Intimate Wedding in Joplin, Missouri | Snowflake Photography | Pittsburgh, PA Portrait Photographer

When you are in the presence of true love, it really moves you.  These two timeless souls exemplified all that one can expect from a relationship built so firmly on love and respect.  I had the honor of photographing their wedding weekend in Joplin, Missouri and will remember the day for a very long time.  Their vows written and spoken to each other were filled with such honesty and had a magic to make you feel as though you were listening to the beating of their hearts.  I would wish them all of the happiness in the world but I am pretty sure they will make that happen.  


~ Marisa


OHHHH and did I mention that before all of this they ran a half marathon on the day of their wedding!  xo

Keeping it real | In Home Lifestyle Play Session| Snowflake Photography | Pittsburgh, PA Portrait Photographer

When I first started my photography journey I used my canon slr and loaded roll after roll into the back.  I shot my sister washing her car, my dad planting a tree, my brother goofing around or my mom cooking dinner.   I captured images of the flowers in our yard or the garden as it grew.   I wish I had taken more of my grandparents doing their thing.  I hold those images close to my heart.  My own personal photography is full of just the everyday beauty of dirty knees and moments that just happen to present themselves in our natural day.  So getting to shoot an in home session with one of my favorite three year old was what I would consider perfect!   We did what he wanted to do. That list included play with trucks, use his umbrella, swing from the garage as he loves to do in any temperature, play in his tent, and eat lunch (super hero glass included).   It was a day of him at three and that's worth remembering.  It's worth having a professional eye look at your everyday to turn it into a keepsake.  So from their home to yours.....

~ Marisa


The best place in Pittsburgh to photograph Newborns | Snowflake Photography | Pittsburgh, PA Portrait Photographer

Leave your baskets and props on the shelf and come with me to the best place to photograph your newborn....... 

Your home of course!  I know you're thinking that maybe your home is not Pinterest worthy but I bet there's a story there and more beauty than you might think. 

When I first took my photography into the realm of being a business I kept away from newborn photography.  Not only did I think that I lacked the skill to pose those cute little newborns on bean bags and propped up in baskets, I really lacked the desire.   Now don't get me wrong, I think that some of those images are super cute and I marvel at the skill to edit out fingers and posing helpers as well as sooth a newborn into some of those super dreamy positions but I just didn't feel as though it was what I wanted to capture.

I have been lucky enough to have clients who want that sliver of life within their walls that tells a story of what it's like for them as parents to a newborn in their own home.  Swaddled up sweetness, bathing beauties, tired little bundles within their own cribs and parents just completely smitten by that new little person.  

So if you are expecting, maybe give your home a second glance...


A little fun in windy Pittsburgh weather | Snowflake Photography | Pittsburgh, PA Portrait Photographer

The weather here in Pittsburgh has been changing from day to day.  With that change in temperature comes wind.  Yesterday was an exceptionally windy day and the play cape came in handy.  I am lucky that she thought of it because I try really hard to capture the authentic moments rather than anything contrived.   

 What we ended up with was a super interesting collection of images with movement and speak again to the magic of childhood.  To think that we spent only five minutes in a small space of our driveway.  Further proof that you don't have to leave home or have super romantic scenes to get images that are dear to your heart.   

Hard to photograph... impossible to forget | Snowflake Photography | Portrait Photographer Pittsburgh PA

If I ask my older daughter to wear a dress, sit in a tub of water, climb a wall, dance in a puddle of mud, face the sun or shut off a light.... well she does it.  She is the reason I fell back in love with photograph because she gave me time to hone my craft a bit more.  My littlest..... well she is the challenge to capture but she is the reason that I've gotten better at my art.  She normally sports a serious face and so many of my images are of her contemplating life.  I love every bit of it.  When a family apologizes for a difficult toddler it doesn't phase me in the slightest.  What does tend to worry me is their expectations of the final images.  Do they want what really is or do they want some version of their child that only exists in a frame?  I am lucky that most if not all of my clients look for the former.   

