+ christmas photo session

Limited Edition Santa Sessions- Capture the Magic of the Season!

Did I mention that Santa will be there? We have put a lot of thought and care into choosing the perfect Santa and we have found him!

We will also be hosting a cookie decorating station. We will provide the cookies and the sprinkles- you just come ready to have some fun and create some lasting memories with your family!

Date: November 26, 2023
Location: Lavender Ridge Farm
Session Length: 15 minutes
Cost: $200
Includes: 8 high-resolution digital images
Additional Prints and Products: Available for purchase

Frequently Asked Questions:

1. How Do Santa Mini Sessions Work?

Santa Sessions are scheduled in advance with specific time slots. Each session lasts for 15 minutes to ensure a smooth flow.

If there is a particular pose you would like your group to do, let us know when you arrive at the start, as session times are limited. Please communicate your requests before your session is over so we can offer you your ideal experience and do as many poses as possible. If you do not wish for Santa to be in the photos, this is fine too, just let us know when you arrive or in your booking notes.

2. What Should My Family Wear?

Choose festive, coordinating outfits for a cohesive look. Consider holiday-themed clothing or colors that complement the setting. Remember that simplicity often works best.

3. Can we bring our own props or gifts for the session?

Absolutely! Bringing your own props or a small gift for your child to give to Santa can make the session even more special and personalized.

4. How can we prepare our children for the Santa session?

Before the session, talk to your children about meeting Santa. Share stories about Santa’s kindness and ask them what they’d like to tell Santa. A well-prepared child is more likely to have a positive experience.

Children absolutely do not have to sit on Santa’s knee. We have a variety of cute seats prepared and recommend that infants are held or cradled by a member of your group.
We have a very calm, gentle, and friendly Santa that even shy children warm up to. However, if you have a little one who is scared on the day, we recommend that Santa start outside the room and enter after you take a nice family photo.

5. Can we include our pets in the Santa Mini Session?

No, not for these sessions.

6. How do I book a Santa Mini Session?

Booking is easy! Simply follow this link to my landing page, follow the prompts to select your desired time slot, make your payment, fill out the short questionnaire, and confirm your booking.

7. How many people can I have in my photo?

A “group” is defined by immediate family. We understand all families are different; while we recommend between 4-6 people to a household group, we understand there may be more family members than this.

*HOWEVER* you will require more than one session if you would like to book extended family pictures (such as cousins, all the grandchildren, or a photo with family friends). If you would like to clarify the best option for your group, please contact me at shawnakeysephotography@gmail.com or give me a call during the week. 

Our Policies:

1. Payment: To secure your session, a $50 deposit is required at booking, and full payment is required seven days prior to your session.

2. Cancellation: Please select your time and date carefully when booking your group’s session. If you contact us at least 48 hours before your session, we will try to fill your spot. If we do, we will gladly refund your payment minus the deposit. If we can not fill the spot, refunds will not be issued.

3. Arrival Time: Please arrive at least 10 minutes before your scheduled session. This ensures a smooth and stress-free experience for your family.

4. Digital Image Delivery: Your high-resolution digital images will be delivered to you via a secure online gallery within 2 weeks. You’ll have the option to download and share your images with family and friends.

5. Print and Product Orders: If you wish to order additional prints and products, you can do so through your online gallery. We offer a wide range of custom products to display your beautiful holiday photos.

Don’t miss the opportunity to capture the magic of the season with Santa Mini Sessions! The memories you create will warm your heart for years to come. To book your session and ensure your spot, visit the booking page today. If you have any further questions, feel free to reach out at shawnakeysephotography@gmail.com

We can’t wait to see the smiles, laughter, and joy that Santa Mini Sessions will bring to your family this holiday season. Book now and let the magic begin!


That one time I almost died!


This story began 27 years ago.

Some of our friends from church organized a rafting trip to Ohiopyle, Pa. We were going to take a ride down the Youghioheny River and navigate some Class III and IV rapids!

“Let’s do this!” said the naive 23 year old me.

My sister-in-law nervously asked me if I was afraid. “Heck no! This is going to be great!” I boldly told her.

Then came the release forms to sign!

Wait! What? There was danger involved?

Then I became a little nervous.

We listened to all the safety instructions, put on our life vests, carried our raft to the river and began our 6 hour voyage.

