{modern, stylized and urban couture~ san diego county based destination photographer}

Nicole Benitez

I am a Modern Stylized and Urban Couture Photographer based in San Diego {Southern California} and always available for session and wedding travel. Specializing in Modeling Portfolios, Commercial and Editorial Photography, Weddings, Couples, Kids and Seniors.

I love God, cupcakes, handbags, shoes, my family and wine. We recently moved back to California after my husband retired from the Marine Corps and we are living life in the Southern California sunshine.

Thanks for stopping by, make sure you leave some comment love so I know you were here. oxox

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Beautiful Belly Bump... Megan || San Diego Maternity Photographer

When I was pregnant with my kids, I never felt like I was one of those women that just glowed. The kind that can wear a gorgeous dress or fitted tank and everyone admires their belly. So when I meet women that are like that, I feel inspired {umm, and envious!!} and honored when they ask me to capture this amazing time in their lives.
Megan is one of those women that inspires {and makes me envious} and feel honored that she asked me to meet up with her to show off her amazing belly bump. She was 38+ weeks at our maternity session last week and stunning. She is having her third child very soon and I cannot wait to meet him.
Megan.. you are amazing and beautiful and inspiring! Thank you for being unafraid and lovely! I cannot wait to meet your new little man! oxox, *Nic


Friday, June 25, 2010

Megan's Belly Bump.. Sneak Peek || San Diego Maternity Photography

This beautiful momma is 38+ weeks pregnant with her 3rd baby and absolutely beautiful! I couldn't resist posting a quick sneak peek of our session at the Oceanside Pier. More to come soon!

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Connecting and Shootsac Summer with... Jessica Claire

When I first started on my Photography journey I was nervous. It is so hard to put yourself out there doing what you love to do and have people critique it or maybe not like what you are working so hard towards. For me, meeting other people and networking and connecting was even harder. I am painfully shy. When I dream of walking into a room of people I don't know, it makes me want to be sick... or just hang out in the bathroom... all night. I usually have to give myself these ridiculous pep talks to speak {coherently}.
Over the course of the last two years I have learned that to grow, I need to push myself out of my comfort zone. Put my work out there in order to become better and meet people who push me to be a better person, a better photographer and a better friend.
 It's not often that you catch me in front of the camera, but yesterday I did just that.. I was in a shoot for Jessica Claire's new line for the summer Shootsac covers. I can't share {yet} what they are.. but Omgoooooshhh!! Beautiful! Once again I cannot believe how blessed I am to do what I love and meet amazing people in the process. It reminded me of the importance of connecting to others that love to do what you do and to share with each other and grow. Jessica was amazing with us and it was so much fun to watch her in action, even more so, it felt like hanging out with a friend.

Posted by Picasa

Monday, June 21, 2010

High School Friends... Baby John Paul ||Orange County Newborn Photographer

I was a dorky kid growing up. Tall.. like king kong tall. Not down with the latest fashions, and more tomboy than supermodel. I loved to read and write and dreamed of becoming a famed Children's Book Author. I spent hours holed up in my bedroom pounding away on my word processor dreaming up the stories that I would some day publish.
When I went to high school it was a different world for me. I attended all girl Catholic,  Connelly High School {Go Koalas..don't hate} in Southern California. With such a small school at just 220 students and 47 seniors, you had no choice but to know everyone by name.We spent our days studying and our Friday nights at the Servite football games {the all boys Catholic High School down the street}. Over time I had lost touch with most of my high school friends, but thanks to Facebook have found many of them again.
This past weekend I met up with my high school friend Diana. Her and her husband John recently welcomed their new baby's arrival. Baby John Paul is a month old and we celebrated the occasion with his first official photo shoot. I have never seen a baby more alert. I think he slept a total of 15 minutes in the 3 hours that I was there. He wanted to watch everyone and everything and I could not get over how good he was!!
Although my writing dreams soon passed as life moved forward in crazy directions and I grew into my 6 foot tall King Kong body and embraced every fashion magazine I could get my hands on. Some things never change.. I am still a little dorky, I love pounding away on my computer and visiting with friends is always welcomed!
Diana and John, thank you so much for inviting me to your home to document your beautiful family! I can;t wait to hang out with you again soon! oxox, *Nicole

John's Servite Football helmet!!



Saturday, June 19, 2010

Sneak Peek.. Baby John Paul

I could not wait to share a couple from today's baby session. This little guy is 1 month old and absolutely beautiful! More to come in a couple of days.


