New Year, New Leaf | So SF Studio Portrait & Commercial Photography

Hello Gorgeous!
Out with the old and in with the new, they say — woohoo to 2016!

In this coming year we’re turning over a new leaf…
Shaking things up in our business and updating our portfolio, clarifying focus in business & home, life & work, creating new goals and keeping a few oldies — Don’t you just love a New Year!

To start, we’ve updated the website.  Once upon a time we were taught it was best for our clients to divide up our genre’s of work across multiple urls — separated — the idea was that our portrait clients wouldn’t be interested in our commercial work and vice versa.  However, after trying this approach for a while, we decide it wasn’t working for us — too many urls to update, cards to create and carry, etc. sweetlightstudios-2016-website

Fragmented Thinking.  The hardest thing to do is admit when you have a problem😉

When it comes down to it, we decided, we are primarily Studio Photographers creating Portraits and Commercial Product Images.
Our goal is singular: Capturing Images to Last a Lifetime.

Clearing the Clutter, Simplifying and Becoming Better Communicators are some of the goals we have set this year, along with growing our business via client relationships (because your friends are as great as you, right?).  We’ve decided our portrait clients just might want to know about our commercial work, and included it, streamlined to show the work we want more of.

101_mother-daughter-loved-ones-sf-studio-photography-family-portraits-sweetlightstudiosLoved Ones! Modern, Contemporary or Traditional, we are opening up the studio to more Family Sessions with Loved Ones to capture Relationship Milestones. I love creating radiant heirloom portraits, portraits to be treasured forever.  I believe we need more of these in our world.

Professional Business Head-Shots

Personal Branding!  My passion for creating great head shots and personal branding images is still evident, I am so excited to meet and photograph all the wonderful business professionals booking in this year.

Intimate Beauty Portraiture Test

Makeovers! Of course I will continue to offer makeover sessions, because every bride deserves to feel as fabulous as a super model with a glamorous photo shoot designed just for her to Rock the Frock!
(Besides, we’d miss making those amazing Before and After pics, wouldn’t we?)

Alexis Cover for WiGo Goods

Commercial! Letting you see all fun and fabulous products we’ve been lucky enough to photograph…
Rather than be divided into various genres of commercial photography on a multitude of other sites, we brought everything into the studio website, reducing clutter in our organizational process and allowing for a bit of freedom.

My top resolutions this year are to:
* Build More Business via Quality Client Relationships
* Travel More
* Eat Well
* Love what I do even more everyday!

What are your resolutions for this year?
Hoping one is to come into the studio and  See Yourself in a New Light!


Schedule a Portrait Session of your own at Sweet Light Studios and See Yourself in a New Light!
Phone: 1+415/409.9389  | eMail:

Sessions at Sweet Light Studios | Portrait Photography in So. SF

Hello Gorgeous!

“How do your sessions work?”
I get asked about the sessions I offer here at Sweet Light Studios a lot — about my services, pricing and how it all works…
I thought I’d just spell it all out here, where it’s easy to see when ever you decided you need to know ( don’t you love tech? this world wide web thing is fantastic)!

As a control freak, I like to be in control of all things in my world — lights, camera, wind, sun, clouds, temperature and rain — you get it, eh?
So, I primarily offer my Studio Portraiture Services in my little humble South San Francisco Studio.  I have a few simple “sets” and a fabulous ‘natural window light’ feeling flash I built that enables me to create glowing radiant portraits.  This is my preferred comfort zone.

I offer two kinds of portraiture sessions here in my studio:
* Mini / Profile Sessions = take about an hour, including shooting, on up to three backgrounds and image review.  Your session may take more or less time, depending on how quickly you choose your images, how much you like to chat and how cooperative other subjects in your party are.
Clients typically turn up ready to be photographed.
Session Prices start at $300 for up to 3 people and include 3-5×7 portraits.
5×7 portraits are only offered through these sessions, add-on’s $100 each.
Professional Business Head-Shots

* Makeover / Glamour Sessions = take up to 4 hours, including makeovers for up to 2 people and photographing on up to 4 backgrounds.  You session may take more or less time, depending on the level of styling desired, how much you like to chat and how cooperative other subjects in the party are.
Makeover Sessions are stylized sessions and include a pre-session consultation and post-shoot viewing session.
Session Prices start at $250 for up to 2 women; packages and ala carte pricing is available for portraits from these sessions.


