Glam it up

February 14th is fast approaching, so why not Glam it up and give your sweetie a gift that will make him say, "Wow."
 I only have a couple of days/weekends left open January and only one day open in February, so don't wait, book now!  

Taylor Class of 2017

I had the pleasure of photographing Taylor's Senior Portraits.  We had a fun time and quite the adventure.  Thank you Taylor and have a fantastic 2017 senior year at Squalicum High School.  

Grant Class of 2017

I wanted to share another fun senior photoshoot I was able to do with Grant from Squalicum High School.  

Thanks Grant and have a awesome senior year.

Photographing horses and little ones.

Recently, I was asked to photograph children with their horses, sounds amazing right? Boy was I wrong. Okay let me back-up a little, when I was asked I was thrilled for this challenge.  Together the family and I came up with some fun idea's, such as putting a horn on one of the horses for a dreamy unicorn shoot. Another was to go out in a field with all the horses in the back drop.  I was so excited  to have all these wonderful ideas in my head and then the day came, and REALITY HIT. 

It was a screaming hot day (unusual for Bellingham, WA), with the little guy who wouldn't sit still, (shocking I know), a little girl crying because she was hot, and to add to the misery the the grass was prickly. Oh that's not all... we had a horse that was spooked and a unicorn horn, that wouldn't stay on.  I new it was gonna be challenging, but WOW. 

Thanks you to an awesome mom for organizing it, and  for being understanding of the not-so-easy day.  Thank you to all the people who helped through this horse photoshoot it truly was an experience. That being said we got some great shots, and sometimes I forget that we all have to roll with the punches, and not ever photoshoot will be perfect. 

In Life & Love - Dawn


What is a Boutique Photographer?

When you think of a boutique, you may think of a small clothing store or a jewelry shop that offers specialty products and personalized customer service. You may not get the same customer service or quality product if you go to a big box retailer or department store.

The boutique or “full service” model is applied here at Dawn Matthes Photography. The decision to have portraits done is not only an investment of your money, but your time. It’s important to carefully craft an experience and end product to capture those memories.

So how does being a boutique photographer benefit YOU, the client?

From the moment of the first inquiry, it is important that I learn as much as I can about you. We will have an in person consultation.  I want to know about your personal likes and dislikes, so I can be sure the session is crafted to fit your style.  It will also give you a chance to get to know me better and ask any questions you may have.  

At Dawn Matthes Photography, I strive to get the best possible photos from each and every session. During our chats, we will craft your ideal session by picking props and setups that will match your child’s nursery or home decor.  We can incorporate family heirlooms or trinkets and finally, choose a locations that match your family’s personality. Being a boutique photographer, I maintain a limited schedule to be sure that your memories are given the personal attention you deserve. You don’t have to worry about being rushed through your session and you can be assured I will not retouch your images hastily. By choosing to take on a limited amount of clients and/or projects, I give you the highest quality service and product the first time!

It is often defeating to me when clients would admit to their picture disc being left in a drawer or even in some instances loosing their disc during a move or while “spring cleaning”.  Your memories are entirely too important to sit on a disc. I believe that your memories deserve to be printed which is why I offer quality tangible art that will last. By meeting once again after your session, I can help to design your art to fit you and your home on a personal level. It gives me the opportunity to offer my expert advice and provide samples for you to see and touch. I personally dislike ordering online because I am a visual and physical person. If I cannot feel or touch the product, I often have anxiety about buying that product.  Once your products come to me, I inspect them to be sure your products are up to quality standards and package for you and your family to enjoy!  I personally package all my clients orders in a special photobox and some extra’s that make this experience special.



Offering a personalized experience is something I strive to do with each and every client. Memories are happening now. Let me help you preserve them for years to come with your very own session!



Headshots Can Be Fun

I love when a client lets me think outside of the box for their headshot photoshoot. If you have a unique job or brand that represents your business, then why not be unique with your headshots? Your headshot isn't just for your website. It’s for your social media and blog, and it helps you in advertising your business.

