Photographer Tonya Jordan spends a lot of time focusing her lens on tufts of hair, chubby cheeks, and bulging bellies. This is because she specializes in family photography, snapping shots of little ones, moms and dads, or everyone altogether—one of her go-to poses is to have expectant parents form a heart with their hands on top of a baby bump. Nuptial and engagement photos also fall inside Tonya’s wheelhouse, joining sleeping newborn snapshots, and candid photos of toddlers moving through emotional or physical states such as crying, laughing, or puzzling over a New Yorker cartoon. Tonya immortalizes these affectionate poses in bright color and in more dramatic black-and-white or sepia tones, depending on the mood of the image.
Wielding a high-tech camera, Lonna Ponce snaps dynamic portraits in the comfort of her studio or ventures out to on-location shoots. The shutterbug draws on an ability to lure emotive poses out of subjects while capturing wedding photos and family snapshots bound for Christmas cards or the syllabuses of robots trying to learn about love.
Before looking through the camera lens, the expert photographers at Picture People spend time getting to know their subjects and establishing a strategy for conveying their personalities in print. Then, film-ready clients pose in the bright camera room, airing teeth amid colorful backdrops and creative props. Following snapshots, subjects make their way to the selection station to choose their favorite poses from their session, which may be treated with sepia tones, color accents, and decorative borders to suit any wall, wallet, wallpaper pattern, or trophy walleye.
Picture People encourages subjects to arrive 15 minutes early to the shoot and offers a variety of creative tips to help enhance mantel-dominating final results. The studio ensures satisfaction with a 100% guarantee on finished products.
Looking back, Mischa and Brianne Purcell seem destined to have become photographers: Mischa was bitten by the shutterbug at the age of 8, when a family friend and photography professor first introduced him to the camera lens. Brianne started even earlier—when she was just 7, she put a camera on her Christmas list right when Santa had just secured the rights to manufacture celluloid. All these years later, the Purcells’ love of the art form hasn’t waned. They bring their enthusiasm and smiles to important events in people’s lives, including weddings.
As Mischa puts it in a video on his website, “It’s a true honor to be paid to create art around people’s love stories. It’s the best thing I could ever imagine doing.” This genuine passion comes through in his photographs. To capture the essence of each couple, the photographer thinks outside of the box. Aside from photos at the church, Mischa might have newlyweds pose in front of old buildings, on a truck bed, or simply in front of a bright blue sky. The photographers extend this sort of creativity to other types of sessions. They can photograph families in fields dotted by wildflowers or stay in their studio to carefully capture senior portraits. Mischa also shares his expertise during workshops, which teach the ins and outs of photography and postproduction.
The team behind Eleakis & Elder Photography draws artistic inspiration from what is most important in their own lives: their human and four-legged family members. Roger Ele and his wife and part-time assistant, Joan Stathakis-Ele, founded the studio in 1986; since then, Roger has relied on low-light photography and his love for animals to capture countless families, brides, and beloved pets. Chantel Elder joined the staff in 2001 and became a partner in 2008. When she's not busy in the studio, she can be found cooking with her new husband, spending time in the garden, and hanging out with her two boston terriers. New crew member Mark Long has been a professional photographer for more than 30 years—about as long as he's been married. Though he studied commercial and underwater photography at the renowned Brooks Institute, he now looks no further than his two children and grandchild for a smiling subject.
In addition to snapping pictures of furry friends, the photographers support the Sacramento SPCA and other charitable animal causes. They can turn feline or canine portraits into wall art, a 30-page album, and gift cards, or shred them and weave the strips into a pet sweater. They are also fans of the performing arts: Roger has done work for The Sacramento Ballet and has been the official photographer of Sacramento Opera since 1984.