The SERVICE I offer throughout these sessions is from my soul — I care about your image, so I will listen to you and work with you to make portraits that you will truly love for a lifetime, images your loved ones will cherish forever, your family will be proud to display.

No matter which session you feel is right for you, know that I will not rush you — some folks naturally need a little more time to warm up to the camera and my style of coaching.  Others take to my direction like fish to water!

Some people are very particular about their image or don’t feel very photogenic, if you are like this, know that I am happy to spend some extra time helping you achieve the Perfect Portrait to match your persona.

Not a quick decision maker?  No problem, I’ve run into this before…
After your session fee is paid I am happy to post a private gallery from which you can view the images and send to friends for feedback… just know that there are certain in-studio savings that are offered only once at your viewing, and galleries naturally have a short lifespan online.


Everything purchased from me is fully retouched in my style and then printed on a luminescent metallic paper… I love the glow and luminosity this paper gives to portraits — the strength is a lovely bonus, too as the coating helps these prints be more durable and resist fingerprints & smudges.  When you purchase a Folio Box, your metallic prints are hand mounted in black mattes, and come enclosed in a beautiful hand-made box — I know, everyone wants digitals these days — not a worry, you get both!  Share online and hang on the wall!  Best of both worlds.


Got a space or place you’re in love with?  I can also be persuaded to go on location creating corporate portraits, product shots, and group portraits… I have the best of time going on location and exploring our world, though schlepping all that gear comes at a cost.   You’ll need to know, I primarily shoot indoors, though, as you might have guessed, to be in complete control.   Pricing varies by location, please be in touch to commission a location session.


I am so happy and grateful to do what I love as work — life is such a gift, let’s share it with each other….
Looking forward to shooting with you soon!

Beauty beyond Perfection!
Schedule a transformational beauty portrait session of your own at Sweet Light Studios and See Yourself in a New Light!
Phone: 1+415/409.9389  | eMail:

Loved Ones | Family Portraiture at Sweet Light Studios in South San Francisco

Hello Gorgeous!

It’s that time of year again…
the winds grow chilly and the sacred dark of night lingers longer, pressing us in close, calling us to hearth and home, this time of year turns my thoughts to family, to loved ones…
this is the time of year I am reminded “There is Nothing more valuable than our Loved Ones”!
When our loved ones are not with us, nothing is more important then photographs of our loved ones!

Modern Glamour Beauty Portraiture - Family Style
I don’t have many photos of my Mother, save for a prom portrait and a few snapshots here and there.
And this leads me to wonder, where was she?
(BTW — I know my mother was there when I was growing up, looking through however there is not much evidence of it in my photo-box.)

As I look deeper into the box, I have trouble finding many photos of myself in the box either, though many many portraits of my children.

I was definitely there whilst my three were growing up…
however not much is in the box to show for my presence, save for a few family portraits when they were wee-little ones.

Transformational Beauty Portraiture - the family

There is no better gift than the gift of studio photography…
As narcissistic as it might seem, it’s vital for us to exist IN photographs for our children, not only so they KNOW we were there, but to give them the opportunity to FEEL our presence in their lives as well…
tangible proof of our existence, of loving them!


Some of my favorite photo session are Mother-Daughter sessions….
I am so blessed to have amazing clients — like this fabulous Mother & Daughter who are building their legacy with beautiful heirloom portraits together.  Nothing says “I Love You, I Want to Keep You Close Forever” like portraits.

Modern Glamour Beauty Portraiture - Family Style

This is the BEST time of year to create family portraits!
When your loved ones visit for the Holidays I invite you to come see me, bring your family, let’s take some time to create some heirloom portraits to last a lifetime — capture the essence of your loved ones to treasure forever!

I want to share your connection, I want to photograph relationships…
Your relationships!


Schedule a Mini “Loved Ones” Portrait Session of your own at Sweet Light Studios and See Yourself in a New Light!
Phone: 1+415/409.9389  | eMail:


Preparing for your Brand Image Portrait Session! South San Francisco Portrait Studio

Hello Gorgeous!
Whenever I book a session to create brand images it’s usually for a new business or entrepreneur…
invariably the first question (after securing a date) is “What should I wear?”.

