• Hello & Welcome!

    My name is Corina Nielsen and I am so happy you stopped by. I provide custom photography services in San Diego, Ca., mainly specializing in newborn portraiture and I also run a separate graphic design business helping photographers define their business identity. You can see samples of all my work right here on my blog... both of my photography and design portfolio's are located right in the above menu! Please take a look and if you are interested in either booking a session or getting on my design wait list, you can use the contact form to get in touch! I look forward to talking with you soon!

{Baby Mason}- San Diego Newborn Photographer

Every baby I photograph 100% utterly and completely melts my heart.  I can truly find something so amazing and special about each and every baby that comes in my studio.  Baby Mason was an absolute DREAM baby though!  Gorgeous, slept like a champ so I could pose him any which way I wanted, had the most adorable little crinkles in his forehead, and THE best pouty lips ever!  I think he gets the award for best lips of 2011!  Truly truly one of the easiest & amazing babies I have every photographed.  It was a good day….

Because Mason did so well during his regular session, I begged mom to come back and get a few more shots…. specifically this image I had been wanting to do for quite some time!  Just something I selfishly wanted for myself:) As you can see, Mason did amazing and perfect!

Michelle Regner - January 12, 2012 - 9:52 am

I loooooove those wrinkles!!!

melissa treen - January 21, 2012 - 6:34 pm

these are precious images…beautiful work!

[...] throughout the year/s but nothing beats getting to play with them again!  It was wonderful seeing Baby Mason again and I cannot believe how much he has really grown and changed… can you believe the [...]

{Baby Stella}- San Diego Newborn Photographer

One of my top 5 business resolutions/goals this year is to actually blog my sessions… one would think this is a simple task, but when you have a large design workload, regularly scheduled sessions each week, 2 kids with sports and lots of dance classes, a husband and a new puppy, well time seems to constantly get away from you.  Last year, I had over 85 sessions and probably didn’t even blog 1/4 of them.  It’s so sad and I know I am doing my business a huge disservice!  This year, I am vowing to blog each and every session I have…. there I said, I put it out there so I know I have to try my hardest to accomplish the goal.  However, before I get into the thick of shooting again for 2012, there are quite a few newborn sessions I just have to show off!  I have them all prepped and ready to blog already so over the next couple of weeks, Im going to get those up and then start with my new sessions:) It’s January 10 and I have already had 3 sessions & 4 more scheduled this month!  I foresee lots of posts this year and wouldn’t you know it, Im already behind lol!  Hope I can catch up before February!

Going to go back a few months and share some images from this sweet little bundle’s session.  Meet baby Stella… she was an absolute DREAM baby!  No matter what I did with her, she looked amazing!  Here are a few of my favorites from her session!

This is us…

This year, I vowed that come rain or shine, I would make sure my own family had pictures taken.  My husband is really good about making sure that I’m not always the one behind the camera, but he is always reluctant to be in front of the camera himself.  A couple of months ago, after I decided to do our own family pictures (thank goodness for a remote and a tripod), I mentioned it to him and of course, I got a little snarl.  At that point, I knew I had to have a little heart to heart with him because for some reason, this year pictures were really important to me, more so than any other year for some reason.  I said one thing to him during that conversation that stuck in his heart… “Do you realize that if God forbid something happened to you, me and the kids would literally have 2-3 pictures of you?  We won’t ever be able to look through an album and see “us”.  Of course we will remember, but it’s just not that same as looking at a photograph.  So please, just think about it?”

I didn’t even have to say anything else.  Surprisingly, he agreed to do pictures and even went as far to get in on the “what to wear” ideas with me!  Now these pictures were literally done within 1/2 hour and NOBODY was cooperating or smiling except for Makena and I.  I was actually quite upset 15 minutes into the “shoot” and really just gave up.  I was happy knowing I would have at least a couple of good pictures though which ultimately is what I wanted anyways.  But as the photographer, you have all of these ideas in your head and then when you feel like you didn’t do it “right”, you become frustrated… at least thats I how I felt.  Oh well, there is always next year right?

