• DC Metro Area Photographer

  • Pixie Memories is Northern VA & Washington DC's Family Photographer. Pat Jesten specializes in modern, organic, simple and clean fine art photography of newborns, maternity, babies, children and families. She serves the DC metropolitan area including NOVA Northern Virginia (Fairfax, Prince William, Arlington & Alexandria Counties) and DC. Towns include: Fairfax, McLean, Falls Church, Reston, Annandale, Springfield, Oakton, Vienna, Clifton, Alexandria, Arlington, Tysons Corner, Georgetown, Old Town and more.

What to Expect

Please expect a relaxed environment.  I will ask your kids to play, laugh and be silly.  I might ask you to  stand behind me and make funny faces at your kid(s).  I will ask you to play with your children and to forget that I am there.  I might bring my ipod and play music or ask you to play yours. Sometimes, your kiddo can watch Thomas the Tank Engine, Elmo, Dora or their favorite youtube video. (It’s attached to my camera) In the end, I expect lots of smiles and soulful looks.  If your pixie is a newborn, expect him/her to hear familiar sounds (I bring a recording of womb sounds).  For tips – keep reading. 🙂

Maternity Session:

  • Schedule any time in the last trimester. The beginning of the 8th month is the most common time.
  • Minimal jewelry – wear only wedding rings or something that has special meaning
  • Moisturize your hands (there will be close-ups)
  • No chipped nailpolish and wear your normal amount of make-up, if you don’t wear make-up a clear lip gloss is fine.
  • Do not worry about stretch marks – they can be diminished in post.

Newborn Session:

  • Please contact me a few months before baby is born to ensure that we get you on the schedule before your Pixie is 14 days old
  • Babies LOVE warmth, so I will bring a space heater (if necessary) to make sure the room is comfy
  • Begin to feed the baby when I arrive (I am usually about 15 min early) so by the time I have set up, we should have a very sleepy baby
  • Have a pacifier close by. The sucking reflex produces natural endorphins in your pixie’s body and will help your baby relax during the session. If you do not have a pacifier, we can use your finger. I also bring a recording of womb sounds to help the relaxation process
  • I love skin on skin images, especially with Dad (warn him first – hee hee) – its not necessary but its such a sweet portrait
  • Babies have no control over their bodily functions, I am used to it  – so no worries
  • Be prepared to “spot” the baby while we put him in props and position him for certain poses.  If you are unable to do so please let me know and I will hire an assistant – especially the C-section Mommas…
  • Plenty of time is allotted for soothing, changing and feeding
  • Clothing choices – Simple is best for the adults, no patterns or extremes in fashion.
  • If you have anything special that you want to incorporate in the session, please have it handy. I allow as many outfit changes as you desire – as long as its within the three hour time frame.

Baby Session:

  • At the three month session and beyond your child will know his name and will respond to loud noises by looking at the person making the noise or calling her name.
  • If you would like to be the one he responds to, please stand behind me, that way we get good eye contact
  • Children can feel your stress (especially when they are older) so relax. We WILL get the smile.
  • Moisturize your hands and babies hands as well. Wear your normal amount of make-up. If you do not wear make-up a simple clear lip gloss and a little mascara is perfect.

Big Pixies and Families:

As your children grow older and their personalities develop they will not always sit still for a posed photograph. And that’s OK. I actually prefer that because I will have the opportunity to photograph the essence of your child(ren). In my opinion, photographs that are filled with personality are the best. And once they “get the wiggles out” your child will sit and pose for the camera – I promise.

And to make sure that the viewer only focuses on what is important – your child(ren), please do not dress him/her in heavily patterned clothing – especially for outdoor photographs. And like babies, big kids are unpredictable – It’s a stressful time for the kids and the parents. If they feel like they have some say, they relax and everyone gets what they want.

And my most important rule is never say “No” during a session.  Kids always look sad when you discipline them and even sadder if done in front of strangers

Click Here to email me, or you can call me at 703-887-9961