Kelsey Shirley Photography | Blog



Yaghassva: Desert Maternity Session

April 29, 2016  •  1 Comment

The weather has been amazing here in Arizona lately and the desert is in full bloom! Nights like this, I am so grateful to have a job that gets me outdoors! I probably won't be singing the same tune in a few weeks but for now, I am loving my evenings at work! Everything about this session was so fun for me! Yaghassva and I worked together to style her session (both outfits are from Forever21)! And then we kind of winged it and just drove till we found a place we wanted to shoot! I loved getting to have so much creative control and the fact that Yaghassva is absolutely stunning didn't hurt either! :) We started the session in Tucson's downtown barrio and ended out somewhere in the middle of Saguaro National Park. The golden light at sunset was unreal!


Yaghassva and her husband, Troy, have a 7 year old son and are so excited to be welcoming a little girl in to their family any day now! 


Thank you Yaghassva! I can't wait to meet your sweet daughter! 

Ashley & Milton: Downtown Gilbert Wedding

March 03, 2016  •  Leave a Comment


It is a busy and exciting time for these two newly weds! They are seniors at Northern Arizona University, they got hitched in February, and will be graduating in a couple months! Ashley and Milton had a little courthouse wedding in downtown Gilbert and they asked me to come take a few photos for them around the town! It was my first time down there and I LOVED it! Ashley and Milton were the cutest! I loved their simple and stylish outfits, their quiet and calm demeanor, and the way their eyes sparkled when they looked at each other. <--- that's saying a lot because I am not really a corny kind of guy, but it was true. These two are crazy about one another! Congrats to Milton and Ashley! Enjoy married life!


Ashley's dress was from Forever 21!

Bouquet by Jill (Ashley's mom) 

Spiral Ring by: Mu-Yin Jewelry 

Turquoise Ring by: Fondeur Shop

Grooms Ring by: LoveStruckSoul


Danna & Erez Mccormick-Stillman Railroad Park Engagement Scottsdale, AZ

February 06, 2016  •  1 Comment

Dannah and I first met in College, volunteering for Tu Nidito. It turns out we had a best friend in common so it has been easy to keep in touch through out the years! Dannah has always been gorgeous, fun, easy going, funny, and kind which are just a few of the reasons I am so excited for her to be a KSP Bride this year! 


Dannah and Erez Met almost a year ago and fell fast for one another! He is originally from Israel and popped the question in his home town with the simple gold ring that you will see in many of the photos. It has the words "Eternal Serenity & Family Values" engraved around it, which to me, feels like she wears a mini version of their vows around her finger. I love it! 


Erez is quiet, helpful, smart, funny, and so madly in love with Dannah that you can literally feel it in their engagement photos. I have been sitting here editing them and I feel like I am watching some sort of romantic comedy or something... You know how when you are watching a moving with a cute couple and you fall in love with them a little? Ya, that's what has been going on over here as I work on their gallery. 


The weather was rainy and cold but we decided to go ahead with the shoot and embrace the romance and mood that a rainy day offers. It was such a fun shoot and we had the railroad park to ourselves which never happens at McCormick Ranch! 



Congrats on your Engagement Dannah & Erez! I can't wait for your Spring Wedding! 


Hair: Tara Hair 

Makeup: SN Makeup

Desert Breastfeeding Session

January 31, 2016  •  Leave a Comment

I could make a pretty long list about why being a woman these days is better than ever... however, this is a photography blog, I'm not much of a writer, and i certainly don't have cute photos to go with each of my reasons! SO, let's just focus on the 1 reason I dedicated a whole shoot to! :)

2016 is a great time to be a woman (and a baby for that matter) and I have the photos to prove it.

3 years ago I was a nursing mother and one of my worst nightmares would have been to find myself in public with my hungry babe and no nursing cover. And the thought of nursing in public (even with the cover) still gave me anxiety! I typically went out to my car to breastfeed my kids. Why was I ok with that? I remember hiding back in a bedroom during family party or when we had company over for dinner while i nursed my kids.  I can't believe how much has changed in just 3 (incredibly quick) years. 

In just a couple of years time, woman have come together to take breastfeeding their children from a private, embarrassing, and inconvenient task to a beautiful, celebrated, and most importantly, NORMAL thing! Well done ladies! 

Last week I went on a hike with 3 other moms and all three fed their babes. with their boobs. while hiking. that's amazing!

Meet Aleea (and her gorgeous babe, Jayda). Aleea has 5 other children that she nursed before the #normalizebreastfeeding movement, so she knows just how freeing it is to feel comfortable feeding her baby anywhere, even in the middle of the desert! The Hickmond family is finally complete so Aleea has been soaking in these final moments of all that it means to be a mother to a baby. Photographing the bond between these two had to happen and I am so glad it did!

Enjoy these photos and feel free to pin and share them. Do your part to spread the word, babies shouldn't have to be fed in bathroom stalls.

Cheers to 15 months of successful breastfeeding Aleea and Jayday! Enjoy every last moment because this post is really making me miss those baby days! Thank you for teaming up with me to do our little part to normalize breastfeeding. 

Merry Christmas From My Family To Yours

December 24, 2015  •  Leave a Comment


As a photographer, the holiday season can be super hectic.I think I heard another photographer compare this time of the year for us, to tax season for accountants and I couldn't agree more. I have spent many hours at photo shoots and countless hours at the computer editing. There have been plenty of late nights, important dates, events, and details (like sending my kiddo to school with a lunch) forgotten, and friends/family neglected but it has truly been so rewarding and so worth it. I absolutely love seeing all of my client's holiday cards arrive in the mail, It is so fun to meet so many new faces, and I truly love getting to photograph clients/friends year after year. Getting to witness (and capture) their families grow and change is hands down my favorite part of my job. If you chose me to photograph your family, your wedding, or your baby bump this year, I would like to say Thank You once again! 

Now, for my family holiday photos... I am kind of obsessed! :) See, photographing your kids is a completely different beast! All of my photographer friends will agree. Photographer kids are the worst! So when clients apologize over and over thinking that their kids made me work extra hard, they can rest easy knowing my kids made their kids look like angels! Max (7) & Mia (4) are not exactly thrilled with my profession. The groans that spew from their mouths as soon as they see me reach for my camera are absolutely pathetic. Their moans and groans are quickly followed by bartering. "If we are good for the photo shoot, what will you give us?" "Can we get ice cream? A dollar?" The WORST I tell you. I always assure them that they will be so glad they have nice photos of themselves to show their future spouses and children and when that doesn't work, I agree to the ice cream because, I will most likely also be feeling the need for a treat when the photo shoot is over (glass of wine preferably but an ice cream cone is a good option too).

I hope your holiday season has been as full and fun as ours!