Menlo Park Photography Class!

Saturday, June 6th I co-hosted a photography class, Snap Happy, in Menlo Park. It was an item a fellow parent and I donated to the Las Lomitas Education Foundation. This is the third year I’ve gotten the chance to work with some moms from school to teach them some photography skills.  The goal of the class is to help them learn tips to improve their photography no matter what camera they own.  I also share some iPhone photography tips as well.

The class started with a delicious brunch and coffee, followed by a class presentation, demonstration, hands on learning along with Q & A. We raised over $1,100 for the morning and had a terrific time! Plus I got to photograph the attendees, bonus!

women with cameras during a menlo park photography class

head shots taken during a menlo park photography class

brunch during a menlo park photography classheadshots taken during a menlo park photography class

We talked a lot about what it feels like to be in front of the camera.  I think sometimes we forget how much direction and feedback people need to get comfortable while being photographed.  My preferred method is using the Beloved Technique to help people be their most photogenic. My style is natural, honest and authentic so it’s important that people look like themselves while showing real emotion.women taking photos during a photo class by anna dobrenski

Working together in pairs helped the attendees remind each other the new tips they learned.  There was lots of chimping to see how they did. Some even shared their “old way” of photographing a person versus the “new way” and the results were fantastic!

women taking photos during a snap happy photography class by anna dobrenski

Thankfully each attendee was willing to be photographed.  I feel it’s important to be on both sides of the camera to learn how to photograph people. You have to be willing to do what you ask of the person you’re photographing.attendees at a menlo park photography class

We ended the morning with a group photos.

[caption id="attachment_2122" align="aligncenter" width="980"]anna dobrenski during a photography class she teaches in menlo park                                      photo courtesy of christine arnould of me photographing some of the attendees[/caption]

If you are looking to improve your photography skills I offer one on one mentoring and small workshops for groups.  Please contact me if you are interested in learning more at 415. 518. 8880.

Anna Dobrenski Photography is a boutique studio offering lifestyle portraits for modern families. Areas serviced include San Francisco, Hillsborough, Woodside, Atherton, Menlo Park, Palo Alto and beyond.

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My New Red Shoes Fashion Show

The 6th annual My New Red Shoes Clothing for Confidence fashion show and silent auction was held September 28th. The event, held at Sharon Heights Golf and Country Club, is a fundraiser for one of my favorite Bay Area non-profit organizations, MY NEW RED SHOES.

My New Red Shoes helps homeless and low-income children look and feel confident as they start the school year by providing them with new clothing and shoes and by rallying youth and adults around this effort through volunteer and educational opportunities for individuals, families, schools, corporations, and community groups.

my new red shoes

Attendees and models showed their enthusiasm and support by wearing red shoes.anna-dobrensk-menlo-park-family-photographer_0610 my new red shoes fashion show

There were lots of children and parents enjoying the arts and crafts area.

my new red shoes fashion show Malvika Behl, event co-chair of the 2014 fashion show with Heather Hopkins, founder of My New Red Shoes and Amy Burnett, event co-chair of the 2014 fashion new red shoes fashion show my new red shoes fashion show my new red shoes fashion show

Some of the Steering Committee members of the 2014 Show.anna-dobrensk-menlo-park-family-photographer_0601

Along with a huge array of silent auction items, there was a raffle prize from Stephen Silver Fine Jewelry.

Children of varying ages dressed up in Old Navy fall fashion and walked the runway.

anna-dobrensk-menlo-park-family-photographer_0606 my new red shoes fashion show

The complete gallery of images from the event can be found HERE.  Scroll down to find MNRS then enter your email address to view, share and purchase prints from the 6th annual Clothing for Confidence Fashion Show.


