{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

Thursday, March 31, 2011

Looking for the next Kangacoo Model... Hosted by Baby Vie

A few weeks ago Baby Vie hosted Kangacoo Designs and {Nicole Benitez Photography} at their gorgeous boutique store located in Scripps Ranch looking for the next Kangacoo Designs model. We were in for some of the cutest kids.. ever!! They were loaded up with personality and absolutely adorable. We'll be announcing the winner soon! AND.. we'll be holding a contest on Facebook next week for a fan favorite winner that will also participate in our Kangacoo Designs Summer Shoot.
Just a few of the cuties that stopped by...

View my portfolio HERE

To book a session or wedding or for more info email me HERE

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Monday, March 28, 2011

Lara and Jeff... Married || National Museum of the Marine Corps Sneak Peek

Their day started off beautiful. Bright blue skies, a golden sky and a perfect early spring day nestled into a weeks worth of sweeping spring showers. Surrounded by their closest family and friends, Lara and Jeff pledged their love to each other in a sunset ceremony at the National Museum of the Marine Corps.
With tears in their eyes, parents, guests and bridal party simply said "they are perfect for each other". That was the theme of the weekend, they just bring out the best parts of the other. Just watching the way they interact, the way they look at each other and the excitement and promise for their lives together.. they are perfect for each other.
Lara and Jeff, you are amazing! I am so honored to have been part of your day and to call you friends. Your wedding was nothing short of spectacular and I know that your life will follow in the same way. Thank you for sharing your family, friends and love. Here is just a little sneak peek until you are back from St. Lucia, I cannot wait to hear about your trip!  

View my portfolio HERE

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To book a session or wedding or for more info email me HERE

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Thursday, March 24, 2011

The Epic Georgetown Cupcake Crawl.. and a Little Sneak Peek of Baby Nellie || Fallbrook Baby Photographer

Yesterday started out early.. before the crack of dawn early. My flight to Washington DC left at 6am and when the alarm went off at 3:45a, I was not a happy camper. I detest mornings. I detest alarms and I don't really love to fly either. I was already missing Erik and the munchkins, but I was looking forward to a fantastic week in DC and Virginia.
My flight was thankfully uneventful. I also had dinner plans in Georgetown with one of my besties. It was going to be a fantastic night and by the time the plane touched down, I was excited for the Georgetown Cupcake Crawl to begin.
It is safe to say that I have a bit of a cupcake issue. The issue.. I love them.. ALL!! If we are facebook friends, then you have already seen the dozen and a half cupcakes that made their way back home with us last night. Georgetown has Baked and Wired, Georgetown Cupcake {of DC Cupcakes tv fame} and a brand new Sprinkles location all within a 4 block radius. Toni and I {with the help of her hubby and kiddos} decided to conduct our own completely unscientific research on the best cupcakery in Georgetwon.
It was not unanimous, but Baked and Wired was the winner. I **heart** their delicious giant cakes and glorious frosting that haunts my dreams.
When the alarm sounded at 8:30a {I'm still functioning on west coast time, don't hate}I wasn't super excited until I remembered that I was meeting gorgeous baby Nellie today and the frosted goodness of last night was waiting for me in the kitchen.
Baby Nellie is 6 weeks old and an absolute angel. I couldn't resist sharing a quick sneak peek of our session today!
Gorgeous Headbands by Anne of Gumdrops Hair Candy
View my portfolio HERE

To book a session or wedding or for more info email me HERE

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Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Leaving on a Jet Plane... Destination Virginia

A quickie to say ciao. I am off to Northern Virginia to shoot a wedding that promises to be nothing short of spectacular. I may not be around much because I have a couple of shoots packed into the rest of a busy destination wedding week, but I'll be back full force at the first of next week with some gorgeous images to share.
Speaking of sharing. I am DYING to share our A Blissful Nest Spring Fling Shoot.. but I have been sworn to secrecy for a little while longer. I can share a couple of my cuties modeling for the shoot in an amazing orange grove near our house. ::Swoon:: I **heart** orange groves, and my 3 little ones, and the amazing dresses and tie from one of our all time fave designers Kait Emerson Designs. And an extra bonus.. couture headbands from GumDrops Hair Candy. Love love love.
Just a few for now..

View my portfolio HERE

To book a session or wedding or for more info email me HERE

Find us on Facebook HERE

Follow us on Twitter HERE

Friday, March 18, 2011

FAQ: Before and After using MCP Actions... Fusion Set

What words would you use to describe your art? What words would you use to describe the art you would like to see on the walls of your home?
Mine are fresh, fun, crisp, soulful and beautiful. That is how I approach every session that I shoot and edit for my clients. I take into account their preferences and my vision and create something more than just a snapshot. 
I receive quite a few emails asking about camera equipment and post processing so I thought it would be fun for another little before and after FAQ.
This image was shot with my Canon 50d and 50mm 1.2 lens
ISO 400

I look at every image that I edit individually and while I don't always use actions, I knew this picture was perfect for the new Fusion Set from MCP Actions.
SOOC Image
Processed with MCP Actions:
Magic Skin at 45%  
Heartfelt {from Fusion} at 90%
The Eye Doctor {sharp as a tack 50%, enhance catchlights 30%}