I am also lucky that I am home with this littlest one and I have had the pleasure of photographing her throughout this fall.  The other day on the way home from pre-school I asked her if she would allow me to photograph her.  She originally said no and then just like that, changed her mind.  We stopped at this beautiful building and yard near our home to run around for a bit.  Today she wanted to smile and run and skip.  Today was a true picture of her just as all of the other ones where she is serious.  So here we are between the age of four and five, between the seasons of sun and snow, and in a perfect time where childhood is carefree and safe and she is whomever she pleases to be in the moment.  

~ Marisa

Pittsburgh City Shoot | Snowflake Photography, Pittsburgh PA Portrait Photographer

I have been all over the place shooting gorgeous seniors, families, and school kids but I wanted to stop in to share a few more from recent sessions.  Such an amazing family!  If you want to feel happy go and spend an hour or two with this foursome.   Elated to be part of their new city adventure. ~ Marisa

Hope | Snowflake Photography | Pittsburgh, PA Portrait Photographer

From the first phone conversation with her mom, I knew that I was going to enjoy this session.  They were looking for something different and after seeing images from a former client they knew that Snowflake fit the bill.  This young woman has her interests blossoming in so many arenas it really made me feel like I should up my game a bit!  She was so easy going and took directions with ease (I actually think she didn't even need my direction).  Her smile was genuine and so it made the session fly by.  We had worried about rain and yet we didn't experience a drop of it on this perfect evening. If you don't mind a play on words... It was all I could hope for. :)  (I just had to ) ~ Marisa

Senior Style | Snowflake Photography | Pittsburgh, PA Portrait Photographer

OH my goodness was the day hot!  Here we are in September and my gauge in the car was reading close to Ninety degrees! Sometimes you worry that it's too hot or too cold for someone to relax but this is where working with high school seniors pays off.  I mean really, they come across cool no matter what the weather.  Luckily it cooled off a bit by the time we got to the shoot and as we moved from site to site it was clear that a little heat wasn't a problem.  We were so happy to hang out with this charismatic young woman and even more impressed with how sweet she was, not only to us, but to her mom. She was so energetic that it was a bit contagious and we left with smiles on our faces.   I'm excited to see what the future holds.  

~ Marisa

Late Summer Evening Light | 3 year old portait shoot | Snowflake Photography Pittsburgh PA Portrait Photographer

Late summer evenings carry a romantic tone with them that make little activities feel like you are savoring something rich and sweet.  This particular evening felt just like that.  The warm day was still lingering but the air had a hint of a cool evening ahead. The light was fading but glowing down on us as we tried to capture a few moments with a just turned three year old who will soon become a big sister.  How lucky will I be when there are two of these sweethearts to photograph?! But as it stands I feel blessed to have had this evening, these moments captured to remember the little girl who had a great deal to say about day with a smile and a pout that equally filled me with delight.  Life is so simply beautiful sometimes.  




Buon Compleanno: Portrait of a little girl's party | Snowflake Photography | Pittsburgh, PA Portrait Photographer

Family birthday parties are always something that I have held close to my heart.  I can close my eyes and see my grandparents and siblings standing around our blue dining room table singing to me happily in tones both off and on the correct scale.  Everyone brought something to the party and everyone celebrated the special birthday person, whoever it was at the time.  I was lucky to be part of this celebration of family as this little sweetness turned three!  Happy birthday or as  Nonna would say "Buon Compleanno!"





Love, a mom at the beach | Snowflake Photography | Pittsburgh PA Portrait Photographer

I adore the beach.  I imagine some of the first people standing on the shore, looking out and wondering what was out past what they could see.  On our honeymoon on Petit St Vincent we slept with the sound of waves crashing at the wall that formed the base of our cottage and I felt as though I was somehow in rhythm with the heartbeat of the planet. I know it sounds poetic and probably a bit crazy but it makes me happy.   As we drove closer to the shore I could almost hear the waves speaking directly to me.  The smell of sun block and the feel of salty hair. Sandcastles and wave jumping.  If I lived there would I be as enamored or would I come to take it all for granted.  My girls.... have visited a few beaches on the Adriatic, Caribbean, and the east coast. But this time I felt as though both of them were really able to absorb all that I find enthralling about the shore.    How lucky I have been to have a summer with a few scheduled trips. I tried to catch what I could of this love through the lens and no other instrument could be more connected to my heart with stronger ties so hopefully this gives you a glimpse into the affair. 

~ Marisa