However, when I got home to edit the handful of images I thought I got, I was SHOCKED to find that I truly truly LOVED so many of the shots and realized I had so many more than I first thought.  Then when I had them printed for family last week, I fell in love all over again.  I’m super super happy with them and know that I was probably the one being the sour puss the day we shot!  Don’t get me wrong… it’s annoying that both my husband and son have a hard time smiling on command, but I will take what I can get!  And the more I look at these images, the more I realize, this is US!  My son is moody, my husband hates being in front of the camera, my daughter and I are both ham’s, but they did this for ME and I am thankful for that…. AND these images.

It goes to show that you don’t need a lot of time.  You don’t need a fancy location.  You don’t need props.  You just need the ones you love around you and the “magic” happens on its own.  No excuses anymore.  I will be doing family pictures each and every year from now on.  This time I used the tripod, next year I might not.  It all comes down to capturing your family.  If you aren’t a photographer, if you don’t have a tripod, don’t have a fancy camera, don’t have the money for professional pictures…. who cares.  Have a neighbor take the family picture in front of your house, then you and your husband can can take turns.  I promise you though, that single picture in front of your house, taken with a crappy point and shoot camera will be looked at many many times and probably cherished by your kids and grandkids for years to come.  It’s not about anything, EXCEPT your family.

That being said…. here WE are in all our glory!

Just as I was finished with my photo session meltdown, I got into the car SO ready to leave.  Then my husband literally carried me out of the car, gave me a big hug, and said “Now it’s my turn to shoot a few!  The family needs pictures of you too ya know!”  I wasn’t really in the mood, but I couldn’t resist since he seemed rather excited about it.  He took on the photographer role in all it’s glory… directing me and all!  Surprisingly, I love what he did.  I think he totally captured me.

I’m silly.  I’m a joker.  I’m sarcastic.  I’m emotional.  I love with my whole heart and wear it all on my sleeve.  This is me.

I find it fitting to start off this New Year with something personal on the blog.  I wouldn’t be anywhere without my husband and kids.  Without their love, encouragement, help, and ongoing support I would have nothing.  I truly feel blessed every single day for all that I have been given and couldn’t imagine a world without them in it.

This is us…. and I love us.

Here is to another amazing year.  I can’t wait to see what’s in store!  Happy 2012!

Adrienne - January 1, 2012 - 12:18 pm

You have a beautiful family, Corina! Happy New Year to you and yours!

Sam Tutton - January 1, 2012 - 2:50 pm

Corina these are beautiful images. You’ve inspired me to try and do the same thing. I have hardly any images of me or my family all together. Wish me luck!

1 workshop, 3 babies, 8 photographers = amazing

Last week, I was able to be a part of one of the best experiences ever!  When Keri and I first started talking about holding a workshop here, I was obviously super excited but also a bit nervous since my studio hadn’t even been built at that time!  I had no idea how big it was going to be, how it would be set up, etc.  Then when the workshop immediately filled up, I thought to myself “Holy crap!  How am I going to fit 6 photographers, Keri & I, AND a family in there!”  The space is absolutely perfect for me and my newborn sessions, but that many people at one time?  I had panic attacks just thinking about it!  However, I am happy to report that although we were snuggled close, everything worked out perfectly…. it was hot and cozy!  We could not have gotten better models, families, weather, photographers, shots, etc.!  The day went off without a hitch and I think everyone learned so much!  I am thankful for the experience and to Keri for traveling all the way from Washington to be here and have me host!  She is absolutely amazing at what she does and its no wonder she is the BEST at her job!  Take a look at some of the action….

Our first model…. Isiah who had the BEST hair ever by the way!

and some of my own shots of Isiah…

While setting up and spotting, Keri helped the gals…

Our second model…. Taj (another perfect little guy)

And on to our last model of the day… Baby Journey (um, yeah, cutest name ever).

By the end of the day, we were all totally beat!  It was a long, full, and wonderful day.  I couldn’t have asked for more….

A very special thanks to Keri Meyers for her trip, her knowledge & expertise, and a blessed day.  Not to mention her crouching down a bit in this picture of her and I so I didn’t look so short:)

A-M-A-Z-I-N-G

Christie Brown - December 13, 2011 - 2:28 pm

What a special day, and beautiful pics! Love your large window & space.