There are so many fun ways to use your photos for your marketing. Here’s an example session with Jenniffer owner of Chatterbox Promotions here in Bellingham, WA. When we sat down for her consultation, I noticed right away the fun colors in her logo. I had some ideas but it was really up to her, and she said I could run with it! Oh, how I love her! Here’re some samples from her session and ideas of what she could use them for. 

In Life & Love - Dawn

Big Red Mini

Well it's that time of year, SPRING!  The buttercups are everywhere, and thanks to my good friend Jamie Smeall of Squalicum Acres, we have a spot for Big Red.  Her farm has a huge beautiful meadow of hay and buttercups.  Big Red will look so amazing against the yellow buttercups. 

Sample photo from my iphone isn't the best, but my vision is that it will be amazing!  Especially, late afternoon when the sun is low in the sky. 

 squalicum farms

squalicum farms

Date:  June 12th

Time: 3pm - 7pm

Cost:  $150 plus tax.  8 fully edited file, in color & bl/wh downloadable via your private gallery.

Sessions are every half hour.  So book ASAP, space is limited.

email: or call: 360-296-2911

Julian's First Year

I had the wonderful pleasure of photographing the Wuhr family for a few years now. I met them in the hospital in Bellingham when they had their first child Lauren. I had the honor of photographing Lauren's newborn and milestone portraits. When they told me they were expecting another child, I was so excited for them. They requested me to capture every moment of their next newborn.  Here is a glimpse of their son Julian's first year.  He is such a joy to photograph, just like his big sister!

Thank you Wuhr Family for a wonderful year.

Whatcom County Headshots Sessions

Social media is growing like crazy!  Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, YouTube, Linkedin, Instagram; your profile picture and headshot photos are EVERYWHERE!!

Your online and/or print media appearance is SO VERY IMPORTANT; maybe even more important than your in-person image due to the vast number of people viewing your photos prior to ever meeting you.  They say "first impressions are everything," and boy is that ever true. 

A good quality portrait or headshot will;

  • build trust in you and your brand;

  • put a face to your name and voice;

  • portray a professional and inviting front to your business.

When looking at your headshot photo a person is making an assessment of you:

  • Do you appear organized and neat?

  • Is your pose welcome and warm?

  • Are you in-sync with current trends and technology?

  • Do you have a sense of humor?

  • Are you passionate about your career?

  • Are you trustworthy?

The group photo taken at a Christmas Party you cropped and are using as your profile picture might not look bad to your mom and friends, but to a potential employer or new client, it may portray lack of professionalism, irresponsibility, and/or just poor taste.  Like it or not, especially in this tech savvy world we live in today, your headshot photos may very well be hurting your business.

With so many avenues for someone to "pre-qualify" you personally and professionally these days, you absolutely have to stand out in the crowd, made a great first impression and portray your attention to detail, professionalism and your integrity; it is an absolute must.

I would love to visit with you to discuss your headshots prior to scheduling a session.   Sessions range from 15 - 45 minutes and start at approximately $75.  I typically ask you to bring a couple different outfits and depending on your business, interests, etc., we will decide whether to photograph you in a studio setting, at your place of business, on location or all of the above. 

So, give me a call right now to get going and don't forget mention you saw this BLOG for a 10% discount!!


(360) 296.2911


Whatcom County Senior Portraits

It's hard to believe your baby is growing up and preparing to graduate.  The time when they will depart your nest to venture into the world and leave their mark is drawing near.  Your precious little boy or girl is in high school; their senior year is fast approaching and ready or not it's time to help them take the next step into adulthood.  I know you really don't want to think about it; you may have trouble talking about it; certainly you aren't ready to deal with it...but you must and we are here to help. 

The first step in helping your teen prepare for what's to come is encouraging them to celebrate where they have come from and empowering them to declare to the world where they are going.  Senior portraits are a beautiful way for your young adult to share their story and begin the transition into the next phase of their lives. 



Formal senior portraits in and of themselves are a tradition dating back to at least the 1880’s in America.  In those days senior portraits were taken in cap and gown, portrait style and posed in studios.  As you can see from my photos, my style is quite different. 

