Family Art Photography & Printing | Blog


Here you will find monthly posts outlining our photographs, our passions and what Family Art has to offer.

Family + Children's Portraits  •  Poolside + Underwater Session  •  Pet Photography

Newborn + Baby Portraits  •  Engagement + Proposal  •  Wedding Photography

Events & Conventions  •  Business Head-Shots


Photo Sessions offered at our on-site Outdoor Studio, At Home or On Location 

Our Print Shop is located at the Loews Portofino Bay Hotel in Universal Orlando


Become a Family Art Member for discounts and free prints.


Be My Valentine | Photography

February 03, 2017  •  Leave a Comment

Untitled-2Untitled-2 Valentines DayValentines Day

    Valentine’s day is about spreading compassion and love towards the important people in our lives. This day is not always about significant others, feeling lonely for one day or buying cheesy gifts which may get thrown away. To Family Art - Valentine's Day is about sharing love with all of your friends, family and the special people in your life who are always there for you. Chocolates, flowers and teddy bears are wonderful and all, but why not give a gift of memories which last more than a lifetime?


Specializing in outdoor photography sessions on-site at The Loews Portofino Bay Hotel at Universal Orlando and, At Home or a Location of your choice for an additional fee.  We can help capture your true emotions in our photographs leaving a lasting impression for everyone to remember.

Following your session, our Print Shop offers a wide range of Print Packages & Digital Images to choose from.


Ceramic TilesAluminum AcrylicCanvasSlatePrint Sheets Digital

Find the perfect gift to fit your loved ones style and decor.


Digital Online Galleries are available as well, so that you can share the love for everyone to see.

Let’s celebrate bonds that can never be broken, loving emotions and genuine laughs
- not just for one day -
but every day!

To Book a Session:

Call (407) 503-1365



(Book an appointment for the month of February - mention “Be My Valentine” & receive a special Valentine’s Gift at your session.)
Valentines DayValentines Day

Mercedes L. Castro

Thinking about doing a First Look ? | Weddings by Family Art

October 21, 2014  •  Leave a Comment

We know traditions are an ongoing topic (and sometimes an argument) between you, your significant other, and your family. Was the father of the bride asked for her hand in marriage? Did the bride get her something borrowed, something blue? Are we breaking plates? Cutting cakes?

    What seems to be the most important wedding tradition is whether or not the bride and groom see each other before they walk down the aisle.

Lets hope not, right? It’s bad luck!



Or is it?

    Since this blog is focused on “first looks” and we were also intrigued by this tradition and its existence, we did a little research. What we found was pretty interesting. According to our findings, the reason why people today, in 2014, still think it is bad luck to see the bride before the wedding day is because a few centuries ago, when weddings were arranged rather than chosen, when they were a business deal as opposed to a life path of love, the families of the bride were afraid that if the husband-to-be were to see his future wife and was not satisfied by her appearance, then he might decide not to marry her.







This reason alone is why most people in America believe that bad luck will strike if husband and wife accidentally sneak a peek at each other before they walk down the aisle.


    Nowadays, since arranged marriages are not as common and fiancés have most likely seen each other before the wedding, there is no need to worry about runaway spouses. There is, however, need to worry whether or not your photographer captures that special moment when you see each other for the first time. Photos of your wedding will always be important, tradition or no tradition. You will be looking at them for the rest of your life.


   Because of this fact, we are proposing a new tradition. It’s called a “first look”. Although we did not come up with this idea, it’s sudden popularity and the benefits of its practice have motivated us to spread the word about it.











It’s simple: the bride and groom take a moment before the ceremony, before everyone has had anything (or at least, not as much) to drink, to be alone. The groom waits at a special place for the bride, who taps him on the shoulder and asks him to turn around. This is the moment that they get to see each other for the first time, without hundreds of eyes gazing upon them. This stress-free, genuine, beautiful moment will be documented by your photographer. After this authentic, love-filled, emotional moment is when all of the family photos can be done, leaving plenty of relaxed, precious time between ceremony and reception to exchange hello’s, thank you’s, and I love you’s.


    Of course, we don’t blame anyone for wanting to stick with tradition. After all, it is your wedding, your special day. However, just to make sure you are able to make the most well-thought-out decision possible, lets cover all of your bases and take a look at all of the things that get missed when couples wait to see each other until the ceremony:

    1. Getting that first look on camera is extremely important and special. When you pay a photographer a lot of money to capture every precious moment, you want to get your money and memory’s worth. If a relative accidentally gets in the way of your first kiss, the lighting in your venue makes it difficult to see, or if any other incident occurs that may keep the photographer from capturing your special moments, remember, it’s difficult, if not impossible, to recreate them.


    2. After the ceremony, when you want to get all the photos with your family, you will find yourself looking all over the place for them, wasting precious reception time. Everyone scatters to find the bar or a long-lost relative after the ceremony. Most likely, nobody is thinking about pictures. It can be very stressful and time consuming to try and find everyone you need for all of the family shots, and, a lot of the time, even when you find them, they might (and usually do) drift off. Why stress about anything on your wedding day? Why waste any valuable time?

