Event Photographer #7 - My First Sweet 16 Photoshoot Gig!

in Photography Lovers2 months ago (edited)


I started sharing my photography journey here in 2017. I began this amateur journey with hopes to develop better skills as I progressed. I never knew what would become of it but one thing I did know was I was having fun with every event I shot.

The last event I did was in 2019 and as you can imagine large gatherings have tremendously slowed down since then. It seems most people are keeping things as small as possible and just having their close relatives record or shoot the events. My cousin did have a few more events lined up in 2020 for me to photograph but one by one they were canceled.

For awhile I took my mind off of doing events and just focused on photographing things around my home for the Stock Images Community which btw I ended up using in most of my posts. 😁

Recently my niece and sister-in-law reached out to me and asked if I would do the honors of shooting her Sweet 16 Photoshoot. I was so excited and thrilled but at the same time in denial that my beautiful little niece was turning 16 😳. Once I got through my emotional meltdown of how fast my baby (she will always be my baby niece, even when she’s 50 😌) was growing it was an automatic YES!



This event was different from any others I have ever done.


Well it was the first time my main subject was a person. All the other events have been capturing the setup and decor and not the actual attendees of the event. I’ve been comfortable with photographing objects so this round would definitely be a challenge…one I was willing and ready to take on. 💪🏽

I spent some time online getting ideas of different settings and poses. I wanted to find ones that fit my niece’s personality as well as to what her tastes were. Her outfits were already picked out but the rest was up to me.

I wanted to be prepared and ready so everything would go smoothly and I wasn’t standing there trying to figure out what we were going to do. I am soooo glad I did that part.

I’m going to share some of the photos we did along with the photos that gave me the inspiration for some of the looks and poses.

Each online photo is sourced. You can go directly to the website by clicking on the word inspiration above each photo.

Here we go…


The Shoot



Our Shot




Our Shot




Our Shot




Our Shot



These last five shots I’m sharing were not derived from online inspirations but came from ideas that arose amidst the photo session. I thank my niece, mother-in-law and sister-in-law because they all pitched in with their creative ideas.

I may have had all of the poses planned and mapped out but time wasn’t on our side. We were losing daylight so quickly so I had to change up a few things. I am thankful for their suggestions because everything worked out even with lost time.


This shot happened as my niece was on her way to change into her second outfit. She saw the small light pole and started posing around it and asked “how about this?” I said sure why not? I learned that day that some of your best photos might come from the ones that are unplanned. 😃


Everyone was giving my niece ideas on what she could do while holding her numbers. While she was listening and responding I kept snapping photos to try to get some good natural looking ones vs. posing ones.


This is one of my favorites. During this time we had lost total daylight. I normally only shoot during the day with natural sunlight. With the help of a street light and my sister-in-law’s car lights we were able to pull off some pretty nice night looks.


My mother-in-law wanted her to do a headlight look. I have never done a photo like this before so what you see is my interpretation of what it should look like. I have a lot more growing and developing to do when it comes to editing. I had a lot of fun with this one. 😊


Finally, for the cover photo I wanted it to look like she was hanging out with 16. This was a first for me making it look like the numbers were floating. My husband and sister-in-law really loved this one and thought it was a clever idea.

I want to explore more looks like this to see what I can come up with for the ending result. Thanks to my eight year old son for holding the balloons up behind her. This photo was the most fun to pull off!


It’s exciting to be able to continue building my portfolio (slowly but at least it’s growing). I still want to work towards upgrading our camera but that will take a little longer due to current financial commitments we have. We’ll most likely stick with the Cannon since I’m so acquainted with it already.

Guess what? I already have another gig lined up for November. Someone asked us to shoot a Quinceañera celebration! He seen these photos and wanted me to photograph this event which is for his daughter. 😆

In case you are unfamiliar with what a
quinceañera is, it is a Hispanic tradition that marks an important milestone in a girl's life. Part birthday party, part rite of passage, it symbolizes a girl's entrance into womanhood when turning 15, traditionally showcasing her purity and readiness for marriage.

These celebrations are very fancy and are accompanied with plenty of food, music and dancing. I’m elated to have been asked to do this but at the same time quite nervous. I won’t just be taking photos of decor or of a single person but will be responsible for capturing the entire event. 😳😬🥴

What if I miss something? What if I have one opportunity to photograph a certain moment and the photo turns out blurry? 🤭😵‍💫

Any comforting words and advice out there for a panicking amateur photographer? I’ll take it please! 😅

Here is a list of my previous events:

Event 1 - Diva Birthday Party

Event 2 - Elegant Evening Birthday Celebration

Event 3 - Classy Vowel Renewal Ceremony

Event 4 - A Young Gentleman Party

Event 5 - A Pastor’s Anniversary Celebration

Event 6 - L.O.L. Surprise! Birthday Party

All photos are my own and were taken with our Cannon EOS Rebel T6.