View my portfolio HERE
More posts from the blog HERE
To book a session or wedding or for more info email me HERE
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Thursday, March 17, 2011

Kiss Me I'm Irish... and a Kangacoo Designs Open Call Sneak Peek || Scripps Ranch Photographer

Where are my days going?? Seriously, only 4 blog posts in over a week and a half? Pathetic, but I had an excellent excuse for today.. Tank took me to lunch to celebrate St Patty's Day! Who could resist his adorable 4 year old face and "Kiss Me I'm Irish" kisses? To say that we have been busy, would be putting in mildly... but I can't complain! I love spring and all that comes with it including longer hours spent lingering in the sunshine with the munchkins and at softball and baseball practices.
We have also been shooting! I know that I haven't been sharing as much as usual, but it is coming!! This past weekend we participated in an open model call for Kangacoo Designs at a gorgeous little boutique Baby Vie in Scripps Ranch.
The kiddos that came out were gorgeous!!! Here is just a tiny little peak at a couple of the cuties, but I promise to share more soon! Also, if you want the chance to model for Kangacoo Designs or any of our other commercial projects... please feel free to shoot me an email with the models name, age, size and picture! Boys and girls and ladies too!! Some really fun projects coming up .. you won't want to miss out.

 View my portfolio HERE
More post from the blog HERE
To book a session or for more info email me HERE
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Monday, March 14, 2011

Ann... Ralph Lauren Inspired Lifestyle Session || Fallbrook Photographer

Everybody needs beauty as well as bread, places to play in and pray in, where nature may heal and give strength to body and soul. ~John Muir

I adore Ann. From the first day we met I was struck by her kind eyes, beautiful spirit and gracious way. Her love for life, her family and animals is infectious and I was honored when she asked me to do a Ralph Lauren Inspired Lifestyle session on the grounds of her amazing property.
I can't explain how giddy I was the moment I downloaded her images and was taken at her inner and outer beauty that shined through! She styled her own session with gorgeous treasures from her own closet mixed with new ones from one of my local favorite stores.
Ann, you are perfection and grace and a testament to being a woman of God and of faith. Thank you from the bottom of my heart for your kindness and just for being you!

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Ann... Ralph Lauren Inspired Shoot || Sneak Peek

 "I believe in manicures. I believe in overdressing. I believe in primping at leisure and wearing lipstick. I believe in pink. I believe happy girls are the prettiest girls. I believe that tomorrow is another day, and... I believe in miracles." — Audrey Hepburn

Ralph Lauren, a beautiful farm bathed in golden light,  and a gorgeous woman {inside and out} that worked it like a supermodel just for the sake of taking time to remember the beauty that surrounds her.
When Ann and I chatted about her session and what she wanted, I knew that it was going to be nothing short of amazing! When she uttered the words "Ralph Lauren inspired", my mind was reeling. My biggest inspiration for stylized sessions are magazine ads, and Ralph Lauren is definitely one of my all time favorites.
I had to share a little sneak peek from our session today!

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Monday, March 7, 2011

Randomness for your Monday... NuxieMade, Birthdays and ToDo Lists

Today is one of those days when I just can't focus!! I have a giant to do list beside me, ideas circling my brain and Tank is in boy heaven playing with grandpa and uncle Cody. Why can't I focus??? So I thought a bit of Monday randomness was in order.
I am giddy with happiness when the UPS man shows up at my door. Today's little gems.. a new macro lens!! Yay! and the pearl paper that I am obsessed with. Now if I had a little fairy to finish the design for my client care sheets and wedding meetings, I would be in heaven!
Speaking of heaven, I am not in heaven when it comes to my house keeping skills this past week. I did do a lot of office time last and the kids had activities all 7 days {Miss Madi sang for the first time during mass this week! Makes her mama proud!!} and I feel like my poor house truly suffered from neglect. I have been begging for a housekeeper for awhile, but I think I have finally worn Erik down!! So please send any local North San Diego {specifically Fallbrook} referrals my way. Stat! Before he changes his mind. Our schedules are not getting any better for awhile and I need help for sanities sake.
Erik.. my anti birthday husband. Today is his birthday and we spent the weekend celebrating against all of his wishes. His mom said that he has hated birthdays for his entire life and would just skip them if he could. The munchkins refuse to skip anything to do with birthday presents, birthday cake and decorating my house up with homemade goodies that they can tape to the walls without my sideways stares of displeasure. Erik is on his way to Tampa and we couldn't celebrate on his actual birthday, but the kids did a great job with the banner that adorned my blinds all weekend and the dinner date with the family and beach day hanging out. Happy Birthday love! We miss you!
I also missed posting the following goodness from one of my faves: NuxieMade!! Melissa sent me a gorgeous hat to photograph for a {commercial shoot} and I instantly fell in love! I adore everything she creates and was in heaven when this little gem hit my mail box! My amazing friend Betsy let me con her into hitting the other side of the camera for this project... sigh, she's gorgeous and talented and works cheap.. a coffee date and a whole lot of fun !!  I **heart** her.
Happy Monday!! I am on my way to productiveness...{maybe}

I am all about a little facebook love lately!! Feel free to like meBetsy and NuxieMade!
Leave some love and I'll like you too. oxox