Clothes, of course!  I laugh because that’s not the first thing I think of when preparing for a brand image or head-shot session — the first thing to think about is “What is the impression you’d like to make?”.
This may seem a funny thought to some, but go with me for a minute, you’ll see…

I’ve written before about how I believe Your brand image speaks volumes about you and is often the first impression one may have of your service, goods or business — Let’s go with that.
Are you casual or formal in your line of work?  Do you want to be perceived as friendly and inviting or long to be viewed a bit more stoic, academic or  judicial?  Are you an artist or creator — do you litigate or analyze throughout your day?  This is your chance to present yourself on your terms, polished and perfected.

sf-headshots-professional-corporate-profile-photographer_web-mark_Reggie -Davis-comp_20130822
Before your session, know that Grooming is Essential — the devil is in the details, and the camera picks up every detail!
Be sure to consider
Hair Cut

  • Hair, if you need a touch up, go see your colorist a few days in advance — I can do corrective work in post, (‘shopping out roots is a tedious job, and costs more than seeing your hairdresser to start with, so yeah, book that appointment before your shoot!).  Caution: This is NOT the time to try out dramatic new cuts!
    On the topic of hair, If you go for brow waxing or threading, book that appointment a few days in advance of your session, to be sure any little irritations will clear away before your session, ties in with…
  • Skin, we want a clean and healthy glow — lots of water in the days before, lots of sleep the night before and a little light exfoliation the day before won’t hurt one bit (we like “The Microdelivery Daily Exfoliating Wash” from Philosophy, it’s even good for boys — all this info is guy friendly too, btw)…Model: Charlene, Ford SF
  • Teeth, if it’s been a while, now’s a great time to schedule a cleaning, we need your most confident smile on shoot day, or you could add a whitening kit or brightening strips to your shopping list to save time and money.
  • Finger Nails as well — just because you are coming round for head shots doesn’t mean those hands won’t enter the picture!  Now’s the chance, splurge on a manicure the day before (or at least file & buff the day of).

Next, my mind always wanders to props
Think about what you do, and what you can hold/embrace/lean-on that might tell the world what you do, without a word.

Some of my clients have brought in tools of their trade to enhance and really personalize their brand image — for instance a chef brought in some veggies and a knife, authors have brought along their books and writing instruments, a woodworker brought in his laser cut card, and musicians always bring their instruments (never have to ask)!

Barry Figgins, Renaissance Entrepreneurship Alumni.  Barry owns and operates Lyris Laser Studio | Professional Business Portraiture by Shelah Osbrink of Sweet Light Studios

Laser Cutter!

What set’s you apart that you can bring along?

Hair & Makeup Artist Nadescha

Makeup Artist!

Need some inspiration?  Who are the leaders in your field that you aspire to be like?  Google them or your title (check the image tab!) and find some simple inspiration images from their blogs, sites or books — bring in what inspires you and we’ll create something even better!

Kavitha Raghavan -- Renaissance Entrepreneurship Center Alumni. Kavitha recently graduated the Business Planning Programme and received her Sommelier Certification.  She is in the process of building a business paring Indian Foods with Fine Wines for a unique taste experience. | Professional Business Portraiture by Shelah Osbrink of Sweet Light Studios


Now that you’ve thought-through all of this, you’ve decided on the first impression you’d like to share & gathered your props, I deem you almost prepared for your session…

Before going to your closest, think about meeting with your ideal clients and colleagues on an average day and how you feel doing the work you do, and how much you love your clients, start from there…
what’s your ideal favorite “power outfit”, ponder the things you feel most confident in!

Finally, let’s talk about wardrobe!  First and foremost, I always recommend wearing form fitting solids in photos…
don’t worry about the shoes or what the bottom half of you looks like😉
Big poofy chiffon blouses with prints feel great and look fabulous, but rarely photograph well, leave them for summer.

Personally, I really like monochromatic portraits to feature and focus on your face and beautiful, authentic smile…
with that in mind, when you go to your closet, look for black or white jackets, tops and dresses!

