Semertsidis Family Portrait Session | Destin, FL Photographers

We’ve added a new family portrait session to the ‘Families’ gallery on our website.  Here are a few sneak peeks, but be sure to check out the full gallery, here!  The Semertsidis family were wonderful to work with, and their Destin portrait sessions is one of our favorites this year.  Anna had this to say of their experience:  “Our family reunion was so special and everyone agreed that working with Pure7 made it even more amazing!  They were able to capture beautiful moments with ease and brought out the best in all of us.  The Pure7 team is flexible, warm, and their sincere personalities made for a seamless photo shoot.  They will forever be our family event photographers!”  Thank you, Anna, for your kind words!  We would be honored to photograph your family during future vacations to our Emerald Coast!

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Rice Family Beach Portraits | Destin, FL

Rice Family Beach Portraits: During the rainiest week in May we had a beautiful family from Kansas scheduled to come visit the beach and have some moments captured together.  The plan was to have some family portraits made while in Destin as a surprise for Mother’s Day.  What mother (seasoned or brand new) wouldn’t be thrilled with the idea of her family together for beach portraits?  We were particularly excited about meeting this family since, Julia (the sister with the super cool and funky pants) is friends with a bridesmaid from a wedding that we shot a couple of years back.  The highest compliment we can be paid is that of a referral from a previous client that is pleased and feels confident in our ability enough to send their loved ones to us.

Unfortunately, it decided to rain on the day that we originally had their shoot scheduled so we had to squeeze them in the day before they left to go back to Kansas.  This is one of the reasons why we suggest scheduling your family beach portraits session toward the beginning part of your stay so we are able to get you in with the instance of inclement weather.  Luckily both of our schedules permitted us to shoot with just enough time and they didn’t leave the beach without portraits!  With a little wind to keep us cool, the weather held out for us and crafted a perfectly pastel sky.


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Kramer Family Coalesce + Portrait Session | Destin Videographers

We’ve known Deanna & Kevin for several years now, as we had the honor of photographing their Emerald Grande wedding in 2010 as part of VIE Magazine’s “Legendary Wedding Giveaway”.  We absolutely adore their sweet family, and are excited to introduce their family’s newest addition, baby Brosnan!  During their family portraits, which Ryan captured entirely on film, Alan created one of his signature ‘Coalesce Sessions’, which incorporates a fusion of digital photography and videography into one amazing feature.  We’re excited to share this gorgeous family with you!  And if this leaves you dying to to see more of Alan’s awesome talent, go check him out on Vimeo!


Happy Veterans Day to some of our amazing clients, family, and friends!

Growing up a military brat, Veterans Day has always had a special place in my heart. I’ve always held military families in the highest regard and this Veterans Day, I wanted to do a special blog post not only recognizing my father and grandfathers for their service, but also my very best friend in the world, as well as some of our AWESOME Pure7 clients (who are currently serving or have done so in the past). I’ve included a little about each family at the top of their image(s). Thank you seems too little to say, but for lack of a better phrase, THANK YOU all for what you have done for our country. I love each and every one of you!   XOXO, Erica

Jason Melvin

We’re blessed that Jason and his wife Lindsay came into our lives. We met them in 2011 when came to our photography studio to hire Pure7 to photograph their WaterColor wedding. After a four hour consultation, we all knew we were destined to be long-time friends. Shortly after marrying, Lindsay and Jason had to endure two long back-to-back deployments. He was very missed by us all while he was away (really, we all just missed his cooking skills). Here is a personal video and photograph that Ryan & I had the honor of taking upon witnessing the return from his first deployment after they wed. They recently moved to San Antonio and we were so sad to see them go, but know they have great things in store and can’t wait to visit them soon!


The Koch Family:

We’ve adored photographing the adorable Koch family three times in the last two years. Travis Koch is a Lt. Colonel in the United States Air Force.  He graduated from the AF Academy in 1995 and has been an active duty military member ever since, serving as a fighter pilot in the F-15C Eagle and the F-22A Raptor.  Travis is currently the Commander of the 43rd Fighter Squadron at Tyndall AFB, FL, the only squadron in the world that trains pilots to fly the F-22A.  And just to add to their patriotism, Travis and Amanda were married on Veterans Day in 2000.  This November 11th they are celebrating 13 years of marriage , 10 of which they have been stationed at bases along the Emerald Coast of Florida. Their first son, John, was born in 2004, and their second son, Andy, was born in 2012.

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Captain Devereux Rogan

This beautiful mother, Devereux, is a Captain in the Air Force and has been in for 8 years.  She has been deployed to several locations: Al Dhafra, UAE to support Operation Enduring Freedom (Afghanistan), Rota, Spain to support Odyssey Dawn (Libya conflict), Curacao to support the counter drug mission in USSOUTHCOM, and Baghdad, Iraq to support the Office of Security Cooperation-Iraq (OSC-I).  She is currently a Test Director for Air Force Operational Test and Evaluation at Eglin AFB, FL.  Lindsey absolutely loved photographing Devereux and her cute-as-a-button son, Barrett, this summer.


