• Welcome to Melissa Stewardson Photography!

    Celebrity photographer as featured on People.com

    Awarded as one of the best newborn photographers in Orange County, by Expertise in 2016, 2018, 2020, 2021 and 2022!

    Melissa Stewardson Photography, located in Orange County, CA and established in 2012 specializes in custom portraits of maternity, newborns, children and families. Experiencing a photo session with me should be fun and relaxing. I know what you're thinking...did she say fun and relaxing?! Am I crazy?! I don't think so. My goal for each session is to shoot photos that look natural and highlight the personalities and vibrancy of the people in them. While, I will shoot some traditional poses, I feel some of the best photos come during candid play or general foolishness! Time flies by so fast so let me capture your family memories today! I can't wait to get to know you and show you what I see through my lens!

    {Melissa Stewardson Photography is fully insured}

Orange County, CA Photographer // Robbie and Sara are engaged!

I don’t shoot weddings, which means I don’t do many engagements or couples photos. But when the owner of my gym and his fiancee asked me, I couldn’t say no! And oh my gosh, after doing their shoot I kinda want to do engagement photos ALL the time….just not the wedding…haha! We had the most perfect light and even though they thought I was kinda crazy with some of my direction, they turned out sooo dreamy! And how cute are they?!!


Orange County, CA Photographer // Newborn Photography Studio

It’s been a while since I have blogged about my studio so I wanted to do an update. It’s changed a bit since I first started using it more than 2 years ago. What started out as a dream, turned into my cozy space which now I couldn’t live without!

It’s small, but mighty! It’s right around 250 sq ft. but since I built it from the ground up I am able to utilize every inch of the space.

So take a look around and message me (MelissaStewardson@gmail.com) if you have any questions!

2018-05-02_0016.jpgBeen loving my new boho swing! It’s perfect for mommy and me, individual children and sibling shots!

This is one of my favorite corners of the studio. I hang all my wraps from simple drapery rod. And I love my cute little newborn and sitter clothes rack which my dad made for me. The tie dyed rug is from Home Goods and the pouf was ordered on Amazon. 2018-05-02_0006.jpg
I love adding a personal touch to each session by personalizing my chalk board for each client. And I always have my snack basket loaded up for the kiddos and parents. 2018-05-02_0009.jpg
A coffee station is also a must! Since I am an all natural light photographer, I shoot all my studio sessions in the mornings when the light is best. I usually start between 9am-11am. But really, coffee is good at any time, am I right?!2018-05-02_0010.jpg
My wood backdrops are some of my most requested! I have this awesome 2-sided platform that folds and rolls for storage. One side is reclaimed wood and the other is painted white reclaimed wood. It’s super versatile for kids and families. 2018-05-02_0012.jpg
My prop closet is stuffed to the gills! I dip into this puppy every session, whether it’s a newborn, baby or kiddo. It has everything I need to make each session unique. The combinations of props, blankets and stuffers makes for endless possibilities for set ups. And how cute is my sign?! My talented sister owns Driftwood Studios 2015 and created this handmade sign for me. It fit perfectly in this spot! 2018-05-02_0015.jpg
I love my quaint client seating area. I got the cute love seat from World Market and the camera pillow covers from Amazon. I have this stocked with some fun magazines as well as toys for the kids. The first thing I do before any 6 month and older session is play with the child. Building a little rapport before shooting is so important. I get to know the child and they get to relax and get to know me as well. 5 minutes of play can go a long way in terms of a smooth session. 2018-05-02_0013.jpg
Having my savage paper rolls hung on the walls was a must. For one it saves a lot of space. Secondly, it’s so fast and easy to just roll it down and then back up when I am finished shooting. No more setting up my stand anymore! 2018-05-02_0014.jpg
Since I have a small space it’s imperative to use the walls for storage. Hanging my headbands and bonnets not only looks pretty, it’s also functional. And who doesn’t love Organic Bloom frames. Those are my 2 precious daughters smiling at you. 🙂

Orange County Cake Smash Photographer // Hudson the lumberjack

Oh my goodness!! How cute is Hudson??!!! His mom came up with this lumberjack theme and idea and I had some fun props to make it happen. Hudson was all smiles and loved his cake! He was all boy when he tried to destroy it towards the end of his session. 🙂


Orange County, CA Newborn Photographer // Itty Bitty Twins

Booking a session with twins gets me all giddy and excited!!! I do a lot of planning and hire an assistant for the session to make sure it will go as smooth as possible. Even with one baby at a newborn session you never really know how it’s going to go. You pray, cross your fingers and have all the baby soothing tricks at the ready! Last Thursday was pure bliss!!! The Chuk family was absolutely amazing. As you can see the baby girls were beyond adorable and they were a newborn photographers dream. So sleepy, calm and loved being posed. And big brother was the cherry on top. He came right in, laid down with his sisters and gave the biggest smiles! And, I also have to mention their awesome parents. They were so kind and so great with their kids. Take a look at all the beautiful photos we got!

Orange County, CA Family Photographer // Party of 6

It finally happened to me after 5 years of doing photos. My babysitter forgot to show up! I was in full panic mode knowing I was going to be late to my session. Luckily my sister lives nearby and was able to help me out. I arrived about 12 minutes late to the session and was frazzled and embarassesd, to say the least. Since it was busy season I knew I couldn’t reschedule because I had no open dates and this was a family of 6 who I didn’t want to have ask the mom to get the family ready again on another night. I unloaded my car, and apologized profusely for being tardy. The Forge family was so understanding and kind to me. I had in mind that the session might be a bit of a challenge since they had 4 kids, one being a baby. But, you guys…this family!!! Not only sweet, but so photogenic and the kids were insanely good for me! They took direction, smiled on command and were polite and friendly! What started out not so great ended up being one of my favorite sessions of the fall. Take a look at all the gorgeousness we captured that night! And wait for it….the sunset at the end was amazing!

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