I also have backgrounds in gold, lavender and mixed browns so blues, pinks, lavenders, and earth or jewel tones are complimentary and match up as well, texture is always a bonus!  For your session we can go formal or casual or a mix of both, be sure to bring accessories, too — it’s okay to bring more than a few things, we can edit together.  web-mark_Dr-Khaleghl-Quinn_Profile-Portraits_by_Sweet-Light-Studios_20150922_SHE2774-Edit

Once you’ve chosen your wardrobe, be sure to clean and press what you’re planning to wear and bring it along to the studio on hangers!
Whew, you’ve done a lot, almost finished — I’ll tell you that those sessions that are most prepared yield the very best results!

Oh, One more thing…
On the day of your session, if you will be doing your own hair and makeup, give yourself some extra time and style yourself up the way you would for an interview or first meeting with a client, super simple and easy.   This is always a great approach (arriving camera ready) because I promise you will look authentically ‘you’ when people meet you for the first time as your portrait will match your true real self!

If you are having someone do your makeup, another great way to go — especially if you’d like to look polished but are not adept at applying makeup or styling hair — it’s best to ask before-hand how your stylist would like you to arrive.
In the studio we always request no makeup, moisturizer only on the face and clean dry hair; bring along hair accessories and any makeup you just can’t leave behind.

web-nomark_BTS_20130818__SHE0267Okay, now you’re good to go and in the know…
Can hardly wait to see what you bring along!


Schedule a personal brand image portrait session of your own at Sweet Light Studios and See Yourself in a New Light!
Phone: 1+415/409.9389  | eMail:

Behind the Scenes with Laura | Personal Branding Session | South San Francisco Headshot Photographer

Hello Gorgeous!

Last week I made a time-lapse stop motion video behind the scenes of an actors headshot session, while musing that next I must learn to add music…
Well — I did it!

>> yay! insert happy dance here <<
(can you visualize it?)

So, I sat down and I taught myself to use iMovie in a day, not only adding music but intro/titles and transitions too, oh my!

>> yay! insert another happy dance here <<
(don’t you just LOVE the internet?)

Laura came around looking to update her profile image on LinkedIn and Facebook, when I told her what I’ve been up to, she graciously allowed me to photograph the behind the scenes action during her session…
even the giggly parts — we had so much fun together — can you tell?

web-mark_Laura-Brossard_Personal-Brand-Portraits_by_Sweet-Light-Studios_20150903_SHE2469-Edit Laura is the best sport ever, and now has a fresh new Brand Images to boost her to the height of success…
wishing her all the luck in the world!


web-mark_Laura-Brossard_Personal-Brand-Portraits_by_Sweet-Light-Studios_20150903_SHE2475-EditTo quote Dan Schawbel: Visibility creates Opportunities.

I’d LOVE to help you update your Brand Image at the studio, let’s create some opportunities for you…
Onward and Upward!


Schedule a personal brand image portrait session of your own at Sweet Light Studios and See Yourself in a New Light!
Phone: 1+415/409.9389  | eMail:

Behind the Scenes Peek | Actors Headshots | Sweet Light Studios South San Francisco Portraiture

Hello Gorgeous!
Quick post this week, I’ve been trying to learn to use my iPhone and iPad for video — two reasons:

  • Communicate with You, Visually, about what goes on around here😉
  • Communicate and establish a long distance relationship with my grand-daughters!

I’ve made a few “nature” snippets, whilst playing around with the iPhone on weekend holidays…
you can find those posted on Instagram (@inSweetLight — come visit me!) if you want to enjoy 15 seconds of inspiration: waves or bells and flags in the wind or a mountain stream.  I try to make the learning fun, you know.

Then, I found this “timelapse” setting on the iPhone and really started to have some fun in the studio…
now, I’m inspired to learn to how to add music — ’cause what wouldn’t make this time-laps of an Actors Headshot session even more fun than some old-timey silent-movie fast-action piano music playing along!   I’ve also learned to post on YouTube — oh, boy, this should be interesting!

What a fun and fast session that was, eh?!

Michael came around looking for an updated head-shot, we came away with more than a few great captures…
here are the winning selections.  I think the favorite is the second one — can’t help but love a big, authentic grin.


web-mark_Michael-Matamoros_Actor-Head-Shot-Photography_by_Sweet-Light-Studios_20150820_SHE2388-Edit web-mark_Michael-Matamoros_Actor-Head-Shot-Photography_by_Sweet-Light-Studios_20150820_SHE2431-Edit
I am soooo lucky and blessed to be able to do what I love and have fun at it too…
wishing the same for you!

