About Laura Mares Photography
“When people look at my pictures I want them to feel the way they do when they want to read a line of a poem twice.”
Welcome to Laura Mares Photography!
Since you are here you must be in need of beautiful portraits of your family. I love that. That’s what I do best! I strive to capture creative, natural, and timeless images of you and your family to treasure for years to come. My work is a blending of photojournalism and fine art.
I’m Laura, a newborn, child and family photographer based in Mt. Lebanon, PA and serving the greater Pittsburgh area. I have a cheerful, easy going personality, am patient and love meeting new people. I’m all about experiencing a whole-hearted life, engaging in meaningful conversations and recording the beauty in the world.
Beginning the journey
I grew up dreaming of becoming a photojournalist for National Geographic. I imaged traveling to the ends of the earth, photographing the beautiful people and telling their story to the people at home. I spent years working in a dark room learning the ins and outs of all things photography. I earned a communications degree with a minor in advertising, PR and international studies. With my heart set on travel, I took a job teaching English in Prague. It was there that I married my soulmate, a Czech lawyer fluent in Czech, German and English. Soon after, we settled down in Pittsburgh. Life was good. During my third pregnancy I did some soul searching and decided it was time to pursue a full time photography career.
About the business
I am an experienced photographer specializing in capturing timeless family keepsakes. Photo sessions are either on location (a local park, your home, etc.) or in my fully equipped home studio, located in Mt. Lebanon, eight miles south of Pittsburgh, PA. My goal is to create an experience where my clients feel comfortable enough to enjoy themselves while feeling confident that I’ll capture who they are with my camera.
I consider it a joy and a privilege when you hire me as your photographer. I am committed to producing the best work possible for you. I take pride in my photography and consider it art. I search to provide unique, high end props including: authentic antiques, souvenirs from travels, knitted and crocheted outfits and blankets, vintage plaid wool blankets, natural furs and flokati rugs and wooden plank floor boards. I strive to answer your emails, be punctual, and deliver your gallery and products in a timely manner. To stay current in an ever changing industry I attend monthly entrepreneur meetings and multiple photography workshops each year.
I have had many satisfied clients since I first began this journey in 2001, capturing magazine covers, yearbook portraits, head shots and group shots for the Legal Intelligencer, Duquesne University, Carlow University, Frick Academy, Baldwin Whitehall School District as well as many families around Pittsburgh. My work has appeared nationally and internationally in magazines and art shows. Although this all started back when I was in college at Robert Morris University, I took a couple breaks to travel and have kids along the way. It grew into a full time business in 2015.
Plan on having fun during your photography session. I love creating an environment that is fun for your family while also setting the scene to create beautiful portraits for your family. While Laura Mares Photography offers a variety of props, I love focusing on the simple and unique features of you and your family like your children’s freckles, crooked teeth and messy hair. I have a knack for capturing the simple beauty in life -like the love between family members, the silliness of a two year old, and the look your 6 year old gives you that can melt your heart. Children are incorporated in family sessions, but if mom and dad want to take a back seat then simply book a child(ren) session. Please note that pets are welcome at lifestyle sessions!
Where photography meets creativity and heart.
Frequently Asked Questions
What kind of photographer are you?
I am a lifestyle and portrait photographer. I strive to capture creative, natural, and timeless portraits. I am trained in everything from classic portraiture to lifestyle images which focus on connections and moments and natural light.
What is your style?
Clients often say they like my candid and fun approach. I would say I’m free-spirited and focus on capturing genuine moments. I love to have fun while creating unique photos in beautiful locations with you.
Where are your sessions held?
I travel around Pittsburgh! Lifestyle sessions are in clients homes while studio sessions are in my home studio. I have several favorite outdoor locations around Pittsburgh, from natural and rural areas and beautiful parks to urban spots. Let me know your preference and we will find a gorgeous place to meet.
When are newborn sessions scheduled and held?
Typically newborn sessions are scheduled while you are pregnant. Posed newborn sessions are held when your baby is around a week old. Posed sessions center around putting sleeping babies into curly poses. Lifestyle newborn sessions are held when your baby is around 2-4 weeks old, when babies are a little older and allow for connections to be captured between you and your baby.
Will we receive digital files?
Yes, all packages include some amount of digital files. The digital files come with a print release so you are free to print them from any lab, although I’m partial to prints from professional labs!
What should we wear?
Clothes should be comfortable and fitted. Layers add interest in the portrait. For families I recommend starting with mom’s outfit and coordinate the family to mom. Read more tips on the blog.
When will our images be ready?
Typically your gallery of proofs will be ready in about a week. Once you choose your favorites it will take around a week for edits.
When should we book?
I tend to get booked 1-2 months in advance. However I do leave a few openings for last minute sessions. When you are ready to book, please click on the contact link in the menu to share with me about your needs.
Do you direct us?
Yes, I do. I direct you into basic poses and encourage you to laugh, interact and have fun from there.
Do you offer any incentives when I refer you to friends?
Yes, I do! To thank both you and your friend you will both receive a $50 print credit towards prints from my website. Please note: Print credit is only to be used towards prints and cannot be traded into money towards a photography session.
How can I order prints and products from you?
If your package includes a print credit, you will receive a coupon code when your gallery is edited to order your prints directly from www.lauramares.com. For other items, I will order them for you and let you know when they have arrived.