Through the use of photography, I strive to help your child realize the importance of their life thus far.  I encourage them to use great props such as Letterman jackets, team uniforms, trophies, club flags, and musical instruments to tell the story of their accomplishments; very important for their self-esteem, sense of fearlessness, and in portraying their dedication and commitment. 

In choosing locations for their photo shoot, I will assist them in identifying important people in their lives, hobbies they enjoy, special places they like to visit, and matters that are important to them; the skateboard park, their best friends, grandpa's barn, the blanket grandma crochet, dad's antique car, and the park where they played as a small child; all important in helping them realize their deep rooted connection to home, family, and their community.  Telling these stories through photography while celebrating their journey and development seizes the important milestones and moments than can never be relived. 

Your teens high school years are filled with marvelous milestones; their first car, falling in “love” for the first time, discovering what career they will pursue, developing and nurturing friendships that will last a lifetime, registering to vote, attending dances and prom, captaining their sports teams, applying for college, getting their first job, and in many cases preparing to move away from home for the first time; all incredible and influential events they will recall frequently throughout their lives.  Certainly these memorable moments, fabulous firsts and wonderful experiences deserve to be captured and preserved. 

Senior portraits are used for many things throughout the year and in those to come.  Senior yearbook photos are often shown in color and larger than other years, you may have a 1/4 page up to a whole page to tell your child's story; so having a professional photos is important.  Photo’s are often included when sending graduation announcements to loved ones near and far.  Family members who have shared the incredible journey of a young person’s life love receiving a print or canvas as a thank you for the influences they have made.  And, let's not forget about your role in this incredible journey; a beautiful metalic print or framed print of the wonderful human being you have nurtured into adulthood will bring you joy every time you see it.  Social media, job seeking, memories and more; the uses for these professional photos are endless.

Dawn Matthes Photography would love to help tell the story of your child's journey into adulthood.  We are booking portrait sessions now and offering an 11 x 17 print ($150 value) for those booked by March and April.  It's not necessary to photograph then, just be sure to reserve your spot before we are booked up for the busy season.  Booking early also ensures there is time to reschedule should there be issues with weather, illness or other circumstances.

Call or email to reserve your session today!!

(360) 296-2911

Beautiful days of February...

Today is such a beautiful day in the Pacific's got me thinking about gardening!!  It was chilly here this morning, but is warming up to a wonderful 58 degrees.  Blue sky with just a few high wispy clouds.  And, there is definitely some heat in the sun.  Great news...Punxsutawney Phil predicts an EARLY SPRING! No shadow!  With all this sunshine and the promise of an early spring I have a hankering to get outside.  Here are some great gardening tips I found from Thompson & Morgan's and wanted to share with you.

  • Prune your Wisteria now, cutting back summer side-shoots to 2 or 3 buds;
  • Towards the end of the month prune summer-flowering clematis before active growth begins - find out how with Thompson & Morgan's clematis pruning guide;
  • Cut back the old foliage from ornamental grasses before growth begins - clip them to within a few inches of the ground;
  • Force rhubarb plants for an early crop. Plant new rhubarb crowns now;
  • Mulch perennial vegetables such as Asparagus and Artichokes with well rotted manure or garden compost;
  • Start chitting early potatoes - stand them on end in a module tray or egg box and place them in a bright, cool, frost-free place;
  • Start sowing vegetable seeds such as leeks , onions and celeriac under cover now;
  • Prepare vegetable seed beds by removing all weeds and forking in plenty of compost. Cover prepared soil with sheets of black plastic to keep it drier and warmer in preparation for spring planting;
  • Sort your seeds by sowing date, month by month;
  • If you haven't already, plan your vegetable plot for this year to ensure good crop rotation and prevent pests and diseases building up in the soil;
  • Order your seeds and plug plants online now. Having a garden plan drawn up will help you decide the quantities you need;
  • Consider using containers and hanging baskets filled with bedding plants to add color to your patio.

Once your garden is all spruced up and the flowers start to emerge why not take a few photos, then print and frame them to brighten up certain rooms in your house this Spring? 

