Photographs for Valentines' Day

The Bootylicious shoot is popular.

Lovers’ Day is around the corner. My girlfriends and I got caught up in a conversation about how to make it special. One common theme: capture the love with a photo.

I spoke with four photographers whose styles and specialties would give each of my friends something to choose from.

Sophie Crew of Sophie Crew Photography (619-742-9778; told me about her Valentine’s Day mini-sessions. “I am mainly a newborn and baby photographer, but I also do kids and maternity. She’s already held her Valentine’s mini-sessions, “but if you have a playgroup or a group of moms who want to get together, I’m open to arranging another time.”

Crew explained how it works. “Sessions are about ten minutes each. I like to keep things simple and don’t go overly crazy with props. This year’s theme is ‘crush.’ It will be sweet...I’ll have Crush red soda and some swirly straws. I suggest solid colors for clothes: red, white, or pink for girls, and for boys, red, white, or blue. The cost is $75. You will get three different shots, which I will email to you and an image on a Valentine’s Day card to pass out at school. I also recommend labs that can print copies for you.”

Kaitlin Bartlett of Always Love Photography and Design (619-504-2847; specializes in couples photography. “I can do all kinds of photo shoots, but couples are my favorite. My specialty is natural light, so I usually do my photo shoots outdoors. A recent shoot I did was of a couple that had been together for six years and had never had professional photos. They both loved wine and he was in the minor leagues. They told me they like rustic-looking images. We went out to Ramona where there was a little baseball diamond. I did photos there with them in some baseball attire. Then we went down the street to an open reserve. She worked at a winery and brought some wine bottles. I rented a wine barrel and did a little setup in a field with them drinking wine and enjoying each other.” Bartlett has a Valentine’s Day special for $175 that includes the session, 25 fully retouched high-resolution digital images, and all rights to photos for printing.

Some of my gal pals were interested in boudoir photography. Barbara Steinberg of Intimate Photography in Clairemont (858-272-0552; told me, “I’ve been doing this for 20 years, and I know how to put women at ease. I’m a little bit older with a very normal figure. This makes women very comfortable with me. When a client arrives, we go through albums and they pick poses they like. I also ask what are the features that their guys really compliment and try to emphasize those. I also do these really cool silhouette poses, where the client is nude, but it’s extremely forgiving for all figures. Guys love those.” Steinberg’s sessions include three outfit changes. “I have over 100 outfits, mostly lingerie, but also costumes like the French maid or the cop.

“Right now I am running the Sweetheart special. The session fee is $85, then $125 for six 4˝x6˝ prints and a CD of images. I use all Canon equipment and have very up-to-date software for retouching images. You may still be able to get my Groupon, which runs $89 to $149.”

Anouk at San Diego Boudoir Photography (619-884-6852; has a studio in North Park. “Boudoir photography is for women to express themselves in a very feminine, artistic, and sexy way,” she said. “It is full of tease. I tell women to bring something to wear that makes them feel good about themselves. I do have some outfits to enhance, but it does not have to be complicated. I talk to women and find out what works for them. They usually leave feeling very good about themselves. I use different angles to enhance and capture features. The Bootylicious shoot is popular. Curves are in, and I am going to work on making those curves look delicious. And everyone gets a touching up, a little magic wand on their photos.” Anouk’s Valentine’s special is $99 for a one-hour session, which includes three outfits and two custom 5˝x7˝ photos.

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