Hannah Nielsen » Documentary Family Photographer Seattle Portland and Worldwide


Early in 2013 I found a true passion in documentary family photography. I simply love finding the special moments within the every day and capturing them for you to have forever. Because of this love, I’ve developed a different type of session. A Day in the Life session is typically several hours long, in  your home (and sometimes on outings nearby your home or in a favorite place), and involves zero posing. My goal is to capture you being you, loving how you love.

I was lucky enough to be featured on Seattle based King 5’s Evening Magazine and I’m pretty convinced that this little clip gives you a much better idea of what these sessions are like than words alone.

Your family is unique and wonderful right in this moment. Perfect in its imperfection. The way your daughter twirls her hair. Your son’s obsession with Spiderman. Your kids’ bond with their new puppy. These stages are fleeting and I want you to always remember them. This is why I shoot documentary family sessions.

Before your session we will discuss your family’s interests, your goals for the session, particular memories you’d like to capture, and what you like to do together. From that we will decide on a concept for your shoot. Think an afternoon in your kitchen baking cookies, a morning at the beach flying kites and splashing in the water, or an intense session of Lego building. It could even just be the normal routines from your day. Whatever it is that makes your family yours. As I mentioned, this is not a posed photo shoot, and you won’t get studio type images.

What you will get is a glimpse in your family’s life — right now.

For more information or to book your own Day in the Life shoot, please get in touch! I’d be honored to meet you and get to know your family!

Click on any of the images below to see a recent Day in the Life Session:

A Day in the Life of Twin 1 Year Olds – Portland Documentary Family Photography

“Write it on your heart that every day is the best day in the year.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson Karlee

A Day in the Life of a Family of Four – Portland Documentary Family Photography

Sometimes I struggle with the words to tell you about the families I spend my days with. This is one of those times.

5 on 5 – November – Portland Documentary Family Photography

5 on 5 is a blog circle made up of documentary family photographers who have committed to telling a story in 5 images

The Fords – Portland Twin Newborn Photography

It’s 10:30 at night. I shouldn’t be blogging. But the cuuuuute! I can hardly stand it. Twin sessions are so

5 on 5 – September – Portland Documentary Family Photography

5 on 5 is a blog circle made up of documentary family photographers who have committed to telling a story in 5 images

5 on 5 – August – Portland Documentary Family Photography

If you’ve been following me for awhile, you’ll remember Stories in Seven. After a year of that project, I

A Day in the Life of the Stephens Family – Portland Documentary Family Photography

Let me just say, I’ve been dying to get my camera on this sweet family FOREVER. And I was so not disappointed.

A Day in the Life of the Newman Family – Portland Documentary Family Photography

“Realize deeply that the present moment is all you ever have.” – Eckhart Tolle Tomorrow every one

A Day in the Life of the Barratt Family – Portland Documentary Family Photography

I spend these hours with these families, watching every interaction. And no matter how much I shoot, I can’t

Worth the Wait – Portland Documentary Twin Newborn Photography

I don’t know what words I can say that these images can’t. These babies were so wanted, are so loved, and

A Day in the Life of the Haynes Family – Portland Documentary Family Photography

These Day in the Life sessions are magical. They are the mundane. Your regular routines. Reading the same book over and

Sharing Tea – Portland Documentary Family Photography

It isn’t every day that you’re asked to document a tea party for four generations of women. I was honored

A Day in the Life of the Lopez Family – Portland Documentary Family Photographer

Choosing to document a day in your life is a love letter to your child in the future. By capturing how you interact,

Something New and the Giveaway WINNER!!!

I have been asked so many times, “Do you do holiday mini-sessions?” And my answer has almost always been,

An Afternoon on their Family Farm – Seattle Documentary Family Photography

I had the honor of spending the afternoon with fellow photographer, Joanna, and her sweet family the other day. They

Well hello again, Oregon! (And a BIG Giveaway!)

We are moving back to Oregon!!! Kyle got a new job within Microsoft and we’ve got a house in SW Portland. Both


  • September 2, 2014 - 11:49 pm

    Ready for my close-up. | Bennett or Bust! - […] My sweet, loving, hilarious husband is camera shy. Fo’real. Getting him in a photo is like nailing jello to a tree. As you would imagine, we’ve never had professional photos done. Engagement, nope. Wedding, nuh uh. Pregnancy with cute little heart hands on my belly? Not a chance. Well, when my adoptive mama friend told me about Red Thread Sessions, I knew that our number was up. This organization matches adoptive families with talented photographers who DONATE a session to honor the newly minted family member. Who could turn that down? Not even Mr. Sano. I scrolled through a long list of talented photographers and one clearly stuck out. You see, we don’t usually frolic through daffodil fields after 5pm. We don’t often gaze longingly into one another’s eyes while petting unicorns. Our life is not rainbows and puppy dogs kisses. Hannah’s photos showed real families in their homes, doing what they do. (Granted, with slightly more make-up and fewer yoga pants than normal.) Perfect. She came and spent time with us, in the background, as we did what we do. There were tears and meltdowns, also fun, laughter, and snacks. Yet somehow that magical husband managed to escape nearly every shot. I’ll get him, one day. Bwahahahaha.Here are a few of my favorite shots, but be sure to check out the official post on the Red Thread page and Hannahs’ beautiful work on her blog.  […]ReplyCancel