These will fill up fast! 

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I will put your little princess's images in a gallery on my website to view and choose your image for for your 5x7 prints.  Paperwork will be filled out the day of the session to include contact information to send the link to your gallery to. Additional prints of any of the images in your gallery can be purchased directly through me.  

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This is going to be a fun day of pretty little princesses!! We hope to see you there!!  



(Rachel Karnes Photography - Chester County PA Portrait Photographer) Pigtails and Crewcuts Williamsburg curtsy dancing photo shoot pretty little princess princess dresses up-do https://www.rachelkarnesphotography.com/blog/2014/6/pretty-little-princess-photo-shoot Fri, 13 Jun 2014 01:42:45 GMT
Colonial Williamsburg Gardens Spring Family Photo Session https://www.rachelkarnesphotography.com/blog/2014/6/colonial-williamsburg-gardens-spring-family-photo-session Ahh Spring. The birds are chirping. The flowers are blooming. And love is in the air.

Or as Robin Williams has said, "Spring is Nature's way of saying, 'Let's Party!'"

What could make Springtime more beautiful than strolling through the gardens of Colonial Williamsburg you ask? How about tagging along with this impossibly gorgeous family for a fun evening of dandelion picking and tree climbing!

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"The sun has come out...and the air is vivid with Spring light. " ~Byron Caldwell Smith, letter to Kate Stephens. 

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"Spring has returned. The Earth is like a child that knows poems." ~Rainer Maria Rilke

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"In Spring, at the end of the day, you should smell like dirt." ~Margaret Attwood

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"Sweet April Showers do spring May flowers." ~Thomas Tusser 

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"A life without love is like a year without Spring." ~Octavian Paller

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"April hath put a spirit of youth in everything." ~ William Shakespeare

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"Spring is when life's alive in everything." ~Christina Rossetti

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"Spring is when you feel like whistling even with a shoe full of slush." ~Doug Larson

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"The front door to Springtime is a photographer's best friend." ~ Terri Guillemets

I certainly can't argue with this last quote!! Beautiful Season. Beautiful Location. Beautiful Family. I would love to tag along some evening with your beautiful family too. Contact me for session details! 

(Rachel Karnes Photography - Chester County PA Portrait Photographer) Colonial Williamsburg Colonial Williamsburg Gardens Spring Spring photo session Williamsburg family photo session flowers siblings https://www.rachelkarnesphotography.com/blog/2014/6/colonial-williamsburg-gardens-spring-family-photo-session Fri, 06 Jun 2014 12:55:37 GMT
Senior Portrait Session on William and Mary Campus | Williamsburg Virginia https://www.rachelkarnesphotography.com/blog/2014/5/senior-portrait-session-on-william-and-mary-campus-williamsburg-virginia Graduation from the beautiful College of William and Mary...check! 

Acceptance into the number one nursing school in the country....check!

Beautiful photos celebrating this exciting time in her life...check!

I have had the pleasure to know and often work out with this recent College Graduate since last Fall.   She's a pretty b@da$$ CrossFitter in addition to being smart and super sweet.  I was thrilled when she asked me to take her graduation/senior portraits for her on the William and Mary Campus.  We had a lovely evening as we strolled around this gorgeous campus with newly bloomed Spring flowers everywhere.  She showed me locations where she spend a lot of time and why they were meaningful to her making it clear that she is going to miss this place. Well we are certainly going to miss her around Williamsburg as she moves on to start this next exciting chapter in her life. So many proud friends and family watched her graduate and sigh as she moves on to start preparing for a career she is very passionate about. No doubt she will excel as she starts her new classes at nursing school in just a few short weeks.  

Congratulations and Best of Luck in all your future endeavors! 

Her hair was done prior to our shoot by the fabulous Nadia at Posh Salon of Williamsburg. 

Senior Graduation Portrait in front of Crim Dell birdge on William and Mary CamupsSenior Graduation Portrait in front of Crim Dell birdge on William and Mary Camups

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I would love to take beautiful photos of your senior to celebrate this exciting time in their lives!!!  Contact me to find out more.  Click here to contact Nadia for your hair appointment before our session!! 

