Donna Young Newborn Photography: Blog en-us (C) Donna Young Newborn Photography [email protected] (Donna Young Newborn Photography) Thu, 11 May 2023 14:50:00 GMT Thu, 11 May 2023 14:50:00 GMT Donna Young Newborn Photography: Blog 120 80 Surf Girl Themed Photo Session | Tween Photography | Pismo Beach, California Did you say themed photo session? If so, I'm in! If you look at my previous blog posts you may notice that I'll take advantage of every chance I get to do a themed photo session with our daughter (I've also done lots of themed cake smash and newborn sessions). So when we headed out to California last month I knew I wanted to do a "surf girl" session. In the past her themed sessions have included Coca Cola, Lemonade Stand, Paint Splatters, Wolves, Sunflowers, a Princess Beach Session, and lots of holiday themed sessions for Christmas and Easter. But I have been wanting to photograph a surf session because I think this girl's hair makes her the perfect little surf girl... at least for photo purposes. 

Now, I'm not going to lie, conditions definitely were not ideal for this session. I had wanted to do them during "the golden hour" so we could walk down the beach and get some shots with some of Pismo Beach's beautiful rock formations but we had to return the rented surfboard well before we could make this happen. So we stuck around the pier so we could block the harsh sun with the pilings for many shots. Of course the weather also decided it didn't want to work with us and the forecast for 75 degrees turned into the 60's, making it pretty chilly in the shade. For a tween that is not exactly thrilled to do a photo session, a lack of ideal conditions can be disasterous. But I think despite the challenges we got some pretty good shots and I'll definitely be adding a few to the seasonal images I display of her throughout the year in our home. 


[email protected] (Donna Young Newborn Photography) Thu, 25 May 2023 14:15:00 GMT
Headshot vs Portrait Sessions | Studio and Outdoor | Parker, Colorado Personal portraits and headshots. What's the difference?

Traditionally headshots have typically been used for professional applications... business cards, company directories, LinkedIn profiles, etc. and as the name would imply, they were limited to the subject's torso and face in either a serious pose or a slight smile. Portraits on the other hand tended to show off someone's personality a bit more and not be limited to the upper body. But these days the lines seem to be blurring as more and more companies want to showcase their employee's personality. I've had more than one client contact me for headshots that wanted to incorporate a little bit of whimsy in their shots. Of course, much of this may depend on what business you are in, but it's always fun to mix it up a little bit with shots that show off your style and even use a couple of props. 

As for what type of session to book, I categorize them by time allocated to capture the images and the number of images needed. Need a couple images for personal branding or business cards, it's a headshot session that will take about 15 minutes. Want something more extensive with a full gallery of images to choose from in different poses, on location in a scenic spot, and about an hour of photography time? That's a portrait session. Lots of individuals have portraits taken for a special occasions like a birthday, graduation, or a pregnancy or branding for their business website and social media. The images in this bog post are a mix of headshot sessions and portrait sessions and I bet for some you can't tell what type of session it was. Still not sure what type of session you want or need? Contact me and we can discuss your options! 


[email protected] (Donna Young Newborn Photography) business headshots indoor outdoor portrait portraits studio session Thu, 11 May 2023 13:59:28 GMT
Baking Snow Angel | Christmas Card Portrait | Parker CO Photographer Over the years I have tried to create some unique images for our personal Christmas photos, mostly in an attempt to be a little more creative and put my Photoshop skills to the test. One year our daughter was reading a "magic" book as Santa and his sleigh passed outside in the night sky (view the image here). Another year our daughter was tapped up to "a wall" while my husband and I enjoyed a quiet glass of wine (view the image here). This past Christmas I decided to create the bakery snow angel portrait I had considered for several years and I think it turned out pretty well. So how was it done? Keep reading! 


To create this image essentially you just need two photos that you can merge in Photoshop using layers (you definitely need some Photoshop skills to accomplish this). The first photo will be of your background baking scene and the second photo of your child, children, or whomever you want in the image.

You can search Internet sites like Etsy to find lots of digital backgrounds and the bakery snow angel concept is one of them. While it is basically some version of the left image above, there are of course variations in colors and baking tools used so you can find one that suits your taste (see what I did there!). Despite there being quite a few available for purchase, in the end I decided based on many of the final images I saw, that they never quite looked right... the outline just didn't quite match the body size without some distortion. So I decided to create the entire image myself including the background image. 

The first image I took was the one of our daughter... making an actual snow angel in flour (I purchased a 5lb bag). Luckily I had the space in our home to do this with relatively little mess and the high ceiling needed to get up on a ladder so I could easily capture her entire body in the image. I had to put our dog outside while the flour was on the floor because let's face it... that would have been a nightmare. Then, I had our daughter carefully lay in the flour and make her angel. I threw a bit of extra flour on her for "good measure" (okay, okay... because it added to my fun), climbed the ladder and took starting shooting. Angle is important on this and it is a bit difficult to capture the shot straight on unless you are laying on some scaffolding overhead. I was fresh out of scaffolding so I held my camera out as far as I could for this shot. It took several attempts to get just the right shot. Now if you don't have the space or just want to avoid this process for a variety of reasons, I highly recommend purchasing one that has already been created. 

The second image I took was just a capture of some coordinating baking elements I either already had in our kitchen or found in a trip to Target. The only cupcakes I could find with the red and white colors were miniature ones and while I think bigger cupcakes would have been great in this scene (I could have enlarged some them in Photoshop) I didn't think it was worth the trouble. After all, the small cupcakes are about the size of her head. I carefully laid the elements out how I wanted them and filled in with more flour where needed. Then I captured this shot from pretty close in so that the elements would be pretty big in the background image without having to crop it too much. 

After cleaning everything up, I uploaded my images, selected my final two, did a little bit of editing on them to ensure the lighting still looked even, then put both photos in separate layers in Photoshop. Then I positioned and sized the image of our daughter so that she fit in between the elements. Now the key to merging two photos together is blending... whether you are swapping heads in family photos when the toddler made a face in what was an otherwise perfect image of a family of 12... or this type of shot. For this image I erased most of the image around our the snow angel outline being very careful to use a light opacity in the brushstrokes of my eraser. It's a bit tedious but totally worth it, especially when it's just one image you need to create. 

Finally, I added some fun text to the image to make it our own personal Christmas card that you see at the top of this post. Relatively simple, lots of fun to create, and a treasured photo I will add to her annual photo album. 



[email protected] (Donna Young Newborn Photography) Tue, 21 Feb 2023 21:15:00 GMT
Extended Family Session | Red Rocks, Colorado | Portrait Photography I love it when families return to me for subsequent sessions. It's one of the biggest compliments you can get as a photographer. So I was thrilled when this family reached out for updated photos five years after I photographed them for a fall session. With one family living out of state, the holidays were a great time to get together and get some new images.

Because most of the Denver area lacks a nice backdrop in the winter without full snow coverage, we chose Red Rocks for their session. This is one of my favorite locations any time of year because the rocks are a stunning backdrop for a portrait session. We photographed the entire family together as well as individual families and other groups and got to catch up a little bit during the session. I can't believe how quickly time flies and how big the kiddos have gotten. It really was a pleasure to see them all again. Below are a few of my favorites from the session.  

Interested in a family portrait session? Contact me today for details! 

[email protected] (Donna Young Newborn Photography) Thu, 09 Feb 2023 21:15:00 GMT
Holiday Photos in the Studio | Parker, CO Portrait Photographer While the studio in our new home isn't as big as my last one, I love having it available for newborn sessions, cake smashes, and of course impromptu photo sessions with our daughter. This Christmas I pulled out one of my favorite holiday backdrops, ordered a Christmas dress off of Amazon and brought her into the studio for a few updated portraits. Our dog Scout of course didn't want to miss out and made a cameo appearance for a few shots. Hope you holidays were merry and bright! 


[email protected] (Donna Young Newborn Photography) Tue, 31 Jan 2023 13:45:00 GMT
Noah | Sitter Portrait Session | Parker Colorado Child Photographer I photographed little Noah as a newborn and was happy to see him back in the studio for sitter photos! He is just too cute and I can't believe I let this blog post fall through the cracks when I got busy with other sessions. But better late than never for showing off this adorable little guy! And it gives me a chance to add a one year photo of him to compare with his six month and newborn photos. 

Little Noah.. A comparison as a newborn, at six months, and a year. I love photographing these little ones with the same props to show how much they've grown! 


[email protected] (Donna Young Newborn Photography) children portraits studio session Thu, 19 Jan 2023 19:39:29 GMT
Scout the Adventure Dog | First Birthday Cake Smash Session | Parker, Colorado One of my favorite session types are cake smashes. I love coming up with a theme (or using one that a client requests), shopping for props, and setting up the studio to create a unique backdrop to celebrate little ones turning one. Normally these are little humans, but this time it was our puppy, Scout.

For Scout's birthday theme I went simple, using primary colors. But the big accomplishment was baking him a dog friendly birthday cake made of peanut butter, pumpkin, applesuace and other canine approved ingredients. And while I didn't let him devour the entire cake, he did seem to like it. Is that a smile I see? For me, it definitely needed some sugar. Yes, yes... I tasted it. Don't judge. If I'm willing to photography a cake smash session for a dog, I'm willing to taste the cake. 

[email protected] (Donna Young Newborn Photography) Thu, 17 Nov 2022 21:45:00 GMT
Fall Photos | Children's Photography | Parker, Colorado I can't believe how long it has been since I have taken photos of our little one... although she is not so little anymore. I used to do a portrait session with her two or three times a year but as she reaches her pre-teens and doesn't want to be bothered with photos, I have let it slide a bit. I took a couple shots last Christmas in the snow but haven't done a full session with her in a while. I decided, starting with this fall session, I'm going to change that.

I have a small easel on our entryway table that holds a seasonal photo of Katie. I change it out each time I change my seasonal decor and when decorating this year, I realized the last fall photo session of her was the sunflower session we did, three years ago. It was definitely time for an update, so I took her down to the park near our house and bribed her to take photos... just like a toddler... with the promise of ice cream. Despite this getting her to smile was a bit difficult at times. She wanted to try some serious looks which I was fine with, but most of them made her look a bit miserable. But with lots of shots, you are bound to get some good ones and I think we did. While she isn't a fan of getting her photo taken these days, I know she will appreciate having them when she is older and I definitely appreciate them now. 


[email protected] (Donna Young Newborn Photography) Wed, 02 Nov 2022 23:00:00 GMT
Maddie & Jake | Twins Fall Photo Session | Children's Photography | Parker, Colorado We recently ventured to a park very close to the studio to capture photos of these adorable twins with the changing leaves in the background. These little ones are the children of a very good friend and I not only have had the pleasure of photographing them since birth (see their newborn, six month sitter, and one year cake smash photos), I'm also get to be their honorary aunt! They are just the cutest pair and you could really see their personalities come out during this session. They were pretty typical of kiddos at this age. Maddie was hard to wrangle for a photo but once she agreed, she sat still, smiled and posed with the best of them. Jake on the other hand was quick to sit down for a photo but had to be coaxed to sit still and smile. But with the promise of playing on the playground after the session and a few marshmallow treats along the way, we were able to capture some great shots and even got Mom in for one of the photos. I excited to watch these two grow up. But slow down kids... it happens too fast!


[email protected] (Donna Young Newborn Photography) children fall outdoor photos portraits Sun, 23 Oct 2022 20:58:57 GMT
Padraic: 9 Days Old | Newborn Photography | Parker, Colorado I hadn't photographed a newborn in quite some time after taking an extended break from capturing client images when the world shut down. But when a friend contacted me because she was expecting her second little boy and asked me to capture newborn photos for her family, I couldn't say no.

I photographed big brother Sean almost five years ago and while he was a doll then, he has grown up into such a handsome young man. I love that I got to capture images of these two brothers together and while sometimes Sean insisted on being serious we did get a few smiles out of him. He is such a sweet big brother who I know will be a big help to Mom and Dad. I also got to capture my favorite pose with Mom who looked amazing as well as some sweet photos with Dad. 

 This studio session was also a chance to test out my new, but smaller studio space in Parker, CO. In the end we had plenty of room to capture some great images of little Padraic. Welcome to the world sweet boy and congratulations Adam and Erica! 




[email protected] (Donna Young Newborn Photography) Thu, 01 Sep 2022 18:04:56 GMT
Family Photo Session | Red Rocks Park | Morrison, Colorado When this sweet family contacted me for family photos at Red Rocks Park, I was thrilled. It is one of my favorite places for photos in Colorado because it is such a beautiful, unique location. The red rocks provide an impressive backdrop for photos any time of year and there are bridges, fences, and this really cool rabbitbrush that I love. This easygoing couple had the most well-behaved boys and a cute dog to round out their family and they were all such a pleasure to work with. I love how the images turned out and I know they will treasure them for a lifetime. 


[email protected] (Donna Young Newborn Photography) Wed, 10 Aug 2022 14:00:00 GMT
Scout the Adventure Dog | Newborn Puppy Studio Session | Parker, CO Some of you may have noticed a break in my blog posts and for while and looking at the dates can probably tell I took a little time off from client sessions when the world got crazy. Despite that, I continued to take photos... a little beer photography for my Great Divide Brewing Ambassador gig, some photos of my own family, and photos of this little guy.  That's right... we got a puppy! Our daughter had been begging for one for years and she is a true animal lover. So now she is at an age where she is responsible enough to care for him it was time. And she really needed a buddy.

I did a lot of research to find the perfect dog for our family and we decided on a Cavapoo (Cavalier
King Charles Spaniel / Poodle mix). He is smart, very affectionate, and playful. He is small enough to fly with us on our vacations, adventurous on our Jeep trips (he can even jump into my lifted Jeep with huge tires by himself), and gets along well with people, other dogs and even the deer that visit our fence-line. And of course, he is non-shedding... which was pretty important to me. 

Now when you are a newborn photographer and you have a new little puppy, a session like this is bound to happen. I treated this session like any other newborn session, making sure our little Scout was tuckered out before taking him into the studio, wrapping and posing him in the same fashion, and letting my first time "Mom" know what I was doing at all times so she was comfortable during the session. Of course, my daughter is the most nervous new Mom I've ever had, so while Scout was easy to work with, she was a bit of a challenge. 

Today he is far from a pup and I am so glad I captured these moments when he was an itty bitty thing. Much like our own little newborn babies, these pups grow up quickly and I can barely remember how different he looked without these images to reflect on. We have several framed prints in our house and I know the entire family will treasure them for years to come. 

[email protected] (Donna Young Newborn Photography) Mon, 25 Jul 2022 13:29:06 GMT
Jonathan's Mandalorian Themed Cake Smash Session | Children's Photography | Aurora, CO This cake smash session was definitely one of my most elaborate yet but I just had to go all in when Mom and Dad said they wanted a Mandalorian-themed session for little Jonathan, who I also photographed as a newborn. Such a fun theme and Jonathan, I dare say, was even cuter than little Grogu, aka baby Yoda.

I started working on this set weeks in advance, creating a replica of the baby stroller/pod from the show with papier mache and my passable painting skills. I also created some fake "sand" out of pillow stuffing and paint in order to blend the planet of Tatooine background with our paper floor drop. Finally, I commissioned a friend who does some really cool 3D printing (details below) to create a replica of the Mandalorian's spaceship, the Razor Crest. It stayed in flight for most of the session but still remained a cute prop after it crash landed just before the bathtub photos... Spoiler alert: it's definitely in way better shape than the "real" Razor Crest.

Jonathan had so much fun as he smashed his cake, played with the stroller pod, and smeared icing over Mando's helmet. Luckily he quickly learned that the cake tasted better than the fake sand and dug in, eventually dumping his cake and getting his feet in the action before bath time. 

While we used the Mandalorian theme for the cake smash and bath tub clean up photos, we were sure to get some before and after photos of Jonathan including some classic shots of him in a cute blue and tan outfit and some fun shots with a Super Nintendo theme. And how perfectly it worked out that he had wild hair after his nice warm bubble bath for photos in his "Wild One" outfit! This little guy was so happy and agreeable for the entire session it was difficult to chose the final images but Mom and Dad will be documenting Jonathan's cake smash with a beautiful album they are sure to show his first girlfriend when they reach that milestone! Such a pleasure to work with, I can't wait to see this family again! 

Special thanks to Wayne Adams for his 3D Razor Crest print. Wayne is located in Aurora, CO and does commission work! 


[email protected] (Donna Young Newborn Photography) cake smash children portraits Thu, 21 Jan 2021 01:15:00 GMT
2020 Top Ten Photos of the Year I don't think it needs to be said that 2020 has been a crazy year that has challenged most of us in one way or another. It was definitely a challenge for me in so many ways. Despite that, I still have a lot to be thankful for this year, as I always try to find the positive in things no matter the situation. With some sporadic sessions here and there and a complete shut down for several months, I focused on doing some creative shoots in the down time. I was still able to connect with some past clients and meet a few new ones and I am grateful for the opportunity to capture images that I know these families will treasure forever.

As you can see from the images I've included, kids photos topped the list of favorites this year. I love the challenge of photographing children. And those that are parents can attest to the fact that there are definitely ages when children are way more challenging to photograph than others. I feel such a sense of accomplishment when I am able to capture great shots during a child's early life. Whether it is during a family photo session, a cake smash, or annual portraits, when I get those shots that parents can't believe I was able to capture, I'm thrilled. 

I think everyone knows I love cake smash sessions and this Western-themed session was so much fun to plan and shoot. This little guy had the best smiles. And how can you not laugh at his shenanigans?

This little guys was just shy of two years old when I photographed him during a family session and he was full of energy and personality. Picking up rocks and exploring nature, he had no time to stop for photos. Needless to say, he gave me a run for my money! But I pulled out all the stops (coming home with pants that were wet up to my knees and hay in my hair) and got some great images of him and his family. And this shot! How can you not just melt when you see this face?

While all the other images that made the list were kids, I just had to include this image. Back in January, before the world got crazy, I took engagement photos for some friends while we were vacationing together near Zion National Park. I loved the images from this session so much, it was difficult to pick just one image for this list. We had lots of shots that focused closely on this gorgeous couple but I just love the epic scenery and the carefree interaction we captured in this one. It's an image that truly deserves to be showcased as artwork in their home... if they ever give up their nomadic RV lifestyle of course!

