Tender Look Photography has moved to Joanna Joy Photography!

Tender Look Photography has rebranded and moved to a new website!  (I left this old site up because I'm sentimental that way and love to flip through old photos for a trip down memory lane!)  The new site has fresh look but the same love of natural photos - documenting wedding days,  capturing family relationships for gorgeous wall prints. . . Visit Joanna Joy Photography to view current pricing, recent weddings, and tons of helpful wedding planning advise on the new blog!

Tucson Family Portraits || Mercado

on Monday, 08 December 2014.

Time for the annual family photo!  We moved from Tempe this year to lovely Tucson and how awesome is this view!!  The Catalina State Park is near home for the Mercado family and made the perfect backdrop!  The skies were dark and cloudy but the rain fortunately held off.  As we finished our session, the clouds pulled back and the sun painted the mountians in golden light - so lovely!!  This session was special to me because this family has been so gracious and welcoming to our family.  The best part about moving - finding beauty in new places and blessings in new faces!

Tucson Family Portraits || Ramirez

on Sunday, 07 December 2014.

We do this every few years just to relate to clients. Just kidding.  We do this because I'm a firm believer that EVERY family should take family photos.  Now. Not later when you have lost a few pounds or when your teenager has her braces off or when your family is perfect.  Ain't gonna happen.  Now is the best time.  My husband's father passed away at 54 years old - way too young.  I have not seen a traditional family photo of all 5 Ramirez boys with their parents.  That would have been so precious to my husband and his family!  Whether or not everyone is fit or in fantastic blow-your-budget clothes - no one would care.  Just a smiling photo to the gang all together would be treasured.  I love my family and I love that they humor me and spend a Saturday afternoon ironing shirts just to stand under a tree for 30 minutes!  (Check out our last family photo two years ago - 2012 Ramirez Family -  Mathias has changed soooo much!)

Scott and Audrie || Wedding Album

on Saturday, 12 July 2014. Posted in Weddings

album preview (click full screen option)

Scott and Audrie || Wedding at St Augustines

on Tuesday, 24 June 2014. Posted in Weddings

Hotel Congress Wedding Reception in Tucson AZ

High School Sweethearts and college sweethearts, Audrie and Scott are sweethearts plain and simple.  In honor of their faith,  Audrie and Scott choose the beautifully restored St Augustine's in downtown Tucson for their marriage ceremony.  Celebrants from her local parish and their parish in Flagstaff (where they both attended college) participated in the lovely service.

They chose a unique venue for the reception - the Copper Hall at Hotel Congress provided lots of character!  I've recently moved back to Tucson and am determined to take in some of Hotel Congress's hosted events!  Retro Game Show night anyone??  Too fun

Tucson Senior Portraits || Elijah

on Thursday, 15 May 2014.

Phoenix Senior Session

Tucson Senior Portraits || Valeria

on Thursday, 15 May 2014.

Phoenix Senior Session

Valentine Announcement

on Friday, 28 February 2014.

Pregnancy Announcement Session

Several years ago, when I first bought my "fancy camera", Amber and I shot an adorable engagement session with Sophie and Caleb.  Bikes, balloons, picnics, etc - everything that told the story of what fun they had together.  No shortage of laughs and smiles!  A while later, we shot their beautiful luncheon wedding at the Wig Wam Resort - fried chicken, lawn games, and live music - lovely!  This Valentine's Day I was let in on a little secret . . . baby is on the way!!  I see many more giggles and smiles in the future - more picnics, more bikes, and more balloons!!

Carrie and Ben || Part. 1

on Wednesday, 11 December 2013. Posted in Weddings

Thanksgiving Wedding in Tucson AZ

Thanksgiving is always my favorite holiday.  My mother used to sing a song "Count your many blessings name them one by one . . ."  Ben and Carrie were blessed with a lovely wedding at Starr Pass in Tucson, blessed with close family surrounding and supporting them, blessed with lovely blue skies, blessed with the greatest treasure of marrying your best friend.  May the blessings just keep adding up, one by one.  