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Snap Happy Workshop | Menlo Park Photography Class

Saturday I taught my third Snap Happy Workshop, a Menlo Park Photography Class to teach parents how to take better photos of their children. The class is designed to teach fundamental tools to improve their photography no matter what camera they own. I cover iPhone photo tips as well.  The class was co-hosted with my friends Wendy and Brian.


group of women at a photography workshop

The Snap Happy Workshop was donated to the 2014  Las Lomitas Auction which raises funds for the Las Lomitas Education Foundation. We had eight awesome moms sign up and attend the class, one was my co-host Wendy, pictured on the far right. Her husband Brian offered to help keep our models (their children Charlie and Betsy along with Miles) and resident dog Phoebe content while I taught the class.

sibling love during a menlo park photography workshop

There’s nothing like sibling love!  Betsy and Charlie made my demonstration of how to get natural expressions from children a breeze!

anna dobrenski photographer



menlo park photography workshop

Do you get frustrated trying to get images of your children in focus? Tired of bad lighting and expressions? If you’d be interested in attending or hosting your own Menlo Park Photography Class, please contact me to discuss details. I’d love to help more parents improve their photography skills with the Snap Happy Workshop! I can be reached at


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Lunch & Learn | Menlo Park Children’s Photographer

As a Menlo Park children’s photographer, I love when I can give back to the community and help others, especially children. Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital is where both my children were born and luckily they were two bouncing beautifully healthy children. It is a huge privilege to be able to contribute my talents to benefit children. Philanthropy supports clinical care, research, and education to improve the health of children and expectant mothers, locally and worldwide through the Lucile Packard Foundation for Children’s Health.


The AMBASSADORS FOR LUCILE PACKARD CHILDREN’S HOSPITAL hosted their 7th annual Lunch and Learn benfiting the Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital. Ambassadors members selected a new medical patient room as their first of four Fund-a-Need goal: $150,000. Suzanne Crandall and Rose Lanham, Co-Presidents, Ambassadors introduced the event speakers.

stack of childrens books for menlo park event

The BRING ME A BOOK FOUNDATION donated stacks and stacks of books to the hospital. Their mission strengthen the language and literacy skills of underserved children.


Susan Ford Dorsey interviewed Dr. Condoleezza Rice about various aspects of her career, political views and personal life.


Dr. Rice, former Secretary of State of the United States, is currently the Denning Professor in Global Business and the Economy at the Stanford Graduate School of Business; the Thomas and Barbara Stephenson Senior Fellow on Public Policy at the Hoover Institution; and a professor of Political Science at Stanford University. She is also a founding partner of RiceHadleyGates, LLC. She was the first African American woman to serve as Secretary of State and was also the first woman to serve as President George W. Bush’s Assistant to the President for National Security Affairs from 2001-2005.


women at a menlo park charity event photographed by anna dobrenkski

Ambassador Board members Sylvia Edwards, Melissa Kepner and Heather Koch were co-chairs for event planning for the 7th Annual Lunch & Learn.

two women at a benefit for lucile packard children's hospital

women at a benefit lunch for lucile packard children's hospital

menlo park charity event


dr. condoleezza rice at a menlo park event

woman laughing at a menlo park event


It was an inspiring talk and my most favorite part was Dr. Rice’s thoughts on mentors. She mentioned that there is a conceit that mentors and role models need to look like us. She suggested we find mentors wherever we can. They should be interested, be able to advocate for you and show you the ropes. We might need different mentors for different stages of life. Very insightful information!

When asked if she had plans to run for presidency, her answer was no. She added, “You have to know what you are cut out to do.”

My specialty is creating photographic art to preserve memories of children and those who love the. I’d love to chat with you about pricing, the experience or session availability. Give me a call at 415. 518. 8880.


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Children’s Health Council Glitter and Glue

by Anna Dobrenski

San Francisco family photography provides many opportunities to document families and children over the course of the year. I focus on providing value and service to the families in the community that commission me. It is important to me also to give back any way I can to help others.

When asked to become a Children’s Health Council Dot as their preferred photographer, I did not take the position lightly. It’s important that my contributions are making an impact. I carefully choose a few philanthropic partners that align with my business and personal mission statement. Here’s a description from the Children’s Health Council website. “At CHILDREN’S HEALTH COUNCIL we’ve been helping children and families for over 60 years believing there is a world of promise and potential in every child. Using a personalized approach, we help children and teens become happier, more resilient and more successful. Our Center, two schools and Community Clinic serve families in the Silicon Valley as well as the greater San Francisco Bay Area.”

The first event 2014 produced by the Children’s Health Council Dots was Glitter and Glue, named after Kelly Corrigan’s new book. Kelly Corrigan is the New York Times best selling author of The Middle Place and Lift. If you have not had the pleasure of reading Kelly’s books you are in for a real treat. Her books have this magical way of making you drop everything you are doing to join in her journey, following stories of personal experience and reflection. Her writing style is just as she is in person, warm and casual. You will most likely laugh out loud, cry streams of salty tears and sigh with a deep yearning for more once you finish the last page. I finished The Middle Place in one sitting. I’m confident Glitter and Glue will be just as captivating. I’m bringing it to my book club next month since we are all mothers who enjoy books and conversation.