One of my creative sessions captured this beauty in a replica of Norman Rockwell's "Girl at a Mirror". While the actual session was short, the set up for this was quite detailed as I tried to replicate everything as closely as possible while still giving it a personal touch. Interested in comparing it to the original? Take a look at the blog post! I think it turned out perfectly!

Newborn sessions were definitely a challenge this year and to be quite honest with you, I did very few. These sessions are several hours and they are done inside my studio that is pretty warm to keep babies comfy and sleepy. So as much as I love photographing newborns, I was quite hesitant this year. Not only was I cautious about Covid, but I knew these sessions would take a toll on me. Roasting was an understatement as I got a workout with a mask on and the heater going in the middle of summer. No need for hot yoga! In addition, because of Covid we waited until it seemed a little safer for this "newborn" who was three months old when I captured his photos. With the ideal age to photograph a newborn being 7-14 days, you know I had my work cut out for me. But the photos turned out beautifully and I'm so proud of them. 

Separation anxiety is quite common for one year old kiddos and when we did some classic portraits as part of this little one's cake smash session with her twin brother she did not want to leave Mom. So I went to my go-to set up of having Mom lay on the floor and had her sit on Mom's stomach. If I hadn't told you, you'd never know, right? And while she didn't crack a smile, I love this serious look. It reminds me of those old-time photos my grandmother had hanging in little oval frames... when nobody smiled for photos. An instant classic! 

I photographed this paint splatter themed cake smash session for a family who had previously had newborn images taken with me and it was so much fun to work with them again this year. This little guy was just adorable and this expression just cracks me up! 

I love it when a child shows their personality... and this little one was fiery! She seesawed back and forth between silly and excited to strong and defiant. Exactly how a two year old should be! We captured a lot of great photos during her session but I'm pretty sure this is a favorite for me... and for Mom! 

I love this shot so much! I normally capture Mom and baby in this pose and while I did that for this session I just had to include it as one of the poses with big brother. Mom was unable to get newborn photos with him when he was little so it was especially important to capture these two together. It's simple, it's stunning, and I love it. 

Of course my favorite photo of the year is going to be of my daughter... I'm biased and I should be! I love seeing a vision come to fruition and while it didn't turn out exactly as I had planned, I truly love this composite image of her that is now on a canvas in her room. She is such a fan of wolves and it was exactly what she needed to complete her room makeover this year! I have a list of photo ideas for her and this was one of them. I definitely need to check a few of these off the list in 2021! 


Which image is your favorite? Leave a comment and let me know. Have a Happy New Year! See you in 2021!


[email protected] (Donna Young Newborn Photography) children family photos newborns portraits studio session Mon, 28 Dec 2020 21:09:20 GMT
Holiday Portraits | Family Photography | Aurora, CO When my friends Kim and Bill asked me to take their holiday portraits with the old truck I recently used for another holiday session, I was more than happy to! They have been together for quite some time and had never had any professional portraits taken together so it was about time! For their session, I decided to change the set up a bit from the last time I used this location. I like all my clients to have unique photos and since Kim loves bling and sparkles, I thought some glittery lights and gold was perfect. I scoured my house for everything that coordinated for the perfect monotone color scheme and asked Kim to bring a few pillows and blankets from her house for a personal touch. 

The day of the session it snowed lightly all day and stopped not long before our session, giving it the perfect touch for holiday photos! Their beautiful golden retriever, Rocket, made an appearance for a few photos and we made things a little more festive with some steamy mugs of hot chocolate and antlers for Rocket. I love how these turned out and can't wait to do some more snowy photo sessions! 

Interested in family photos? Contact me today for your personalized session!  



[email protected] (Donna Young Newborn Photography) family photos holiday portraits portraits Sun, 13 Dec 2020 21:42:11 GMT
Simple Holiday Portraits | Studio Session with my Daughter | Aurora, CO Some years I set up elaborate sets to take holiday photos for my daughter but this year has been a bit hectic and honestly I just wanted a few simple shots of her, especially since I planned to put one of them in the digital Santa image I'm offering to clients this year. Now when I say simple, I mean simple. I hung a backdrop up in the studio, pulled out a matching little seat and from her closet grabbed a red, black and white sweater dress I had bought her years ago, hoping it would still fit. Luckily she is tiny and it worked perfectly... although I can't say the same for the matching hat! I should have taken a picture of that so you all could have gotten a few laughs! Just know it was way too small for her head and looked ridiculous!

I grabbed a few shots before needing to get dinner on the table and although I definitely wanted to get a bit of her outfit in an image for the photo with Santa, my favorite shot is the closeup. I sometimes forget how much I love these shots that I have captured in the past for high-school seniors and I'm glad I didn't this time. I know I'm biased but I love this little face! 


[email protected] (Donna Young Newborn Photography) children portraits studio session Sat, 12 Dec 2020 22:00:48 GMT
Family Portraits | Vintage Truck Holiday Theme | Franktown, CO If you've ever seen my landscape images, you've probably noticed that I love photographing old "stuff".... barns, building, mines, trucks, or anything else that has been given character by time and the elements! So when this sweet couple, Chris and Kendra, wanted holiday photos with this old truck on their property I jumped at the chance. Not only could I capture an old truck and a beautiful family, but I got to do a little bit of my other favorite past times... decorating, albeit temporarily decorating a truck for the holidays. When I showed up at their home my vehicle looked like I had packed up all the Christmas decor in my house! But after a short set up to make everything a bit more festive I was ready to capture some images. 

This truck was in the perfect setting on their property for holiday portraits, set against pine trees in the snow that lingered on the ground thanks to the shady location. Chatting with Chris before the session, I learned that this wasn't just any truck on their property, it is the truck he inherited from his grandfather so it has very special meaning to the family! 

We captured images of the entire family as well as some shots of the kids and some couples photos while the kids played amongst the trees. Despite the very cold temperatures this entire family was so easy to work with and the kiddos not only gave me some great smiles but also some funny faces to show off their personality, which I love. I'm so happy I was able to capture these special photos for the family and can't wait to work with them again! 

Interested in family photos? Contact me today to discuss your custom portrait session! 

[email protected] (Donna Young Newborn Photography) family photos holiday photos portraits Fri, 04 Dec 2020 17:57:42 GMT
Holiday Photos With Santa | Contact-Free Just because Santa may not be able to greet your kiddos on his lap this year doesn't mean they have to miss out on annual portraits with him! Send me your favorite image of your child/children/family and I'll create your very own portrait with Santa holding your framed image.

Use your digital download image for holiday cards, social media posts, or prints. 

Want your image turned into a beautiful heirloom quality canvas, print, or ornament to display in your home each Christmas?  I'm also happy to provide this service (additional fees apply) for my clients. 

First image: $20. Each additional: $15

for your personalized Santa image

Please note: 

You may either submit a horizontal image (as shown) or a vertical image (not shown).

Final digital image(s) will be provided via electronic transfer without watermark.

If submitting a professionally taken image, please ensure you have printing rights. Personally taken images from your camera or cellphone can also be used however I cannot be held responsible if low resolution / quality images are submitted.










[email protected] (Donna Young Newborn Photography) children family photos holiday photos portraits Tue, 01 Dec 2020 17:30:00 GMT
Two Year Old Birthday Girl, Jada | Children's Portraits | Denver, Colorado This adorable little girl, Jada, visited me in the studio to celebrate turning two with some portraits. Two is definitely a challenging age for portraits and Mom and I had to be patient in order to get some great shots of her but it was definitely well worth it. We captured not only some nice smiles but also a lot of personality from this little one! She is active, adventurous and spirited, with a little bit of attitude. Well, maybe a lot :) My favorite image is the classic "I am two, don't mess with me" look! And how can you not love her precious curls and those amazing eyelashes. Too cute for words! I'm thrilled Mom will have a beautiful album to remember this special time for years to come and pass down to Jada when she is older. 

Interested in portraits for you little one? Contact me today to discuss a customized session! 

[email protected] (Donna Young Newborn Photography) children portraits studio session Sun, 22 Nov 2020 17:00:37 GMT
Outdoor Portrait Session | Family Photography | Centennial, CO I recently had the pleasure of photographing this family of three just as the leaves were beginning to change. This beautiful couple was due for a portrait session together not only because they hadn't had photos taken since their wedding, but because they expanded their family almost two years ago and hadn't gotten images with this handsome little guy yet. I'll admit, little Brayden was a tough customer as he is going through that two year old phase we all know and love, but with a bit of patient and perseverance from everyone we captured some great shots and some awesome smiles from him for this family's new photo album! I can't wait to deliver it to them so they have beautiful images in their home to share with friends and family! 

Interested in family photos? Contact me today to discuss a personalized session! 

[email protected] (Donna Young Newborn Photography) family photos outdoor photos portraits Tue, 20 Oct 2020 22:28:23 GMT
Katie's Paint Splash Portrait Session | Children's Photography | Aurora, CO  When a client of mine requested a "paint themed" cake smash session for her little boy's first birthday photo session I had a blast searching for fun props and creating a custom backdrop for it. While searching online, I came across this cute little dress that matched the theme perfectly. Of course, it wasn't exactly appropriate for a one year old boy, but I just happen to have a ten year old daughter it was perfect for. I bought it so I could take a few photos of her in the studio before the background got discarded and I'm so happy I did! I love to capture images of her a few times each year and I'm always looking for unique photo opportunities. She had fun being silly and coming up with "poses", although I gave her direction on a few. Can you tell which was which? LOL.

I'll definitely be adding one of these to the collection of mounted prints I display on an easel in our home... now to decide which one! Which one is your favorite? Leave a comment at the end of this blog post and help me decide! 

Interested in a unique, custom photo session for your little one(s)? Contact me today for details! 


[email protected] (Donna Young Newborn Photography) children portraits studio session Tue, 06 Oct 2020 19:23:38 GMT
Guinea Pigs on the Farm | Pet Photography | Parker, Co One of the things I love about being a photographer is that I get to do fun little projects for our family. Last month I did a wolf-themed photo session for my daughter, I've previously done a fun family Christmas card session, and most recently I photographed this session with my daughter's guinea pigs. She is a total animal lover and we got these cute little guys, Copper (the tan and white guinea) and Nickle (the multi color guinea) about six months ago. She loves being a momma to them and like all proud mommas, she needed photos of her babies! 

I got the idea for the farm theme after I picked up a miniature cowboy hat for a cake smash session. I thought... how cute would these little guys be wearing a miniature hat? Our neighbor friends happened to have this amazing little John Deere tractor toy that they kindly let me borrow and I picked up a miniature hay bale from Lowes before heading out to my favorite photo spot with my daughter to act as an assistant. 

Of course as a brand ambassador for Great Divide Brewing Co, I had to grab a couple shots with an appropriate beer and my favorite shot is Copper chewing on some hay next to a can of Colette, a farmhouse ale, that was perfect for this session. 

[email protected] (Donna Young Newborn Photography) pet photography Thu, 24 Sep 2020 14:11:25 GMT
Recent Headshot Sessions | Portrait Photographer | Denver Colorado Did you know that in addition to taking newborn, family, and other portraits, I also take professional headshots? Clients can choose to have them taken in the studio, where I have several backdrops or at an outdoor location. The process for these sessions is a bit different than my other sessions that focus on providing heirloom quality products for my clients. The session fee includes two high resolution digital photos (option to purchase additional images) as well as matching web optimized photos and they can easily be selected and downloaded from an online gallery. This makes it easy to get your headshots updated quickly as the turnaround time is only a couple days from session to image delivery. And my service includes touch ups like skin smoothing, blemish removal, teeth whitening, etc. upon request so you can look your best for business cards and company websites... not that any of these gorgeous ladies that I recently photographed needed any help! 

Contact me today to discuss professional headshots for all your business needs!




[email protected] (Donna Young Newborn Photography) headshots portraits studio session Sat, 12 Sep 2020 18:41:52 GMT
Warrior Girl With Her Faithful Wolf | Themed Photo Session | Aurora Colorado Children's Photographer Our daughter is a total animal lover and while she has had cute pink and mint woodland animal decor in her bedroom for ages, at ten years old it was time for a more mature animal theme. Her favorite animal is the grey wolf and for her tenth birthday, I wanted to give her a portrait with a wolf to put in her newly decorated wolf-themed room. 

Now when you are with an animal as fierce as a wolf, you have to be fierce yourself, so the perfect outfit was necessary. I immediately envisioned a post-apocalyptic warrior type outfit and bought all the components necessary for it, complete with a sword. With her hair wild and messy, we headed out to one of my favorite wooded photography spots. We shot at a couple different spots but when we were about to head home I decided I wanted a few photos by a huge tree that is half dead. Almost at the car, my daughter begrudgingly trudged over for a few more shots and I'm glad she did. I think it was the perfect spot for the photo with the wolf and while I intended to just create one photo image, I ended up with some cool shots of her alone that I thought were keepers. While the wolf shot will be on a unique hanging canvas in her room, all of these images will go into her annual photo album. 

Interested in a themed photo session? I love planning and creating unique sessions.

Contact me today to see what we can create together! 



[email protected] (Donna Young Newborn Photography) children outdoor photography portraits themed photo session wolf photo Mon, 31 Aug 2020 14:00:00 GMT
Kian's 3 Month Photo Session | Newborn Photography | Aurora, CO I had the pleasure of photographing a fun baby shower celebration for sweet little Kian in early March and Mom and Dad recently brought him into the studio for a bit of a delayed "newborn" session to capture some of his first photos. With the craziness of everything happening this year, I had closed down my studio for several months and didn't have little Kian and his parents in for these photos until he was 3 months old.

I'm so pleased that despite a few "hurdles" we needed to overcome for this session, we captured some beautiful images. You see, I normally photograph newborns when they are about a week old because they very sleepy and super "squishy" for posing, but as I mentioned Kian was already 3 months old when I photographed him. In addition, health and safety was a huge consideration so the session length was limited. And with a warm room temperature to keep Kian as cozy as possible, I had to take a couple quick breaks outside to cool down since I wore a mask (as did everyone when they weren't being photographed) for the session. While I did concentrate mostly on wrapped shots, you wouldn't be able to tell from the photos that this session was different from other newborn sessions. And the nice thing about a session this "late" was the great smiles and awake shots I photographed as well as the fact that Mom had a little bit longer to bounce back to her pre-pregnancy figure. As you can see she has been working hard and looked fantastic when she arrived at the studio. Because of that I did a little variation on image I normally take with Moms, capturing more of a full body shot. I am so pleased with all the images. Kian and his parents were a dream to work with and I'm happy they will have these newborn images and a beautiful album to treasure for a lifetime! 

Interested in a newborn session for your little one? It's not too late! Contact me today to discuss a custom session. 

[email protected] (Donna Young Newborn Photography) newborns portraits studio session Tue, 18 Aug 2020 22:10:10 GMT
Ansel's Painting Themed Cake Smash Session | Children's Photography | Aurora, CO As a business owner, it's a great compliment to have a return customer. As a photographer, it's a huge compliment to have another photographer book you for a photo session. So when a fellow photographer and his wife returned to my studio a year after I captured photos for their newborn son so that I could take some cake smash photos.... well, I was very honored to say the least. And I couldn't be happier to work with this amazing family and document Ansel turning one! 

When Ansel's Mom requested a painting theme for this session, ideas immediately started popping into my head. I envisioned one element being a canvas that Ansel actually painted himself, so I dropped off a canvas and some paint for Ansel and got to work creating some custom props, including a backdrop. On the day of the session, Ansel showed up with his masterpiece (he may be the next Picasso!) and the perfect cake. 

Ansel was a dream for his newborn photos, but he seemed a little more skeptical about this session. That's not uncommon at this age because kiddos can be a little anxious about being away from Mom... even if she is in sight! But after some coaxing, playing, and being silly in the studio, he warmed up to sitting on his own and we ended up with some great photos. As you will see, the cake portion of the session was definitely a hit but Mom, Dad, and I all love the bathtub photos too! No doubt they will reappear sometime in his teenage years so Mom and Dad can have a little fun with them!

Interested in a custom cake smash session for your little one? Contact me today to discuss what we can create together!



[email protected] (Donna Young Newborn Photography) birthday cake smash children portraits studio session Mon, 03 Aug 2020 22:01:40 GMT
Chase and Bethany | Portraits | Aurora, CO This adorable couple contacted me to capture some photos together while Bethany was out visiting Chase from Pennsylvania. For our session, we headed out to one of my favorite photo spots late one afternoon.

I'll admit I didn't know what to expect from them because during our consultation these two were a bit quiet and reserved... but it didn't take long for them to come out of their shell when we started capturing their images. In fact, Chase was quite the character as he goofed around and brought out lots of genuine smiles and maybe a couple of eye rolls from Bethany... all in good fun of course! She was such a good sport and even posed for a shot while nibbling a bit of hay with him. They seemed to truly have a good time together as you can see from the images, and I enjoyed hanging out with them and capturing these fun moments. These are the types of clients that make my job so much fun! 

Interested in capturing some memories with your significant other?

Contact me today to discuss the perfect session! 



[email protected] (Donna Young Newborn Photography) engagement photos outdoor session portraits Mon, 20 Jul 2020 17:38:19 GMT
Wyatt's First Birthday Cake Smash Session | Children's Photography | Aurora, CO I recently photographed little Wyatt's first birthday cake smash session and I'm amazed that this handsome little guy is just as sweet and fun to work with as his big brother. How lucky these parents are to have two of the sweetest boys I've ever met and how lucky am I to get to continue to photograph this family and watch it grow!

For Wyatt's session Mom wanted a rustic mountain theme, which was very different from big brother Liam's construction themed cake smash session I photographed back in 2018. I tend to gravitate towards rustic elements so I was excited to get to work building a custom set that I think turned out perfectly for this family. I quickly got into the garage with my saw and cut some plywood, then painted blue and gray caps of snow as well as a matching number one. I pulled out my Christmas bins for some greenery, miniature evergreen trees, and a rustic garland, grabbed a lantern from our living room and a crate from my stash of props in the studio and put it all together with a wooden cake plate. When Mom showed up with a simple, beautiful cake and this little cutie, everything was complete!