In our raft, we had my husband, my brother-in-law, my scared sister-in-law and myself. We sat on the edge of the raft, like we were instructed, and started paddling down the river.

The first few minutes of the trip, we traveled through some beautiful and calm water with no white water in sight. Then….we bumped into a rock that was hiding under the water. And next thing I know, I was catapulted out of the raft!

Mike was able to grab my vest, hoist me back in and plop me back to my spot.


We continued on our adventure. At this point, I was a little more nervous and my sister-in-law was terrified! But there was no turning back!

We enjoyed a few more minutes of beautiful, calm water before we heard the thundering roar of white water!

Okay, I am exaggerating a little. It wasn’t a roar. It wasn’t even thundering. Honestly, I don’t think the water was making any sound at all at this point. But the water WAS moving a LITTLE faster when we hit another stupid rock and I flew out of that dang raft again!

And again, Mike reached down and grabbed my vest, hoisted me out of the raging river and plopped me back to my spot on the edge of the raft.

Yes, dear sister-in-law, now I was scared!

Especially when I heard the for real sound of white water!

I tried to remember what the instructers told us to do but all I could remember was what they told us not to do. And that was to not sit on the bottom of the raft! Which is exactly what my sister-in-law and I did!

Th next 5 hours and 45 minutes of this trip were spent in the bottom of the raft praying to Jesus that we would not die!

He heard our prayers and we made it off the river. But we both swore that we would never do that again!

I am older and braver now and decided to try white water rafting again. This time it was Mike, Emma and I on the trip. And they were only class I and II rapids.

It was fun and I didn’t die.

Thank you Jesus!


Sam + Kenzie

Sam and Kenzie were married on March 28, 2020. Right in the middle of a statewide stay at home order during the COVID-19 pandemic.

They had plans for a huge celebration with their many friends and family. We had spoken of all the plans they had for their wedding day. Kenzie and her mom told me about all the details they were so excited about. Just talking with them made me so excited to be able to celebrate with them.

But as we drew closer to the date, it became clear that they were not going to be able to have the celebration that they had been planning. At least not on March 28. After much counsel and prayer, it was decided that they would go ahead with a private ceremony on their chosen date. They just wanted to be married!

They were so surprised and touched when so many friends and family showed up in the church parking lot to celebrate with them. They honked their horns, cheered and waved posters. They even “passed the plate” and gave them a little money. So, so thoughtful!

This couple is so sweet! I love the way they interact with each other and the way that their faces light up when they are together. When I am with my couples, I like to hear their love stories and this is what Kenzie and Sam shared with me about the way they met…

We met in the parking lot at CTEC (school). I saw him and yelled out, “Hey are you Sam!?” He turned around surprised and said, “Yeah….” Before ducking into my friends car, I yelled back, “I’m Josiah’s sister!!!”.

He was already friends with Josiah. They met at Ross’ Granville Market (where they worked together) and they hung out just a little bit. We met again when I started working there. A couple months later, Sam and I started hanging out and watching movies. We did this a couple of times over the course of 3 years. I had no idea if he liked me or not.”

In August of 2019, we confessed that we liked each other. After going out on a few dates, he asked me to be his girlfriend. A couple weeks later, we knew that we wanted to get married and we wanted to do it this year. First we chose October 10th, 2020 then we moved it to March 28th, 2020- although, he officially proposed on December 2nd, 2019, after we had already started wedding planning!”

This is their story. What’s your story?



Limited edition Sunflower Mini sessions

As the warm embrace of summer gives way to the vibrant hues of autumn, there’s no better time to capture the beauty of nature in all its glory. And what better way to do that than with our Sunflower Mini Photography Sessions! These sessions are designed to immerse you in the enchanting world of sunflowers, providing the perfect backdrop for stunning photos that will brighten your day and your memories.

The Beauty of Sunflowers

Sunflowers are more than just a flower; they are a symbol of positivity, happiness, and endless summer days. Their golden petals radiate warmth and joy, making them a fantastic choice for a photoshoot backdrop. Whether you’re celebrating a special occasion or simply want to embrace the beauty of nature, sunflowers have a way of making every moment feel extraordinary.

What to Expect

Our Sunflower Mini Photography Sessions are a wonderful opportunity to create lasting memories. Here’s what you can expect:

A Picturesque Setting:

I have selected a stunning sunflower backdrop. The vibrant colors and natural beauty will enhance every photo.