Charlene and James || Family Portraits

on Monday, 02 December 2013.

Phoenix Pet Portraits

I have a confession to make.  I am a cat person.  My family has always had cats and I have a lovely calico named Patches.  After this session, I am now firmly a dog person.  Willing to trade my children for well behaved dogs? yes. almost.  I withheld the temptation to ask the name of the obedience school - but only because my eldest was with me patiently passing out doggie treats on command - I rewarded him with treats.

Charlene and James are east coast transplants.  I'm told all important life events (ei. weddings etc.) are accompanied by rain.  True to form, we faced record rain the day of their scheduled photo session.  Thankfully this lovely park was spared any flooding and all gloominess was sent into hiding at the sight of these adorable puppies! 


Senior Session: Gabby

on Sunday, 22 September 2013.


Some women are scared of aging.  Some want to stay young forever.  I don't.  I've known Gabby's family for 20 years.  (and WOW do the years fly by! don't blink!)  To stop time would be to stop this beautiful young girl from growing up.  The future that's ahead of her, the joys she'll experience, and the challenges she'll overcome . . . may her beauty never fade, may her smile always be easy!  

Engagement Portraits || Carrie & Ben

on Sunday, 22 September 2013. Posted in Engagements

Tucson Engagement Photographer

They got to know each other as part of a cycling group . . . songs and poems are written about this kind of stuff - falling in love - you never know when and where everything will change. . .

Ben and Carrie were so fun to work with!  They humored me . . . "sure bike the hill again in the hot September heat? No prob." Did this emphasize how unfit I am - huffing and puffing while just giving directions? Yes it did.  I def. felt the need to sign up with a gym.  "Please climb that cliff - yuppers, I want you standing on the ledge! Lizards, snakes? Don't worry - no one has seen a mountian lion here for days."

Family Portraits in Maine

on Saturday, 03 August 2013.

St John Valley Photographer - Summer Vacation

I made a trip home to Maine this summer for my 20th Class Reunion.  Millissa is a friend from art class who has recently launched her own photography business - she asked for a family session while we were both vacationing. . . ah the beauty of Maine!  the fields, the lake, the quiet . . .

The day we shot this session the boat that her husband built made it's first successful maiden voyage to the lake island and back again - what a way to document the event!  Playing in the canola fields and hay fields, we were quickly approaching sunset by the time we got to the dock.  Lakeside sunsets just can't be beat!!

Angie and Josh

on Monday, 24 June 2013. Posted in Weddings

Wedding at Calvary Chapel

This wedding featured a lot of "firsts" for me.  

No outdoor shoots - a first (though I missed the sun, air-conditioning is always a thing of beauty - ha)

Posing a firetruck - a first (a helpful crew was a definite plus)

Shooting a wedding with ginger ale and crackers in my camera bag - a first (both Amber and I were sick and though I was woozy, I didn't pass out and most shots are in focus :P)

Every couple is unique and every wedding is unique.  Angie and Josh were preparing for a big out-of-state move so Angie's mom helped organized a theme in vivid red and yellow.  The ceremony was held at Calvary Chapel with a reception following at the American Royal Palace Banquet Hall. During the ceremony, Josh surprised Angie and sang a song he wrote.  Lots of tears and laughs thoughout the day.  The warmth and support surrounding Angie and Josh was a joy to witness.   

Sarah and Justin

on Saturday, 11 May 2013. Posted in Weddings

Wedding at the Farm at South Mountain

A picture is worth a thousand words and I think I've posted a thousand photos!  Sarah planned a lovely sweet wedding at the farm.  It was a hot day but that didn't stop the smiles!  

I confess I'm guilty of falling in love at every wedding - usually with the parents of the couple!  So gracious, warm, and friendly . . . meeting Justin's folks and spending time with Sarah's parents was a joy.  May Justin and Sarah share a long happy marriage - weathering life's ups and downs with joy and grace.   

photo credits shared with partner Amber at Two Peas in a Pod Photography

Bouncing Baby Boy

on Tuesday, 07 May 2013.