(Rachel Karnes Photography - Chester County PA Portrait Photographer) College Crim Dell bridge Posh Salon of Williamsburg Virginia William and Mary William and Mary Campus Williamsburg Wren Building graduation portraits portraits senior portraits https://www.rachelkarnesphotography.com/blog/2014/5/senior-portrait-session-on-william-and-mary-campus-williamsburg-virginia Wed, 14 May 2014 17:44:30 GMT
Endearing Student Couple Portrait Session at William and Mary Campus https://www.rachelkarnesphotography.com/blog/2014/4/student-couples-photo-shoot-at-william-and-mary-campus A few months ago around Valentine's Day I received a lovely email from a William and Mary College student who was interested in a couples portrait session for her and her boyfriend, another William and Mary student.   He is graduating this year and moving a few hours away to start his career and she will be studying abroad next year. Knowing they will be far apart, they wanted to preserve their relationship as it is right now with photos. So awesome...this is why I love what I do!

Naturally they wanted the shoot on the beautiful William and Mary campus. As a wife, mother of three children, and running my photography business, I thought I was busy. I apparently don't have much on college students these days!! Between their classes, organizations, trips, and activities, we finally worked everyone's schedules out for our shoot.  We met on campus on an early evening that was threatening us with rain.  Thankfully, the weather played nice and I had the pleasure of spending time with this extremely charming couple.

Student couple on William and Mary CampusStudent couple on William and Mary Campus

Can I just tell you how easy they made my job.... they were so sweet, fun, and affectionate with each other that I think sometimes they forgot I was even there with my camera! We began our session on the legendary Crim Dell bridge.

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Since this was their campus where they spent most of their time, they certainly had ideas about where they wanted to be photographed. One of them was in a tree. I admit, I was skeptical and even with my step ladder, I wasn't sure how well this would work! But apparently, I just needed to trust them because these images were amazing and so romantic!

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In addition to interesting locations there were also outfits!! Love! Time to get all decked out for a few portraits in her gorgeous qipao and suit.

Student in qipao at wren building in WilliamsburgStudent in qipao at wren building in Williamsburg Couple at wren building on william and mary wearing qipaoCouple at wren building on william and mary wearing qipao Student in qipao at william and mary wren buildingStudent in qipao at william and mary wren building

This busy couple had a formal dinner to attend this evening, so another quick change! How elegant do they look on the stairs of the Wren Building?! 

formal couple on steps of wren building in williamsburgformal couple on steps of wren building in williamsburg couple laughing on steps of william and mary wren buildingcouple laughing on steps of william and mary wren building Student couple on wren building steps looking over william and mary campusStudent couple on wren building steps looking over william and mary campus

In case you couldn't tell, I really enjoyed this session! I was honored to preserve this special moment of time in their lives for them.  I would love to preserve your special moments in time too...contact me to discuss your custom photography session today! If you want to hear about the latest and greatest over here, to include being in on any promotions I have, sign up for my mailing list here. As always, thanks for reading and enjoying at my work!  

(Rachel Karnes Photography - Chester County PA Portrait Photographer) College couples couples portraits Crim Dell bridge portraits Qipao Students Virginia William and Mary William and Mary Campus Williamsurg Wren Building https://www.rachelkarnesphotography.com/blog/2014/4/student-couples-photo-shoot-at-william-and-mary-campus Thu, 24 Apr 2014 20:35:40 GMT
Golden Retriever Puppy Photo Shoot in Williamsburg, VA https://www.rachelkarnesphotography.com/blog/2014/3/golden-retriever-puppy-photo-shoot-in-williamsburg-va I love dogs. My husband and I have had three over the years and currently have a 12 year old Shepherd mix who is older than all my children. He loves them and they love him. He is a member of our family. Just as I think it's so important to capture photos of our "people" children as newborns and as they grow, it's also rewarding to capture our "furry" children like this as well.

This sweet family's daughter has wanted a dog for a long time. She loves the neighbor's dog, loves on friend's dogs, and has been dreaming of having her own someday. Her parents took her to visit a litter of adorable golden retriever puppies and surprised her by picking one out together. They named him Olaf and visited him weekly until he was able to leave his mom and come home with his new family.  He'd been home about a week when I came over to capture this cutie and the little girl who now gets to hug him everyday. 

Meet Olaf...

Golden Retriever puppy photo shoot in Williamsburg VirginiaGolden Retriever puppy photo shoot in Williamsburg Virginia

And his new best friend...