Expert Photography:

I am focused on capturing the essence of the moment and will work with you to create a collection of photographs that you’ll cherish for years to come.

Fun and Relaxed Atmosphere:

I believe that the best photos come from natural, unscripted moments. Our sessions are relaxed and enjoyable, allowing your true personality to shine through.

Choice of Packages:

I offer a range of packages to suit your needs, from individual sessions to family and group options. Whether you’re celebrating an engagement, a birthday, or just want to update your family album, I have you covered.

Digital Downloads with Print Options:

After your session, you will receive 8 hand-edited images of your choice. You will also have the option to buy beautiful professional prints. You will be able to share your beautiful sunflower memories with friends and family or decorate your home with the warmth of sunflowers.

Booking Information

These Sunflower Mini Sessions are available for a limited time, as the sunflower season is fleeting. Follow this link to secure your spot or contact me if you have any questions. Don’t miss out on this opportunity to bask in the golden glow of sunflowers and capture the beauty of nature in its purest form.

In a world that often moves too fast, taking the time to appreciate the simple joys of nature can be truly rejuvenating. These Sunflower Photo Sessions offer you the chance to do just that while creating beautiful, lasting memories. So, embrace the golden glow of sunflowers, book your session today, and let’s capture the magic of this fleeting season for you to cherish forever. I can’t wait to see you in the sunflower fields!

+ senior photo session ideas

How to capture personality in a senior photo session

Seniors radiate a special kind of energy during their final year, and as a photographer, it’s my job to capture that confidence, personality, and individuality on camera. This blog post dives into the art of posing, selecting locations and curating outfits that will showcase their personality in their senior photo session.

1. Posing with Purpose:

My goal is to make my subjects feel at ease by starting with simple poses. I teach them how to place their feet, how to distribute their body weight, and even what to do with those hands. Once they’re comfortable, I will encourage them to experiment. If there is water nearby, maybe we will wade out into it or just kneel beside the edge. I also like to capture candid moments while they are interacting with their surroundings or engaged in activities they enjoy. The goal is to capture genuine expressions, showcasing their confidence and personality

2. The Magic of Locations:

Locations set the tone for the shoot. I like to consult with my seniors to understand their interests and preferences. Do they like urban environments, such as downtown sidewalks and brick walls? Natural landscapes, such as a park, woods, or an open field. Sometimes, even their home can serve as a great backdrop. The key is to choose a location that resonates with their style and allows them to feel comfortable.

3. Outfits that Speak:

Outfits are an extension of our personality. I encourage my seniors to bring a mix of outfits that reflect various facets of themselves. Whether it’s a trendy urban ensemble, a bohemian dress, or a sporty outfit, each choice should highlight a different part of their identity. Accessories, such as earrings, hats, or jackets, can also enhance the overall vibe.

4. Showcasing Hobbies:

Hobbies and passions are integral parts of one’s identity. Incorporating these elements into the shoot can lead to stunning photos. If a senior is a musician, for example, capturing her playing her instrument can be an incredibly powerful way to show her personality’ These images will reflect not only her confidence but also her interests.

5. The Natural Flow of Candid Shots:

While posed shots are essential, candid moments are equally valuable. I love to capture the interactions between shots, the laughter, and the unplanned moments. These candid shots often capture the raw authenticity of a senior’s personality.

A successful senior photoshoot is all about capturing their confidence and personality. Through thoughtful posing, location selection, and outfit choices, we can create a series of images that speak volumes about who they are during this pivotal time in their lives.

Hannah did an amazing job at her session. She wanted more of a natural landscape so we traveled to a farm of her family friend to capture these shots. We were able to incorporate some open fields, deserted roads, a rope swing, a pond, and even a rocky creek. The results definitely showcase her personality and confidence.

Are you ready to rock your senior photo session? I would love to connect with you!

+ family of five photo session

Hancock Family photo session|| Infirmary Mound Park|| Granville, Ohio

Nick and Bri met with me in Granville for a family photo session. I have photographed their three children for years and it is so fun watching them grow up in front of my camera. Oh. My. Gosh! They have grown up so quickly!

We decided to meet at Infirmary Mound Park in Granville, Ohio. I knew that Bri wanted summertime photos and we would be able to get that look for her at this park. They have beautiful open fields and wildflowers. Also, there is plenty of room for the young children to move and a playground for them to enjoy they are finished with their session.