Greek Orthodox Baptism

A friend recently invited me to photograph the baptism of his first son.  I remember when he first brought his new wife by the office - very proud and happy she had arrived from Ethiopia!  The birth of their baby and the traditional baptism 40 days later coincided with the Greek Orthodox Easter celebration.  The day following the ceremony family gathered together for photos, great food, and fun!  

Spending time with this sweet young mother reminded me of the joy of my first son - you just want to lay there and watch that sweet baby sleep and breath.  There is nothing more precious.

Sneak Peek || the Farm at South Mountain

on Tuesday, 07 May 2013. Posted in Weddings

Sarah and Justin's Wedding

I've been working my way through the photos from our most recent wedding - April 28 at the Farm at South Mountain.  Sarah and Justin were married on a lovely Sunday afternoon.  This is one favorite photo of many!  I'll try and post more wedding pictures soon but just had to share this shot!

Ashlynn and Steven || Part 2

on Saturday, 20 April 2013. Posted in Weddings

Wedding Album Design

I've posted photos previously of Ashlynn and Steven's wedding and wanted to share a few more.  Below are a few of my favorite album layouts!  We may shoot a thousand photos but it's nice to narrow them down and showcase what's important - the smiling friends, the gorgeous details, the romance of the bride and groom!  

Ashlynn and Steven || Part 1

on Thursday, 21 March 2013. Posted in Weddings

Phoenix Wedding

Another wedding at our home church!  I feel so blessed!  I'm going to sound like an old lady here but seriously I loved spending time with these young people - this whole bridal party.  (I got to meet a few new faces from Bagdad AZ and it was so sweet to see these girls support Ashlynn!)  Danny and I will be 18 years married next month - wowzers!! It's so sweet to see a cute couple just begining, knowing that God plays such a central role in their relationship with each other and guides their eyes to the future.  I pray many many blessing on their household!  Congratulations to Ashlynn and Steven! 

Jackie and John

on Monday, 11 March 2013. Posted in Weddings

Faria Munmun Photography || Eagle Mountain Golf Club

I had an opportunity to second shoot for a friend recently.  Faria and I met a while back at the Pictage Users Group.  I confess to stalking the blogs of my friends and had loved the darling engagement session she shot at the State Fair with Jackie and John.   Faria invited me to join her at the wedding.  We had never worked together before but I think you can always walk away learning something when you try something new.  In the end it was a lovely day at Eagle Mountain Golf Club.  Seeing the tears, the smiles, and the sweetness between this couple was special.  A tenderness that belongs only to newlyweds - so beautiful.  

Beautiful Brides and Bouncing Babies

on Thursday, 07 March 2013. Posted in Weddings

Just heard through the grapevine this beautiful bride is expecting!  Congratulations to Elyse and TJ!!  TJ had proposed to Elyse in song (which we featured in their engagement session) I'm sure their home will be filled with music once the baby comes. . . that wedding march will turn into a sweet lullabye!

Flash Back Friday

on Sunday, 03 March 2013. Posted in Weddings

Fountain Hills Wedding Photography

Happy Anniversay to Robb & Carah!!

In spring of 2011, the wedding and reception were held at Alchemy in Fountain Hills.   

Flash Back Friday

on Friday, 08 February 2013. Posted in Weddings

Phoenix Wedding Photography

Happy Anniversary to Kate & Steve!!  

Feb. 2011 - preceremony at the Sheraton, downtown Phoenix, followed by ceremony and outdoor reception at the Arizona Center

Family Portraits

on Tuesday, 29 January 2013.

Tucson Family Portraits

Family Photos in Tucson!  It's a priviledge every year to watch these two grow in talent and good looks.  :)  I take personal pride cuz they just happen to be family!  Love you Elijah and Elizabeth!!

Engagement Portraits || Ashlynn & Steven

on Sunday, 27 January 2013. Posted in Engagements

Tempe Engagement Portraits

"Like the warmth of the sun and the light of the day, may the luck of the Irish shine bright on your way."

