David Marano Photography | Blog

Family Portraits Fullerton Arboretum

Okay, this Abigail is probably one of the cutest girls I've seen in a long while. Well, that's sort of lie cause I think all the kids I photograph are the cutest little humans. Basically, she was a ham in front of the camera. Made my job easy that day. Captured at the Fullerton Arboretum in Southern California, my new favorite location for Family Portraits. 

Retouching Edits

I've always thought it's important for clients to understand what their investing in when hiring a professional photographer for either a one-hour photoshoot or a full eight-hour wedding day. To touch base on one important time sucker that goes into digital photography is the editing and retouching of images. Speaking for most professional photographers out there, the "editing room" is where we spend a vast majority of our time, besides marketing and running a business. For example, if I photograph an eight-hour wedding, I'll typically spend around 40 hours after the wedding; editing, retouching, uploading, ordering fulfillments, and color correcting the images. So we photographers don't just shoot for an hour or eight and collect our checks, there's much more behind it than you'd think.

Editing images also plays a large part into a certain style a photographer creates behind their images. The way they add or subtract saturation, contrast, vignetting, etc, this all gives a photographer that style to their images. Not everyone can hop into Photoshop and fix blemishes, remove dust spots, color correct, improve their composition or contrast, this list goes on and on. That's one of the many reasons why one hires a professional, to do all of that and more. With all that said, I wanted to at least share an image shot directly out of my camera and then the final edit delivered to client. I think this image helps paint a good picture of editing and what goes into it all. Thanks Andrea for letting me share. Feel free to click on the image to enlarge and take a closer look.    

Laguna Beach Family Portraits

I haven't posted on here in a while due to the Holidays and the hustle and bustle that goes along with it all. I'm so grateful for all the families that came through the door over the holidays. It was such a privilege photographing you all! Thanks to everyone for the support and love over the years. Cheers to an awesome future ahead!


Laguna Beach Portraiture

I was excited when Andrea asked me to do some portraits of her. She's an emerging photographer that has an amazing eye for imagery, and it's rad seeing someone so young following what they love doing. No one knows where life will put you, but staying true to your passion is a good start to end up somewhere nice and lovely. I'm fired up to see where Andrea ends up, she's a talented and all-around epic human being. You go girl!!

Sunrise Ocean Prints

Wanted to share a few photos I got the other morning from a fun little swim session in San Diego. Sunrise shots offer up some great lighting for waves. Digging the blue hues in these images. If there is anything you see on here or my instagram feed, feel free to shoot me an email to purchase any photo prints.

Newport Beach Family Portraits

I think one of the best things about photographing families is getting know a bit more about them while I shoot. A vast majority of my clients are from referrals, so most everyone falls into the six degrees of separation category. More times than not, I'm walking into a family I've never met before, and meeting these new families is all part of the fun for me. All-in-all, the families I photograph share a certain connection with each other, and I love trying to bring that out through the images I capture. It's awesome how similar but different everyone is with their families. Being able to  learn more about them is truly part of the experience.  I learned early on that photography is a way into people lives and hearts, and that's what makes meaningful images. Opening people up in front of a camera is no easy task, and conversation is a damn good start. With all that said, here is an amazing family I got to connect with recently that was a referral. I guess you could call it a "blind referral". Regardless, they all have a love for each other that is so evident, and it was a joy capturing and connecting with them.

PS: If I don't post again before the holiday, I want to wish everyone out there a fabulous Thanksgiving weekend!! I'm so grateful for all the families that have come through my door over the years and the ones still coming through. Being able to capture their connection and love makes my job one of the best out there. It's an awesome ride and I appreciate every minute of it!



Rancho Buena Vista Adobe Wedding Photos-Southern California

 I'm always stoked to have some of the best wedding couples to work with.  Jen and Aaron were just that, and it was so fun to capture their relationship with each other. It's a strong one and I love seeing that in couples. Life is a tricky thing and to be able to lean on someone when you need it for the rest of your natural life is truly a gift given. When you're lucky enough to find that one person who just fits right next to you, be grateful for it and work hard at it. I truly wish these two the best in their growth together.