Little girl in yard with goldie puppy in creekside landing VALittle girl in yard with goldie puppy in creekside landing VA

Just to give you an idea of how much she couldn't wait to bring her puppy home, her mom put together a photo collage of the drawings she made as they were waiting for Olaf to get big enough to bring home. Mom was kind enough to let me share it here. If you can't tell, she was pretty excited!

Little girl's drawings of her golden puppyLittle girl's drawings of her golden puppy

So yeah, this guy really is this adorable. 

Golden puppy photo outside in creekside landing in Williamsburg VirginiaGolden puppy photo outside in creekside landing in Williamsburg Virginia

Little girl snuggling her golden retriever puppyLittle girl snuggling her golden retriever puppy Williamsburg Virginia custom family and children photographyWilliamsburg Virginia custom family and children photography

Cute golden puppy in his bedCute golden puppy in his bed

Golden Puppy laying at little girls feet Golden Puppy laying at little girls feet

Sleepy golden puppy lifestyle family photography in Williamsburg VASleepy golden puppy lifestyle family photography in Williamsburg VA

It makes me smile how loved this guy is! As I write this post, I know Olaf is already bigger and starting to look older! If you want to freeze time for your little one - furry or non-furry - contact me today!!  Sometimes I have specials and exclusive offers...if you want to be in on those sign up for my mailing list HERE

(Rachel Karnes Photography - Chester County PA Portrait Photographer) Creekside Landing Golden Retriever Virginia Williamsburg dog family goldie little girl puppy puppy photos https://www.rachelkarnesphotography.com/blog/2014/3/golden-retriever-puppy-photo-shoot-in-williamsburg-va Wed, 19 Mar 2014 22:17:11 GMT
CrossFit Gangs of the Mid-Atlantic | CrossFit Williamsburg https://www.rachelkarnesphotography.com/blog/2014/2/crossfit-gangs-of-the-mid-atlantic Even if you are not a member of a CrossFit gym, a "box" if you will, you have still probably heard of it.  After moving to Williamsburg this summer, this is first time I have been an member of an actual CrossFit box. Shout out to CrossFit Williamsburg!! I enjoy the daily WOD (workout of the day) and a community that encourages each other to try their hardest.  

Tomorrow is the beginning of the 2014 CrossFit Open! This is the first of three stages of the CrossFit Games.  Make no mistake, the athletes in the games are the best of the best, like unbelievably amazing, but it all starts out with the open.  And anyone can participate in the open. That's pretty cool! 

CrossFit Williamsburg hosted the Gangs of the Mid-Atlantic competition this past Fall and I had the pleasure of putting two things I love together: photography and CrossFit. So in honor of the CrossFit Open starting tomorrow, I am revisiting some of the images I took from this competition.  Looking for a little inspiration or motivation? Enjoy! 

CrossFit Williamsburg Gangs of the Mid-Atlantic mens deadliftCrossFit Williamsburg Gangs of the Mid-Atlantic mens deadlift

Tug of war at WISC GANGS competitionTug of war at WISC GANGS competition Wall Climbs at Williamsburg CrossfitWall Climbs at Williamsburg Crossfit       athlete doing box jumps at Gangs of Mid-Atlanticathlete doing box jumps at Gangs of Mid-Atlantic

Womens Crossfit DeadliftingWomens Crossfit Deadlifting Crossfit Camaraderie Gangs of the Mid-Atlantic Williamsburg VACrossfit Camaraderie Gangs of the Mid-Atlantic Williamsburg VA CrossFit Tug-of-warCrossFit Tug-of-war Mens shuttle run Crossfit Williamsburg VA st WISCMens shuttle run Crossfit Williamsburg VA at WISC Crossfit back squat WOD VACrossfit back squat WOD VA Gangs of the Mid-Atlantic Row Crossfit Williamsburg at WISCGangs of the Mid-Atlantic Row Crossfit Williamsburg at WISC Crossfit Double Unders Williamsburg VA WISCCrossfit Double Unders Williamsburg VA WISC Shoulder to Overhead Crossfit WOD VAShoulder to Overhead Crossfit WOD VA Crossfit Sled Pull WOD Williamsburg VCrossfit Sled Pull WOD Williamsburg VA Crossfit Gangs of the Mid-Atlantic WOD Williamsburg VACrossfit Gangs of the Mid-Atlantic WOD Williamsburg VA Kettlebell swings WOD Crossfit Gangs of mid-AtlanticKettlebell swings WOD Crossfit Gangs of mid-Atlantic Crossfit thruster WOD Williamsburg VA WISCCrossfit thruster WOD Williamsburg VA WISC

What would working this hard be without the aftermath of a great WOD??

