family portrait photography in Santa Cruz

Creating your family portraits and preserving precious memory

There are few portraits more precious than a portrait of your family. A portrait is more than a photograph. If you are looking for a portrait which is truly meaningful and sensitive, please talk to me. Don’t wait until it is too late. Here are some stories from my clients.

I want to create a portrait of your family that is even more beautiful than you ever dreamed it would be. This is one of my favorites. Click on the photo to see more photos in the gallery.

family photography Santa Cruz


I had been wanting to do a family photo for quite a while but never took the time to get it together… I had never heard of Portia Shao, but then, I didn t know any photographers so I just went for it. It ended up being a great choice for me! My daughter lives out of town and it was a little difficult to find a time when all four of us could be together to even take a picture. Portia was wonderful in helping with offering to work when she normally wouldn’t to accommodate my needs… The photo shoot was amazing, not only did she spend more time than I would have expected, it was a blast! We all were laughing and having a great time. Portia took probably hundreds of shots, in all different combinations of the four of us. I ended up with exactly what I originally wanted and more, I now have a beautiful collage of my two young adult children and the best picture of myself ever taken! Thank you Portia for capturing my family in time that we will all enjoy for many years into the future!” Dana, Santa Cruz





Family portrait sessions can be a real fun experience, especially with children, like this one

Talk to me about clothing choices, here are some tips on what to wear for your family portrait session.

Unique family portrait


Your family is probably not like every other family. Here is Brandon’s idea of his family portrait, and I throughly enjoyed creating it for them.I went to Portia to shoot a unique ‘ family portrait’ involving costumes, special effects and dragons. Portia was patient with my idea and kids, and absolutely captured my vision on film! Better still she had fun with the concept and really took the time to make and improve the image I wanted. Absolutely a great experience.

Since every family is unique, your idea of a family portrait is not the same as your neighbor’s so it is a really good idea to set up a complimentary consultation before the photo session. Brandon would never get what he wanted if we did not talk about what his ideas were, and his children had their ideas too, they also came to the consultation so we were able to plan the session successfully!

Check here for steps to getting a great studio experience and don’t hesitate to ask me if you have any questions, via email me, phone/text 831-426-1400 or use the “Leave message” button on this page.






Or if your family included some furry 4 legged members, that’s not a problem, bring them! I have even photographed a family with chickens and another with rabbits! Here is how to contact me.

pet-photo-by-Portia Shao--800x-76