Here’s a sneak peek from the inside cover of Glitter and Glue. “When Kelly Corrigan was in high school, her mother neatly summarized the family dynamic as ‘Your father’s the glitter but I’m the glue.’ This book is about the difference between travel and life experience, stepping out and stepping up, fathers and mothers. But mostly it’s about whom you admire and why, and how that changes over time.”

The event drew a crowd of close to 350 women. It was great to see the shared laughs, knowing glances and touched hearts during Kelly’s talk. What an amazing sense of community!

author kelly corrigan photographed by anna dobrenski, san francisco family photography

author kelly corrigan photographed in menlo park by anna dobrenski, san francisco family photography

woman laughing during a menlo park event by anna dobrenski


menlo park event photographed by anna dobrenski photography

san francisco family photography

menlo park family photographer

san francisco family photographer

san francisco family portraits

san francisco family photography

children's health council event

san francisco family photography

author kelly corrigan photographed by anna dobrenski

author kelly corrigan at book signing photographed by anna dobrenski

If you attended the event and would like to view, share or purchase prints from the gallery log onto my storefront HERE. San Francisco family photography is my specialty. I would love to get to know your family and capture the joy and love that you share. Contact me for more information at 415. 518. 8880.


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Beloved Session Giveaway!

couple kissing girl wearing cowboy hat in a field for their beloved session
“A successful relationship requires falling in love many times, always with the same person.” Unknown

Whether you’ve been dating for a few years, married for sixty, or somewhere in between, you have long term love that should be celebrated! I’m super excited to share this Valentine Beloved session giveaway with my friends and fans!

Beloved sessions are being incorporated into all my solo, children and family sessions but I thought it would be fun to offer one up just for couples!

Beloved sessions are a unique, feel good experience that will warm your heart and touch your soul. And, I’ll just happen to be there documenting the natural play and expressions with my camera. It truly is a gift to enjoy a Beloved session with the most special person in your life. Head on over to my FACEBOOK PAGE then “like” and comment to be entered to win. The Beloved session giveaway winner will be announced after selection tomorrow, February 14th, 2014 at 5pm.

Winner will receive a complimentary Beloved session for a couple (sorry, no children) lasting 60-75 minutes at a location within 20 miles of zip code 94028. A pre-session consultation to design and plan your session is included. Within two weeks of the session completion, winner will receive an in-home Session Premiere to view and select products. A $300 product credit is included. Session must be completed prior to March 30th, 2014. A signed model release is required from winner(s).

What are you waiting for? Click on over and enter to win! You can also tag friends and family you think might want to enter also.

Please contact me if you are interested in scheduling a Beloved session for you and your loved one(s). I have limited session times available for spring and am booking through the end of 2014. I can be reached at 415.518.8880.

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Cherish This Day/ San Francisco Children Photographer

The Cherish This Day project continues at we roll into fall. This time of year always seems to move too fast. While at the pumpkin patch this week I photographed families to help support Lucille Packard Children’s Hospital. I will post more on that soon.

I’m sharing a favorite image from that day. This adorable girl with her tiny sized cowgirl boots perched on a pumpkin made me pause to enjoy the moment. I recently noticed how I feel like I am always running and dashing places. Like there is never enough time. Children move through this world with such confidence and grace, like they know there is all the time available to them that is needed in a day. I love how the Cherish This Day project has helped me stop to reflect on the little things and the simple things that are so important. Every day is a gift and every day is to be cherished. Today I might just make another trip to the pumpkin patch to giggle on a pumpkin in my very own pair of cowgirl boots : )

cherish this day/ san francisco children photographer

Please check out the work on the blog of some of my favorite lifestyle photographers HERE.