    3. And what happens when your family takes forever to be found? It gets dark quickly, and the best photos are the ones in natural light. That light disappears quicker than you’d imagine, and when it’s gone, there’s no getting it back until tomorrow. So what will you do when the sun goes down and the lighting is gone? Or when the lighting is orange because of the setting sun and everyone looks like tangerines, all because it took forever to find everyone for photos?









4. In our opinion, the most unfortunate thing that can happen from waiting until the ceremony to do a first look is authenticity. Sure, you may think that everyone and everything around you will melt away as your stare into the eyes of your soulmate at the alter, but what if someone turned up missing before the ceremony? What if the DJ puts on the wrong song? What if Uncle Chris is shouting things that you really wish he wouldn’t shout? Like life, weddings can fall off plan, and it isn’t always a bad thing. If your photographer is a professional, he or she will be trained to capture all of your silly, beautiful candid moments without flaw. But if you are stressed out because something went wrong in your ceremony and you have to try and and pretend like you are happy come family photo time, believe us, fake smiles are the easiest thing to spot. Is that really what you want to remember?





Capturing the moment when your first see each other, your “first look”, is essential for your photo album. It’s the one you will be staring at for the rest of your life, saying, “Wow, that is truly love.” Isn’t that what you had in mind when you decided to hire a photographer? So why not get what you’re paying for and participate in a new kind of a first look.






There is a lot to gain when deciding to participate in a first look, such as:

1. It’s the one time the bride and groom will really get to be alone at their wedding. The entire ceremony and reception requires will be crowded with people. People they love, of course, and want to be around, but trust us, there will be that time that you wish you could spend with just the two of you besides just at the alter.

2. Like we said about authenticity, the most genuine moment of your wedding will absolutely result from doing a first look. This is because of the precious alone time you will have, an uncensored moment of seeing each other for the first time without the nerves of knowing so many people are watching you. Not that we expect that you will be focused on those people during your ceremony, but we know from experience that the first look creates a different, more intimate kind of feeling that we guarantee you will want digitally documented.


    3. Of course, first looks require preparation. You will have to make sure that your family/bridal party will be assembled and ready to take family photos before the ceremony (and what better time than right after they just got their hair and make-up done?) You

will also have to make sure that everything is ready to go by the time you participate in your first look because the ceremony should happen right after. However, how rewarding and relaxing would it feel to know that family photos will be taken care of before the ceremony even begins, that everyone will be there on time (exceptions being cases of life not going according to plan, missed flights, traffic jams, but we would hope that everyone you care about would be at the wedding at least 15 minutes before the ceremony anyway), beautiful lighting for your wedding photos, and having so much precious time to mingle with family and friends immediately after the ceremony? Sounds pretty rewarding and relaxing to us! Best of all, your photographer will have all that time to focus on all those great candid shots during the wedding and reception.


    Tradition is a beautiful thing. It reminds you of your roots and makes you feel as if you are participating in something older than your great-great grandparents. But have you ever considered what you might be missing when you participate in something you know nothing about? What is more important to you: following tradition or getting the best photos and eliminating as much stress from your special day as possible?

    Lets start a new tradition, one based out of love and appreciation! Lets do a first look!

Written by April Welker

Photography by Family Art Photography + Printing


Tips for Back to School Photos - Family Art

August 16, 2014  •  Leave a Comment

It's that time of year for the kids to go back to school which means the sometimes dreaded school pictures are just around the corner! It's so important to have that annual documentation of how cute Suzie was when she was in 3rd grade and how awesome Billy's mohawk looked in 7th grade, but we know it can sometimes be stressful. Here are some quick tips to help you get back great school pictures you can hang in your home for all your friends and family to see!

1. Make sure any new haircuts are more than one week before the picture date. It might seem like a good idea to get little Tony a fresh new haircut the day before school pictures, but sometimes those haircuts might not come out the way you like. Or sometimes they need a few days to fall into place and look natural. So to be safe and give yourself one less thing to worry about, book those haircuts at least a week before school picture day.
2. Choose a perfect outfit in advance. Most people look best in bold or vibrant colors in school pictures. Solid colored shirts are best because they will emphasize your child's face and minimize any distractions in the photo. Of course make sure the outfit is clean and wrinkle-free, but make sure it's something your child will be comfortable in to guarantee the best chance for that sweet, natural smile!
3. Relax! If you're stressed or nervous about your kids' pictures, they'll pick up on it and be stressed, too. Just let them be themselves and enjoy it!
If for some reason those pictures just don't capture the essence of your little one, come see us for a harbor portrait session! Our photographers are able to take more time with your child  and let their personality shine through, plus they can help you pick out great prints and products to hang in your home or share with your extended family. Give us a call at 407-503-1365 or email us to set up a session. Our studio at the Portofino Bay Hotel is open daily from 10am-6pm
Dawn Aiello

"A single sunbeam is enough to drive away many shadows"
-- St. Francis of Assisi

Photos of Love with Family Art this Mother's Day!