In honor of Steven's Irish heritage and Ashlynn's dedication to continuing her education at ASU, we choose downtown Tempe for this engagement session.


Rustic Family Portraits

on Friday, 14 December 2012.

Scottsdale Family Photographer

Ask my husband, ask my partner, ask my kids - I'm a collector of chairs.  Odd chairs, vintage chairs, and especially little chairs.  Facing the time crunch of the holiday season but wanting to prioritize and invest a little for my family, we went ahead and did a family portrait this year - hauling out a collection of chairs to a rustic field. (Yes there was freeway access and a few No Trespassing signs but we'll pretend we were in the beautiful pines of Northen AZ not off the access ramp of the 101!)  

I think it really helps a photographer identify with clients by going through the work of finding decent clothes (within budget) and scrubbing a pack of children so they are presentable.  It's not easy!  Many families view portraits as a hassle.  It does take effort but the results are worth every bit of effort!  

My husband and I had attended a parenting workshop.  There was a big emphasis on "family identity".  Making your children feel part of something special.  Take the time to let each child know how important they are to you - not just individualy but also as a whole - as a family.

PHOTO CREDITS for the group photo go to a friend (featured in the last photo)  Amber wasn't feeling well so we brought along the boy's buddy.  I handed him the camera and said "push this button."  :)  Thank you Johnny!!  

Professional Profile Photos || Miss Lily

on Tuesday, 11 December 2012.

Corporate Head Shot & Profile Portrait Photographer Phoenix AZ

Miss Lily

I can not fit into one paragraph the history I have with this lovely lady.  My friend since childhood, she followed me from Maine to Arizona after high school.  Reserved, quiet, and very much in control, it still gives me the giggles to tease her and make her laugh.  I'm tempted to post the outtakes from this session.  She's got the management "get back in your seat and get to work" look down pat!  If I got too goofy she'd give me the "look" and fearful for my life I'd get back on task!  I'm also tempted to share the inside jokes that provoked these laughs and smiles but that wouldn't be fair.  I'm counting on her to cook my chicken stew Christmas Eve so I'd better play nice!  

Chris and Cassia || Part. 2

on Monday, 03 December 2012. Posted in Weddings

Ah newly wedded bliss!  It's all giggles and kisses!  My secret favorite photo though is not of newly weds but a portrait of Cassia's grandparents.  I was assembling a ginormous family grouping on the steps and spotted them walking away.  I hollared to Amber to grab their portrait real quick.  My husband had the sweetest set of grandparents I ever met.  We celebrated their 60th anniversary - I wish I had a portrait like this of them!  There is just something so precious about a marriage that has stood the test of time and still holds love.  Amber set them on the steps and later, laughing, told me how Grandpa was flirty and wanted Grandma to sit right next to him!  I wish Chris and Cassia many many years of giggles!  May you always make each other smile.


Chris and Cassia || Part. 1

on Monday, 19 November 2012. Posted in Weddings

Phoenix Wedding

A wedding at our home church, taking photos of precious friends . . . what could be better??  Chris and Cassia's wedding was a lovely full day of beautiful details, lots of planning by the bride, lots of hands chipping in and getting involved . . . there is no way to show all the efforts, all the emotion, and all the beauty in just a handful of photos but tonight with Part 1 we'll give it a try. :)

Christmas Tea

on Sunday, 18 November 2012.

Theme Christmas Portrait Session

Amber and I recently had an opportunity to be part of a Holiday Showcase event.  We used this event as an excuse to stage an impromtu styled Christmas Tea.  Amber got creative with her culinary talents and we both hauled our props/decor out on location.  

We caught the sun just as it was setting and the girls has a lovely tea party in our mini forest!  Just an hour earlier I was sitting in terrible traffic in downtown Phoenix; in record time we were sitting in the pines sipping tea and munching pastries.  

I know it's not Christmas yet, but may this holiday season, whether Thanksgiving, Christmas, or the New Year be celebrated with great food and even better company!  Enjoy the laughter of those around you and NEVER pass up a second delicious plate!!  