If you would like to schedule a session with a San Francisco Child Photographer or say HELLO, please contact me by clicking connect with me button below:

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Menlo Park Children Photographer/My New Red Shoes

Being a Menlo Park Children Photographer, there are many opportunities to partner with community organizations to give back. Because my family is my priority, I limit the amount of time I donate to philanthropic organizations throughout the year. My New Red Shoes is an organization that I am proud to partner with to help raise funds for homeless and low-income children. The funds they raise go towards helping those children look and feel confident as they start the school year by providing them with new shoes and clothes. Additionally they rally youth and adults around this effort through volunteer and educational opportunities for individuals, families, schools, corporations and community groups. You can read more about how to donate your time, talent or treasure to My New Red Shoes HERE.

This year was the second year I was lucky to be involved with the annual fashion show. It was lots of fun photographing the models (all 80 of them!), parents and audience members. If you attended the event you can find photos for purchase at Anna Dobrenski Storefront.

menlo park family photographer

menlo park children photographer

menlo park children photographer

menlo park family photographer

menlo park children photographer

menlo park family photographer

menlo park children photographer

menlo park portrait photographer

menlo park children photographer

menlo park family photographer

menlo park family portrait photographer

menlo park children photographer


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Menlo Park Photographer/Anna Dobrenski Photography/Circle of Friends

Circle of Friends held their annual Lunch & Learn was May 1st in Menlo Park. I was pleased to be asked to photograph the event again this year. Gloria Feldt, author of No Excuses: Nine Ways Women Can Change How We Think About Power, was the speaker at this year’s luncheon.

The organization supports Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital at Stanford. The funds raised at the event support patient care, pediatric research, outreach and education. Both my children were born at Lucile Packard so it means a lot to me to be able to contribute my time and talent to this wonderful organization! To learn more about Circle of Friends please visit their website HERE.

circle of friends

menlo park photographer

circle of friends

menlo park photographer

I was fortunate to have the opportunity to photograph the Circle of Friends annual Pumpkin Patch event in October. The idea is that you bring your family to the pumpkin patch to “buy a pumpkin and donate a pumpkin.” There is a pumpkin patch set up in the Forever Young Zone at Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital for the patients to decorate a pumpkin. To see photos from the event on the blog CLICK HERE.


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This is the second year I’ve had the privilege of being the photographer for Circle of Friends Pumpkin Patch events.  Circle of Friends supports the Lucile Packard Children’s Fund which helps Packard meet its most pressing needs each year in areas that are not covered by medical insurance but are critical to providing the best care to kids.

The annual Family Day at the Pumpkin Patch brings out families who donate pumpkins that are taken to the Forever Young Zone to create an in house pumpkin patch for the patients.  The children and families at Packard were delighted and entertained decorating their own pumpkins from the patch!


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That’s right folks, today is my birthday!  I thought I’d do a giveaway to celebrate my day!  Woodsnap, the wood printing company has generously offered to print a photograph on an 11″ x 14″ wood panel for one lucky winner, a $59.95 value!  To enter, please send an email to me at and include the following information:


Phone number

Email address

Shipping address

Photo you’d like printed on wood.  High resolution please.

Winner will be required to send a photo of them holding their Woodsnapped photo for Facebook sharing.

Giveaway winner will be selected Monday, October 8th at noon Pacific Time Zone.

Here is a sample of a photo from my Little Red session I had Woodsnapped recently.  It’s a 24″ x 36″ panel and looks amazing in person!


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WOW!  What an incredible experience to see such support for this terrific cause!  My New Red Shoes is an amazing organization that helps thousands of local homeless and low income children gain confidence.  To learn more about their work or to donate your time, talent or treasure visit their website   There were 72 models in yesterday’s show that were dressed in Old Navy’s new collection…adorable! If you attended the event and would like to see the image gallery, please contact me for the link.


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Yesterday I had the honor of photographing the annual Circle of Friends Lunch and Learn event.  It was a beautiful day with an inspirational talk by bestselling author Kelly Corrigan.  You probably know her work:  The Middle Place and Lift.  Must reads if you haven’t already!  The event raises funds for my favorite charity Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital.  In fact, if you mention Circle of Friends, I will donate 10% of your session fee to the hospital through June 30, 2012, limit one per family.


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October 19th I had the pleasure of photographing children and families at Webb Ranch for a Circle of Friends event to benefit Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital.  Families came out to purchase pumpkins for their homes and donate pumpkins to the LPCH Pumpkin Patch.  Last week I had the honor of photographing the pumpkin patch at the hospital.  It was touching to see the joy of the patients and families decorating their pumpkins!  Thanks to all who were able to support Circle of Friends and Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital!

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