The Russell Family:

Elaine’s husband was deployed shortly after she became pregnant with their first son. He was still on deployment when little Edward Thomas Russell IV was born, but daddy was able to be there via Skype (gotta love modern technology!). Lindsey was so blessed to be able to capture the newborn portraits of their son, even before daddy’s return. The great news is that Elaine’s hubby is now home safe & sound, and getting to spend some much needed time with his sweet little boy and beautiful wife!


The Kim Family:

We’ve photographed the incredibly cute Kim family twice since 2011, and have loved watching them grow. Their father, Lieutenant Colonel Sonny Kim, has served 18 years as a pilot in the Air Force. He is currently on staff at SOCPAC in Honolulu, Hawaii. His wife, Zoe, has endured many long deployments but says “We are honored to support him during his time serving our country.”

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The McGeady Family:

James McGeady serves in the Marine Corps as a combat engineer officer and is currently stationed in Okinawa, Japan with his stunning wife, Jessica. Ryan and Lindsey photographed their lovely wedding last year and were so happy that James was in uniform. Who doesn’t love a man in uniform?

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The Kittrell Family:

We’ve had the pleasure of photographing the Kittrell family many times over the past couple years (and are also looking forward to photographing them again next month)! Michael Kittrell has been serving in the Air Force for 9 years as a pilot flying various aircrafts.  For the past 5 years he has been stationed at Hurlburt Field, and is presently assigned to the 19th Special Operations Squadron. A little shout-out to Michael from his beautiful family: “We love and support you always. Our hero!” Love Kimberly, Kaden and Kyle



The Johnson Family: 

We photographed the wedding of Troy and Jennifer in 2012, and are so impressed by the level of service that they and their extended families have provided to our country. In Jennifer’s words:

“Patrick (Troy’s son) and I are currently serving and Patrick is now at 1 year and I am at 18. My total family now would be 137 years: Paul Hutto (father) 20 years, USAF; Paul Hutto (grandfather) 21 years, US Army; Al Hutto (uncle) 20 years, US Army; ; John Hutto (uncle) 29 years, USAF; Gerald Hutto (uncle) 4 years, US Navy; Troy P. Johnson (husband) 20 years, US Army; Patrick Johnson (step-son), 8 months, US Army; Dennes Hutto (cousin) 4 years, USMC; I am proudly representing my family in my 17th year, bringing my family to 135 years of continuous military service! Happy Veterans Day to each of you, and to all of my friends whom I have had the pleasure of serving with.”

Next month will be Jen’s 18th anniversary in the US Air Force. She spent the first 16 years as a Knowledge Operations Manger and is currently in the Intelligence career field. She has deployed to Saudi Arabia, Afghanistan, Iraq, and is currently preparing for a year in Qatar. She plans to retire at 20 (years) and start her own business as a wedding planner. Troy (Jennifer’s husband) spent 20 years as a Tanker in the US Army before retiring. He supported multiple deployments including the first Gulf War, Bosnia, Korea, and spent a year in Iraq. He is currently a contractor supporting US Army North at Ft Sam Houston, as an IT specialist.



The Morrow Family:

Ryan photographed Monica and Chad’s maternity session, and Lindsey the newborn session of their precious daughter, Kennedy. They’ve been a pleasure to get to know (and photograph)! Major Chad Morrow is a psychologist in the Air Force and has served for 6 years. He is currently supporting the 23 Special Tactics Squadron at Hurlburt. A shout-out from Monica to her beloved hubby: “We couldn’t be more proud of him for his service!” Love, Monica and Kennedy


The Manthey Family’s Sister Wife

As my best friend, I couldn’t help but joke and put Jennifer Fisher as part of ‘The Manthey Family because family she truly is! To those that don’t know, Jennifer served in the United States Air Force as a medic on the back of a very fancy big plane (that I think has a ‘C’ in the title). I should know exactly which, but usually our conversations revolve more around wine, food, and our love lives.  However, I do know that her service is one of the things about her that I love most and am so impressed by. She endured several deployments and has visited almost all of the ‘stans’, and this gorgeous lady has one of the biggest hearts in the world. She also has a very heightened sense of awareness of her surroundings due to her military training (which comes in very handy in seedy areas of nola, but I’ll save that story for another day). I could go on for paragraphs about her and what she means to me, but I’ll leave it at: she’s awesome. and beautiful. and the best friend a girl could have.

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My grandpa, Reed Swope:

My beloved grandpa entered the service on April 17th, 1945. He was drafted into the Army, became a Military Police officer, and was sent to Okinawa to guard Japanese prisoners. During a recent visit to his home, I was fascinated looking through the albums he has at his house full of old pictures from this time. After his service, my grandpa returned to his hometown of DuBois, PA, where he raised three sons and still currently resides with his wife, Betty (my beautiful, loving, wonderful grandma). I would like to personally thank my grandpa for not only his service to our country, but for being such a wonderful man of God and a spiritual man and leader in our family that I have always loved, admired, and adored with all my heart and soul. I love you, grandpa!