Wayne and Vita || Vive L'Amour

on Sunday, 30 September 2012. Posted in Weddings

Wedding at Sassi in Scottsdale AZ

This fall we were lucky enough to join the Tanner family in another wedding celebration.  They captured our hearts last summer when Amanda and Jon were married.  (They have recently added to the Tanner family - Congratulations!!)  These three brothers with the most elegant parents and the sweetest wives - are truly a gracious and welcoming family.  We loved spending the day with them at Sassi in Scottsdale.  Vita planned a beautiful wedding - the location, the music, the food - just beautiful.  Only a honeymoon in Italy could surpass the romance in the air!

Mother and Daughter Portrait Session

on Saturday, 30 June 2012.

Come Walk With Me

In honor of Mother's Day, Amber and I shot portraits of each other with our daughters.  I don't know if I have the words to describe this post.  The responsibility we have in raising our daughters, in keeping them close, in making them feel loved - it's overwhelming.  The easy part is hugging them, is kissing their cheeks, is holding their hands.  Those are the easy parts.  If we take time for those things, the big important official parenting stuff will fall into place.  At least that's my hope!  There is not enough hours in the day to cherish these sweethearts!  Thank you Lord for little girls.

Farm Wedding Inspiration Shoot

on Saturday, 26 May 2012. Posted in Weddings

Sunnybrook Farm Wedding Style

We're both guilty of hosting weddings on Pinterest.  I think I have weddings planned in at least 6 colors!  Last fall our love of details and vintage got the best of us.  I don't remember what the original starting point was - maybe the vintage Mustang, maybe Sophie's darling veil, maybe a craving for strawberry shortcake. . . We teamed with Sophia Sarten and staged a wedding inspiration shoot.  Amber's brother and sister-in-law had an elegant evening wedding and were willing to shoot a fun daytime session for us as an anniversary celebration.

A kindly older couple gave us permission to use the front portion of thier ranch for this shoot.  Finding country green in Phoenix is always a challenge!  The funniest part of the day was seeing them sit on the porch, watching hordes of people stage a fake wedding with no guests on their front lawn.  Too silly!  How odd we must have looked!

Once Amber found that farm location, Sophie pulled together a summery color scheme of yellows, blues, and reds.  Amber, with her history as a wedding florist, incorporated the yellow color pop into a super cute billy ball bouquet and a sweet blue boutonniere with button accents. Sophie added farm details - hay bale ceremony seating, tin can flower holder on the backs of wood slat chairs, ragged ribbon streamers and garlands. . .

The hit feature of the warm late summer day was definitely the ice cold strawberry lemonade!  Sipped from barber pole straws they were very refreshing!  Sophie's newly wed husband and a few friends chipped in - moving hay bales, laying out place settings, and reading fake menus.  I was hoping we'd have some of that grilled chicken . . . maybe please just for a photo op?  Nope - just cake and lemonade.  Jackie Austin created not one but two delicious shortcakes!  Maybe she forgot they were only for show and there were no guests, but she made them so yummy we couldn't stop munching!!

The "bride" crafted a lovely little heart garland - a pretty accent to our theme!  I embroidered my first little heart on the groom's bow tie.  Amber's son stood in as ring bearer.  I always tease her - he is the cutest vintage little boy ever!  Norman Rockwell come to life!  (The groom secretly paid him for his cooperation in M&Ms.  That's just what uncle's do!)  On a side note, I"ll work for shortcake, lemonade, and M&Ms too.  Any day.

and We're Back!

on Saturday, 15 October 2011. Posted in Weddings

It's been a lovely summer break!  We've spent time with family, spent time on the lake, spent time with our children . . . and as always, we've spent time with our cameras!

With the unveiling of this new site, we are excited to show you sneak peeks of summer weddings and engagements!  We've also completed our first styled shoot with stylist Sophie Sarten. 

This site is still under construction.  Thank you for being patient with us through the summer hiatus!

We are in the process of restoring our older blog posts to this new site - please take  a peek at our Galleries to view our work, view our About Us page to see our personal blog, or view the For Brides page for helpful wedding planning tips!