Sometimes it can be difficult to wrangle three young children and get them to cooperate all at the same time. But I have learned to be patient, give them room to move, and take lots of photos! Because sometimes you just have to do a face swap in Photoshop!

The Hancock kids honestly did very well and we were able to capture some beautiful family memories.

Looking to freeze those precious family moments in time? A family photo session offers an unforgettable opportunity to capture the love, joy, and bond that makes your family unique. From candid shots to beautifully posed portraits, I am dedicated to creating a visual story that you’ll cherish for generations to come. Ready to book your next family session? Let’s do it!


Wildflower session|| Lavender Ridge Farm|| Newark, Ohio

The Smith Family joined me at Lavender Ridge Farm for a wildflower session. The flowers, temperature and lighting were just perfect. Which is a rare thing these days in Central Ohio.

The kids did so well! Young kids can be a ball of energy sometimes, but I have found that if I take a few photos and then let them run, I get good results. However, I did overhear Mom and Dad bribing them with chocolate, so that may be the real reason we got the results that we did!


Alex+ Sara || Wedding || Granville, Ohio

I loved hanging out with these two on their wedding day! They were kind, compassionate, genuine and absolutely in love with each other!

Venue- Cherry Valley Hotel and Ohio Event Center

Flowers– Foraged 774

Caterer- City Barbeque

Ben + Jessie Smith||Wedding||Vinberige Vineyards

Ben and Jessie were married on a beautiful, windy day among the rolling hills of Perry County, OH. Vinberige Vineyards offered such a stunning backdrop for their wedding ceremony with gorgeous views of the vineyards.

The Bride and Groom chose not to have a wedding party stand with them. I am finding that more couples are doing this and it does make for a very intimate ceremony.

After the ceremony, the guests were invited inside the barn for a delicious dinner, lots of wine, and hours of dancing!


Landoll’s Castle Wedding|| Loudonville, Ohio

Landoll’s Mohican Castle is one of the most unique lodging and wedding destinations I have photographed.

Located in central Ohio, deep in Mohican country and Loudonville, Ohio, this romantic venue is nestled in an enchanting forest making it a one-of-a-kind setting to host your fairytale wedding.

Named one of the top 3 places to get married in Ohio, what better place to exchange your vows than at an actual castle?

Landoll’s Mohican Castle offers a truly breathtaking wedding experience that you and your family and friends will remember for years to come. 


Aden + Abigail Triona|| Wedding|| Glenford, Ohio

Aden and Abby were married on a chilly December day at a small church where Abby’s father is the Pastor. It was very special for them to have their ceremony here as this is where Abby and her family have worshiped her entire life.

I had never been to this church and I was blown away by the beautiful natural light that streamed in on both sides of the sanctuary making it a dream come true for photographers!

And you know what else was a photographer’s dream? Being surrounded by people who are truly FOR each other!

All day long, Aden and Abby’s family and friends cheered them on and surrounded them with love. I loved celebrating with their sweet friends and family! And I wish this couple many years of happiness and blessings!


Ben + Taya Wilson || Home Birth Newark, Ohio

When Taya asked if I would be interested in photographing her home birth I did not hesitate to say yes! I have photographed many births but this was my first one done at home. And the fact that it was for someone very dear to my heart made it even better!

I did not know what to expect with this type of birth. I did love how the parents were in control of how they wanted the birth to go.

It was a very professional, peaceful, and natural setting and I would definitely do it again!


The Connelly Family

I met the Connelly’s at Dawes Arboretum for a family session. I hadn’t seen their little girl for a whole year so she was a little shy at first. But after a while, she warmed up to me and ended up having a great time. You can actually see the progression of our session in her smile!

I absolutey love working with families and I especially love it when I finally make friends with the littles!


Casey + Onalee || Wedding ||La Navona, Gahanna, Ohio

From the moment that I saw Casey and Onalee on their wedding day, I knew it was going to be a great day! They were all smiles from the very beginning! I absolutely love it when a bride and groom decide to leave all worries at the door and purposely make the decision to enjoy their day.

This was the first time that I had photographed at La Navona in Gahanna, Ohio. I can honestly say that I loved it! The venue was beautiful and the staff was so helpful. The bride and groom suites were very nice and comfortable with everything that the wedding party needed to get ready for the day.

  • Venue and catering- La Navona Gahanna, Ohio
  • Second Photographer- Taya Wilson (images not shown)