As always I captured some simple timeless "before photos" in addition to photographing the main event and finished up with some playtime in the bath tub. 

Contact me today to discuss a custom cake smash session to celebrate your little one's first birthday! 



[email protected] (Donna Young Newborn Photography) Thu, 09 Jul 2020 19:26:12 GMT
A Young Girl Contemplates Growing Up in a Recreation of Norman Rockwell's "Girl At A Mirror" I recently recreated a Normal Rockwell painting for a client who wanted to capture this image of her daughter before an upcoming birthday. I love the idea because it depicts a young girl's sweet innocence and apprehension about growing up, and is just perfect at this age. Norman Rockwell was known for depicting Nostalgic America with elements of pop culture and feeling. The original image entitled "Girl at a Mirror" was created as the cover of the March 6, 1954 issue of The Saturday Evening Post and is full of insightful and symbolic elements. The magazine in her lap shows a portrait of Jane Russell who starred in "Gentleman Prefer Blondes" with Marilyn Monroe. This beautiful brunette mimics the worried, apprehensive look of the original image as she stares at the mirror. A discarded doll from her youth lays nearby while a comb, brush, and red lipstick that represents the beauty of a movie star she compares herself to is by her side in this symbolic portrayal.  

While the one to one ratio of the original photo was likely appropriate for the Saturday Evening Post publication, I recreated the image in an 8x10 (below) ratio that is more appropriate for framing today, while still allowing for both image sizes to contain all the elements of the original. 

The Back Story:

The additional time at home that many had due to COVID19 Stay at Home orders prompted a string of recreations of famous paintings. Some of these image recreations were very true to the original while some used fun elements for the situation, including toilet paper and disinfectant. You can see some of the recreations on this Twisted Sifter post. Even school art teachers jumped on this trend which I found out about when my daughter's art teacher sent out an assignment to recreate a Norman Rockwell image. I saw some classmates images that were super cute and funny.... think The Music Man, and was immediately excited to do this as a photographer with time on my hands! I created the image for my daughter (below) in my home studio and posted it on social media which led to being contacted to recreate it for my client after Stay at Home orders were lifted. 

While the original image of my daughter was a pretty good recreation of the painting, it was a quick capture and definitely less exact than the recreation above. For example, she sat on a low table instead of a smaller wooden bench. The image dimensions and cropping were not the same. And since my daughter doesn't like dolls, a bear had to serve a a stand in. I also think she has more of a miserable face than a face of contemplation and sadness as planned... but that's typical for my daughter, asking "are we done yet" in between shots for this project. Kids are way less cooperative for their own parents it seems, but I'm still thrilled I captured this image of her.



[email protected] (Donna Young Newborn Photography) children norman rockwell nostalgia portraits recreation studio session Thu, 04 Jun 2020 15:29:08 GMT
Twin Travel Themed Cake Smash Session | Portrait Photographer | Aurora, CO These beautiful twins were back in the studio a while ago for their one year cake smash and splash session. They had visited the studio previously for both their newborn session and their sitter session and it has been so much fun to see the changes not only in their faces, but in their personalities. Jake was full of smiles for some before photos while Maddie was very serious, resulting in a stunning classic portrait that both Mom and I love. When we moved onto the travel-themed cake smash portion, which was a slight variation from our earlier aviator-themed sessions, Maddie was very excited to dig into the cake while Jake was happy to let Maddie steal the show. He soon made an exit, briefly returning to play with his airplane before we moved on to bathtub photos. It was definitely an experience to try to wrangle two icing covered toddlers in the studio, but we had a fun time and captured lots of great images for the family's album. 

Contact me today to discuss a personalized first birthday session for your little one! 

[email protected] (Donna Young Newborn Photography) cake smash children portraits studio session Mon, 27 Apr 2020 13:43:44 GMT
At Home with the "Easter Bunny" | Portrait Photography | Aurora, CO I was scrolling through Facebook a couple weeks ago when I saw a friend's post about not being able to take her kids to see the Easter Bunny this year. Oh... I hadn't even thought of that at that point! Of course missing a trip to the mall for my daughter to see the Easter Bunny isn't a big complaint... I don't love going to the mall under any circumstances and standing in line to spend two minutes with someone in an over-sized bunny suit isn't exactly my idea of a great time... but it is a tradition. Now in the midst of a pandemic I could list a million things that are bigger problems than missing annual Easter Bunny photos but I thought... I have time, why not get creative. My daughter is nine and will soon be at the age where she will scoff at the Easter Bunny and Santa Claus so I want to keep it going while I can. She may not be able to sit on the Easter Bunny's lap this year but she's big enough to have a bunny sit on hers!

I ordered a bunny from Amazon, pulled a dress from her closet, and put up a pink backdrop I had in the studio. After getting the bunny (who sat in our garage quarantine for a few days), I set up for a quick photo session with her. During the session she even ended up sitting on the bunny's lap at one point but made up for squishing him with lots of hugs and snuggles. It was a fun time for her and she got to keep the cuddly bunny after the session. I not only got some photos of her with the "Easter Bunny" but some spring photos to show how much she is growing up! 

If you are interested in capturing photos of your little ones when the dust settles from the Covid19 pandemic, contact me today

[email protected] (Donna Young Newborn Photography) children portraits spring studio session Sun, 05 Apr 2020 16:28:47 GMT
Celebrating Baby Kian's Pending Arrival | Event Photography | Aurora, CO It's always interesting and fun for me to not only see, but be a part of, how other cultures celebrate their little ones. Whether it is a special outfit or jewelry worn during a newborn session, a birthday tradition, or a baby shower custom, I love learning about these traditions.

Recently I was contacted by the nicest couple who asked me to photograph their upcoming newborn shower including the Godh Bharai ceremony. This is the Indian celebration conducted during the 7th month of pregnancy to welcome the unborn baby into the family. In Hindi, the words God Bharai literally mean to fill the lap with abundance and blessings.  In addition to this ceremony, additional fun activities that are typically a part of Western showers, included a cake cutting and games that had everyone laughing hysterically.

I was happy to capture images of the shower, as well as lots of photos with family and friends and a few quick outdoor shots of the proud Mom and Dad to be. Congratulations to these expectant parents on the pending arrival of baby boy!

Contact me today to discuss your photography needs!

[email protected] (Donna Young Newborn Photography) events family photos portraits Sat, 21 Mar 2020 21:08:19 GMT
Jonathan: 8 Days Old | Newborn Photography | Aurora CO Last month I photographed a beautiful newborn baby boy and his family. While this was a typical newborn session in my studio, I made sure to get plenty of family and sibling photos. You see, Mom and Dad wanted a canvas for the family's home featuring their new addition but didn't already have any existing wall art of big brother as a newborn. We all wanted to make sure he was also a focus in the images so he would never feel left out and the images they chose for the wall, a family portrait and an image of the boys together, will ensure he doesn't. As you can see, big brother was very serious about his roll in the photo session and I'm sure he will end up being not only a protective sibling, but a great playmate to his little brother.

Congratulations to Mom, Dad, and big brother on the new addition to your family!

Interested in newborn photos that suit your families needs?
Contact me today to discuss your customized session! 

Interested in newborn photos? Contact me today to discuss your customized session! 


[email protected] (Donna Young Newborn Photography) children family photos newborns portraits studio session Mon, 09 Mar 2020 14:50:52 GMT
Michael's Western Themed Cake Smash Session | Portrait Photographer | Aurora, CO I've had the pleasure of photographing lots of cake smash sessions lately and this one was such a blast! When I started planning with this kiddo's Mom, I was excited to hear she wanted a rustic, western-themed session. I love creating custom set-ups but rustic and antique items are my jam! I picked up some old horseshoes on a trip to Utah and a little hat keychain (which I deconstructed) while at a photography convention in Nashville (I've been traveling a lot lately). I incorporated them with a log cake plate and a rustic crate I had in the studio, my husband's guitar (shhhh... don't tell him. He never plays it anyway), and a replica wagon wheel I found at a local craft store. When Mom informed me the day before the session that the cake she picked up unexpectedly had turquoise accents, I ran to the local fabric store and grabbed some matching fabric to incorporate into the shoot. It was perfect to add into the banner and a great little pop of color that tied everything together. Finally, Mom brought along Dad's cowboy boots for the perfect finish to the set-up. 

During the session it took a few minutes for little Michael to warm up but soon he was full of giggles and splashes! He made the cutest little faces and I'm so glad I was able to capture his mischievous little looks that really show his personality. I'm excited to be delivering a beautiful album of favorite images and a canvas for Dad's office soon! 

Interested in a cake smash and splash session to celebrate your little one's first birthday? Contact me today to discuss your custom session! 

Contact me today to discuss a personalized smash and splash session for your little one! 

[email protected] (Donna Young Newborn Photography) cake smash children first birthday portraits studio session Wed, 19 Feb 2020 01:09:17 GMT
Girl Scout Cookie Cake Smash Session | Portrait Photographer | Aurora Colorado As a photographer AND the mother of a Girl Scout who sells cookies each year I was inspired when cookie season and the first birthday of a friend's daughter fell at the same time. I knew I had to create a Girl Scout cookie themed cake smash session and this little's Mom was happy to have her take part. She was ready to dive in as soon as she saw the cake. Her face looked like what many Girl Scout cookie fans look like when they see their first cookie box each year. She was full of smiles the entire session and was such a pleasure to photograph. Happy Birthday Maddie, good luck to all those hard working cookie sellers out there, and happy cookie eating to everyone!  

Interested in a custom cake smash session for your little one? Contact me today for more information! 

Please note: While I really wanted to capture these images, my first consideration was safety and avoiding a choking hazard. Mom ensured me that while her daughter loves playing with her food, she isn't exactly a fan of eating it, which made her perfect for this. Despite Mom's reassurance, I was sure to have both Mom and an assistant standing close by to monitor the session. If you are photographing children of this age, please remember to put safety first. 





[email protected] (Donna Young Newborn Photography) cake smash children portraits studio session Sun, 02 Feb 2020 16:15:00 GMT
Beertography - Featured Fall and Winter Beer Photos In early September I posted my first blog entry on my summer adventures with beer photography and I was thrilled with the how the photos turned out. But I'll admit... as summer drew to a close I was a bit concerned that my beertography opportunities were waning as I started thinking about putting away our camping gear, spending more evenings inside by the fire, and taking a break from our crazy summer schedule. But I'm never happy sitting still for too long and as the nights began to carry a chill and I pulled out the fall decor, I began to realize with autumn upon us and Halloween and Thanksgiving just around the corner, there were tons of opportunities and I was suddenly inspired. 

For the Labor Day weekend we headed out to Collegiate Peaks campground outside Buena Vista. During our stay, my daughter insisted we go explore the little creek by our campsite. Of course I brought a beer and my camera along and snapped a couple shots. But I have to give credit to my daughter for this one. This location was her idea and it was perfect. Photographer in the making? Maybe so! 
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Part of the camping trip I spent testing out my new hammock while some of it was spent exploring some Buena Vista, Leadville, and Fairplay. While in the South Park area of Fairplay I noticed these hops growing along a wall and had to stop for a photo opportunity. 
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A bit later in September I set off on an epic adventure... and the last of my camping excursions for the year. I traveled with a group of friends to spend three days and two nights tackling the infamous Rubicon Trail with my Jeep! This 22 mile trail is where the Jeep Rubicon gets it's name and part of the trail is used as a testing ground by Jeep and many aftermarket Jeep product companies. And while there are lots of trails in California, this one is really a must do for a serious off-road adventurer. Not only are there tough obstacles, but the scenery is beautiful! During the 16 hour drive from Colorado, I stopped at both the Great Salt Lake and the Bonneville Salt Flats for some photo opportunities (and a bit of racing on the salt flats)! 

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Some epic views and gorgeous lily pad ponds were great spots for beer photos while on the Rubicon Trail. 

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And of course there were some obligatory photos with the Jeeps in our group. 
At the end of the trail we celebrated with lunch and amazing views!

When you finish the trail and run into some rangers what do you do? Ask them if you can take beer photos with their vehicle of course!

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When I returned home from California fall was definitely upon us! The sunflowers my daughter and I had grown from seed in our raised planter this year were blooming and ready to be used for some beautiful bouquets. I used this bouquet for a fall photo session with her, and afterward a can of Colette provided the perfect "vase". And of course I had to get creative with some Halloween images. Pulling the wings off my daughter's favorite bat did not go over well, but they got sewn back on and she finally forgave me :) And I tested my skills of pumpkin carving... I've learned my limits because that definitely does not look like the cut out of a beer mug like it was supposed to! 

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Color inspired me for the photo of the Mexican Yeti Stout (which is definitely one of my favorites), during a fall Jeeping trip over Red Cone pass. And of course the Colette gave me the opportunity to show off my fall dining room decor! 

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Fun events like the Great American Beer Festival and a beertography Meetup were opportunities for a few images. 

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And when I had the opportunity to pick up some whiskey barrels that were used to age Great Divide's famous Yeti stout, not only did I get a couple photos, I also made lots of fun Christmas gifts and a couple items for our own home (see one of those below) after breaking them down and getting creative. 

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An early December trip to Philly, Vermont, and New Hampshire resulted in a few photos with iconic locations... Pat's King of Steaks (and a go to for me whenever I'm in the area), the Dartmouth College campus (Animal House!), and one of the many covered bridges in New England. 

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Finally, some cold weather and holiday decor were the inspiration for my final images of the year! 

Thanks to Great Divide for my beer supply as well as lots of fun events! And of course a special thanks to all my models, friends and family who humor me while I take time out of our adventures to snap these images. 

[email protected] (Donna Young Newborn Photography) beer photography landscape photography Sun, 26 Jan 2020 15:12:24 GMT
Engagement Session With Epic Views | Zion National Park | Denver Colorado Portrait Photography I'm so excited to have had the opportunity to capture engagement photos for this amazing couple as my first photo session of the year! Josh and Ally are a one of a kind couple who love travel and adventure. I met them a couple years ago in Moab, Utah while exploring scenic, and sometimes precarious, Jeep trails and we have met up several times for adventures together in Colorado, Utah, and California.

These two are always up for anything and their nomadic lifestyle is a true adventure. Although they call the Denver area their home, they have been traveling the country in their motorhome for more than two years. Living in such a small space for that long is truly a testament to their relationship... I'm not sure many couples could do it. So when I heard that Josh had proposed to Ally I honestly thought, i'ts about time :) 

Their engagement story was no less of an adventure as Josh popped the question in the perfection location. While skipping rocks on the shores of Lake McDonald in Glacier National Park, Josh happened to find the perfect "rock". He had someone there to take photos and a family celebration waiting in the wings unbeknownst to Ally. 

For their engagement photos, it was only fitting to photograph them at another epic location. So while they were vacationing with my family and some other friends in Utah, we set out to Zion National Park for an afternoon of hiking and photos. We captured images at the top of the Canyon Overlook Trail and some scenery along the Virgin River for some spectacular backdrops as well as some more intimate photos of the couple. 

I couldn't be happier for this fun-loving couple and wish them a lifetime of happiness and adventure!




[email protected] (Donna Young Newborn Photography) family photos outdoor portraits Mon, 13 Jan 2020 21:30:00 GMT
2019 Top Ten Photos of the Year Every year I love to post a Top Ten List of my favorite images. I'ts a fun way to reflect back on the year, see how far I've traveled in my photography journey in the last twelve months, and remember some great sessions with my amazing clients. It's always difficult to chose my favorites because I have so many throughout the year, but here goes... 

There's just something about a new big brother and his excitement that you can't help but love. I've worked with this family for many years and I love watching their family grow. This past year I photographed maternity and newborn sessions for them and it was awesome to hear that big brother was saying my name as they pulled up to the studio!


I really enjoy working with seniors and while it's always difficult to narrow down my favorite image, I have a new love for these closely framed shots that really showcase their beauty and personality. See more images from this session, including some perfect for her yearbook, here

This little cutie visited me in the studio for newborn images last year and returned for his cake smash and splash birthday session in June. Mom and Dad chose a Rockies theme and I loved coming up with a custom session to capture this milestone and create another beautiful album for their collection!

I had such a fun time photographing my beautiful friend and fellow photographer this past November. We got together to take each others headshots at Red Rocks Park which provides great backgrounds no matter what time of year. This wild brush that turns yellow in the fall provided a stunning setting for a few shots and this image was among my favorites for this session. I'm excited she will be featuring many of the images for her branding and social media content! 

It's not often that I have the opportunity to photograph twins and this session was especially fun because it was the twins of a good friend. While we had lots of great shots from this session, this aviator themed image is definitely my favorite. Admittedly, it was a bit of work, but it was well worth it to capture this photo for Mom, who is a pilot. We also captured an aviator themed image at their sitter session and while this one is featured on canvas in their home, both will be in the album documenting their first year! 

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Here is the beautiful Mom of those cute kids in photograph ten. This dress was just gorgeous on her and it was difficult to decide between this image and one with her smiling older son that we captured during the session.  

Of course my daughter has to make it into my Top 10 each year! She's cute and I'm biased! This year we did lots of sessions together including a spring session in the studio, a summer Coca Cola themed session, a fall sunflower session, and Christmas images in the studio. We had a blast together during this session, possibly because she got to drink her first Coca Cola and she was full of energy! Hmmm.... I wonder why. I've showcased this image in our home as one of the mounted prints I rotate by season. 

This wonderful family came to me for portraits because they had never had professional photos taken and said it was time! I'm so glad they did I because we had a fantastic session and they now have some beautiful canvases hanging in their home. I loved everything about this image... the background, the foreground, the well coordinated outfits, the adorable kids, the genuine smiles. What's not to love?

Six week olds are a bit more challenging to photograph than newborns at the one or two week mark, but this gorgeous little one made it well worth it. So many beautiful images from her session but this one is just sooo sweet and is definitely being featured prominently in this family's home in both an album and one of the canvases in the nursery!  

Cute, cute, cute is all I can say about this little guy with a little felted teddy, miniature bed and those cute little pants. We got several shots in this set up but this one with his dangling leg is definitely my favorite and my number one photo of this year! It's one of the many images that was included in this family's beautiful newborn album. 