In her article "10 Tips for Improving Your Flower Photos", Anne McKinnell shares this..."as the flowers start to emerge from the soil, all the neighbors begin emerging from their houses with gardening tools in hand. I, on the other hand, have my camera in hand ready to capture the spring flowers and I hope you do too!"  Anne's tips about when to photograph flowers, closeups, clutter, depth of field and more are fantastic and will have you snapping great pics in no time. 

A few hours outside this wonderful time of year does a body and soul good.  Happy Gardening Friends!!

Time is running out!!

Just a few days left Ladies!! We are all so excited for this Beautiful Boudoir Event!! Check out these beautiful women!!

Book your session today as there are only a few spots available on Saturday.

Professional Hair and Makeup Artist, lots of sexiness, bubbly, nibbles, photos and fun!! We would love to have you join us!! Get a few of your girlfriends together and come on out to Selene Homestead.

After your session, meet your special someone for dinner and a fun evening because you are going to look gorgeous!!

Your photos will be available as a package or ala carte. Just let me know what your budget is!!

Have questions?? 360.296.2911


Mini Family Sessions with Big Red.

Hello everyone!  I can't believe that this year is coming to an end soon.  And you know what that means.  Time for Fall and Winter Mini Sessions.  I have had requests for Big Red up on Baker again this winter season.  As many of you know this is a great way to update your family wall, make awesome xmas cards and family gifts...and have fun doing it!  I have not picked my spot for the fall color session, but will post ASAP. 

So don't wait to book your time slot, I am looking at November 22nd or 29th For the Mt. Baker location and for Fall Colors the date will be November 1st.  I will book only 5-8 spots per location.  They generally last 20 minutes, a custom CD with 5 fully edited high resolution files in color and bl/wh.  COST $150 plus tax.


My Momma

Hello everyone!  Here are the photo's promised from my last blog, about making sure we honor our mom's for mother's day.

Life changes so quickly and you can't go back.  I do have regret that I haven't taken more photo's of my mom and especially of her and I.  I am going home again for Mother's day and I am getting a friend to come and take a few shots of her and I with my brothers, very rare indeed.  I did capture her with a few lovely shots of her outside in their garden at her nursing home.  I will say though, I did not find her this way, all clean and ready.  My heart sank when my brother and I walked into her room and found her with her pants down around her ankles and her "diaper" all dirty and torn up in her hands.  She seemed very lost and confused.  I have no idea how long the poor thing sat there pulling at her pants wanting help to go to the bathroom and just frantically pulling at her clothes.  The helper's first words were, "Oh, she does that allot!"  and that's ok I asked?  I was shocked and confused myself and really didn't do anything at that time, just wanted her cleaned up and ready to enjoy my visit.   The next day I found her still in bed at noon eating lunch, when asked if she had her once a week bath, the gal said that my mother punched her so she didn't get her bath!!!  I was shocked and went to our counselor and demanded an explanation.  I asked where are all the nurses that used to take such awesome care of my mom?  His answer was that there were some changes in November, (cut backs), and now her care is done by "Caregivers"  who don't really know how to care for Dementia patients.  They speak very little English and this is frustrating for my mom, who is already having challenges in her everyday life.   Lewy Body Dementia is robbing my mom of her dignity and her quality of life.  I am taking steps to make sure she is getting better care and will keep you posted.  But until then I hope you enjoyed the photo's I took of her.  For her to smile now is very difficult, so to catch such a big one like the good ol days was AWESOME!

Have a wonderful day and smile big, it just makes you happy.

Limited Dates Left for Senior Portrait Sessions

For those of you who haven't started thinking about your teens senior portraits for 2016, you better get on it!  Time flies and the deadlines for submission will be here before you know it.  I have 4 open dates in August and 2 in September.  If you are interested in booking please call or email ASAP!

Let me help you tell your story.  I promise you, it will be fun and it will be quite the adventure! 

I have teamed up the Kara's Beauty Barn.  Kara is an amazing, fun, talented makeup artist and stylist.  She and I are here to help you look and feel your best for your special day with us.  We feel this day should be all about you! 

Prices start at $350.  Call today @ 360-296-2911 or email me @