May 13, 2014  •  Leave a Comment

To the mothers, who offer us their body, soul, and everything in between. To them, who are the ultimate expression of coexistence. To those for whom love is not a feeling, but an instinct.

To those whose hand is gentle when we need it and firm when we (perhaps unknowingly) also need it. To those who remain graceful in the face of chaos, and who play every role in one.

This one’s for you.






We live through you and you will live through us. Thank you, for everything.

Happy Mother’s Day to all the wonderful women who make an art of family, from all of us here at Family Art.

5 Top Tips for Wonderful Easter Family & Kids Photo in 2014

March 19, 2014  •  Leave a Comment

Easter and springtime are one of the most popular holidays to have your family photos taken.


Because it's great to start off the year with a family portrait that reflects how your family started the year- especially while your kids are young and changing so quickly! Also, the vibrant palette of Spring Easter clothes add a great splash of color to your family & children's portraits. Of course, putting your kids in fancy clothes and trying to line your family up in front of a camera is an easier thing said than done. If you'd like your Easter 2014 photos of your kids & family that will really wow your friends and family, then save yourself a headache with these tips from our photographers.


1.  Use a professional photographer. No matter how great your camera is, there is more to getting a good portrait than meets the eye! Finding an experienced and well recommended photographer will make your experience much less stressful, and means you don't have to balance your camera on self-timer to get yourself in the photo too. Photographers not only have a variety of ideas for posing & setting up more candid shots, your kids will also usually pay better attention to someone who is not their parent. Also, experienced photographers know about how to use ambient lighting to make sure you and your kids look your best.

2. What do you wear to an Easter portrait session? The two most important things are that you pick clothes that are a. colorful & reflect your style, and b. comfortable and make you or your kids feel good about yourself in. No matter how cute that fitted dress is, if it's too itchy and uncomfortable that it causes a distraction for your little one, it greatly decreases your chances for success for getting a natural, happy portrait of your child! Don't be afraid to add some color to your outfits also, but make sure you pick a blend of colors that go well together. Accessories also add a fun touch- hats, flowered hair ties, and other little details are a great way to compliment your kids smiles.

3. Have fun & give your kids something to smile about! Bubbles. Flowers. Balloons. Easter baskets. A beloved family pet. Some people can smile easily on demand, but for those of us "cheesy smilers" out there or people who are more nervous in front of the camera, candid moments and props can help us look our best. So instead of asking your kids to smile (and then asking them to do a "real smile"), try giving your kids a bubble wand or telling them or count their Easter eggs. You will be amazed by the simple fact that adding a fun element to your photos will make your kid's pictures turn out much better. Since these are Easter photo sessions, getting photos of your kids playing with their Easter baskets, toys or and your family pet can make their photo experience much more fun. Oftentimes these days parents want to take a perfect picture, and they put too much pressure on their kids. We photograph thousands of families every year, and when we are looking through our photo sessions you can definitely see a difference in when kids are genuinely having fun, because it shines through in the best photos!
  "central florida photography", family, "art", "family art", "family photographer","family photography", "family portraits", "fun portraits", "kids photography", "kids photography studio", orlando, "doFamily photo sessions at the Portofino Bay Hotel Harbor. We're the exclusive photographers for the Loews Hotels at Universal Orlando, where we offer family portrait sessions.

4. Pick a fun, well lit location. This is a great time of the year to be outside, especially if you live in Orlando! Springtime flowers are out, and there are plenty of beautiful green lawns about that will add a wonderful natural feel to your kids photos. If you book a session here in Orlando with one of our family art photographers, we have a great area that is gorgeous this time of year at our Villa garden here at the Portofino Bay Hotel. And keep your eye out for our next blog entry, where we'll share our top 5 favorite photo locations here at our gorgeous resort location!

5. Don't forget to share & gift your photos. What's next after you've taken your spring or Easter family photos? Now it's time to share, display and archive your photos. ep your loved ones updated. Nothing will cheer a grandparent's day like getting a great portrait of their beloved grandkids (tip: grandparents love clear, close up portraits of your kids faces).

  • Display & Gift: If you look around your house and you only have baby photos up of your 8 year old, it might be time to think about re-decorating with your new family photos! Our photographers can work with you to create beautiful prints that you can use to incorporate into your home decor, from your living room to your kid's bedrooms or to brighten your day at the office. Printing your photos professionally is not as expensive as you might think, and the quality difference means you will have a photo for generations instead of something that will fade in a year or two.
  • Share: Keep your friends & family updated on your family- ask your professional photographer about purchasing a DVD and the "digital rights"of your photo session, which will allow you to share your photos on social media sites like Facebook, Instagram, Google+, Twitter,  or email.



To schedule your Easter family and kids photo session, email or call us at (407) 503-1365. And please let us know sooner rather than later, since it is one of our busiest times of the year here for our Family Art Photography team! Explore our website or see what we're up to on: Facebook & Google+

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