Crossfit Gangs of the Mid-Atlantic fight gone battle royale aftermathCrossfit Gangs of the Mid-Atlantic fight gone battle royale aftermath Crossfit Williamsburg WOD aftermath Crossfit Williamsburg WOD aftermath Gangs of the Mid-Atlantic WOD aftermath Crossfit WilliamsburgGangs of the Mid-Atlantic WOD aftermath Crossfit Williamsburg

Are you motivated to work hard? Are you inspired to try your best? Are you signed up yet for the open yet? DO IT HERE!  

Am I signed up you ask? With the encouragement of some great friends/workout partners, yes I am. I have no delusions of going anywhere or even being able to complete every WOD, but I love a good competition in a positive environment. So you will find me the next five weekends trying my hardest and maybe learning I am a little stronger than I think.  That is if figuring out how to do double unders doesn't kill me first! 

If you want to be the first to hear about specials I am offering, get first dibs on limited promotions, and even get exclusive offers, subscribe to my mailing list HERE.  Check out the types of photography I specialize in and contact me to plan your session! 

(Rachel Karnes Photography - Chester County PA Portrait Photographer) back squat box jumps CrossFit CrossFit photos deadlift double unders fitness fitness photos Gangs of the Mid-Atlantic kettlebell row sled pull thrusters tug of war wall climb WOD photos https://www.rachelkarnesphotography.com/blog/2014/2/crossfit-gangs-of-the-mid-atlantic Wed, 26 Feb 2014 19:49:15 GMT
Five Ways to Personalize Your Family Photo Session https://www.rachelkarnesphotography.com/blog/2014/2/five-ways-to-personalize-your-family-photo-session One evening my family and I went to dinner at a local restaurant. There was a wait, so we put our name in and sat on a bench outside the front doors. While sitting there, we watched a father and his two children walk out of the restaurant. He grabbed both their hands and they proceeded to skip through the parking lot to their car singing “We’re the three best friends that anyone could have…”. Yes, as in from the movie The Hangover. My husband and I looked at each other and thought that was probably the coolest thing we had ever seen. So what does this have to do with family photos? Families, as a unit, have a personality all their own.  This dynamic is one of my favorite things to see and my ultimate goal to capture as a photographer.  So here are some ways you can customize your photo session to show your family’s personality.

  1. Bring your pet. As a dog owner and lover, I know pets are very much a part of your family. Include them in a shot if you can.
    Customize Family Photos with a petCustomize Family Photos with a pet
    Fall Family photo with pet in Williamsburg ParkFall Family photo with pet in Williamsburg Park
  2. Wear something special.  Adorn that beautiful piece of jewelry someone special gave you. Use that gorgeous quilt grandma made you to snuggle up in or sit on.

    In this photo, my clients wanted a picture of their children in the traditional dress of Galicia, Spain (traje tradicional gallego), which is part of their heritage.
    Siblings in traje tradicional gallego Siblings in traje tradicional gallego
    OK, so obviously this is an outtake from the session and rest assured we did not let him sit there and cry. Mom was right there and has a great sense of humor about this photo. She even came close to using it for their Christmas card that year if not for the fear of her mother being angry….ah family dynamics.
  3. Show a hobby. If your child plays an instrument, bring it.  Does your child have a doll or lovey that never leaves his or her side? I will admit that it is not my personal photographic style to use props just for the sake of using props, but if it is showcasing a personality, special talent, or love of something important to you and you want to preserve that memory, I am all for it. 
    Tweens playing musical instruments outdoors and in studioTweens playing musical instruments outdoors and in studio Boy playing cello in Virginia fieldBoy playing cello in Virginia field
    Little girl with American Girl Doll in parkLittle girl with American Girl Doll in park
  4. Shoot at a special location.  If there is a place near and dear to your family (that your photographer has permission to shoot at of course), that might be the perfect location to have your photo session.