If you don’t love your work, how you gonna’ love your life — I believe that the work you do allows you to do what you love when you are not working, so what’s not to love?  Give it your all and make every day a Sweet Day!

See you soon!


Schedule a actors head-shot session of your own at Sweet Light Studios and See Yourself in a New Light!
Phone: 1+415/409.9389  | eMail:

Gold & Lavender | New Backgrounds at Sweet Light Studios | Modern Glamour Portraiture in South San Francisco

Hello Gorgeous!
I was feeling kinda uninspired and experiencing the doldrums when it came to working in the studio, so rather than wallow any longer I decided to get up and do something about it. Little did I know then, that I would start this little project Again, and again, over and over and than once more again… And now that it’s finished, I’m excited!

Recently someone came into my life and the message was made clear — “I can not fail (ever), I can only produce results”.

So, while pondering, my mind took it’s time to wrap around this huge concept, I slowly began to understand…
for you see, I had trapped myself in a miserable block of frustrated artistry that says
“I MUST to do everything perfectly, or I have failed”.

That kind of thinking sets us up for stagnation…
Self Sabotage, Small Thinking & (dare I say) Depression.
I’ve turned it around, time after time with positive thoughts, like:
— Imperfect Action Stimulates Momentum.
— Edison didn’t fail, he discovered 1,000 ways NOT to make a light bulb.
— Mistakes are only harmful if they are not learned from.

I thought to myself, if I could do anything for my clients what would I do?
I’d give them more options during sessions!  So, I set out to acquire new “walls” and paint them for backgrounds.

Honestly, I was stymied with the notion of how to get Styrofoam “walls” to the studio from the hardware store — 4×8 sheets of Insulation material make for a great faux wall — no need to carry far, but far enough not to want to actually hand-carry them.  Store Delivery was the same price as the materials, rental vans fraught with all manner of additional fees and waiting… sheesh, what’s a girl to do?

Luckily, A friend offered to help — so off and away for the first go we went, not more than a block away the Styrofoam walls we’d lovingly put atop his car snapped in half from wind lifting them.  Clearly we are photographers, not movers!
A couple of weeks later we decided to give it another go as he had to pick up some heavy 4×8 background sheets and we figured we’d sandwich the foam in between — yay! Success  I felt optimistic again, new, unbroken Styrofoam at the studio!

Not thinking about the project much more, I stripped off the Mylar & plastic coating on said Styrofoam as a bit was ripped and got busy painting new backgrounds (the sad broken bits were taken home for another project  — another comedy of errors as on the way home we had to stop and tighten the ropes around the foam atop the car whilst going over the Bay Bridge — not a place you want to stop. Ever. LOL, good times, yeah.).

As I added more and more layers of paint I slowly realized the paint was settled right in…
We’ll, we’re all about the positive spin, right — so, This result? Lesson Learned: Styrofoam is like a sponge, leave the plastic and Mylar on & paint right over it said the web (second lesson, watch those YouTube Vids again before starting that project just to make sure you got it down).
Back at the paint store they suggested PRIMER — so, a couple cans of primer and a couple more cans of my favorite colours and back at it!  Much better — while they are not perfect, the result is finally usable (and, hey, I figure I can change colours again when I get board, so cool cool).

Several days later, a few more buckets of paint & a whole lot more time than I wanted to invest, I am proud to say I am offering additional colours to my repertoire of Glamour options: Gorgeous Gold and Luscious Lavender!
So far, these walls are a hit!
Comedy of Errors plus a whole lot of mistakes later, I see it’s true — Imperfect action really does stimulate momentum!
Two subjects that love the new look, new flowers and props in the studio and I’m inspired to make something new for you out of the broken bits of Styrofoam lying out in my garage!  Just ordered the materials and I’m so excited!

So, see there Gorgeous — nothing is perfect, never is there waste and always know something great can come out of a mistake, if we can only laugh and learn whilst holding on to a positive thought!

Let the good times roll!


Schedule a transformational beauty portrait session at Sweet Light Studios and See Yourself in a New Light!
Phone: 1+415/409.9389  | eMail: