First Time's a Charm

San Ramon beauty photography

“I’ve never had a professional photoshoot. Not like this.” Patricia said as she arrived at my studio for her photoshoot. Like most of my beautiful clients, she was concerned that she didn’t bring the right outfits, didn’t know how to pose, and maybe wasn’t exactly worthy of being dodded over for the afternoon.

“It’s not your job to get great shots. That’s my job,” I replied. “Leave all of the heavy lifting to me. I’ll hold your hand through the entire photoshoot. You’ll never have to wonder what you should do with your hands, where you should look, or whether or not you should smile.”

San Ramon beauty photography

For an hour and a half, Patricia and I laughed, rocked out to Bruno Mars, and captured breathtaking images that she’ll cherish for a lifetime!

“This experience made me feel confident! I love this! This photoshoot reminded me that self love and confidence is achievable at any stage in your life, and is necessary to better myself to have the energy to serve others.” - Patricia

San Ramon beauty photography

“Don’t you dare compare your magic to mine or any one else’s. That’s a fools mission, you know. No happiness was ever born from wishing you had someone else’s gifts while ignoring your own.

Stop looking around and look within. You are magic, wild woman. Own that thing.”

- Brooke Hampton

San Ramon beauty photography

Relax, Relate, Release... (Bay Area Personal Branding/Yoga Photographer)

Have you ever met someone for the first time and they instantly feel like home? Meeting and working with Jean Marie was the definition of easy, breezy… I suppose, I shouldn’t be surprised. I mean she is (one of the) Goddesses behind the incredible Anasa Yoga studio in the Laurel District of Oakland, California.

Jean Marie is the walking, talking embodiment of Namaste. Our recent personal branding photoshoot began like all good things should… With a cup of tea.

The minute she escorted me into her spacious studio, I felt a sense of peace wash over me. Together we went over her vision for her custom photoshoot, toured her gorgeous studio, and gained some great insights into her business.

Personal branding San Ramon

I learned three incredible lessons from this gentle powerhouse:

1.) Peace is a choice that you make daily.

2.) The lotus flower grows in mud.

3.) You can speak softly and still move mountains.

personal branding san ramon oakland
personal branding san ramon

Thank you for making me so beautiful Mawiyah.  You are a very gifted pro!

I look forward to working with you again soon.” - Jean Marie

personal branding photoshoot oakland
personal branding photoshoot oakland

Dear moms, put YOURSELF on your to-do list (San Ramon beauty photographer)

Ooooof, I know it ain’t easy. But, its NECESSARY.

Indian Glamour San Ramon, California

When I became a mom, I TOTALLY lost myself. The instant I laid eyes on my first born, (a gorgeous brown-eyed boy with so much hair he looked like he was wearing a wig!) I morphed into this whole other person. I stopped styling my hair, I skipped the gym, and I routinely cancelled plans with plans to spend more time with my new main squeeze.

I poured my whole soul into my children and in return, I was left kinda soulless. It may sound harsh, but that’s the way it was.

I used to feel legit guilty for spending time and God forbid money on myself. This went for years… Okay, more like over a decade. But, I was in good company. In fact, I’ve never met a mother who didn’t sacrifice her life for her children.

And one day i asked myself a question that changed the way I care for myself. What if my children grew up to treat themselves the way I treated MYSELF?

No bueno!!!!

san ramon glamour photography

And that’s when I put my foot down. Quite literally. The first act of self care I did was treating myself to a pedicure. It was my first one in YEARS. Next, I gifted myself with a yoga class and after that I was off to the races. Before long, I’d given myself permission to treat myself DAILY. Some days it’s a long walk around my neighborhood, or locking myself in my bedroom to meditate or pray. Other days it’s a fun night out with my girls!

The moral of the story is that I put MYSELF back on my priority list. And my kids (now 13 and 16) are all the better for it. I’m far more energetic and fun to be around. And knowing that I’m modeling a healthy lifestyle for them encourages me during those times I’m tempted to put myself on the back burner.

san ramon glamour photography

This bombshell is a busy mother and wife. She arrived to my studio overwhelmed and completely consumed with worry over her children. My deepest desire is to show all women how confident, fierce and safe they are in their own power. Together, we worked through her anxiety and unleashed the powerhouse you see in these images.

It was such a pivotal breakthrough when she finally allowed herself to relax and take this time for herself.

“I love every photo. I truly enjoyed my photoshoot. You made me feel so comfortable. I will definitely recommend you to my friends and family. I love your work. Thank you for a great experience.” - Charisma

san ramon glamour photography
san ramon glamour photography

I’d love to photograph YOU!!! Let’s create something incredible together.

Are you nervous about having a photoshoot?

Most people come to my website and think “wow, I could never look like that…” I photograph everyday women and men who are mother’s, brothers, artists, lawyers, community leaders, etc. Not professional models and NOT comfortable in front of the camera (at least not at first ;)

You don’t have to wait until you feel better. Please don’t put it off until you’re more worthy of this experience. Come as you are. My precious clients arrive to my door embodying the full gamut of human emotions. Excitement, joy, curiosity, nervousness, depression, hope, guilt, shame, embarrassment…

BUT THEY ALL LEAVE FEELING:

  • Empowered

  • Confident

  • Energized

  • Happy

  • Beautiful

I have never had a client come to me and say “girl, this is your lucky day! You get to photograph me. I’m super photogenic, confident about every inch of my body, mind, and spirit and totally ready for my close up.”

Nope, it usually goes a little something like this. “Mawiyah, I’m really excited, but honestly I hope I don’t let you down. I love all the photos on your website, but there ain’t no way I can do that.”

san ramon glamour photography

The truth is that working with me is so much more than a photoshoot. It’s a transformation.

Every. Single. Person I photograph arrives unsure, fearing that they may not have what it takes.

Yolonda was no exception. She arrived burdened down and overwhelmed from the woes of decades of adulting. She was convinced I wouldn’t get a good shot of her. She warned me that there were aspects of her face and body that just wouldn’t photograph well.

I listened to her concerns and gently guided her into what she called “the best photos of my life.” She ended having a BLAST! And so did I.

Yolonda 5-3.jpg

It’s not your job to perform or pose or look sexy. It’s my job to empower you with guidance and encouragement. (I pose you down to your fingertips! You will never wonder what to do, how to stand, or even what to wear. I. Got. You. Boo.)

When I help YOU break free of limiting beliefs, you assist ME in doing the same for myself. 🖤

san ramon glamour photography
san ramon glamour photography
san ramon glamour photography
san ramon glamour photography
san ramon glamour photography

College Bound | Pleasanton Senior Photoshoot

I vividly remember my senior year in high school. Here are a few fun facts about how ya girl was living back in the 1992 (Dang, that was a long time ago)

  • I was 16 years old (yep, just a youngin’)

  • Everyday after school, I’d stuff my face with tater tots, turkey sausage and Hostess cake products in an attempt to add weight to my 98 pound 5’5” frame, cuz “boys like em’ thick” and I was anything but.

  • I attended Fremont High School in Oakland, a “Magnet School” where in addition to taking snooze fest classes like math and geometry I attended “The Media Academy” where I got to produce and star in videos, write for the school paper and spend my summers doing cool internships at the local TV station!

  • I broke up with my one and only high school bf (and by broken up, I mean finally mustered up enough self esteem to release myself from a toxic relationship). Hallelujah! 🙌🏽

    Back in my day, a senior photoshoot consisted of a visit to the school cafeteria where a cheesy black velvet sash was draped over your chest and a less than enthusiastic “photographer” snapped your pic.

My how times have changed. For the better!

It was a BLAST photographing this divine young lady. I’m honored that I was selected to capture her final moments in high school before she spreads her wings and heads to college (gulp) out of state.

Jolie, we’re rooting for you!

Pleasanton senior photoshoot
Pleasanton senior photoshoot
Pleasanton senior photoshoot
Pleasanton senior photoshoot
Pleasanton senior photoshoot

How To Get Anything You Want | Outdoor Glamour Photoshoot

Whatever Lula wants… Lula gets!

“I just decided that I wanted (insert object/experience here) and it came to me!” - Lula

I wouldn’t believe it if I hadn’t seen it with my own two eyes, but I’ve witnessed this woman manifest European vacations, getaways to Mexico, mentors, and most notably peace in the midst of storms.

When I first met Lula 3(ish) years ago, I knew she was someone I wanted to know forever. She fascinates me. Most people I’ve met throughout my life have an internal set point to focus on bad news. You know exactly what I’m talking about too.

Most folks can go on for hours, days, uhm years about how crappy or unfair this, that, and the other is or was. But, Lula is not most folks. She sees the world in much the same way my 12 year old does. Full of wonder and possibility. She turns new corners and opens new chapters in her life with complete faith and open-heartedness.

I once called her a superhero.

Her special ability is to start each day with a clean slate. In her nearly 50 years (right?! I can’t believe it either!) she’s seen her share of hard times, heartache, and disappointment - BUT, she doesn’t carry it with her. She struts about light as a feather. I’m in awe of this woman and so blessed to call her friend.