Contact me to book your 2020 newborn, maternity, child, or family session! 



[email protected] (Donna Young Newborn Photography) children family photos high school maternity newborns portraits senior studio session Mon, 30 Dec 2019 20:30:00 GMT
Kelly's Headshot Photos | Red Rocks Park | Morrison Colorado Recently my friend and fellow photographer Kelly and I headed out to Red Rocks Park to swap some headshots. She wanted some fresh images for social media and I needed an image for an upcoming online feature on women in business.

I met Kelly when I hired her to photograph my daughter's birthday party, something I try to do every year so I can enjoy the festivities and still get great photos for an album. I liked her right away and we stayed in touch, meeting up for drinks and dinner and talking for hours. Our headshot session was no different as afterwards we stopped by a neighborhood watering hole for some great food and conversation.

I'll admit, I'm always a bit nervous when I photograph other photographers and their families but Kelly is easy going (just one of the reasons she is such an awesome wedding photographer) and we were soon just hanging out again, chatting and experimenting with our images.

We spent most of our time down by a little bridge that had some beautiful brush... perfect for bringing out the yellow in Kelly's outfit. We chatted and played around with poses a bit longer than planned. Despite this, we still had time for a short walk to a different spot where the red rocks were still visible despite the sinking sun. The rusty colored background was another perfect setting for photos and I'm so glad we didn't skip this stop.

It was fun to do a bit of experimenting with no pressure and we are definitely going to make it a habit!
Thanks Kelly for such a fun "session"! Can't wait for the next one!



[email protected] (Donna Young Newborn Photography) portraits Tue, 17 Dec 2019 21:15:00 GMT
My Girl's Christmas Photos in the Studio I don't think I'll ever top our family Christmas image from last year (although I might try next year) so this holiday season I decided to take photos of just my little one by herself. She was only too happy to pose for me in the studio in front of an awesome new backdrop I recently purchased from Lemon Drop Backdrops, and even provided suggestions for poses! She is growing up to be quite the photographers daughter and cooperative as ever... probably because she knows the faster I get the images I want, the sooner she can go back to playing with her Legos! I love the rustic, yet sophisticated look for her images this year and of course that sweet smiling face. 

Happy Holidays to Everyone! May Your Images be Merry and Bright and Your Christmases Be White! 

[email protected] (Donna Young Newborn Photography) children portraits studio session Mon, 09 Dec 2019 15:58:14 GMT
Jake and Maddie | Twin Sitter Studio Session | Aurora, CO Remember those adorable newborn twins I photographed back in January? Well they were back in the studio at about ten months for a sitter session and they are as cute as ever! Of course we had to recreate the aviator themed image that I took at their newborn session because it is so much fun to see these comparison shots. I was able to find little aviator costumes for bears (shhh... don't tell them they are wearing bear costumes) that had little hats and goggles similar to the ones I made for their newborn session. While Maddie was a little bit defiant at the beginning (I just love that face she gave me!), she soon warmed up! And Jake had plenty of smiles. allowing us to get some great shots in buckets and baskets as well as some of them standing, which they really preferred to sitting. Finally we made sure to get some Christmas themed photos for the holidays! Can't wait to see these two smashing some cake in the studio for their first birthday! 









And I just have to include this beautiful shot of Mom almost a year ago before these littles arrived. 



[email protected] (Donna Young Newborn Photography) children christmas photos portraits studio session Mon, 25 Nov 2019 15:47:31 GMT
Charlotte: 6 Weeks Old | Newborn Photography | Aurora CO Little Charlotte just could not wait to enter this world and blessed her Mom and Dad with her arrival six weeks early! After more than a month of making sure that this little one was ready to venture out, I got to meet her and her family and plan her newborn photo session. Mom and Dad were so excited to document this fleeting time in their lives and we quickly got them all into the studio to capture some beautiful images. Just by chance, her session date fell on her due date... just a little over 6 weeks after she was born. 

Charlotte was a bit particular about the positions she wanted to be in, which is pretty typical of a newborn at six weeks, and while we kept her wrapped and cozy for most of her images featured in pink for Mom's requested girly images, we still had the opportunity to capture some images with a travel theme and a scale photo, at Dad's request, as well as a Christmas image since it is so close to the holidays!

I just love how little Charlotte's images turned out and I can't wait to deliver a beautiful album, canvases, prints and gift items to this wonderful family. It was such a pleasure working with them and I'm looking forward to seeing Charlotte and the rest of the family in the studio for her first birthday cake smash and splash session next year!

Album, Prints, and Canvas ImagesAlbum, Prints, and Canvas Images


[email protected] (Donna Young Newborn Photography) newborns portraits studio session Tue, 19 Nov 2019 17:15:00 GMT
Jayce's Senior Photo Session | Portrait Photographer | Denver, CO Summer is far behind us in Colorado and I'm excited for the holiday season, but I just have to post one more of my senior sessions before time gets away from me and this beautiful girl graduates! I photographed Jayce early in the summer and she was such a pleasure to spend time with. Sweet and softspoken, her beautiful smile made it difficult not to capture stunning images of this young lady during her senior photo session at a family home outside of Denver. I wish her all the best this year and in her endeavors in the future! 


[email protected] (Donna Young Newborn Photography) portraits Wed, 06 Nov 2019 21:40:56 GMT
Becca's Senior Photo Session | Portrait Photography | Aurora, CO It has been a busy year so I'm just now getting around to posting images of this beautiful senior I photographed a couple months ago... just in time for the start of Becca's senior year! She was so photogenic and fun and all of her images came out beautifully, but I'm especially fond of the close-up of her. 

Wishing her the best for an amazing senior year and everything that follows!

Interested in senior photos? Contact me today to discuss your personalized session and available products! 

Interested in senior photos? Contact me today to discuss your personalized session and available products! 


[email protected] (Donna Young Newborn Photography) portraits senior portraits Tue, 15 Oct 2019 14:38:48 GMT
Sunflower Portrait Session | Children's Photographer | Aurora, Colorado Sometimes photographing kids can be a challenge. And sometimes photographing your own child is the biggest challenge of all. This was the case with my most recent session with my daughter... although at 8 minutes long, I can hardly call it a session. Luckily, in the end we got some great shots to add to our family collection of seasonal photos. These images have a treasured spot on an easel in our front entry way and are rotated for display with every season.  

I'm sure many of you have seen photos taken in sunflower fields and I myself have always wanted to do a session like this but found it is way more difficult than you might think. Not only do these amazing flowers have a short bloom time, the greatest problem is finding a field that allows the public (and photographers) to wander through these rows of sunlight on a stem. Most of these fields are private property and trespassing is strictly enforced (even though you may not see no trespassing signs). It's understandable because those gorgeous sunflowers are very fragile and damaging them is financially detrimental to these hard working farmers. With that in mind, this year my daughter and I decided to grow our own little sunflower field. While not a large field of flowers, we planted enough seeds in our raised garden early this year to yield some beautiful bouquets. 

With the short bloom time and our crazy schedules I had very little time for a sunflower session with her. So late one afternoon I borrowed a dress from my studio that I use for princess sessions, cut some flowers for a bouquet and headed out to a small park about a mile from our house. With storm clouds rolling in (as well as a Girl Scout meeting to get to), we had a short opportunity to grab some photos. While my daughter is very used to being behind the camera, she is not always the most cooperative model despite the finished images everyone sees... and this session was a reminder. The pending storm made for hurried conditions. The wind forced us to do a quick hairstyle change. The sunlight was too bright for her despite the cloudy conditions. There were bugs, "pokey" grasses, a small snake (harmless and thankfully unnoticed by her), and of course "prickly" sunflower stems she was determined not to touch. Needless to say, things did not start well but I was determined and 8 minutes ended up being all I needed to grab a few shots I think are keepers. If you think your little one(s) are difficult to photograph, you are not alone. Just know it is worth the effort (and sometimes pain) to have photos of them that will last a lifetime.   

Interest in capturing images of your little one? Contact me today to discuss a personalized session! 

[email protected] (Donna Young Newborn Photography) children fall photos portraits Mon, 30 Sep 2019 14:35:28 GMT
Back to School Photos | Children's Photographer | Parker Colorado I can't believe how this summer just flew by this year but when one of my repeat clients contacted me for annual back to school photos for her kids it was a wake up call that fall, my favorite season for photography, was upon us. 

This is the fourth year I have photographed these awesome kids and it is so great to catch up with them and watch them grow up! Every year I make sure to change things up a big with the location and props to ensure they have unique photos. This year I used a simple set up but wanted the personalization of them writing their own names on a chalkboard I picked up. A few apples and a cool stool I had in the studio finished out the prop selection and we headed to 17 Mile House Farm Park for a quick session just after school started. While we took themed back to school photos we also captured some classic portraits in the fields. 

Best wishes to these kiddos for a fun and productive school year! 





[email protected] (Donna Young Newborn Photography) children fall photos portraits Tue, 24 Sep 2019 14:30:00 GMT
Beertography - My Summer Adventures with Beer and Photography Screenshot

Occasionally you come across an opportunity that was made for you and that's what happened to me early this summer. I was talking with a friend and learned she is an Ambassador for Great Divide Brewing. After chatting about it for a while I knew it was something I wanted to do. Why? It incorporated three things that I love... adventure, photography, and great beer!

It's goes without saying that I'm passionate about photography. I love creating images that are unique and memorable for my clients and I get so much satisfaction knowing their photos are hanging in their home where they can enjoy them everyday. I avidly take photos of my own daughter and I love capturing landscape and nature photos, some of which are featured in galleries. But this new venture allowed me the opportunity to do some creative and fun work on my own time.

Those who know me know that I am frequently off on an adventure, whether it's exploring a new location or taking part in some adrenaline filled experience... I rock climb, hike, camp and have been know to fish (although I don't catch too much). I like getting off the beaten path and I drive a modified Jeep that allows me to travel to locations most can't... where I find old mines, beautiful lakes and pristine waterfalls. I like watersports... tubing, white water rafting, and waterskiing.  And I'm a bit of an adrenaline junkie who has been skydiving, bungee jumping, spelunking, and rappeling. 

As for beer I'll admit that before I moved to Colorado I was more of a wine fan. We lived in Virginia's Loudoun County wine country where our home was within 5 miles of 5 wineries. But after moving to the land of amazing craft beer, things can change quickly. I started dabbling in wheat beers, found I love porters, and even like a nice low key sour or a citrus-y IPA. 

Now Great Divide Ambassadors have a very simple task... take great photos of their beer incorporated with journeys and adventures. So obviously this is is a perfect fit for me. Below are some of the images I captured for Great Divide on my summer adventures (June, July, and August). Stay tuned to see what photo opportunities the colder months afford. 

June 2019 - 1June 2019 - 1 June 2019 - 2June 2019 - 2

When I heard Medano Creek at Great Sand Dunes National Monument was running at epic levels I had to take my husband and our daughter down for some beach time, Colorado style. We took a picnic and some beach chairs, a tube for her to cruise down the river, and of course my camera. What's more refreshing than some snow melt and a couple cold brews on a hot day? 

June 2019 - 3June 2019 - 3

The view of the Collegiate Peaks from Buena Vista is stunning and the perfect spot to relax with a brew... and take a photo of course.

July 2019 - 8July 2019 - 8 July 2019 - 7July 2019 - 7

While many times I have a vision for the images I'm planning on taking, occasionally an opportunity just presents itself. While vacationing in Buena Vista I spotted these tractors and knew I had to photograph Great Divide's Colette (a saison that pays homage to Belgian farm workers) with it's depiction of a female farmhand holding a pitchfork on the can.  And while grabbing some pizza with family at High Mountain Pies in Leadville, I noticed Colette was on the menu, so I grabbed one for this shot with their signature pizza... the Crocodile. 

June 2019 - 4June 2019 - 4

Beer and camping go hand in hand and, so....

July 2019 - 4July 2019 - 4

I've been know to get my Jeep up on three wheels more frequently than I would like... which is why I named it "Tipsy". Of course now the name can definitely hold a double meaning, although never while driving... I enjoyed this beer when we got home from our Jeep outing.

I had an the idea for this shot from the very beginning and just had to create the opportunity to get up on three wheels while I had the time for a photograph. Normally when I'm on three wheels it's WAY more precarious and I want to remedy the situation as quickly as possible. LOL.

And can I just say how much I love the can on the Heyday... a girl in a Jeep with her hair blowing in the wind. Thank you Great Divide! I feel like it was made for me... although it should have been a four door ;)

July 2019 - 2July 2019 - 2 July 2019 - 6July 2019 - 6 July 2019 - 5July 2019 - 5
Great Divide's Lager came out just before the 4th of July and this can was perfect for some shots with red, white, and blue! 

June 2019 - 6June 2019 - 6

While rafting the Arkansas this year the water was at epic levels. Unfortunately this made it difficult to beach at our take-out, despite our guide's best efforts. It was a valiant try that led to her swimming before we could land at a take-out a bit further down river. As some of you may know when a guide swims they buy the beer for all the other guides that night, so I thought it was only fitting to help her out with the beer supply.

June 2019 - 7June 2019 - 7

It takes a strong beer to hold up a falling mine so I think Great Divide's 25th Anniversary Big Yeti was the perfect beer for this shot at 13.5% ABV. Actually the Allie Belle Mine has been falling for many years and every year I'm shocked to see that it is still standing. If you are ever near St Elmo, Colorado you can drive right past this mine on the way to the old Hancock town site. This shot was more difficult than I imagined... getting the angle right was tough and I ended up laying in a big puddle of mud to do it... not the first time I've ever done that for a photo though.

July 2019 - 5July 2019 - 5 July 2019 - 6July 2019 - 6

If you live in Colorado you may have heard of Rails and Ales... many of the scenic railways have an annual journey that couples gorgeous views with great local beers. 

June 2019 - 5June 2019 - 5

This growler of Great Divide's Maple Pecan Yeti was perfect for an afternoon by the Arkansas River. This is probably one of my favorite beers to date... unfortunately it was brewed in limited distribution for Great Divide's 25th Anniversary Party. Please bring this one back soon!!! 

June 2019 - 10June 2019 - 10 June 2019 - 9June 2019 - 9 June 2019 - 12June 2019 - 12 June 2019 - 8June 2019 - 8

Speaking of the 25th anniversary party, I had the pleasure of helping out at this event and had such a great time! Checking guests in and patrolling for empty beer cans and cups might not sound exciting, but I loved making the rounds and chatting with all the guests. And of course, I got to drink some great beer while doing so! 

July 2019 - 1July 2019 - 1 July 20119 - 10 (Chuggin' Chipmnunk)July 20119 - 10 (Chuggin' Chipmnunk)

Apparently even chipmunks love a cold Colette! LOL

Actually this is another concept shot I had in mind from the beginning. Every year while Jeeping out in the Collegiate Peaks area we stop at the chipmunk pile in the "ghost" town of St Elmo. Here you can buy a bag of sunflower seeds from the general store and feed these cute little critters. My daughter loves it and it has become an annual tradition. So this year I took a can of Colette and enticed a few to pose. I mean, who doesn't love a Chuggin' Chipmunk?  

July 2019 - 8 (Yeti Hunting)July 2019 - 8 (Yeti Hunting) July 2019 - 9 (A Perfect Fit)July 2019 - 9 (A Perfect Fit)

The Yeti hunting shot was another concept I had and I just needed to find the right location, while the shot on the left was spur of the moment while on a hiking trail near Steamboat Springs, Co. 

August  2019 - 5August 2019 - 5   July 2019 - 7July 2019 - 7 Sometimes something as simple as can color inspires me. As much as I'm out on hiking trails, it was difficult not to photograph the Titan more... I just love how it looks with lots of greenery around it. And Great Divide's Lager was a perfect match for this yummy treat... 

August 2019 - 1 (Not Like the Other)August 2019 - 1 (Not Like the Other)

One of these things is not like the others... While hiking with friends who are expert mushroom hunters (don't eat wild mushrooms unless you know exactly what you are doing!) I got this idea. We brought the mushrooms back to camp and before cooking them up for dinner, I set them up in a line with a Big Yeti and took this shot.

Sometimes when I know a hike is going to be difficult or I just want to pack light, I only take one beer to photograph. And because I really love photographing a beer that "fits" in the surroundings I'm sometimes kicking my self when an opportunity for a photograph happens and I feel a different beer would have been a better choice. Not with this photo! While hiking in Aspen we discovered some Ice Caves we didn't know would be in our travels. So photographing the Hazy with "Fresh, COLD, Friends" was perfect sandwiched between two pieces of ice that were still melting in this cave in mid-August! You have to love the diversity of Colorado's nature! 

  August 2019 - 6August 2019 - 6

While on a trip to Glenwood Springs, my friend John took us out fly fishing. I didn't know if we would catch anything but I had a back-up plan with a net and some empty cans I had been saving. John actually caught one while I got one on the line but lost it before bringing it to shore. Despite that, it was an awesome afternoon on the river! 

I took a photo of Lizard Lake years ago to add to my landscape photography collection and on a trip back to the location, just outside Marble, I decided to add beer. See the beerless image, entitled "Lazy Lizard" on my  landscape photography page (image 18)! 

It's not always possible to photograph beer with people, but when I'm traveling with friends I always take advantage of it. It's easy when I bribe them with free beer :) 

Of course sometimes I ask random strangers to be beer models. You can't be shy about it and luckily I've never been turned down!  

August 2019 - 2August 2019 - 2

Waterfalls are definitely plentiful here in Colorado and make it into my images frequently. The image on the left is Adrenaline Falls just outside of Durango and the image on the right is Devils Punchbowl located just outside Aspen. 

Katie's 9th Birthday PartyKatie's 9th Birthday Party

Katie's 9th Birthday PartyKatie's 9th Birthday Party Katie's 9th Birthday PartyKatie's 9th Birthday Party

Katie's 9th Birthday PartyKatie's 9th Birthday Party Katie's 9th Birthday PartyKatie's 9th Birthday Party

While not exactly an adventure, I couldn't leave out images from our daughter's end of summer birthday bash. We had a variety of Great Divide beer for adults at the party and had fun creating these shots.
(Photo credit - Kelly Vann Calaway Photography). 