Denise Burrridge - December 15, 2011 - 6:33 pm

Hello lady!!
What a great opportunity!
I’m looking forward to doing a mentoring class with you once we move to Vegas!
Have a wonderful Holiday.
prosperity, peace and love

Hope - January 16, 2012 - 10:44 am

How awesome to host a workshop like this. I was wondering if you are ever going to do anymore workshops in the future? I would love to be apart of something like this to get one on one training. Please let me know. Thank you!! Have a great day :)

Pumpkin Gingerbread Latte Cupcakes

Oh the holidays… a great excuse to bake, overeat, overspend, and be merry.  Every year I like to try a few new recipes and add to the classic family items I do every year like pumpkin bars, sugar cookies, oreo balls/cake balls, and dutch apple pie.  These are things my family can count on every November/December without fail.  However, I get adventurous sometimes and like to spice things up a bit.  Last week, I was feeling a little spicy myself and thought I needed some gingerbread in my life.  However, I don’t really like gingerbread cookies per se and opted for doing cupcakes instead.

I had found a couple of different recipes and thought I would try both.  One is totally from scratch and then another one uses a boxed cake mix, but spruced up!  They had unique flavor and texture, but I don’t think I could say which I liked better so I will give ya both!

Version I

If you aren’t into the whole baking thing and are a boxed cake mix kinda girl, use this recipe  (I altered from here):

  • 1 package (18 1/4 ounces) spiced cake mix
  • 1 package (4-serving size) vanilla instant pudding mix
  • 1 cup pumpkin puree
  • 1/2 cup oil
  • 1/2 cup strong brewed coffee
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon, ground
  • 1 tablespoon instant coffee (I used Starbuck’s Via)
  • 1 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1 teaspoon cloves, ground
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

Directions
Preheat oven to 350°F. Beat all ingredients in large bowl with electric mixer on low speed just until moistened, scraping side of bowl frequently. Beat on medium speed 2 minutes or until well blended.  Pour into paper lined cupcake pans, filling 2/3 full.  Bake for 18-20 minutes.

Version II

If you don’t believe in boxed cakes and like doing everything from scratch, try these here (I added the Starbucks Via as well to give more coffee flavor):

  • 1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground ginger
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cardamom
  • 1/8 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1/2 teaspoon allspice
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 stick (1/4 cup) plus 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup unsulfured molasses
  • 1 large egg, beaten lightly
  • 1 cup canned pumpkin
  • 1/2 cup strong hot coffee
  • 1 tbsp instant coffee (or Starbucks Via)
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
Directions
  1. Preheat oven to 350°F
  2. Add flour, the ground ginger, the cinnamon, the cloves, the allspice, and the salt in a bowl and sifc.
  3. Add 1/2 stick of the butter and granulated sugar in bowl and beat until mixture is pale and fluffy. Add molasses and egg beat until the mixture is smooth. In a measuring cup combine the baking soda with 1/2 cup very hot strong coffee water, instant coffee,  and stir until baking soda is dissolved. Stir the baking soda mixture into the molasses mixture (the mixture will appear curdled) and the combined molasses and baking soda mixture into the flour mixture, add pumpkin, stir until ingredients are well combined.
  4. Fill cupcake liners halfway. Bake the cupcakes on the middle rack of a 350 degree °F. oven for about 20 minutes, or until a tester comes out clean. (Cupcakes will be flat on top.) Transfer the cupcakes to a rack to cool completely before frosting.
When the cupcakes have cooled go ahead and prepare the frosting!  Most cream cheese recipes will call for a whole 8 ounces, but my family doesn’t like the stuff too much so I always opt for something with a little less “tang”.  I can get away with using the cream cheese when I use this recipe!

Cinnamon Cream Cheese Frosting:

  • 4 ounces softened cream cheese (room temperature)
  • 1/2 cup softened butter (1 stick at room temperature)
  • 1 box (16 oz) powdered sugar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 teaspoons cinnamon
Add cream cheese, butter, confectioners’ sugar and vanilla into a bowl and beat until fluffy and smooth.  Chill frosting for 200 minutes before using.  Either glob some on or you can pipe it:) Garnish with a pre made gingerbread man and voila, instant holiday!  Absolutely perfect for December parties or just to fill the house with smells of Christmas!

Adrienne - December 6, 2011 - 4:42 am

Mmmm, can’t wait to try this out!