    This dad frequently goes to this little spot on a Lake near his home with his kids to fish.
    Father and Son fishing on Burke Lake VAFather and Son fishing on Burke Lake VA
    This place is important to their family and the activity is meaningful. This brings me to my final, but maybe the most important point…
  5. Just be yourselves. This goes for everything from what you wear to how you “pose”.  If you all never dress up then be casual! Let the kids run around, explore, and play a while!  
    Little boy picking flowers at Lake Erie State ParkLittle boy picking flowers at Lake Erie State Park
    Children sitting on a fence in Colonial WilliamsburgChildren sitting on a fence in Colonial Williamsburg
    If you are a silly family, you might not fall in love with heavily posed images or serious faces... so mix it up a little!   
  6. Silly Family photosSilly Family photos
    Family being silly at VA Grist MillFamily being silly at VA Grist Mill
    Do what you like to do together. Wrestle, have a picnic, play a game, read to the kids, walk on the beach.
    Little boy blowing bubbles in VA parkLittle boy blowing bubbles in VA park

    Virginia fall family photo swinging children Virginia fall family photo swinging children
    Adding a personal touch here or there doesn’t have to be huge ordeal or the complete focus of the session, but if those are the things your family enjoys and does often, those are images you will smile at every time you look at them.

Talk to your photographer for suggestions on easy and fun ways to incorporate your family's personality into your photo session.  And if you really want to document a snapshot of your family’s real daily life, then a lifestyle session might be a good fit for you. To learn more about that type of session click here.  

Do you want photos like these? Contact me to customize your own fun session!

(Rachel Karnes Photography - Chester County PA Portrait Photographer) children customize family family portraits fun photos Personalize family photo session silly family photos Virginia Williamsburg https://www.rachelkarnesphotography.com/blog/2014/2/five-ways-to-personalize-your-family-photo-session Fri, 07 Feb 2014 00:29:10 GMT
Williamsburg First Year Outdoor Photos and Cake Smash https://www.rachelkarnesphotography.com/blog/2014/1/first-year-cake-smash Am I allowed to say I am "catching up" on blogging if this is my first post? Ever? Well, let's say I've just been behind for a while, but this is a great time for lots of firsts...It's the first month of the year, this was from my first session in Williamsburg VA since moving here, and this adorable little guy was turning one. We took him to the park and cuteness ensued! 

Toddler boy at New Quarter Park in Williamburg VAToddler boy at New Quarter Park in Williamburg VA

I am normally not big on a session being too "proppy" (is that even a word?), but I could barely contain my squealing when mom busted out this vintage airplane he has in him room! Cute little boy in overalls with vintage airplane Cute little boy in overalls with vintage airplane

Adorable boy in overalls in rocking chair and vintage airplaneAdorable boy in overalls in rocking chair and vintage airplane

 And as you can tell  he was kind of into the rocking chair too. 

boy in rocking chair at New Quarter park in Williamsburgboy in rocking chair at New Quarter park in Williamsburg

cute boy in rocking chair outside at New Quarter Park cute boy in rocking chair outside at New Quarter Park

Who can resist a sweet boy with his teddy bear?!

toddler in overalls with teddy bear in rocking chair outsidetoddler in overalls with teddy bear in rocking chair outside

Having a blast flying that airplane

Toddler in overalls with toy airplane at New Quarter Park Toddler in overalls with toy airplane at New Quarter Park

When we were done at the park it was time to bring on the cupcake for the cake smash! Yum!!

One year old cake smash with cupcakeOne year old cake smash with cupcake

Toddler with cupcake for one year cake smashToddler with cupcake for one year cake smash

I think he likes it. 

Cute one year old boy with cupcake Cute one year old boy with cupcake

Toddler boy with cake on face from cake smashToddler boy with cake on face from cake smash

Time for a little fun on the slide! 

One year one toddler on slide in Williamsburg VAOne year one toddler on slide in Williamsburg VAToddler climbing up slide

Want some fun images of your little one? Let's talk


(Rachel Karnes Photography - Chester County PA Portrait Photographer) New Quarter Park One Year Cake Smash Williamsburg VA overalls rocking chair teddy bear toddler vintage airplane https://www.rachelkarnesphotography.com/blog/2014/1/first-year-cake-smash Wed, 29 Jan 2014 01:25:41 GMT