Thanks for Checking Out My Work ~ ❤️


Time flies way too fast!
I love the headlights one. There's a real mood feel to it.

I think sometimes the best ones come when you don't expect it or when you catch them in a natural setting where they don't realise they're being photographed.

@tipu curate

Way too fast!

Im glad you liked that one. I really wanted it to be a memorable photo for her. Thanks so much.

Yes for sure! Those are definitely the best ones.

Well done @crosheille! If you think you could've done better then there's always next year....she's not the only one growing fast. You'll have more nieces or nephews or sons or daughters to photograph. It always amuses me that you American's do a sweet 16. We don't. But here in SA 21 is BIG!!!!! How did your son feel about being edited out?

Thanks @buckaroobaby! That’s very true. I was just talking about that with my sister. My other niece will be turning 16 in two years. Lol yep, sweet 16 is pretty special here. I didn’t celebrate big for my 16th neither did my friends back then. It seems it’s more of a thing with this generation.

He actually loved it. He thought it was so cool comparing the original with the edited. He was proud to have helped my vision come true. 😄

I can't get enough of these pictures! Are these all?? I want to see more!!!

The one in front of the card headlight is spectacular! I'm not a fan of shoots but I wish I had someone who honestly put some effort into making my pictures look this good!

That one she wore a hat, absolutely beautiful!

Hahaha wow that's a wonderful compliment! Thank you @blezyn! I'm tickled to hear you are really enjoying them. 😄

No this is definitely not all. I sent her over 50 edited photos but only chose to share just a few for the post.

I’m glad you liked the headlight photo, I really worked hard on that edit to make it stand out. ☺️

If we were close on the globe I would LOVE taking photos for you and your crochet work. That would be an amazing photoshoot for sure!

Since you enjoyed them so much I attached a few more here for you to see. I knew you liked the hat photo so wanted you to see a version of it in color too. I decided to make one of the night photos b&w and then there is one more in her skirt outfit at the park.

Thanks again for such great feedback ~ ❤️




Wow, I'd be thrilled to get over 50 photos when they are this good!

If we were close on the globe I would LOVE taking photos for you and your crochet work. That would be an amazing photoshoot for sure!

I would have been so happy! You're amazing with your photography and editing skills.

Since you enjoyed them so much I attached a few more here for you to see.

I love these new ones you added😍😍 your niece is so pretty.

She was really happy which makes me even happier. 😊

Thank you for the compliments. I love doing this and hope I'm able to many more like this one.

Thanks for the compliments of my niece…she’s so beautiful inside and out and I am so glad she chose me to do this for her. She really made my job easy ~ ☺️🥰

These are great. The one where she is backlit by the car headlights is dope.

Thank you so much!! I really wanted that one to work out and look unique. So glad you liked it, a real compliment coming from you ;)

Thanks for the support ~

Those are stunning shots! My fave was the shot where you had lost total daylight! It's nice to see people spending their sweet 16 with a sweet fam 💖

Thank you @purepinay! ☺️

That was definitely one of my favs too! I had no idea we would be able to pull off night shots. I'm so thankful for the experience and opportunity to try new things.

I agree. We are a very family oriented group of people and love doing a lot together. She wouldn't have had it any other way but to be amongst her loved ones. 😊

Thanks so much for your sweet comment ~ 💗

Niece and sister-in-law, she's both? 🤔 What am I missing (I don't typically start with back to back questions)? Well she's gorgeous whoever she is. And they or she picked the right photographer.

Is it that difficult to find sourced images of people who are not white?

Was the previous question inappropriate?

Is this too many questions? 😉

𝒟 𝒶𝓃𝒹 𝒜

Hahaha! Well just in case you are seriously confused maybe I should have said "My niece and her mother, whom is my sister-in-law, reached out to me etc etc.”. Makes more sense now right? 😁😆

Thanks for the compliments of my niece.

Awww wow thanks so much. I had so much fun doing these.


Yep okay, I totally see what you mean @nineclaws. He totally reels you in to his comedic comments. Oh my goodness. Lol

I was actually wondering if anyone would notice it or even say anything about that…now I know…it’s You. 😂
I promise it wasn’t intentional, those just happened to be the looks I was looking for. 😌😄

Thanks for such a good laugh, I needed one tonight.

You can ask all the questions you like.

Secretly wondering if I made a huge mistake by saying that. 🤔😬

I really appreciate the visit ~

Yeah sure way more sense now, clear as mud thanks! Kidding, now that you explained it I can't believe I missed it the first time so I threw mud hoping you'd forget I asked.

NineClaws is really cool. She's got thick skin for a Canadian lunatic.

No, really. Hey, I'm serious, listen up. I'm not kidding anymore. Or less. Kidding! Seriously, no joke, listen I'm not making this up, this isn't part of the act: You're very welcome. My pleasure. 💖

I notice those things. I don't know what that's about. I've received many responses either complimenting something I saw or not recognizing whatever it was I saw.

