Elliot – A Couple of My Favorite Sessions!

 Posted on September 10, 2019

Little Miss Elliot came to the studio in San Francisco at just 10 days new.  She is one of the cutest babies, and I’m a sucker for that sweet hair swirl! Not to mention her delicate and long eyelashes. Mom and dad were enamored with their new little girl. The neutral colors of her San Francisco newborn session were beautiful, and I always love creating simple, timeless imagery.

Mom saved her beautiful lace veil from her wedding dress, and we incorporated that into the session as well.

The family signed up for the Full Year Journey, and I was thrilled when they booked they were able to book their next appointment when Elliot turned 5 months old. She was already sitting up! We did her milestone session at the family’s new home, which was built in 1928! So cool. I love seeing clients in their own home and capturing new memories for them there. Since this baby is such an early sitter, I am sure I will be seeing her in just a few months for her last Full Year Journey session.

Mom and dad said, “We love the photos!”

I do, too!

yawning baby

bearded father wearing glasses, touching noses with newborn daughter

mother kissing newborn daughter's head

closeup of newborn eyelashes

baby girl on flokati, mother's veil

newborn baby fingers

black and white image of newborn baby toes
sitting baby girl with blue eyes

san francisco family photographer

Zoie | San Francisco Newborn Photography

 Posted on August 13, 2019

I have been so fortunate to photograph big sis Ellie many times. I first photographed Ellie as a newborn, then at 6 months, at 1 year, and now as a big sister to Zoie. Mom and dad LOVE photos and take many photos themselves. Like, tons. Mom plans to do a first year album that has one page of photos per DAY of life! That is impressive!

It is so much fun to have these guys in the studio, located in Potrero Hill, San Francisco. This family laughs together and has a good time navigating toddler AND baby hood.

Mom usually snags a few behind the scenes photos as well, which is wonderful.

I want newborns to be remembered just as they are, and a big part of that is capturing beautiful imagery straight out of camera and keeping post-processing to a minimum. From their precious newborn details, to the special bond they’re developing with you, there is something especially special about preserving every bit of this earliest stage of life outside the womb.

These photos of Zoie, and Zoie and Ellie, mean so much to me. I know they’ll be treasured for generations to come. I hope I’ll be able to look through these with Zoie in a year or so and see her reaction. Oh, the joys of a baby.

Time is fleeting, memories can fade, but little moments captured in images can last a lifetime.


newborn baby girl in basket, big sister

Portrero Hill, San Francisco family portrait

silly San Francisco family portrait, Photography by Emily Payne

newborn baby girl and big sister studio portrait, Portrero Hill

beautiful newborn baby girl picture, San Francisco newborn photography

newborn baby girl details

newborn girl swaddled in white

newborn portrait, studio, Portrero Hill

big sister booping baby sister's nose

newborn baby girl awake

newborn hands detail image

half swaddled newborn baby girl, flokati

newborn toes, San Francisco newborn photographer

newborn baby, flokati


These photos were taken during a studio newborn photography session. If you are located in the San Francisco Bay Area and are expecting a bundle of joy, I would love to capture the precious details of your newborn baby. Feel free to visit my Investment page and use the contact page to get in touch with me. Let’s schedule your session!

Baby Henry Turns One!

 Posted on July 25, 2019

I first met Henry when he was only a few days old, at his home in Redwood City. He was the perfect baby and slept through his mini session completely. Henry’s family loved the images from Henry’s newborn session, and contacted me again to do a mini studio session to celebrate Henry turning one!

The studio is located in Potrero Hill, San Francisco. Minutes before the session, Henry’s parents called me worried that he hadn’t taken a nap. He was also suffering a bit from his one-year vaccinations. We decided to give the mini studio session a “green light”, and Henry nailed it! He also had the most adorable gingham outfit!

Look at his adorable little teeth peeking out of that smile, too. It always warms my heart to capture the grins of some of my youngest clients.

The clean white studio backdrop is one of my favorites and most used for mini sessions with little ones. It’s classic and timeless.

We ended the session with a couple images including mom and dad. I always suggest parents jump in a frame or two if possible.

I have photographed a lot of one-year sessions and adore them. A year old is such a wonderful age and stage worth celebrating! (Babies all-too-quickly turn into toddlers, as we know!)

Mom said, “LOVE these! Emily, you are amazingly talented. Thank you so much!”

smiling one year old boy with hand on chair, birthday banner in background

one year old wearing gingham romper, white child size chair, blue tassel banner  San Francisco baby photographer

Photography by Emily Payne, San Francisco one year portraits

sitting baby boy in bucket

smiling baby boy pulling himself up, bucket

mother and father swinging baby boy in between them, white studio background

Newborn Baby Ted | Photography by Emily Payne

 Posted on June 4, 2019

I am so honored to share this session with you that is near and dear to my heart. Laura contacted me a few days after her son was born here in San Francisco. Sweet baby boy debuted a bit early … okay, that’s an understatement. He decided to completely surprise mom with his arrival, before she could even gather a bag!


He made it safely earthside. Alive. Healthy. Perfect.

Laura hadn’t completed the optimistic tasks of collecting baby items or packing a “go” bag because, following the birth of her daughter 10 years ago, Laura experienced 9 pregnancies that were not carried to term. She was never quite sure that this pregnancy would be successful until precious Ted was actually in her arms. The strength of mind, spirit, and will that this mother carries within her is nothing short of breathtaking.


There may not be a word in the English language that properly exemplifies the wave of feelings that washed over Laura but she was, simply said, relieved.



I felt a deep and immediate connection to this family, and the need to photograph dearest Ted and his big sister. I could sense how much these images would mean to Laura. When I arrived at their home and saw mama nursing baby, I was absolutely blown away by the intense, almost palpable love in the room. During our session, Laura mentioned to me that she didn’t even want to find a babysitter for Ted because she doesn’t want to miss a single fleeting moment.


I feel privileged to have photographed Laura’s family at such an extraordinary and heavenly time in their lives. Jackie helped me downstairs after I packed up to leave their home, and I received this message from Laura: “Lucky number Ted, as I like to call him, just wanted to let you know you’re the best and that he fell asleep before you guys reached the elevators. Can we stop time? Please! Thank you again for your time, patience, and kindness.”


Laura, I did my very best to stop time for you with these photos. Thank you for sharing your family with me.