So after all the adventures and all the beer this summer, what was my favorite?

For beer?

I'd have to say the Roadie, Grapefruit Radler... an easy drinking summer beer with a little tartness and the Maple Pecan Yeti, an imperial stout which was available in limited quantities for Great Divide's 25th Anniversary party. 

For adventure?

Definitely the trip to Great Sand Dunes with our daughter. It was such a unique and amazing experience to be there with Medano Creek was running at full flow. It's an amazing ecosystem that is absolutely one of a kind and should be experienced at least once. And it was so fun to watch our daughter have such a blast tubing in the creek! When it comes down to it, that's the ultimate adventure! 


Thanks for stopping by the blog. May your beer be cold and your adventures be epic! And don't forget to revisit the blog to see my my fall beer adventures later this year! 

Special thanks to all my beer holders... Ainslee, Jen, Jenny, John, Julia, Kayla, Kim, Laurel, Mark, Tera, Tiffany, and of course all the Great Divide 25th Anniversary Party guests! 

And of course, thank you Great Divide for this fun opportunity and lots of great beer! 

[email protected] (Donna Young Newborn Photography) beer photography landscape photography Mon, 16 Sep 2019 15:47:34 GMT
Ansel: 18 Days Old | Newborn Photography | Denver Colorado I recently photographed this sweet little one a couple weeks after he was born. His Mom and Dad contacted me after being referred by a friend who had their newborn photos taken by me last year. Referrals are such a huge compliment and I appreciate them so much! When I found out Dad is a fellow photographer, I was even more honored to be chosen to capture this special time for this family.

With a name befitting of a photographer's son, Ansel was perfect for his session even when he decided he'd had enough sleep and was going to check out the studio. Of course we took advantage of this for a wide awake shot. We captured so many great images in this session it's difficult for me to chose a favorite! I just love him posed on the little bed, holding a felted teddy, with his head perched on his hands, swaddled up nice and cozy on a comfy gray blanket, and of course those shots with Mom! 

Feel free to congratulate Mom and Dad and let them know which one is your favorite image in the comment section below! 

Interested in a personalized newborn session? It's never to early to start planning! Contact me today to discuss how we can capture beautiful images of your little one and how to best to display them in your home! 

Contact me today to schedule a complimentary, no obligation consultation for a newborn session.  

Felted Teddy - Enchanted Baybee Designs

Miniature Metal Bed - Honey and Me


[email protected] (Donna Young Newborn Photography) children newborns portraits studio session Thu, 05 Sep 2019 21:16:45 GMT
Summer Family Photo Session | 17 Mile House Farm Park| Parker, CO Early this year I helped my daughter's school set up their first ever silent auction, with the proceeds being used to create an outdoor learning garden. In addition to coordinating the donations, I also donated a family photo session with a canvas. When the winning family contacted me I was thrilled to help them capture some beautiful images for their home, as they had never had professional portraits taken and decided it was time! We scheduled a session at 17 Mile House Farm Park for a date in July and after delaying a day due to what seemed like endless downpours we braved the threat of another rain storm and an unusual amount of bugs from the wet weather to capture some beautiful images for the family home, including some with Dad's classic Corvette! I'm thrilled with the way the images turned out and so happy to have created a beautiful collage of five canvases to hang in their home!

Contact me today to schedule a complimentary consultation to discuss how we can capture your familiy's memories!  


[email protected] (Donna Young Newborn Photography) family photos outdoor portraits portraits Tue, 27 Aug 2019 17:20:38 GMT
Summer Coca Cola Portrait Session | 17 Mile House Farm Park | Aurora CO Photographer I have wanted to do a Coca Cola-themed photo session with my daughter, Katie, for a couple of years now and this summer I finally made it happen. I got some great ideas from Pinterest and found her an outfit, kid-sized Aviator sun glasses, and a cute retro style bandanna headband on Amazon. Then I picked up some throw back Coke bottles at the grocery store and bought an old plastic Coke crate. On photo day I headed out late in the afternoon to 17 Mile House Farm Park with a reluctant Katie in tow. Apparently she is getting to the age where she gets embarrassed and she was NOT a fan of this outfit. As you can see, that didn't deter me one bit! LOL

While Katie is always pretty good during her photo sessions it was apparent she did not want this one to end, despite her initial reluctance. I'm pretty sure it's because this was her first taste of Coke and obviously she liked it! She kept picking out additional spots to take photos and tried out different poses while sipping her soda and chewing on her straw (Do all kids do this? LOL). We had a super fun time together and she must have had a bit of energy from the soda because she wanted me to take pictures while she was running. Of course I was happy to oblige. 

This location turned out to be the perfect setting with an old white house with a porch and a path down to the treeline with fields along the way. With the barn and tractor equipment, some of the photos took on more of a farm feel than a Coca Cola but I love how they all turned out! 

Interested in themed portraits? Contact me today to discuss a customized session! 


Which image is your favorite? Let me know in the comment section below! 

Contact me today to discuss a customized session for your little one or family! 

[email protected] (Donna Young Newborn Photography) children outdoor photos portraits themed-photo-session Mon, 19 Aug 2019 16:15:00 GMT
Juliana's High School Senior | Portrait Session | Aurora, CO Portrait Photographer I love photographing high-school seniors and this gorgeous gal was no exception. While this photo session took place within a very small area at a local home, there were plenty of locations to capture a variety of images and showcase her beautiful smile. I'm loving the close-up shot of her that I captured!  

Contact me today to schedule a no obligation consultation to discuss your senior portrait session! 

Contact me today to schedule a no obligation consultation to discuss your senior portrait session! 

[email protected] (Donna Young Newborn Photography) high school outdoor photos portraits senior Thu, 08 Aug 2019 22:00:00 GMT
Aiden's High School Senior Portrait Session | Aurora, CO Portrait Photographer Earlier this year I captured some senior portraits for this handsome young man as he prepares for his final year in high-school. He was laid back and easy to work with and I especially love how he could switch between a terrific smile and a serious pose in a second! Seniors are always so much fun to work with and he was no exception. May his senior year be full of fun, memories, and of course, great grades.  

Contact me today for more information on senior portrait sessions. 

[email protected] (Donna Young Newborn Photography) portraits Tue, 30 Jul 2019 20:15:00 GMT
Wyatt: 9 Days Old | Aurora Colorado Newborn Photography I recently had the opportunity to photographed my second newborn for this beautiful family. At nine days old, little baby Wyatt was such a pleasure to work worth and his big brother Liam.... well just look at that sweet face! He is just the cutest and I love that he runs up to my door saying my name! 

This time around, the family asked for something a little rustic and mentioned a camping theme. So when Mom told me she had crocheted a buffalo plaid blanket for their new little one I got a vision of just what to do. I had the perfect little buffalo plaid romper made for the session and set up a little camper scene. And as I normally do, I planned some neutral toned set-ups with a classic, but rustic look. We captured some family images and of course sibling shots during the session as well as some beautiful shots with Mom. 

Finally, I knew I had to put Wyatt in this set-up not only because it's one of my favorites, but also because big brother was photographed in the same little chair. See his photo here

I can't wait to watch both Wyatt and Liam grow and I'm already excited about a cake smash session for Wyatt when he turns one... maybe a camping theme??? Stay tuned! 

Interested in a newborn session for your little one? Contact me today! 

[email protected] (Donna Young Newborn Photography) children family photos newborns portraits studio session Tue, 16 Jul 2019 22:00:00 GMT
Family Portrait Session | Red Rocks Park | Denver, Colorado Just west of Denver, the remnants of sedimentary layers uplifted and subsequently exposed to the elements make an amazing backdrop for photographs. So when this family told me they wanted to have red rocks featured in the background of their portraits I was thrilled to accommodate them. While they mentioned Ken-Caryl as a potential location, the red rocks of the Fountain Formation that flank the Rockies are prominent from Roxborough Park, through Ken-Caryl and South Valley Park, to Red Rocks Amphitheatre. With this in mind, I scouted out both Red Rocks and Ken-Caryl searching for the perfect location for them and ultimately we decided Red Rocks was best spot because it has so many beautiful backgrounds within a short walk of each other. I love the way their photos turned out and I'm thrilled the image of their beautiful family of four will be featured on a canvas in their home while others will be displayed as mounted prints! 

Interested in a family session in the perfect setting? Contact me today to discuss family portrait location options! 

[email protected] (Donna Young Newborn Photography) children family photos portraits Tue, 09 Jul 2019 17:21:01 GMT
Callahan's First Birthday Cake Smash Session | Aurora, CO | Children's Photography Oh how I love a cake smash session! I love offering parents a completely custom set-up because it not only ensures families receive unique images, but it allows me to get creative! I love essentially have three sessions in one as I take before portraits, cake smash photos, and bathtub clean up images, I love hearing Mom's and Dad's laugh as their little one plays in the bath or tentatively touches the icing on the cake (or completely annihilates it), I love seeing those little ones I photographed as newborns become little barrels of inquisitive fun! I love capturing these children with genuine expressions, excited, and sometimes attitude.

So when Joel and Alexis contacted me this year for their son Callahan's first birthday photos I was thrilled but I must say, a bit surprised. I photographed their little one as a newborn, but I knew they had moved out of state on a big adventure. Luckily, they were coming back to town to visit family and have a birthday party for little Callahan and they wanted to get some cake smash photos during their trip. So I got to work creating a Colorado Rockies baseball theme for them as they said it was one of the things they were still passionate about after moving out of state and wanted that to be the birthday theme. I had such a great time catching up with them and capturing this little cutie and his amazing smile!

Go Callahan and Go Rockies! 

Interested in a smash and splash session for your little one's birthday? Contact me today for details! 

[email protected] (Donna Young Newborn Photography) children portraits studio session Wed, 26 Jun 2019 14:30:00 GMT
Newborn Registry Now Available The Gift of Photography

These days you can create gift registries for your new little one from a multitude of websites and stores, so why should newborn photography be any different? The gift of portraits is one that expectant parents will cherish long after their bundle of joy has outgrown yet another cute outfit or toy! This is why I now offer a photography registry service for my clients! Portraits, whether they are of your newborn, yourself, or your family are sure to be cherished forever and I am happy to provide not only beautiful images, but high-quality heirloom artwork such as wall art, albums and prints that can be passed down throughout the generations. And now friends and family can contribute! 

How It Works:

The gift registry is a complimentary service offered to all newborn clients (registries for other types of sessions are available upon request). Each client has their own unique registry page with personalized URL that allows friends and family to purchase gift certificates in various denominations. Loved ones can chose to have the gift certificate sent to them so they can hand deliver at the shower, hospital, or another convenient time or have the gift certificate sent directly to the recipient. In addition, I will provide beautiful mini baby registry cards to be included in shower invitations or to hand out as needed.

Purchasing a gift certificate can be done online and only takes a few minutes. For those clients scheduling multiple session for baby's first year, the registry can be kept active so that family and friends can contribute for your little ones first birthday.

Client Steps:

Simply book your session by paying your retainer fee and let me know that you would like a registry. Then send one of your favorite photos via email (or I can chose one if you have had a previous session with me) and I will create your personalized registry.

If you are having a shower I will send you (or your shower hostess) registry cards to send out with your shower invitations. I'll also email you with a link to your registry so that you may share the information with friends and family. 

After your session, bring the gift certificates to your reveal and ordering appointment and apply them to your product purchase. Unused gift certificate amounts can be used for future sessions. 

Gift Giver Steps: 

Visit the online gift registry and chose the dollar amount you would like to gift. Certificates are available in denominations of $25, $50, $75, $100, $200, $300, $400, and $500. Then chose whether you would like to have the gift certificate sent to the recipient or sent directly to you so that you may personally deliver it at the shower, hospital, etc. Then click purchase! It's that simple. Payments are made via Paypal, however if you don't have an account, just click on Pay by Credit Card and you can make a payment as a guest. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact me! Remember gift certificates also make wonderful first birthday gifts for those fun smash and splash sessions!

View a sample registry page that will be personalized for each client.  


[email protected] (Donna Young Newborn Photography) children newborns portraits studio session Mon, 17 Jun 2019 17:37:47 GMT
Spring Maternity Session I'm so excited to post these images I recently capture of one of my favorite clients as she returned to me for her second maternity session. Over the years we have done family photos, maternity photos, newborn photos and first birthday cake smash and splash photos. So when she contacted me to let me know she was expecting her second, I was thrilled to be able to once again capture this time in their lives and to catch up with their family... especially their adorable little one who is very excited to be a big brother.

Accompanied by her husband and little one, we headed out to 17 Mile House Farm Park for some Spring photos. We captured some casual family shots as well as some gorgeous images of Mom in this beautiful maternity gown I have from Silk Fairies. And of course I had to give big brother his moment in the spotlight to show off his cute little smile! Just look how happy he is with Mom! Can I just say... Heart! Melting! 

Contact me today for more information about newborn, maternity, and family photography sessions and please feel free to leave a comment below and congratulate this adorable family! 

[email protected] (Donna Young Newborn Photography) fall photos maternity portraits Tue, 11 Jun 2019 17:44:15 GMT
Girl Scouts Bridge Ceremony Girl Scouts is an opportunity for girls to explore, discover, and work together! From adventuring outdoors or experimenting with science to participating in public service projects or developing new skills, Girl Scouts is a fun and rewarding experience for young girls. 

As these girls grow and accomplish their goals, they rise through the ranks to the next level... Daisy to Brownie, Brownie to Junior, Junior to Cadette, Cadette to Senior, and Senior to Ambassador. Part of Girl Scout tradition is holding a "bridging" ceremony for troops as they transition to the next level as a way for troops to celebrate and honor their accomplishments. One of the ceremonial elements for this troop, which my daughter is a part of, is a ceremonial walk across a bridge wearing their current uniform and then receiving their new uniform. This year, as they bridged from Brownie to Junior, our girls and our troop leaders wanted to capture these memories and I was happy to help. Congratulations Troop 67285 on becoming Junior Girl Scouts and thank you to our amazing troop leaders and assistants for everything they do! 









[email protected] (Donna Young Newborn Photography) children event photography portraits Thu, 06 Jun 2019 14:58:34 GMT
Kaya's Spring Senior Session | Portrait Photography | Aurora, Colorado I met up with this gorgeous young lady recently to capture some photos during a session with five incredible seniors! With lots of great areas for portraits within a stones throw, I was able to capture a variety of great shots of all of them in about two hours.  It was a bit of a cloudy, dreary day but they were full of energy and so fun to work with. As you can see, I had lots of favorite images of this beautiful gal!

Subscribe to the blog to view upcoming posts of all the seniors from this session! 

Contact me to discuss a fun senior session to capture your personality as you head into your senior year! 

High School Senior Portrait Photography - Denver Colorado High School Senior Portrait Photography - Denver Colorado High School Senior Portrait Photography - Denver Colorado

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Contact me today to book your senior portrait session! 


[email protected] (Donna Young Newborn Photography) high school portraits senior Mon, 20 May 2019 19:23:14 GMT
Spring Portrait Studio Session One of the great things about having a studio in my home, in addition to being able to photograph children and newborns for clients, is that I can have impromptu sessions for my own daughter whenever I want! I love to have at least three "sessions" for her each year. Spring, Fall, Christmas, and sometimes Summer. While some are outside, when the weather isn't cooperating or I'm just pressed for time to go on-location, I head down to the studio to capture some quick photos. For this session I curled her hair and had her throw on a dress from her closet, grabbed some faux tulips (don't they look real!?) from my assortment of flowers, and hung a flokati rug that I normally use for newborns on my backdrop stand and away we went! 

She had a great time trying out different poses and even threw on one of the headbands I have for my princess sessions. I can't believe how fast she is growing up and I'm so glad to capture her becoming a big girl!  

Leave a comment below and let me know which photo is your favorite! 

Interested in a portrait session for your little one? Contact me today for more information! 



[email protected] (Donna Young Newborn Photography) children portraits spring photos studio session Thu, 09 May 2019 13:33:31 GMT
One Year Old Cake Smash and Bathtub Cleanup Session I just had to share highlights of this cake smash / bathtub clean up session for this little guy who I have been photographing since before he was born. Mom and Dad contacted me for maternity images and decided at his newborn session to take advantage of my first year package. I'm so glad they did because it was a pleasure to watch him grow throughout the year, culminating with celebrating his birthday with a huge funfetti cupcake topped with whip cream and blueberries. As always, we captured some before images (make sure to scroll to the bottom to see how he changed since birth) as well as a shot with his cake, making a mess, and getting cleaned up. 

Interested in a session or multiple sessions to document your little one growing up? Contact me today for information on a custom package! 

Here is this handsome guy at about a week, 6 months, and one year. Oh how time flies and these little ones change! 


Contact me today to schedule your session! 


[email protected] (Donna Young Newborn Photography) children newborns portraits Tue, 23 Apr 2019 18:31:32 GMT
Spring Maternity Session | City Park, Denver CO Last week I got to spend some time with several expectant Moms and a few other photographers at a photo shoot in Denver's City Park. We were hoping to time this event with the emergence of the cherry blossoms but mother nature had a different plan with a later than expected bloom time. Had this been a regular session I would have definitely presented a rescheduling option, but with the amount of photographers and models involved it just wasn't possible. So we took advantage of some evergreens and city backdrops to showcase these Moms. It was a bit of a whirlwind shoot as we frequently changed locations, models, and dresses but it was awesome to work with these ladies to capture some beautiful images. I loved the light of the setting sun combined with the skyline of the city. Here is some of my favorite images from one gorgeous Mom! 

Contact me today to discuss your customized maternity session! 

