I introduced my Senior Spokesmodel for the Class of 2014, Janelle, a few months ago.  We had a very impromptu photo shoot in the snow (you can see it here).  Her “big” session, however, was a long time in the making!    We planned every detail… wardrobe, makeup, locations, and more!  She was in the makeup chair by 6 am on her session day!  With her parents and sister accompanying us that early in the morning (thank you!), we visited her horse’s new home, at The Centre at Greenspot.  Taking pictures with her horse, Cole, was our most important part of the day.  I am amazed with the unspoken connection Janelle shares with her horse.

After the session with her horse, we hit the road running, with pointe shoes, wedges, Converse, combat boots, and sandals… a girl has to have a different pair of shoes for each outfit, right?!

You will be seeing (and hearing) more from Janelle in the next couple weeks.  And to the girls of the Class of 2014: she can get you a special invitation to the upcoming & exclusive Senior Night, where you can meet me, my glam team (Brandi, hair stylist & Cassie, make-up artist), Janelle & her mom.  I’ll be treating you to a night of sweets & all the information you need to start planning your very own senior portrait session with me!  Spots are limited!

Janelle, I’ve had an amazing time with you the past few months.  Your photos don’t come close to showing how gorgeous of a girl you are, inside and out.  I’m proud to have you by my side this year!  We might have to consider planning an encore photoshoot:)

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  • April 8, 2013 - 8:30 pm

    Jessica Hekman - These are gorgeous Michelle! Dreamy light, locations, and everything else. I was just saying the same thing to one of my senior clients recently, that this did NOT exist when I graduated high school, but is such a cool way to document a special time 🙂ReplyCancel


Do you remember how adorable Olivia looked in her mommy’s tummy?  If not, go check out her mom’s maternity session here.  Now, it is no wonder how beautiful Olivia is out of her mommy’s tummy!  Everything about her is pure perfection.  And to see her older brother treat her with gentleness and patience…. oh, this girl is going to feel loved for sure!

Miss Olivia, I am so thrilled to have had some time with you, playing dress-up (or dress-down).  You are always welcome in front of my camera:)


Many of you celebrated my son’s first year of life with me as I documented a weekly photographic journal for his first 52 weeks.  That was an incredible personal challenge and commitment for me and looking back on it, I realize how much I miss the time I spent chasing him around with my face behind my camera.   That is why I am so excited to participate in Letters To Our Sons, a blog circle group where (mother) photographers from across the country write a monthly letter to their sons, complete with pictures.  To keep it a “circle,”  we link to each other in our letters.    I am looking forward to learning about these talented photographers, their emotions and hopes as mothers, and their precious inspirational sons.   I am also ready to return to focusing my lens, my heart, and my thoughts on my lovable Evan.


March, 2013 

Dear Bubbooz,

As I first started writing this letter, you climbed your way up onto my lap and threw your small but solid body against my chest, finding a comfortable spot for your head between my neck and shoulder.   Your arms tucked themselves in between your body and mine.  Your whimpering stopped.  Your eyes were fixed on Jake & The Neverland Pirates, but your body language made it clear to me that I had to postpone my typing and just hold you.  

Oh, how I never tire of your need for physical touch.  Nor of your giggles when I squeeze your inner thighs and demand you “give me some bacon!”   But it is during the quiet moments of watching you discover something new that I see a different side of you.    It is my time to wonder how you will turn out, what type of boy (and man) you will be, how you will treat me as we both grow older, and how you will love another woman, someday.  Reluctantly, I realize that God has made you, not for me, but for others in this world.  Won’t you always need me, and need me to hold you?

As daddy was assembling something for me in my studio space, you came running to see what tools of his you could get your hands onto.  You always suddenly appear if there are power tools, tape measurers, screw drivers, or hammers.  I watched you place your sweet gentle hands around daddy’s wrenches and sockets and your eyes could not be distracted away from these treasures.   In the moments these photos were taken, I became convinced that the “handyman gene” was passed down from your daddy, daddy’s daddy, and my daddy.  I smiled.  I imagined how helpful, reliable, constructive, and dependable you will be as a young man.  I long to see daddy teach you how to fix things.  He is a perfectionist, so be patient with his instructions and his slow, methodical pace.  And remember, when you are done playing with daddy’s tools, my lap will be waiting for you.

You have all my love,



To continue reading the next letter in this blog circle, please visit Mel Karlberg Photography for Melissa’s letter to her son.

  • March 25, 2013 - 7:54 am

    Anne Canon - Welcome to the circle! What a wonderful lett er you have written to your son. Your images are beautiful and show his curiosity.ReplyCancel

  • March 25, 2013 - 1:19 pm

    Jennifer Harris - What a handy little guy you have there! My son loves tools too. 🙂ReplyCancel


It all started several months ago with a simple question.  Tracy asked me if I could do her maternity pictures.  And now, with a couple weeks until her daughter enters this world, I am proud to showcase Tracy, her husband David, her son Will, and her baby bump (that belongs to Olivia).  It seems like as long as I have known Tracy, she has dreamed of having a second child.  And now she is expecting a daughter, who will naturally be so incredibly beautiful, just like her mom!

The secrets to Tracy’s successful maternity session are (1) A LOT of planning…. her wardrobe, shoes, jewelry, her husband & son’s wardrobe, locations, props, etc. (2) A LOT of pampering…. hair & makeup by my glam team, of course, and (3) plenty of snacks!  Tracy was well prepared for a long afternoon of picture taking.  And thanks to my super best friend/assistant, Jen, we all had a great time laughing and exploring the haunted side of Redlands.  Yes, the haunted side!  Those will have to be stories that Tracy someday tells her daughter…. or maybe not!

I’m counting down the days now until I get to meet sweet Olivia and play with her during her newborn session.

Shhhhh!  I’m already preparing for her session! 🙂

  • February 28, 2013 - 1:43 pm

    Celesa - Michelle… WOW!
    This maternity session is absolutely amazing. I love all of the locations and the colors are so rich. You have done anamazing job.ReplyCancel


Senior portrait photography is one of my favorite aspects of Mango Mahalo Photography.  I am inspired by the spectrum of beauty, style and energetic youthfulness captured in a senior portrait session.   I love working with high school seniors to make their session unique to their character, personality, and hobbies.   And senior sessions include exclusive access to my “glam team,”  my favorite professional makeup artist (Cassie) and hair stylist (Brandi).  Seniors also receive unlimited time with me (by phone, texting, or in person consultations) to pick the perfect wardrobe.  No detail is left unplanned!

Mango Mahalo Photography has a great senior portrait program to share with those seniors (and juniors) who are looking for an amazing, artistic, bold and fresh experience.  To help me spread “the word” about this senior portrait experience, I am proud to introduce Mango Mahalo Photography’s *first* Senior Spokesmodel for the Class of 2014, Janelle!

There are a lot of perks to being a Senior Spokesmodel for Mango Mahalo Photography, and Janelle is already experiencing them.  She just finished her first mini shoot… in the snow!  Yes, it was cold, but it was a small price to pay for creating these stunning images.  Be prepared to see a lot more of Janelle this Spring.   And if you are a junior wondering what exactly it is like to be photographed by Mango Mahalo Photography, Janelle is now a great person to ask!


To see Janelle’s Senior Rep session featured on Seniorologie, follow the link by clicking below:

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