Outdoor glamour beauty photography
Outdoor glamour beauty photography
Outdoor glamour beauty photography
Outdoor glamour beauty photography

And then we celebrated her beautiful eritrean heritage 🖤

Outdoor glamour beauty photography
Outdoor glamour beauty photography

San Ramon Maternity Portrait Session

And baby makes 3... I’ve been blessed to create headshots, engagement photos, and now maternity images for this amazing couple! I’m always honored when expecting parents choose me to document such a pivotal moment in their lives.

Can’t wait to meet their beautiful baby girl 🖤

I only have one regret with regards to motherhood. See, I never treated MYSELF to beautiful maternity photos. So, when I’m commissioned to create legacy images for new parents, I’m all in.

San Ramon Maternity Photography
San Ramon Maternity Photo Shoot
San Ramon Maternity Photoshoot

Every client arrives to my studio with some degree of nervous energy. Sometimes it’s just a few butterflies and other times it’s a monsoon of nerves. The first time you shoot with me, you may arrive with your guard up, because you don’t yet understand that I will “hold your hand” through it all and you’re completely BLOWN AWAY at the beautiful images we capture.

The second time you shoot with me, you’ll start off far more comfortable and confident than the first time and you’ll love your images even more than the first time!

The third time you shoot with me. It’s. Pure. Magic.

Whether it’s your first or your fifth time with me, you never have to wonder if you’re “doing it right.” I’ll do everything in my power to make you feel right at home. I’ll also pose you down to your fingertips.

In a nutshell… I’ve got you!

San Ramon Maternity Photoshoot
Bay Area Maternity Photoshoot
Bay Area Maternity Photoshoot (San Ramon)

Bay Area Beauty + Glamour Photography

“You gain strength, courage, and confidence by every experience in which you really stop to look fear in the face...” - Eleanor Roosevelt

Can a photoshoot change the way you see yourself? YEP!

Hasina is an incredible makeup artist who I had the pleasure of creating some beauty/personal branding images for. I love guiding women who don’t see themselves as “glamourous” step into the goddess that lives inside of each of us. I had THE BEST time photographing this bombshell and makeup artist extraordinaire.

Watching my clients unfold in front of my camera is the greatest feeling.

Bay Area Beauty Photography
Bay Area Glamour Photography

You don’t need to perform or pose, just allow me to guide you as I help you tap into your natural strength, beauty, and poise. It’s easy peasy and so much FUN.

Bay Area Beauty Photography
Bay Area Beauty Photography
Bay Area Beauty Photographer

I absolutely love helping women reveal their inner goddess to THEMSELVES!

Bay Area Beauty Photography

Bay Area Actors Headshots

Photographing this aspiring actress gave me a serious case of deja vu. Seems like just yesterday I was hustling for auditions, on set til the wee hours of the morning, and getting into all kinds of glorious mischief with my fellow thespians.

Bay Area Headshot Photographer

This was Beverly’s first professional headshot session! I worked as an actress and print model for over 10 years. So, when I get a brand new performer in front of my lens, I love providing a bit of mentorship as well dope photos. I’m proud to report that my guidance helped her land her first commercial and theatrical SAG franchised agent and her first commercial.

Bay Area Headshot Photographer

I love helping my headshot clients emote out a variety of moods and “characters”. EVERYTIME I photograph an actor, it makes me miss acting. My favorite thing in the world is connecting with other performers and making beautiful art.

Bay Area Headshot photgrapher

I’d love to photograph YOU! Find out how here.

Personal Branding + Headshots for Boss Babe Ashley

Google “boss babe” and watch this powerhouse of a woman’s image appear. This busy Fortune 100 VP/General Manager of a multinational conglomerate had exactly 15 minutes to capture headshot gold before jetting off to an important meeting across the bridge in San Francisco.

20 years ago when Ashley first began her Corporate journey, she routinely endured condescending comments about her southern accent and blonde hair. She struggled to be taken seriously and was routinely passed over for opportunities.

But her grind + time payed off. Not only is she at the top of her game, she is also an incredible Speaker and mentor (and a whole lot of fun to photograph!)

This is the gorgeous face of perseverance. And it’s why I LOVE THE WORK I DO. I photograph amazing, joyful, world changers.

“Mawiyah was great to work with. She was efficient, energetic, and I loved every image we produced in the short time we had to work together.” - Ashley

“Mawiyah was great to work with. She was efficient, energetic, and I loved every image we produced in the short time we had to work together.” - Ashley

Can you believe that it was over 100 degrees in San Ramon this day?! The sun was hot, but Ashley was cool, calm and collected.

Can you believe that it was over 100 degrees in San Ramon this day?! The sun was hot, but Ashley was cool, calm and collected.

Headshot San Ramon, California

Personal branding headshots set you apart from the pack and help you connect with your dream audience/clients. Find out how to book your session today!

Personal Branding Headshot San Ramon