My grandpa, Stanley Rusonis:

My grandpa Stan passed away too soon, when I was only 10 years old. I really wish our family had more time with this loving, gentle soul. In his military days, he served in the Army Air Corp and was a Link trainer (aircraft simulator instructor) in Florida. After his service, my grandfather returned to DuBois, PA where he worked for the Post Office for 38 years and raised five children along with my amazing grandma Lillian (who now resides in Pittsburgh).

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My dad, Timothy Swope

I’ve started and re-started this sentence three times, and keep deleting and starting over . . . because there is no way to properly sum up the amazing-ness that is my father with only a few sentences. But I’ll try, so here goes. Lieutenant Colonel Timothy W. Swope served in the United States Air Force for 20 years, which was throughout my entire childhood and most of my teen years. A few of the programs he worked on as an aerospace and systems engineer were the Space Shuttle Program and developing the C-17 cargo plane. He retired in 1995 and resides in Niceville with my beautiful mother, Marie. Being a military brat was a life that I absolutely loved. We moved seven times before I was in 5th grade, but each move was an adventure and the memories of our journeys and destinations are ones that I adore and look back upon often. I always loved seeing my dad in his uniform and thought he looked so handsome and important, and although I wasn’t sure what he actually did, in my mind he was out there saving the world. I recall bragging to friends that “he knows all about aliens and extraterrestrial life, but can’t tell you about it because he’s been de-briefed”. Wonder where I got that idea . . . Dad?  I’d like my dad to know how proud I am of him, to thank him for his sacrifices in order to serve our country, and that I’ve always admired and looked up to him. Love you, daddy!


Fall Portraits | Destin Family Photographers

Fall has officially (and finally!) arrived here at the beach!  As Destin Family Photographers, It’s definitely one of our favorite times of the year – slightly cooler temps, less humidity, phenomenal sunsets – pair those with a gorgeous beach or state park and you have yourself the perfect setting for family photos in Santa Rosa Beach and Destin.  We’ve selected a handful of our favorite fall family collections to showcase, taken in places like Eden Gardens State Park and, of course, the beach.

If you’re considering a little time here this fall, make plans to take advantage of the gorgeous backdrops this time of year for some timeless family portraits.  And this year, we’re very excited to offer a custom line of holiday cards, so be sure to hop on that early – the holidays will be here before we know it!  And if you’re stuck for gift ideas, everyone knows grandma and grandpa looove pictures – and it just so happens we can take care of that for you, too!

Feel free to head over to our portrait website and check out the ‘Everything but the Beach’ gallery for even more Fall portrait inspiration!

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Simmons Family | Watercolor Beach Portraits

Summertime for us means lots of  family beach portraits sessions with some super-awesome families!  The Simmons family, hailing all the way from Arkansas for their Emerald Coast vacation, fell immediately into the “Awesome Families” category. The connection was immediate and those sweet kiddos LOVED Ryan (as evidenced by the adorable iPhone photo (below) their parents insisted sweet Sophie, Max and Bekah take with him)!  It seems that Ryan’s doing what he can to one-up Lindsey, our resident baby-whisperer, by taking home the reigning kid-whisperer crown.

We couldn’t be more blessed to have captured such wonderful memories for the Simmons; in fact, you see all those pretty pictures down there?  Well, a select few of those, our dear readers, are going to be beautifully displayed as a wall gallery on our custom gallery-wrapped canvases that Lynda & John selected for their home.  We pride ourselves on helping our families create heirloom products that they’ll be able to treasure and pass down for generations.  These aren’t Walgreens-matted photos, friends.  These are custom and high-quality and amazing and beautiful.  Go to Walgreens for Aspirin and Pepsi and gummy bears and what-not.  Come see us for pretty pictures and even prettier ways to display them in your home.


Alys Beach Family Portraits | Fay Family

Can we just talk for a minute about how much we love taking photos of pretty people?  Make that doing pretty family portraits on a really pretty beach and, well, you basically render us speechless.  ‘Tis the season for all this prettiness to come to life in the form of awesome photos – so what better way to show off the fruits of our efforts with one of our latest beach portrait sessions!

The Fay family are no strangers to Alys Beach – since they own a little slice of what is just like heaven on earth here on the Emerald Coast, we figured it’d make the perfect spot for their family photos.  The best part of an Alys Beach family photo session?  It’s quuuuuiiiiiet.   Like, peaceful and private and non-crazy.  We’re fans of all of the above.  We’re also big fans of these guys.  So go ahead: take a peek at these and just try not to grin ear-t0-ear whilst admiring the happiness radiating from these happy souls.  We dare you.

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Ok yeah, come on.  I mean, if you’re not smiling BIG here, then we should have a chat.  Just look at this!  Perfection.

Can you say UH-dorable??  Sigh.  So sweet.

And that, my friends, is how it’s done.  We’re actually planning on obsessing over these photos for at least another 1.7 hours, so you should too. And tell your friends to do the same.


we are gonna end the week with some photos of harrison and his mom. one of my favorite things about being a family portrait photographer is shooting moms and with their kids. i love the emotion that comes through the images. you can definitely tell that harrison is a mommas boy  : )  i hope you all have a wonderful weekend, wherever you are. please give someone you love a little bit of love today. you never know what a single touch can do to lift someone up.