Ideas for Senior Portraits in Phoenix | Urban Locations and Outfits

My photography style is very light, bright, and true-to-life colors so Tally, being an artist herself, was a dream for me! She is a super creative artistic type that needed a colorful urban setting for her senior pictures. Downtown Phoenix offers so many different looks, so it was the perfect match for Tally's senior portrait session.

Location Ideas for Downtown Phoenix Photo Shoot

As a professional portrait photographer, it’s all about the light. My style is very light, bright, and true-to-life colors so Tally, being an artist herself, was a dream for me! Due to Covid restrictions in 2020, when I first met Tally she was wearing a mask. I never realized what a difference they make in my ability to understand a senior. During her consultation, I would have thought Tally would be one of those girls in flowy dresses and playing in the lake, a true boho styled photo shoot. Wrong!!! Tally is a wild creative that needed a colorful urban setting for her senior pictures. I had one picture from a 2017 senior that really stood out to Tally and she said multiple times that Mercy was her inspiration. She also mentioned that SHE wanted to be that type of inspiration for others. This girlie gives me goosebumps!

Gilbert Classical Academy Senior Pictures

I spend a lot of time hunting down the right colors and light for every shot. However, just sometimes, someone brings them to me. Tally Thompson was one of those lovely people.

Ideas for Downtown Phoenix Senior Portraits
Downtown Phoenix Senior Photo Graffiti

An Artist’s Photo Shoot

I don’t need to tell you that triplets have a very special bond with her brothers. Tally envisioned using primary paint colors for these photos. She chose not only her favorite color (yellow!) to star in most pictures but also those of her brothers, Cole and Wyatt (blue and red.) Now, I’m not going to say it’s a coincidence, but these sibling favorites worked together perfectly for these crazy artistic images. I can’t tell you how fun this was for both of us. I was a little nervous about getting her messy during her photo shoot, so we chose to do a little pre-session shoot so we could paint her without worry. Because she had frames and no lenses (awesome idea, let me tell you!) we both laughed when I slid the paintbrush right through to avoid smudging and mixing colors. Certainly can’t do that with glasses on!

Fun Painting Senior Portraits in Phoenix
Ideas for Senior Portraits with Paint in Downtown Phoenix

The colors may have helped to illuminate the photos. Still, Tally was the artist behind it all, making each photo into a vibrant masterpiece. I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t clicking away constantly through the shoot – she’s just so full of expressions and happiness!

Imaginative, Energetic, and Oh-So-Photogenic

Preferring a more urban feel, Tally suggested Downtown Phoenix as the setting for her senior photos. It was the right pick as I fear no other place could’ve matched her limitless energy. There was a lovely sense of freedom to Tally’s photo and posing ideas. I felt like the world thanked her for her optimism when the sun cracked over the city buildings giving me the perfect opportunity to catch this starburst!

Fun Ideas for Phoenix Senior Portraits

I fully believe the perfect shoot requires us to collaborate, and Tally was of the exact same opinion. She allowed me the freedom to make suggestions on pretty much everything—however, no matter where, when, or how, she rolled with it. The camera just loved her, and how could it not? Nothing translates better than personality in photography, and Tally had buckets full with more to spare.

Showing her true colors through her senior photos

Tally let me know that “creativity is intelligence having fun,” and I couldn’t agree more. In fact, I think she may be the perfect example of it! We searched for fun backgrounds and “artsy” settings, even finding this “be kind” gem. Perfect? Yes I agree!

Downtown Phoenix Senior Portraits

Tally’s father bought her an easel just to use for the shoot, which really worked well to represent Tally’s love for art. Not to mention the paintbrushes and piles of paint!

Phoenix Senior Portraits Artist Painting on Easel
Phoenix Senior Portrait Photography

Looking towards a bright future

We took photos of Tally running since cross-country is one of her favorite hobbies. And she clearly excels at it, as can be seen from those sweet medal pictures too.

Phoenix Senior Portraits Cross Country Ideas
Phoenix Senior Portraits Sports

Lumberjack Spirit

This spunky 2021 grad from Gilbert Classical Academy, is now a film major at Northern Arizona University! She even has her own IMDb page!! Over the summer she traveled to LA to make a short film with other NAU students, and one short has been showing internationally in over 25 festivals! So proud girlie, so proud!!! Clearly her creativity shines bright, I can only imagine the intelligence that lies behind it. She’ll go far in whatever she sets her mind to – and she’s off to a great start!

Phoenix Senior Portrait Photographer

Best Job Ever

Did I love every moment of shooting Tally’s senior photos? Absolutely! But even better than that is that fact that I got to help her showcase the hobbies, activities, and interests that she loves. We were able to scour the city to find places and landmarks that perfectly highlight her creative personality, and we collaborated to showcase the things she loves in a collection of portraits she and her family will keep forever. Do I have the best job ever? You bet I do…down to the very last shutter click.

If you love Tally’s photo shoot, don’t miss Mercy’s session with more ideas for urban senior pictures!

8 Comments
  • I love this blog post. Crazy how we might picture someone and they turn out totally opposite! Great way to capture her senior session.

  • Tally’s senior photos are just truly fun! It’s good to see the relaxed mood and natural look that can be achieved when subjects look comfortable in their clothing, location and their trusted photographer!

  • This Phoenix senior session has such amazing variety! There are so many urban locations that are great for senior photos. I love how you were able to incorporate Tally’s love for art into her session!

    • Hey Brandi! I don’t get to do too many urban sessions, so it’s lots of fun when I get a senior like Tally! Thanks for taking the time to comment!

  • Beautiful colors and young lady! Wonderful senior portraits in Phoenix for this high school senior!

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