Denver Maternity Image Close UpDenver Maternity Image Close Up Denver Pregnancy Photo SkylineDenver Pregnancy Photo Skyline

Denver Sunset Maternity PhotoDenver Sunset Maternity Photo Denver Maternity Image White GownDenver Maternity Image White Gown Denver Maternity Photo SunsetDenver Maternity Photo Sunsetdenver, aurora, colorado, maternity, expecting, pregnancy,

Denver Maternity Photo - Sitting DownDenver Maternity Photo - Sitting Down Denver Maternity Photo - City ParkDenver Maternity Photo - City Park

[email protected] (Donna Young Newborn Photography) maternity photos portraits spring Thu, 11 Apr 2019 16:57:18 GMT
Twin Newborn Session - Jake and Maddie I can't tell you how excited I was when a friend of mine told me she was having a baby! Then she told me she was having twins! Then she told me that she was having a boy and a girl! So I not so patiently waited for these two to arrive as I started planning their session. I had big plans in store for them, wanting to make a few custom props to make their session extra special. Since Mom is a pilot I knew I wanted to showcase these little ones in a classic aviator theme and Mom happily agreed. I got to work making the little hats and goggles and ordered a map backdrop. Then I scoured Etsy for the perfect matching outfits and turned one of my newborn beds into a bunk bed for a couple different shots I planned. I love how these turned out and how their little personalities shine through. Congratulations Mom and Dad on your two beautiful little ones!!!

Newborn Twins Posed in Aviator ThemeNewborn Twins Posed in Aviator Theme

Newborn Baby Girl Posed with HeartNewborn Baby Girl Posed with Heart Newborn Twins Posed on Miniature BunkbedsNewborn Twins Posed on Miniature Bunkbeds Newborn Baby Boy in Sleeper Cap Posed with HeartNewborn Baby Boy in Sleeper Cap Posed with Heart

Newborn Boy and Girl TwinsNewborn Boy and Girl Twins
Newborn Baby Girl in PinkNewborn Baby Girl in Pink

Newborn Baby Girl Smiling in PinkNewborn Baby Girl Smiling in Pink Newborn Baby Girl Wrapped with Pink HeadbandNewborn Baby Girl Wrapped with Pink Headband

Newborn Baby Girl with Pink BlanketNewborn Baby Girl with Pink Blanket

Newborn Twins Wrapped in CreamNewborn Twins Wrapped in Cream

Newborn Baby Boy Posed in Miniature ChairNewborn Baby Boy Posed in Miniature Chair Newborn Baby Boy in Brown Hat Posed on ChairNewborn Baby Boy in Brown Hat Posed on Chair

Newborn Baby Boy Wrapped in GreenNewborn Baby Boy Wrapped in Green

Newborn Baby Boy in Cream Romper and HatNewborn Baby Boy in Cream Romper and Hat Wrapped Newborn Baby Boy SmilingWrapped Newborn Baby Boy Smiling

Newborn Twins with ParentsNewborn Twins with Parents

Which image is your favorite? Comment below and let me know!

Click here to see more newborn images! 


[email protected] (Donna Young Newborn Photography) newborns portraits studio session twins Sun, 17 Mar 2019 01:28:44 GMT
Six Month Sitter Session in the Studio Sitter sessions are such a fun way to document your little one as they are smiling, laughing, and sitting up! During this session I used some of my newborn props which worked great to show how much this tiny tot has grown. This cute guy bounced back and forth between big smiles and serious looks and we could definitely see his personality shining through. 

Contact me today to for more information about sitter sessions for your little one! 



[email protected] (Donna Young Newborn Photography) children portraits studio session Thu, 28 Feb 2019 19:38:49 GMT
Inside The Studio Welcome to the Studio!

I'm so happy you clicked to get a glimpse of where the magic happens!

CONTACT ME to schedule your in-person tour of the studio! 

Donna Young Photography studio welcome sign.

 I have had a dedicated studio for two years and I love it! It is ideal for client consultations, reveal/ordering appointments, and of course photo sessions! I typically use the studio for all my newborn, sitter, and first birthday smash and splash sessions. This allows me to take advantage of state of the art lighting, newborn posers, props and of course all those adorable hats, wraps, and headbands!  

Comfortable couch for clients to relax. Sitting area includes a microwave, refrigerator, and coffee maker for clients.

The sitting area of the studio is where I hold my consultations as well as reveal and ordering appointments. Here clients can relax with refreshments while we plan a customized session, view their images, and discuss which heirloom products are ideal for their home and family. For client convenience there is a refrigerator, microwave and coffee maker... and of course, a comfortable couch. More than one new Mom and Dad has caught a few zzz's here while I photograph their newborn. The studio is also equipped with a full bathroom that is not only convenient for clients, but is an ideal place for filing up those miniature bathtubs for smash and splash sessions!

Client consultation, viewing, ordering and sitting area with heirloom products such as canvas & wood wall art, albums and specialty items on display.

Studio sitting area. Full bathroom in studio for client convenience.  
During newborn sessions I can quickly access outfits, headbands, hats, props and backdrops.

Newborn rompers for boys and girls photo sessions.

Selection of hats for newborn baby boys and girls. Blankets, furs, and quilts for newborn photography sessions.

Pink wraps and headbands for newborn baby girl photo sessions. Large selection of wraps for newborn boys and girls. Pretty purple wraps and headbands for newborns

Large selection of props and backgrounds for newborn, child, sitter, and cake smash photo sessions. Flokatis and fur for newborn posing Large selection of sake Stands for first birthday smash and splash photography sessions.

Three different areas are available for capturing images. One is a dedicated area for posing newborns, the second is a large area ideal for cake smash sessions, newborn prop shots and family images with newborns and the third is a flexible space I use when I want to have a quick transition between multiple set-ups.

  Posing are for newborn photos complete with professional lighting.

Large Posing Area for Family Photos with Newborns, Cake Smash Sessions and Prop Shots Third area for specialized photography sessions and themes

 Want to learn more about the studio, custom sessions, and heirloom products I offer?
Contact me today to set up a convenient time to chat! 

Let me know what you think about the studio! Leave a comment below!!!



[email protected] (Donna Young Newborn Photography) children newborns studio session Mon, 14 Jan 2019 13:51:12 GMT
Reflecting on 2018 and the Top Ten Photos of the Year It's that time again! Time to reflect on the past year and plan for an amazing new one. As I think about my photography journey in 2018, there have been so many wonderful changes. I began offering a more full-service experience for my clients with the inclusion of amazing heirloom products, assistance in choosing the perfect images for their home, and professional installation services. I made many upgrades to the studio (with more to come this year), making it more comfortable and efficient. I participated in a trade show as well as some great training workshops both in person and on-line as I continuously seek to improve my photography skills. Finally, I have had the pleasure of working with so many wonderful clients that truly value the importance of not only documenting moments in their life, but showcasing them in their homes for friends and family to enjoy.  

As I reflect on 2018, I have also chosen a few of my favorite images from this past year because... who doesn't love a top ten list! 

I hope you all had a wonderful year and I wish you all the best in 2019. Let's capture some memories!


What an adorable kiddo! He looks so grown up sporting those glasses. Of course they were really only on his face for about two seconds. Fortunately that is just enough time to capture a cute photo like this. One reason I love this photo is because it was taken in one of the same set-ups I used to photographed him as a newborn and I love comparing the difference of a year. See his newborn photo in the same chair here!


While I had lots of favorite images from this family session, I love this one of Mom and Dad! So often we are focused on our children but parents need some time in the spotlight too. I love the depth of this one and how their happiness shines through! 


This is one of my favorite newborn wrapping methods, the potato sack, and babies love it. I love how versatile it is as you can move little ones to a variety of different set-ups (a bucket, a basket, a bed) while they sleep peacefully. I chose a rustic metal bucket for this sweet guy since Mom and Dad have grey tones in their home. You can see more from his session here. And oh those dimples!!! 


I love how this sheer dress and the beautiful light passing through it shows off this beautiful Mom's bump while being very classic and tasteful. 



Of course our own family Christmas card had to make the list. I love coming up with a holiday card every year since it gives me the freedom to be creative and experimental. See how I created it in this blog post and stay tuned for next year's creation (I already have a couple of ideas)! 


Just in time for Christmas, this gorgeous mom-to-be visited the studio for some images to document her twin bump and we got to be a bit festive with this holiday background.  


Well isn't this just the cutest kid you've ever seen? Okay, okay... I'm biased. She's ours! I have to admit that I neglected photos of her in the beginning of the year, which is unusual for me, but I did come through with a fall session as well as some beautiful Princess Christmas images. 


Another one of my favorite newborn poses... "bum up". While this was just one great image from her session, I love how this showcases all the little features of a newborn in a simple, classic pose. 


I captured so many beautiful images of this six week old that I love! But I just love the colors in this one and oh my... those cheeks!  


I now use this pose for all my newborn sessions including this one, because it is so sweet and Mom and baby look so beautiful together. Mom's love it, Dad's love it and I love it. I had so many beautiful images using this pose this year it was difficult to decide on just one for the top ten!  


Contact me to book your 2019 newborn, maternity, child, or family session! 



[email protected] (Donna Young Newborn Photography) Thu, 27 Dec 2018 21:57:30 GMT
Our Funny Family Christmas Image | How It Was Created | Aurora, CO Family Photographer Last year I set out to create an amazing Christmas card with a "magical" image of our daughter. I was very pleased with how it turned out... an image of her reading a Christmas book in front of a window while unbeknownst to her, Santa and his sleigh were passing the moon in a starry filled sky behind her. You can view the final image and how I created it here

Of course, this year I just had to do something equally as creative. Those who know me know I'm a bit competitive... even with myself. That competitiveness helps me grow as a photographer as I figure out new ways to create images, practice Photoshop techniques, and think creatively. This year it prompted me to try to outdo myself on our holiday image! Now being creative doesn't mean I'm above checking out Pinterest for ideas every once in a while and ultimately this is where I came up with the general image idea. But I definitely put my own spin on it! 

After deciding on the concept, I set out to gather everything I needed for the image. Originally I purchased some buffalo plaid print PJs on Amazon. It was easy to find something for everyone to wear since this print is very popular this year. But a few hours later I walked into TJ Maxx and saw some kids PJs that said "Dear Santa, Define Good" and PJs for me that said, "Dear Santa, Bring Me WINE" and I knew these would be perfect! So I quickly cancelled my Amazon order and bought these as well as some coordinating PJs for my husband. I returned to Amazon to find coordinating wrapping paper, ribbon, and Santa ornaments for the tree that matched my daughter's PJs. On to the liquor store to pick up some wine, which of course also needed to coordinate. Ugly Sweater Red? Perfect!!! I grabbed the Christmas tree we put in our daughter's room and an antique workbox I bought ages ago. Finally, I pulled down the seamless paper I have in the studio to use as the background and grabbed a panel I use for flooring. 

With everything set-up, we donned our PJs and I set up my camera on a tripod. I focused on my husband, jumped into the picture and had our daughter press the shutter button... several times. As expected, giving up the element of control when I'm on the other side of the camera is a bit difficult for me as I can't see how everything looks. Ultimately this is why we ended up doing this twice (wine was a good bribe for my husband) and I Photoshopped the left two images you see below together to achieve the look I wanted... including the angle of my face. Let's admit it... some angles are just not flattering! 

After these two images were merged, and I did a wee bit of Photoshopping to my waist (it was just after Thanksgiving... who wouldn't?), I realized I needed to capture another image. While my studio is great for capturing a closeup of an entire family, it's not quite large enough for full length family images, especially when one family member is not grouped closely to the others. With more space needed on the left side to place our daughter "on the wall" I pulled out another floor panel and took a photo of the "extended" set-up (above right). As you may notice, this image was taken at a different angle. This is because the family photo was taken from the stairway to the studio in order to get further back and ultimately I couldn't move to the left for the additional shot. Again, with a little Photoshop magic I was able to modify how the angle looked as well as extend the tan background.   

Finally it was time for the most important family member's close-up! I got our daughter dressed and ready to go. Then I told her I was going to tape her to the floor. Her response? "Ummm... I am NOT doing that!" LOL. Of course she then happily complied and told me she deserved ice cream. 

I rolled the paper used for our background down so it would cover the floor and then positioned her on the paper. I took some test shots and re-positioned her several times because I knew the angle of the lighting needed to be consistent for everyone in the image to make it look realistic. Once I settled on her position I taped her arms and legs. I also tried to position her hair so it looked like it was hanging and pulled her PJs to the side for the same reason. Of course with a squirming 8 year old this was not the easiest thing to do. Ultimately I did a bit more Photoshop work on her hair for the final image. 

Capturing the image was a bit awkward and I'm pretty sure I pulled a muscle in my lower back. LOL. If you take a look at the photo on the left you will see a ladder. I was standing on that ladder to take that picture. Standing, leaning significantly, bracing myself against the ceiling and holding my camera out while I shot on live mode. This setting on my Canon 5d Mark iii's allowed me to see the image on my camera's LCD screen and focus while my camera was at arms length... and while I rarely use this feature, it was great to have for this capture. 

After the image was taken it was back to Photoshop to add our daughter into our image. Because the lighting wasn't exactly the same, this took a bit of work to make the image look seamless. After that was done I realized something was missing. She just looked a bit too happy to be "tapped to a wall" so I decided she needed a bit of tape on her mouth. Back down to the studio we went and I took another picture of her with the tape. I then took just the tape portion of her faced and over-layed it on the image and carefully blended it together. Finally I added text about having a peaceful holiday to pull it all together and the image was complete! I had it made into an ornament for our tree and because my husband laughs every time he sees it I'm planning on putting it on canvas so I can hang it up every Christmas. 

What will I do next year to top this? I've already got some ideas! SUBSCRIBE to my RSS feed below to ensure you don't miss it. 

Let me know what you think of this image (and the process) by leaving a comment! 

Interested in capturing some unique images of your family? Contact me today to discuss your own personalized photo session! 

PS - No wine or children were harmed during the creation of this images... well, maybe some wine ;)


[email protected] (Donna Young Newborn Photography) family photos holiday photos portraits studio session Mon, 17 Dec 2018 18:44:10 GMT
Extended Family Photo Session | Denver Tech Center | Aurora, CO Family Photographer I love it when clients contact me because they are interested in an extended family session. I think it's so important to capture these memories with loved ones beyond our immediate family to document this bond between multiple generations. So when I was contact to photograph a family of four with Mom's Mom and Dad who had just recently celebrated a milestone anniversary I was more than happy to do so! I was especially happy to capture some memories for these amazing grandparents, married for 50 years... such an inspiration! 

Contact me today for more information about family photo sessions! 


[email protected] (Donna Young Newborn Photography) fall photos family photos portraits Mon, 03 Dec 2018 16:03:43 GMT
Summer Family Photo Session | Aurora, Colorado Family Photographer Snow is on the ground here in Colorado and I'm finally getting around to posting some of my favorite images from a photo session I shot over the summer along the Cherry Creek Trail in Centennial. Planning a visit from Virginia, my friend Tara contacted me about catching up and getting some family photos while they were in town. I was thrilled to see her and capture some images for her and her husband and I was especially excited to meet this cute, cute, cute addition to their family! I just love his expressions and of course that wee bit of ginger hair! 

Contact me today for more information about family, newborn, maternity and children's photography! 

[email protected] (Donna Young Newborn Photography) family photos portraits Wed, 14 Nov 2018 00:25:52 GMT
Fun Photo Session at the Park | Children's Photographer | Centennial Colorado Over the weekend I had a fun photo session at the park with my own little one! I normally take time out for a few photo sessions with her each year, normally doing something for each season. But things have been so busy this year, I have continued to put it off! When school started I promised myself I would get out and take some "back to school" photos of her. While this session took place well after the start of school, during her fall break, I figured better late than never! 

Off we went to a little park in the Denver Tech Center where we found plenty of great spots to play and pose for photos... although she really only has one pose. You can probably guess her "signature pose" from these images, but she has fun with it and I can't complain as she says "Mommy, take a photo of me here... and here". LOL. When I told her I was also scouting the location for an upcoming family session, she pointed out lots of great spots and definitely recommended photos in front of the lake. She's such a little helper. She also had a great time chasing the local wildlife and eventually tromping through the stream in her boots. What can I say? Kids will be kids!


[email protected] (Donna Young Newborn Photography) children fall photos portraits Mon, 22 Oct 2018 20:53:54 GMT
6 Week Old Photo Session | Aurora Colorado Newborn Photographer I normally photograph newborns somewhere between 7 and 14 days old. It's a great time-frame as it allows Mom and Dad to adjust a bit to life with their new little one, while ensuring that baby is still sleepy and squishy to capture those quintessential newborn poses. Despite this, sometimes it's just not possible due to circumstances out of our control. This little one had a longer than normal hospital stay and came to the studio at 6 weeks old. And while we had quite a few awake shots during her session and focused on more wrapped poses, her images turned out beautifully and I can't wait to deliver their custom-designed heirloom album and canvas! Here are some highlights! 


Contact me today to discuss your personalized newborn session! 


[email protected] (Donna Young Newborn Photography) newborns portraits studio session Fri, 05 Oct 2018 12:29:37 GMT
Fall Portrait Session | Aurora Colorado Family Photographer I had such a blast capturing some images for this beautiful family. I've know them for a couple of years now and it was fun to visit with them as we walked back to the Cherry Creek Trail near Parker for their session. Here we were able to take advantage of the beautiful setting of trees, grasses, rocks, and of course the creek that can be found in this location. While fall was definitely not in full swing yet, the trees were starting to show a little bit of yellow color and we also found some beautiful rabbit brush which I just love! Their session wrapped up just as the sun was setting, creating some beautiful golden tones. We captured lots of great images and here are their favorites that they will be able to proudly display in their home and on their Christmas cards this year!

Contact me today for more information about family, child, newborn, and maternity photo sessions! 


[email protected] (Donna Young Newborn Photography) family photos portraits Wed, 26 Sep 2018 22:15:00 GMT
Back to School Mini Session | Aurora Colorado Children's Photographer I just love seeing this family year after year... watching these kiddos grow up as they return each fall for back to school mini sessions. Each year I select a different location (a local park, a school, etc.) for back to school photos as well as different props so there is variety in client images from year to year. This year we shot at a location along the Cherry Creek Trail right on the border of Parker and Aurora. This quick session, perfect for the little ones who have a limited attention span at this age, captured some great shots that I know Mom and Dad will cherish. 

I hold a limited number of mini-sessions each year... back-to-school, Christmas, and Easter.

Contact me today for more information! 

Contact me today to book your customized photo session or for additional information! 