Friday, June 18, 2010

Striking Gold... Sarah Petty Inspires

For the last several months I have been restructuring my business in an effort to be more efficient, have more time with my family and to provide an amazing experience to my clients. It's been a slow process to perfect my new brand, new products, packaging and marketing tools. Over the last few days I felt like I had hit a brick wall. There are so many options, so many tools and the choices are overwhelming.
My brain was fried and I shut down. I would start working on a project..then stop to surf facebook, email a friend, do a devotional... anything but focus on completing this transformation.
Until last night.. I felt like I was a miner during the gold rush and I hit it big. Ok, maybe that is a bit of an over exaggeration... but I think that God was handing me the tools to move forward onto the next step. I can't remember how I came across Sarah Petty's The Boutique Experience {free e-book} in my work avoidance, but in an instant I was renewed.  My next steps were mapped out to take care of my clients and move forward in my business. I have always admired Sarah's work, and in a quick read she once again transformed the way I think about my business and my clients. For that I am incredibly grateful.
Here's a little sneak peek of what's to come... 

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Sometimes I forget...

Sometimes I forget to stop and breathe. Life is moving so fast and now that we are in SoCal we're trying to close on our house, and spend time with family and.. and.. and.. I forget to stop and just breathe. I thought that I would have a little down time with the move, but it seems that more days than not we are on the go.
This week I was incredibly blessed to have a few hours of downtime with Erik. We headed to San Diego for a mini get away before he heads back to work next week and for our house inspection {it can't be all fun}. We hit up a phenomenal sushi restaurant, wondered around a few shops then capped the night off with a stop into Extraordinary Desserts. If we're not facebook friends.. we sooooo need to be!! The pictures don't even do the amazing creations justice, and unbelievably...they tasted even better.
Although I am back to work work work {and a little play}.. I found these little gems while I was cleaning off my hard drive today. Gorgeous Miss Grace celebrated her First Holy Communion last month and I forgot to blog these. Now seems like the perfect time.


Thursday, June 10, 2010

Madi... Happy {belated} Birthday to my Baby

We have joked since Madison was born that she lives in Madi-land. In truth, it makes me even more proud of her, although frustrated at times. She is a free spirit that truly dances to her own beat, doesn't care what others think of her and has a huge heart. 
She is insanely creative, smart and beautiful. She had a blocked tear duct last month on her birthday and we waited to do her pictures until a few days ago. She styled her own birthday shoot and even swindled her way into borrowing my diamond earrings... because "Mom, they'll add the perfect touch." How could I say no to that face? She rocked it!!
Happy 11th Birthday Madison Rane!..a little late. oxox

Monday, June 7, 2010

Madi.. Sneak Peek || San Diego Children's Photographer

This is just a teaser of my session with Miss Madi. My baby girl turned 11 last month and between our move to California and trying to find a house.. we just did her birthday pictures.. today! So the mom guilt kicked in and she got all dolled up with her cute little outfit, an adorable headband from Random Nicole and we did a little shoot to celebrate her! 
 More of Miss Madison coming this week..

Sunday, June 6, 2010

Sisters.. Jacquelyn~ Prom 2010

When we were little we would spend most of our days with our grandma. She has lived in the same house since before we were all born, around the corner from the cutest park.. ever! We would spend hours on end playing on the swings, playing tag or under the tress chatting away. So when Jacquelyn suggested we do her Prom pictures at the park we grew up playing at, I knew it was the perfect place.
Jacquelyn is my youngest sister, and the baby. She is fun, crazy, spontaneous and hilarious. She is graduating from high school in a few weeks and we are so excited to be in Orange County to celebrate with her! I adore her and her shoes {and secretly wished we wore the same size so that I could steal them}.. here's a few of my favorites of her and her boyfriend.
A special thanks to one of our other sisters: Stephanie for the phenomenal hair and makeup!! Love it!!

Friday, June 4, 2010

Jacquelyn Senior Prom .... Sneak Peek


Thursday, June 3, 2010

First Birthday Girl.... Kennedy

I can't believe an entire year has gone by.. When we were home on vacation last year I was lucky enough to be around when my niece was born. She was the most perfect little angel seen here, here and here. She came for a visit right before Christmas and I just can't believe how much she has grown since then.
My sister, brother in law and baby Kennedy got together last weekend to do a little mini session to for Kennedy's upcoming birthday {and her daddy's!} and I am so thankful to be here to celebrate her big day!