I probably included way too many images from their wedding, at least the upload manager told me so, but I narrowed it down and here it is. I have to give a plug to one of the best event planner teams I have worked with to date. Courtney and Jessie own One Sweet Day, Weddings & Events and if you're looking for some planners who have it together, contact them. Thanks : )




Crystal Cove Family Portraits

I love finding awesome locations for family portraits, and with a beautiful sunset for lighting, we couldn't ask for anything better. Sarah and her family were such a joy to work with and her little girls were too cute. Here's a few of my favorites from our family portrait session last week. Thank you Autumn and Mother Nature for doing your part.

Sunrise Surf Newport Beach CA

- Halloween Morning Colors -


Orange County Maternity Photos

I've been meaning to get Rod & Courtney's maternity photo session posted to the journal for some time (a couple months now). This isn't the only one, I have a few photo sessions I've backlogged and have been sitting on dumbly. Better late than never, right? That's what's so rad about photography, it's something you can always go back to, months or years down the road.

I was stoked to have the opportunity to connect with these two. 

Congrats on the new baby girl you two!! Can't wait to meet her!! 

Family Portraits in Seal Beach

It's always a joy being able to photograph a family that is family. My Aunt hit me up about doing a portrait session with her wonderful boys and their families. I grew up with these dudes (my cousins) and it's rad to see them all grown up with little kiddos and beautiful wives of their own. Such a great family to be around and model after. So grateful to capture their spirits.  

Business Headshots and Portraits

Recently I got to update my own business head shots, and realized how horrible my past images were that I shared through my business social media sites. I truly believe having a professional head shot makes you stand out above the rest. I'm actually the first to say, "Hell No!" to stepping in front of a camera. But I have to say it's a great experience if you get the right photographer to open you up. I thought it was rad that Marim and Jeremiah reached out to me for business head shots of their own the same week I got mine done. Got to bring along the excitement and a few extra tips from getting my own portraits taken.  

Engagement Photography Session Corona Del Mar, CA

- Chicago Engagement Comes to California -


Tip on Photographing Kids

I wanted to share a simple tip about photographing the kiddos out there. I think the biggest thing to remember when photographing tinny humans is to bend them legs and get on their level. I learned early on it's important to photograph children on their eye level. It's something you don't think about since adults are typically already at your level when photographing. I'm not saying it's the right or only way to photograph kids or any subject for that matter, but you seem to get a better sense of connection with the subject at eye level. Photographing from an angle that looks upwards or downwards on a subject can be unflattering more times than not.  Even though little ones are typically cute no matter what, it's just something to keep in mind the next time you're shooting a munchkin.  

Storing Digital Photo Files

If you're curious to what's the best way to store your digital files or photos. I wanted to share my experience and knowledge on the importance of storage and being able to keep your digital files for a long time to come. To start things off it's smart to have two separate storage devices that mirror each other, just in case one fails or crashes. Purchasing external hard drives instead of storing images directly onto your computer's hard drive is the best idea. Filling up your computer's hard drive with images will eventually slow your computer's working speed, and you'll be frustrated. So use external hard drives and always keep 70% of your computer's hard drive open and available for maximum downloading and working speed.  The cost of hard drives really depends on the amount of storage you need. 1TB is more than enough space for a typical humanoid. Photographers typically use 1 TB every 6 months or so (videographers even more), but our files are larger than what a client would receive on delivery of digital files. A 1 TB hard drive ranges from $120-$250. I suggest checking B&H Photo-Video website for great reviews and the best cost on electronics.  I recommend LaCie hard drives, I've never had one crash on me and the speed of transferring is excellent. Remember if you're not using your external hard drive then turn it off, it's never good to keep them running if you're not using.

Say NO to CDs!! They only last a couple years, especially if you mark on one with a Sharpie. Just stay away from thinking a CD will store your images for years to come. It's fine to have them to temporarily store your digital files, but transfer them over to your hard drive as soon as you can. 

Cloud space is another way to go, I say use it as a third back up to your hard drives. It's much slower to upload compared to a hard drive and really depends on your internet speed. Flickr is a good route to go, they are only $25 a year for unlimited space and have a cool interface that is easy to use. There's a ton of sites out there, so it will probably come down to what interface you like, cost and/or what you might already have (icloud, shutterfly, etc...).

One last thing, manage and organize these digital files so you can easily reference them. It will make your life much easier. Below is how I do it. Year, Category, and Date of Shoot with a short description.  There's no perfect way to do it, but I've had no issues with trying to find certain photos later down the road. 


Hope this helps you understand the importance of image storage and how to. Don't hesitate to reach out with any questions or comments. 


Dave -