[email protected] (Donna Young Newborn Photography) children fall photos portraits Thu, 20 Sep 2018 16:36:22 GMT
Jacob: 9 Days Old | Aurora, Colorado Newborn Photographer I recently had the opportunity to photograph the second child of my good friend Patty and her husband Chad. I've loved watching this family grow and I'm thrilled to have been able to document so many special moments... their wedding, a moving announcement, a camping-themed cake smash session for their first born's first birthday, a pregnancy announcement, maternity photos, and now newborn images!

Little Jacob is as sweet as can be and was a rock star for his newborn session... even when he was wide awake and ready to check out the world around him. Congratulations Patty and Chad on your new addition!!!


Interested in a newborn session? Contact me today to schedule your complimentary, no-obligation consultation! 


Felted Bear: Enchanted Baybee Designs

Teal Drop Fabric: Roses and Ruffles

Tan Mohair Hat: LeAnge

Antique Trough: The Emporium

[email protected] (Donna Young Newborn Photography) newborns portraits studio session Mon, 23 Jul 2018 22:58:26 GMT
Callahan: 7 Days Old | Aurora Colorado Newborn Photographer There's nothing sweeter than a brand new baby and little Callahan is no exception. While he took a bit longer than expected to make his entrance into this world, he was well worth the wait for this lucky Mom and Dad. I had the opportunity to photograph him at 7 days old and capture his tiny features while he slept peacefully. Callahan had a few scowls for me during our session but I love to see personality come through. And those dimples.... oh my!

We captured some classic poses using a grey palette to match the colors in the family home and added some accents of blue here and there. Knowing the nursery was a fox theme, I picked up a felted fox for a few of the photos that will match the decor and look great hanging on the nursery wall. We also captured a great family photo and some shots of Callahan with his gorgeous Mom... definitely some of my favorites!

Congratulations Joel and Alexis on your handsome baby boy! It was a pleasure having you all in the studio! 


Interested in newborn photos? Contact me today to schedule your complimentary, obligation-free consultation so we can discuss the perfect custom session for you and your little one. 



[email protected] (Donna Young Newborn Photography) children newborns portraits studio session Wed, 18 Jul 2018 19:37:15 GMT
Rustic, Elegant Baby Shower | Cherry Creek | Denver Colorado Claire celebrated the upcoming arrival of her new baby girl with family and friends at a rustic, yet elegant baby shower at a local restaurant in the Cherry Creek neighborhood of Denver. We took a few shots with Dad and some family members before the ladies began their celebration filled with great food, drinks, and gorgeous decor. The most beautiful part of this day however was the constant laughter, playful antics, and tearful toasts that demonstrates the bond that is so strong between these ladies. There is no doubt, this baby girl is going to receive more love than she could ever hope for. Congratulations Claire and thank you for letting me share in your celebration!   




[email protected] (Donna Young Newborn Photography) event photography maternity Mon, 25 Jun 2018 21:43:07 GMT
Jasmine: 7 Days Old | Aurora Colorado Newborn Photographer I am so excited to share my most recent newborn session!

Little baby Jasmine is the newest addition to Sierra family and her Mom is one of my closest friends. I photographed both of Jasmine's older brothers when they were born and even though we now live more than 1700 miles apart, I had to photograph this sweet baby girl! So I packed up my camera equipment, lighting, space heater, posing pillows, props, wraps, headbands, and a change of clothes (LOL) and jumped on a plane!

While I normally photograph newborns exclusively in my studio to ensure optimal conditions, I couldn't be happier about how this session turned out. And of course it was great to catch up with a dear friend and spend time with her family including her new little one. Below are some highlights of our photos session. 

One of my favorite poses... I just love seeing those little baby back wrinkles! 

Mom is looking absolutely gorgeous! 

Pinks and grays were used throughout the session for a cohesive look that not only makes the images look great side by side, but also coordinates with the family's home. 

"Paupau" was visiting while I was there for the session and she stepped in for a few photos. 

Jasmine's nursery is a grey bunny theme so we had to get a shot in this little outfit! 

Congratulations on your beautiful new baby girl!!! 

[email protected] (Donna Young Newborn Photography) baby children newborns portraits Wed, 20 Jun 2018 21:00:46 GMT
How To Choose The Appropriate Size for Your Printed Family Artwork Choosing an appropriate size to display your family portraits is one of the most important and most challenging aspects of having your images printed. Many times clients start out believing an 8x10 or an 11x14 is a large portrait for their home. In reality, I would considered these gift prints, suitable to gifting to friends and family or for taking to the office to display on you desk. But when it comes to hanging family portraits on your wall at home, most of the time a much larger image is appropriate. 

Even the 16x24 image on the left feels lost over a large couch while the 30x40 image on the right is more appropriately sized for the room.

There are three main considerations when choosing a size for your images. Room size, viewing distance, and subject face size. Is your room a small 8'x8' office or a grand family room that is 20' deep? How far away will you be viewing the image? How large will the subjects faces look at a distance? Will you be able to see their expressions? Thankfully, these factors all work hand in hand making these considerations easy to address with the appropriate tools and guidance. You simply need to hang portraits that are appropriate for the size of your room, and subsequently the furniture. This will ensure faces are at minimum size that they can be seen at various viewing distances and the portraits don't get lost in the room. In looking at the overall wall space dimensions your artwork should take up two-thirds to three-fourths of the area.

You should also consider the orientation of the wall you are placing your portrait on. Tall, narrow walls lend themselves to images in a vertical, portrait orientation, while horizontal wall spaces, such as over a couch work best with landscape-oriented artwork. Of course if you are using gallery (or grouping) of photos, you only need to consider the orientation of the outside edge of the entire gallery.   

A gallery of images also works well in large spaces and provides flexibility in selecting different image orientations.

Splitting an image in two is also a unique option for some images. 

Because it is sometimes difficult to visual what any particular size image would look like in your ideal space, make sure you measure the space before you make a decision on size. I also recommend using something like painters tape to mark the outline on a wall and then take a few steps back to see how it looks.  While there are standard sizes such as 16x20, 20x24, 24x36 and 30x40, custom sizes are also available and may be more appropriate depending on the amount of space you have, coupled with how each size will crop your image (more on how cropping will affect your image in a future blog post). 

To make this entire process easier, I have the ability to show my clients their images in different sizes in both stock rooms AND in their own personal space. That's right, with a simple photo taken on a cellphone of your ideal space, combined with a measurement of something in the room, I can show you what your images would look like in any room of your home in different sizes, taking the guess work out of everything! 


Multiple stock images including bedrooms, living areas, offices, hallways, and entryways make it easy to visualize photo size even without your own room image. 

A gallery of two 16x24's with a 30x30 vice a 30x40 

If you are interested in having family photos as well as professional design service for home, please contact me for a free consultation! 

[email protected] (Donna Young Newborn Photography) canvas family photos image size portraits size wall art Mon, 14 May 2018 15:18:32 GMT
Liam Turns One! | Smash & Splash First Birthday Cake Session | Aurora CO Kids Photography I love first birthday cake smashes, especially for those little ones I photographed as newborns! It's so exciting to see how much they have changed over a year and it's fun to see how they interact with the cake and the bath. I had the pleasure of photographing this cutie, Liam, when he was a newborn (and took Mom's maternity photos)! He was adorable then and now... all decked out for his construction themed smash and splash session in the studio! I had fun stylizing this session with construction tape and cones, construction themed rubber duckies, and a laundry line full of coordinating clothes including socks with a construction truck print!  

Liam and his Construction Birthday Photo SessionLiam and his Construction Birthday Photo SessionLiam and his Construction Birthday Photo Session Liam's First Birthday Portrait Liam's First Birthday Portrait Liam's First Birthday Portrait

Little Liam's first interaction with the cake seemed to go well. 

Liam testing out the consistency of icing at his first birthday cake smash session. Liam testing out the consistency of icing at his first birthday cake smash session. Liam testing out the consistency of icing at his first birthday cake smash session. irst Cake Interaction at a Birthday Smash Cake SessionFirst Cake Interaction at a Birthday Smash Cake Sessionirst Cake Interaction at a Birthday Smash Cake Session

But soon it was clear that he was not exactly wild about cake... as you can see from the extent of the cake damage (or rather lack thereof) below. 

Extent of Cake "Damage" during our photo session. Extent of Cake "Damage" during our photo session. Extent of Cake "Damage" during our photo session. Liam and his First Birthday Cake Liam and his First Birthday Cake Liam and his First Birthday Cake

It happens! Some kids love digging into their cake and others don't really care for it. But splash sessions are a different story! I will admit, we were a bit worried at the start of his bath, as Liam seemed to dislike it as much as the cake. But after a few minutes he warmed up to it and had a blast. 

Splashing in the bathSplashing in the bathSplashing in the bath Liam hanging out in his bath after his cake smash photos. Liam hanging out in his bath after his cake smash photos. Liam hanging out in his bath after his cake smash photos.

While drying off we had a little more fun playing with rubber duckies. Liam couldn't seem to find the one on his head for a while. But I sent him home with one so he could practice his ducky finding skills.  

Liam searches for the rubber ducky on his head after his first birthday splash photos. Liam searches for the rubber ducky on his head after his first birthday splash photos. Liam searches for the rubber ducky on his head after his first birthday splash photos. All dried off after a splash session All dried off after a splash session All dried off after a splash session

Thanks for stopping by the studio and celebrating your first birthday with me Liam! 


Interested in a Smash and Splash Session? Contact me to discuss your customized session! 

[email protected] (Donna Young Newborn Photography) cake smash children portraits Thu, 26 Apr 2018 16:02:47 GMT
Watching Little Ones Grow Up | Child and Newborn Photographer | Aurora, CO I love it when clients return for subsequent photo sessions. Repeat clients (and referrals) are the highest compliment I could receive! I especially love when clients return after a newborn session. The first year of life holds so many changes and I'm so happy to capture milestone images for parents! I also love to see how that tiny baby I photographed in the first couple weeks of life has grown!

One of my favorite images to capture for newborns who return to the studio at 3, 6, 9, and/or 12 months is in a prop I used for their newborn session. Whether it is a bowl or a crate, a newborn bed, etc. It's such a fun way to document how much they have grown! 

When I had this little cutie back in the studio for a cake smash session, I just had to photograph him in the custom chair I posed him in during his newborn session! I can't tell you how much I love this image and the comparison of him in the chair at one week and one year. 

I had the pleasure of photographing the little one below several times throughout his first year with a first year session package. I used the crate from his newborn session at six months and at one year. He barely fit back into it at six months and we didn't even try for his one year photo but we still incorporated it into the photo to show how much he has grown! 



Think this is a fun idea? Leave a comment! 

Custom Chair and Table: Gorecki Lucas Handcrafted
Crocheted Pants and Hat: KB Handcrafted
Backdrop: HSD Backdrops

[email protected] (Donna Young Newborn Photography) children newborns portraits studio session Thu, 22 Mar 2018 23:00:00 GMT
Pretty Pink Newborn Photos | Studio Photography | Aurora, CO I always ask my clients if they have color preferences for their little ones during my pre-session consultations. Maybe they'd like an image that can be framed or put on canvas to hang above the crib and therefore want to coordinate with the nursery theme or color. Or maybe they just prefer a certain color due to their style... maybe earthy colors or whites. Sometimes clients don't have a preference and I'm happy to select colors for them. While pink is an obvious choice for little girls I think it's especially appropriate for newborn girls born around Valentine's Day! Here are some images I captured from recent sessions that took place in the later half of February of little ones adorned in pink!

Headbands: Pinkytinks and Girlologie
Drop and Wrap: Roses and Ruffles
Felted Hearts: Enchanted Baybee Designs

[email protected] (Donna Young Newborn Photography) newborns portraits studio session Thu, 15 Mar 2018 23:15:00 GMT
My Passion for Offering Finished Family Art Work Do you have digital images from a photo session stashed away somewhere but have yet to do anything with them? If this is the case, you are not alone! I've found that many photography clients, including mine, still have their digital files on a thumb drive floating around in a drawer somewhere or saved in a folder on their computer but have yet to print and display their beautiful images! 

Creating beautiful images is a passion of mine and if you book a photography session, capturing these moments is obviously important to you. You took the time to have photos of yourself or your family taken, you probably spent time choosing outfits, you may have coordinated with extended family members to find the perfect time and location, or you fought off the sleepiness of being a new parent to come to the studio and have images taken when your new addition was sleepy and squishy! But you selected and received your digital images and your family and friends still aren't enjoying them. It's unfortunate, yet so common because of a variety of reasons... and I want to eliminate those reasons.  That's why I now offer finished art work for my photography clients. I want to ensure your beautiful images are presentation ready when you receive them so you can enjoy them immediately.

Heritage Walnut Folio Box - Finished Photography ProductHeritage Walnut Folio Box - Finished Photography Product

 The 8x10 Heritage Folio Box Beautifully Displays and Stores Up to 20 Matted or Mounted Prints
and is a Great Way to "Collect" Images From Multiple Sessions.

I understand the reasons clients aren't enjoying their images. Many find it difficult to find the time to sit down and order prints, canvases and albums. It's no wonder. Most of us are busy with work and family and the countless other responsibilities we juggle. Even if you get a few minutes to sit down and take on this task, chances are you don't know where to begin... how do you want to display your images, what products are available, what is the best size for display, where is the best place to purchase, how do you know you what suppliers have quality products? This is a bit overwhelming, which leads many to put it off... indefinitely. 

  Wooden Folding Trio - Finished Photography ProductWooden Folding Trio - Finished Photography Product  

This Wooden Tri-Fold Trio is a Unique Way to Display a Selection of Your Images on a Table or Shelf and is Available in Two Sizes. 

There are also things many clients don't consider. Did you know that some mats will yellow over time or that images should not be placed directly against glass (without a mat or spacers) because they will eventually adhere to the glass? How will certain crops (aspect ratios) affect what is contained in your finished image? Did you know that you can have images mounted beautifully on wood? Have you heard of deckled prints? What type of finish do you need on your canvas so that it is not easily susceptible to scratching and corner damage? Do you know the most appropriate image size for over your couch? 

Framed Torn Trio Print - Finished Photography ProductFramed Torn Trio Print - Finished Photography Product Framed Torn Print Details - Finished Photography ProductFramed Torn Print Details - Finished Photography Product

This Torn Edge Framed Print is Offered as a Trio or Single Image.

Round Wooden Wall Print - Finished Photography ProductRound Wooden Wall Print - Finished Photography Product Metal Print - Finished Photography ProductMetal Print - Finished Photography Product Canvas Print - Finished Photography ProductCanvas Print - Finished Photography Product

Wall Art Options Include Wood (left), Stand Out Metal (middle), Canvas (right), and Framed Prints (not pictured).

Chances are you can't answer most of these questions because it's just not your field of expertise. This is why I'm here to help! As a photographer offering finished art, I'm not just the expert on how to capture and edit your photos, but also how to showcase them. I've spent hours and hours researching products online, ordering samples from dozens of professional labs (and discarding many of them because they just weren't up to par), and attending virtual and in-person trade shows. This is time consuming (and expensive) and just not feasible for clients to do themselves. And there's nothing worse than taking the time to order something and being disappointed in the quality when you receive it. If it's that shirt on Amazon you can probably return it for a full refund but when it comes to images of your family that will not be the case. In addition, most of the products I offer are not even available to the general public. Most professional labs only allow photographers with verified credentials to order and these labs tend to have the highest quality, not to mention the most unique and amazing products. 

  Table Products - Finished Photography ProductTable Products - Finished Photography Product Acrylic Block - Finished Photography ProductAcrylic Block - Finished Photography Product

Additional Table Display Options Include the Classic Folio Box, Mounted Prints, and Acrylic Blocks. 

My service (in addition to pre-session consults) includes sitting down with my clients after their session to preview their images and help them select the images and products that work best for them and their lifestyle. This is a relaxed, no-obligation session because I don't believe in having a minimum order for products and I offer a la carte items to ensure clients purchase only what they truly love. After selection I take care of ordering all products, inspecting them for quality, and personally delivering them to to your home where you can begin to enjoy them immediately. I'm please to offer a variety of products to meet my clients personal style including albums, folio boxes, framed prints, canvas, metal, and wood products. I also offer products suitable as gifts for family and friends and digital images for your archives. 

You are encouraged to visit the studio to take a look at the amazing products I offer and discuss full pricing or you are welcome to contact me for some general price guidelines. 






[email protected] (Donna Young Newborn Photography) product spotlight Thu, 08 Mar 2018 20:35:22 GMT
What to Wear For Maternity Sessions / Gowns Provided for Clients Tips for choosing outfits for your maternity session AND maternity gowns I provide for client use!

The time you spend waiting to meet your new little one may seem endless or it may speed by but regardless, you'll want to cherish it forever. A maternity photo shoot will help you capture the anticipation of exciting times to come as well as your adorable baby bump! You'll look back on these photos for years to come, so it's important to choose great outfits. What you wear for photos may be challenging any time, but even moreso for a maternity session, so here are some helpful tips on what to wear as well as a look at some of the gowns I provide clients for use during maternity sessions.


1. Choose clothing that will accentuate your bump: Wear a form fitting dress or top. Anything with a waistband that sits above your bump gives you the waist you're missing due to pregnancy. If you are wearing something more flowing, poses using your hands to accentuate your belly can be done. You can also add a scarf or belt to help do this. 

2. Dress for the weather and season: You may want to be more cozy during fall and winter months with stylish boots, jeans, and sweaters while in the summer you may choose something more light and bright. The seasons will also give you a great starting point for picking out what colors of clothing you will wear for your photos. Look to the colors of the seasons and the variety of landscapes each month offers you. For example, during fall there will be plenty of bright autumn leaves and during the winter there may be snow.

3. Consider the location of the session. Will you be in a meadow or surrounded by trees? Or will you be standing on marble steps surrounded by pillars? This will help determine how casual or formal your clothing selection is. 

4. Avoid trendy outfits: Give your photos a timeless feel with clothing that won't go out of style. Solids are a great idea however if you have a pattern you love and want to wear, ensure that others having photos taken are not wearing something that will clash. Keep in mind patterns can be very distracting and you want the focus to be on your baby belly. 

5. Keep accessories to a minimum: Photos should be focused on you and your bump so either keep jewelry and accessories simple or use them to accentuate your bump. A belt or scarf above your bump will help if your outfit does not have a high waistline. 