They're not always long like this. It's that whole improv intro you forced me to do. Hashtag AllYourFault.

Lol it's so funny how you can write one thing and someone can read it totally different. It's all good. 😉

Yes I’m enjoying getting to know her better. I’m so glad I ran into you both. I haven’t had this much fun in awhile!

I think it’s a skill to notice things like that…even a profession maybe. I’m keen to details and I appreciate when others notice them too.

Hashtag AllYourFault.

Uhmmm…I beg to differ. 🤨😜

I add the spicy element, sometimes it gets a little too hot and @dandays misses the serves. I just sigh (in satisfaction), score another point and rally up for the next round.

Oh wow...the spicy!!! 👀 Lol 👌🏽

🤣🤣 I like chilies, lots of them, plenty of heat, so I'm always making jokes about "spicy". It's really good because it brings other things to mind, not so much chili peppers, but I'm thinking of the chilies.

Hahaha love it!!! Although I'm a big baby when it comes to spicy, I normally can't take the heat and chilies aren't my friend lol! 😅 It always amazes me how others can stand that type of heat.

🤣 Everyone differs. I used to dislike all pepper, even black pepper until I was in my late teens and stayed with my Thai aunt. Everything was super spicy. It was eat that or not eat, LOL. After a while of that, when I went home, I just wasn't the same anymore. I had to add pepper to most things. As time went by, I kept increasing the heat and my tolerance is now very high. That's how it worked for me. From total aversion to total love. LOL

Wow what a story!! You went from dislike to "I gotta have em!" 😃

I think I too would have chose the eat that option over the not eat! Lol 😅

Even after losing daylight..
The one with the help of street light was a beautiful one...yod did a great job recreating those photos...
They all look beautiful...

Thank you. I'm really glad the night ones turned out nice.

It was fun taking on the challenge of recreating those looks :)

Thanks so much for the comment ~

Sweet sixteen, we've all been there but not many were so lucky to have aunty do a photo shoot, real jealous now.

How did your son hold on to the number six balloon? 🤔

Hahaha I'm jealous too! 😅 I would have loved doing a photoshoot back then.

I had him work those arms of his 😄. Here's the original before editing him out...


He was like “mom I can’t hold this much longer!”

I love your work, they're all beautiful and the inspiration VS your shot part got a huge ranking from my heart.... I love them 🥰

You'll keep growing for sure and I can't imagine how awesome your work would be come by that time... Just keep it up

Enjoy what you do as you are doing now and we'll keep cheering you up. Thanks for sharing with us dear

Yay thank you!! I'm glad to hear you liked them all. ☺️

Thanks so much for the encouragement. I’ll keep enjoying this for sure as I find new ways to be creative ~

Beautiful photographs @crosheille - your family must be so proud of you and ingenious idea of your son holding the balloons up to appear as if they are floating. Well done !!!

Thank you very much! Yes, they were quite impressed I was able to pull off my vision. It helps having that surrounding support :)

Thanks for reading and commenting ~

You're so welcome and yes, it's wonderful when you have the support of friends and family

It truly is ~ 😊

Beautiful neice, and great shots @crosheille. You really did well following those shots for inspiration, you created pieces as great as them.

Happy belated birthday to your neice, legal age soon.

Thanks so much! She made my job easy 😊.

I really appreciate that. It was really cool comparing the results at the end.

Oh gosh please don’t remind me 🥴. I want her to stay 16 for two years lol!

Thanks for the visit ~

Wow how beautiful the shot with the floating numbers is perfect, you have such a talent for photography. Blessings!

Thank you! I was so glad to be able to get it the way I envisioned it. 😊

Thank you for reading and commenting ~

Wow. Am happy for your niece on her turning sixteen, she looks so gorgeous and very beautiful. And again I love those pictures. The shot were taken perfectly. Kudos to you

Thank you! I'm proud of the young woman she is becoming. 😊

I appreciate the compliments of my work. Thanks for visiting ~

You are most welcome

I don't know that you are also good at photography @crosheile. Great, you are a multi talents needleworker! I love how you took the photos for your niece

Heee hee thanks @devyleona! I still consider myself amateur but I really love it. I am slowly turning it into a side gig to further help support my family financially :)

Thanks for the visit ~ 💗

You're welcome and i still think you have many talents and it is great @crosheille...


@crosheille wow you looking so beautiful and pretty.I like all your photography very much. Your photo style has attracted me the most.Nice work and fashion.👌👌👌All the best.

Thank you @sumaiya777! The young lady in the photos is my niece. I was fortunate to be able to do this photoshoot for her. 😊

Thank you for the sweet comment ~

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After watching these photos, I wish I could do one with, "Me under 16" banner. But that would be like a farfetched dream. Jokes apart, I would love to do something similar and post it on Hive. Thanks for the inspiration.

Hahaha!! 😅

So glad that posting my work could be inspiring to you!! I say Go For It! 😉

Thanks so much for the comment ~