6. Choose a couple of outfits for a variety of looks. Select a couple of different styles for your maternity session. I always encourage my clients to wear a casual outfit and then change into a dress. Long or mid-length maxi dresses are a great option that is comfortable and also may cover up anything you feel are "problem" areas during pregnancy. If you keep a great shape during your pregnancy, a form fitting dress works well. 

7. Select appropriate colors: Look at the colors in your home. You may want to consider colors that would compliment your walls and decor if you are planning on hanging large photos in your home. Think about colors you like. These are your photos so make sure that you love the colors you wear. Also consider your complexion... does white make you washed out? Keep in mind the location of the shoot and the background colors. For example, mint might look great on a beach but may not look as nice with fall leaves in the background. 

8. Undergarmets: I recommend wearing skin tone undergarmets and wearing (or bringing) a strapless bra. Many of the maternity gowns I provide are off the shoulder and photograph much better without having to pull bra straps down (which sometime creates unnecessary bulges). Some of my gowns are light in color (and some are a bit sheer) so it's important not wear something underneath that will be seen through the dress. 

9. Shoes: Shoes are something that are often overlooked during photo sessions. You'll want to appropriately coordinate shoes with what you are wearing and be mindful that they will likely be seen in many of the photos. I recommend wearing stylish but comfortable shoes. I don't know too many pregnant women who want to walk around in heels and for most of my photos sessions we will do a little bit of walking to get from spot to spot. If you are brave enough to bring heels to your session, I recommend also bringing some comfortable slip-ons or flip flops to wear in between locations. Most of the dresses I provide reach the ground and your shoes will be covered so I recommend something low profile and comfortable. At times, it may be appropriate for you to go without shoes once we get to a location and start photographing. 

10. Find Inspiration Online: There is a lot of great inspiration on the Internet for photos... including maternity photos. Search Pinterest for color palette boards or maternity clothing ideas. 

You may already have a great dress, or you many want to rent one from somewhere like Rent the Runway or Borrow For your Bump but you can always opt to wear one or two gowns I have on hand. I realize purchasing (and even renting) a maternity gown for photos can be quite expensive with some costing hundreds of dollars, so I have a collection of maternity gowns chosen specifically for client use during photo sessions as part of my service. Below are SOME of the gowns I have available... and I'm always adding more! 


This blue dress has a beautiful halter top feature that can be tied in a variety of ways. 
The mustard-colored skirt has a matching tie and goes well with this white lace top with a halter top lining. 
This maroon dress has a full skirt and is ground length. 

Mom-to-Be in a split front white maternity gown.Mom-to-Be in a split front white maternity gown.A beautiful Mom in a split front maternity gown taken on a bridge over Cherry Creek.      Summer Maternity Photo in White GownSummer Maternity Photo in White GownA summer maternity session captures Mom in a beautiful white flowing gown amidst a woodsy background.

From the designer Sew Trendy, this white dress is a fitted tube style at the top while the bottom is flowing and a bit sheer. It has a split front but can also be photographed with the split brought together, depending on what you prefer. 

Fall Maternity Session Next to Cherry CreekFall Maternity Session Next to Cherry CreekFall colors and a wooded setting make a perfect background for a maternity session in a white lace gown.  

This white dress on the left is lace with a built-in underlayer. There is a small ruffle at the bottom for added detail. It can be worn alone or paired with a ribbon to accentuate your baby bump and add a bit of color. The white dress on the right is flowing and when photographed at the right angle can provide a dramatic silhouette of your baby bump while still being tastefully covered. 

Winter Maternity PhotoWinter Maternity PhotoA winter maternity session captures a snowy setting and a beautiful Mom-to-be in a dramatic blue gown.

The black and the blue dresses above are the exact same style. They have small trains, a "v" wrap bodice and elastic fitting at the shoulders. Moms tell me they are also made from a very comfortable material. 

Winter Maternity PhotoWinter Maternity PhotoAn expectant Mom photographed in a beautiful dramatic gown in a snowy setting.

The above dress is a bit fitted from the waist to just above the knee, has beautiful bell sleeves and an extended train. 

This beautiful flowing gown looks amazing on any expectant Mom. 

I also have additional gowns in my studio in a variety of colors just waiting for the perfect model! If you are in the Aurora / Parker / Denver area and expecting, please contact me to discuss options for your customized photo session! 

Most of my dresses will fit a range of sizes as they have some stretch to them. If you are one of those lucky mommas who has a small shape even during pregnancy, larger dresses can be pinned or clipped in the back if a dress is a bit loose. 


[email protected] (Donna Young Newborn Photography) maternity portraits Wed, 24 Jan 2018 14:27:40 GMT
Wintery Maternity Session | Lookout Mountain, Co | Aurora,Co Maternity Photographer This beautiful mom-to-be contacted me for maternity photos after she was referred by a friend and when we were discussing her upcoming session, she told me she was looking for a location that was quintessential Colorado. I was thrilled to hear this because I love beautiful Colorado backdrops for photos. But her request was especially touching. You see Angie and her husband Kris are from Australia, living in the states for a couple short years for work and she wanted the portraits to capture their time here. It was so nice to hear how they are embracing Colorado as well as visits to other parts of the country. We batted around ideas for locations and since their session was scheduled for late December, Angie also requested some snow. Well, as Colorado residents know, sometimes snow in the Denver area is a bit elusive and so far this winter that has definitely been the case. We have had a few storms but the snow has melted very quickly. Several days before Kris and Angie's session we did see a little bit of the white stuff but it warmed up the very next day. But I was determined to make this snowy, mountain session happen! Not being able to make it all the way to higher mountains, I recommended Lookout Mountain for the session. I was pretty sure that we would be able to find at least some patches of snow in the shade of the evergreen trees and on the north facing slopes. I was right and we found some beautiful spots for photos without having to walk through anything high, which is sometimes challenging... even when you aren't pregnant. We got some more casual shots as well as some in a couple of Chicaboo gowns I have for maternity sessions. 

After we finished, I asked Angie and Kris if they had any special requests for their upcoming newborn session. Angie's answer? I'd love something that says "U.S." Ohhh... I love it! And I definitely have a few ideas for their upcoming session. Until then, here are a few of my favorites from our wintery maternity session. 

[email protected] (Donna Young Newborn Photography) maternity portraits winter photos Thu, 11 Jan 2018 23:01:55 GMT
2017 Top Ten Photos of the Year It's nice to reflect on the past year as a new one approaches and that's one of the reasons I love TOP TEN lists. This year brought lots of progress for me in my photography journey and I believe that is reflected in how my photos have changed in the past year, especially my newborn photos. Early in the year I attended a newborn photography workshop for some hands-on newborn posing training. Soon after that I turned a portion of our home into a studio complete with state-of-the art lighting, a sitting area for families, and lots of props, wraps, and headbands (I have a slight addiction to newborn props). I also dove into learning Photoshop and began taking an online class taught by a leading newborn photographer. 

I'm very excited about my plans for 2018 but before I bid adieu to 2017, here are my favorite photos for the year. It was difficult to narrow it down this year... I had so many favorites! 

While visiting from California, this family of four got together with other family members in the local area to have some photos taken all together. I've taken lots of "extended" family photos this year, especially around the holidays, but this was one of my favorite sessions. They were a fun-loving group and so happy to finally have photos of everyone together. While I loved many of the images from this session, this image with a family of four along the fence was at the top of my list. 

It's difficult to take a bad photo of this beautiful girl but I'm going to take a little credit :) 
This was shot in the Georgetown neighborhood of D.C. on a trip back to the area for some photo sessions and visits with friends. The light early in the morning was gorgeous and Georgetown has a ton of great spots for photos. We got so many great shots during this session but this one has to be my favorite!



I'll admit, I'm a bit partial to newborn poses
that incorporate military items to
honor Mom or Dad's service.
(I'm a bit patriotic and I served in the Air Force.) 
I was so pleased about the way this photo turned
out and I'm sure it's one this family will treasure!
More images from this little guy's session can be seen here.


(NOTE: I am pleased to offer a 10% discount to
active duty military members as well
as teachers, firefighters and police officers!)



1 - Edited1 - Edited

As I delve into taking more maternity photos I have started offering the use of maternity gowns to my clients and this one from Sew Trendy was perfect for this gorgeous momma (more images from her session here). The setting and lighting were perfect and I was so happy to capture this special quiet time before baby arrived!

What can I say? This sweet little boy! This chair! This set-up! I have started focusing on simpler poses and set-ups for my newborns (see more images from his session here) but I still love to get one image that's a little bit unique. I love this one!  






Black and white photos are so classic and timeless.
This image was a new pose for me and
I love how it incorporates Dad in the image.
It turned out to be a little piece of art. 
See more of this little one's images here












I don't think I need to say much
about this one. Just... sweet, sweet, sweet!








I just love this image of this little guy...
who doesn't love some baby chunk? 
I've photographed him since before he was born
(announcement and maternity photos for Mom),
as well as newborn, sitter, and first birthday cake smash photos.  
Can't wait to watch this little one continue to grow up!





Sometimes I fall in love a photo because of the "technical" aspects behind it. I know Mom and Dad love their newborn images because it's their baby and I appreciate that, but I also try to meet the "standards" of the newborn photography community (for this image it is angle, lighting, leg position, hand position, body curve, etc) that make newborn images the most flattering. This "bum-up" pose is definitely my best to date and how I was able to transform it during the editing stage is a testament to how much I've learned about Photoshop this year. Of course, it doesn't hurt that this little girl is simply adorable. 

I'm sure I've never spent so much time on one photo, but it was well worth it! For this image I had to set up specialized lighting, hang a black canvas outside our window (yes, those are actually our window panes), prep my daughter on how to pose (yes, that's our gorgeous girl!), and do a lot of post-production editing. This photo came together by using including 3 different overlays (night sky, Santa and his sleigh passing the moon, and light coming from the book) and then editing to merge them just right. View how it was done here. I know I'm partial to this one because this is my daughter, but I just love how it turned out and I was pretty happy with my use of Photoshop, especially since I only started using it earlier this year. This one went out on Christmas cards and is getting printed on canvas!

I wish you all health, happiness, and good luck in the new year. May the journey you take be filled with growth and fulfillment! And should you need photos of your newborn, growing children, or entire family, please contact me

[email protected] (Donna Young Newborn Photography) portraits Tue, 26 Dec 2017 20:31:39 GMT
Epic 1 Year Old Cake Smash Session | Children's Photographer | Aurora, CO I'll be the first to admit, sometimes a one year old likes cake and sometimes they don't. Sometimes it takes them a while to warm up to a cake and you may need to help them out before they will even touch it and sometimes, no matter what you do, they want nothing to do with it. This is one of the reasons I now incorporate before portraits and bathtub "clean-up" sessions into my one year cake smash sessions... to ensure I capture some photos of a happy child... whether they like cake or not (they all seem to love the bath).

At my most recent cake smash session, Mom and I had nothing to worry about. This little guy loved everything!  He played for a bit while I took some portraits, he splashed around with some rubber duckies in my miniature bathtub, and best of all... he could not wait to get his hands on the cake. He devoured it and didn't even need to use his hands at times! When Mom sat him down in front of it, she could barely get out of the way before he dove in. We had fun watching the show and it resulted in some great photos. 

[email protected] (Donna Young Newborn Photography) children portraits studio session Mon, 18 Dec 2017 18:58:11 GMT
Creation of a Magical Christmas Photo I've been asked how I created a recent image of my daughter, showcasing the "magic" of Christmas, so I thought I'd create a blog post about it for anyone who is curious or would like to attempt it themselves (Photoshop skills required).

The Set-Up:

I set up a spot in our dining room for this shot. My daughter is actually sitting on our buffet surrounded by some fake Christmas presents I used for recent Holiday mini session. I chose the buffet because it was the right height for the window and I didn't want anything between her and the window like the back of a couch. I've seen this type of shot also set in a window seat which would be a great option if you have one... if not, you just need to use a little creativity. I hung a black piece of fabric inside the window. I also affixed a red blanket to one side of the window by clamping it to our blinds that I had raised. I did this to create a "curtain" that would made it look a little more like a window (since our window only has a valance). 

The Lighting: 

I decided to take this photo during the day in order to take advantage of at least a little bit of ambient light and therefore not have to raise the ISO on my camera. This created a bit more post production work but I thought it was worth it to reduce the level of unnecessary "noise" in the image... some might opt to capture an image like this closer to dusk but that's a matter of preference. Despite the ambient light I was working with, after a few test shots I decided to use a soft box to add some light to the scene. I was careful not to make it to bright and to position it just right... making it look like it was more of a nighttime shot and a lamp nearby was partially illuminating my daughter's face. Inside the book she held, I placed my cellphone with the light turned on and positioned it toward her face. While a post production addition of the light coming out of the book was great, it wouldn't actually change the lighting on her face so this was necessary to make it more realistic. We struggled a bit with the cellphone slipping out of position as she moved around but eventually got a shot where it was directly towards her face and worked well.

The First Attempt: 

After taking a few shots I uploaded them to my computer and started tinkering with them in Photoshop. I quickly realized that although the black backdrop was perfect for creating the night sky where I would later add an overlay, it didn't look very much like a window because I was covering the panes of the window with the black fabric (unfortunately I don't have an example of this since I immediately knew it wouldn't work and trashed the image). So outside I went to hang the fabric behind the window. 

The Second Attempt: 

After uploading some shots with the black fabric outside, I realized that it wasn't quite dark enough to have the effect I wanted. It was a bit thin and the sun was shinning through it (see photo at right). I had created a layer in Photoshop in which I had raised the black in the photo, but when the black was dark enough for the sky portion it had become too dark for the rest of the photo. I may have been able to mask off a portion of the photo to get it to work but I decided to make one more attempt to make it work better by changing the setup. So I headed back outside with a big thick semi canvas material to hang behind the black fabric I had already hung. It took some work to get this hung up and I eventually got the help of a nice neighbor after a minor incident with my ladder (please remember to be safe)! 

The Third Attempt:

Back inside I put my daughter back up on the buffet and well, as they say, the third time's a charm! By this time I had settled on the angle I wanted to shoot, how I wanted to frame the photo, how I wanted her to sit, the lighting, and corrected the setup. I brushed my daughter's hair back from her face, positioned my cellphone light correctly, and bribed her to smile (as a photographer's daughter, she is my guinea pig for lots of photos and it is very "trying"

Post Production Work: 

I uploaded my new images, selected one I liked and went back to work in Photoshop. First, I realized that the book had dropped slightly in the image, revealing my cellphone (complete with purple case), so I cloned it out a bit. Then, I used an action that I am fond of from Greater Than Gatsby's Radiance Collection, "Clean Edit Color Base" (actions are series of steps that have been recorded by their creator and can be reapplied at any time without having to go through each individual step every time... they are a real time saver). I also added an action called Bold Vignette, then I created a duplicate layer of the image, placed it on top and increased the blacks. This basically created the solid black "sky" between the window panes and helped to blend my daughter and the surrounding scene into the background a bit. I did end up erasing some of the darker portions off the layer so that it didn't make the buffet and other items too dark. And I erased the layer off of the window panes so they didn't become too dark either. 

Next, I added the book light to image. I had purchased a set of these light overlays on for a few dollars and tested several before settling on the right one. I carefully sized and rotated it, then erased the portion that fell on the binding of the book and beyond so that it looked like it was coming from inside the book, as opposed to laying on top of it. This overlay also helped hide my cellphone cloning. 

I added the starry sky overlay (also purchased on Etsy in a combination with the Santa/Moon overlay). I placed it over the entire image because sizing it like this gave me the desired look I wanted. This however meant I needed to erase the stars from everything in the image that was not the night sky, including the window panes. It took some careful, tedious work and there may be better ways to do this but I went with what I knew. Once satisfied with the look, I added the moon with Santa's sleigh to the image. I needed to put this layer in front of my daughter but behind the starry sky overlay and that required me to erase the stars from on top of the moon too. 

Finally I played around with a paint on vignette action in Photoshop to blend everything together a bit until I was happy with the results and brightened the exposure just a tad. 

There were a couple other small edits in there as you can see.. . for example I used a selective darken on a portion of my daughter's hair that looked really bright, selective sharpen a bit around her face, and a deblotch action to remove a mark on her face as well as bit of a vignette before adding the brush on vignette. Many of these edits are subtle, but contribute to the overall final image. In addition, you can see that there was quite a bit of editing within the layers to ensure stars, increased blacks, etc were masked off for a more realistic affect. 

Here is the succession of edits: 


The entire process took about two hours between setup, shooting, and post production work but I'm thrilled with how it turned out. I'm planning on using it for both our Christmas cards as well as a canvas I will bring out every Holiday season to decorate our home. 

This is my first time creating an image like this and I'd love to hear your thoughts, questions, or tips/tricks/better ways to create this type of composite! So please feel free to leave a comment or a question!

[email protected] (Donna Young Newborn Photography) children portraits studio session Fri, 08 Dec 2017 00:40:25 GMT
Winter Family Session in the Mountains | Dillon, Co | Aurora, Co Portrait Photographer It's always a pleasure photographing this family... whether it's back to school minis for the kids or a family session. Last year they had their family photos taken in the fall, but this year they wanted to do something a little different and get some snowy, winter themed photos for their family Christmas cards. As most know however, here in Colorado our weather can be a bit unpredictable and we have been having some unseasonably warm temperatures in the Denver area. Luckily, there is almost always snow in the mountains around this time of year. So we headed up to Summit County to take advantage of not only the white stuff, but the beautiful mountain scenery. Here are a few of my favorite images from the session. 


[email protected] (Donna Young Newborn Photography) family photos portraits winter photos Thu, 07 Dec 2017 14:26:48 GMT
Senior Photo Session | Fayetteville, PA | Aurora, CO Portrait Photographer I have been so busy with sessions in the last few months that I hadn't gotten around to creating a post about this shoot. But I've been wanting to because it was such a great session with this photogenic, easy-going senior despite the gloomy weather and it deserves to be highlighted!

While visiting the East Coast back in September, I headed up to Pennsylvania, where I grew up, to meet up with a high-school friend and take senior pictures for her daughte