The Brilliant Ballora Bunch

It is difficult, in this industry, to pinpoint exactly what makes a portrait session particularly unique or amazing. However, there are those rare (and wonderful) times when you can put your finger right on that point. Particularly, say, when your subjects are fuzzy! 


Well, to be fair, only some of the subjects were fuzzy. But who can say that about their clients? Yes, that's right, now we can.

Let me back up.

We met the lovely Judy at the YMCA. She has a son and daughter-in-law who, she felt, were long overdue for a family portrait. She spoke with Prasad, ordered a gift certificate, and we all went about our business. Later that afternoon Prasad spoke with the couple about their portrait session. Within moments we knew this would be a session unlike any other.

Enter Greg and Kristin Ballora, their son, Beckham, and Greg's mother, Judy.

Finally, and without further ado, enter...



Greg and Kristin are puppeteers in Hollywood. Not only do they make their own puppets, but their puppets star in PBS shows as well as in PIXAR films.They have worked on blockbusters such as Spiderman 2and 3 and Team America World Police, and Greg has done quite a bit of work with The Jim Henson Company.

In addition, Greg is the official puppetmaster for Disneyland! He makes sure all puppets and their puppeteers are on their best behavior and working well together. The relationship between a puppet and its master can become rather complicated, it seems.

Greg and Kristin work together like lyrics and a song. They complement each other so well and know just what to say to elicit the most hilarious or appropriate response from one another. Watching them improv together is better than any planned routine, I'm sure! 

To top that, they have been working with 10 (going on 40) year-old Beckham, who is next in line for a career in puppeteering. I must say, he is quite good! (And we do have our eye on him for our 10 year-old granddaughter, so don't get any ideas).

We had such a terrific time working with this talented and brilliant family, including their gorgeous (and also fuzzy) dog, Calvin. The session was unlike any other and the subjects were quite unique and such a blast! Prasad couldn't keep away from the puppets! Even given all of his experience, I'm not sure he's ever photographed characters quite like these! 


"Nobody says you must laugh, but a sense of humor can help you...cope with the unexpected, and smile throughout the day."


Categorized In: actor headshots | family portrait photographer | headshot photographer | newport beach family portraits | newport beach photographer

Thanksgiving at the Prasads!

Ah, Thanksgiving. A time to relax, enjoy delicious food, and spend quality time with the family.

Or, in our case, run around like chickens with our heads cut off, scarf down food before one of the many dogs in attendance could help themselves to it, and try with all our might not to strangle said family! 

There were people and children underfoot, dogs frolicking inside the house and out, and delectable food and wine being enjoyed by all.

Yes, all.

It's not that we didn't enjoy our Thanksgiving experience, because we did. Thoroughly!


However, for some reason we thought it would be a good idea to conclude our feast with a photo session. In theory, this was actually a wonderful idea. It was the first time 4 out of 5 of our combined children, their spouses and all 8 grandchildren had been in the same county since the summer. We figured it might be our only opportunity for months (years?) to come so we took advantage.

We rounded up the entire family and piled them upstairs into the studio for our photo session. It wasn’t just a bit muddled, it was utter chaos! The studio was swarming with lively adults and playful children. Trying to create a setup that worked with all these people was quite the chore. But with only minimal pushing, shoving and  hollering, we made it happen! And we ended up with a beautiful family photo that we will treasure for the rest of our days. In all its craziness, our Thanksgiving was amazing and we are truly thankful for our family and the time we spent together.


Categorized In: california family portrait photographer | family photographer | family portrait photographer | newport beach photographer | orange county family photographer | portrait photography

Next Best Actor


If you want to hear about the most handsome little man, read on.


Marc is 9 years old.

And absolutely adorable.

He dreams of becoming an actor and therefore came to us looking for a great headshot photographer in Newport Beach! We were happy to take on the job for several reasons. One: he is a delight to work with. Two: he's a ham and the camera loves him! And, perhaps the point which most behooves us, three: we can say "we knew him when!"

We had such a wonderful time photographing this little man. He was full of energy, charisma and charm. It's no wonder, after meeting his mother, Dr. Amy Conrad. She is a fantastic woman who hones her pediatric skills in both Mammoth and Newport Beach, trading the beautiful mountains for the beach halfway through each week. We asked if she would consider adopting us because deciding between Mammoth and Orange County is next to impossible. Living in both is a dream! However, her hands are full with Hollywood's next greatest actor so she could not take us on just yet.

 We loved working with this adorable family and can not wait to watch Marc's career soar!



Categorized In: actor headshots | children's headshots | children's portrait photographer | headshot | headshot photographer | newport beach children's portraits | newport beach photographer

Six Sweet Squires

  • Published June 1st, 2010 by Maria Turley Prasad
  • 1 Comment

We have the best job in the world. We get to spend time with and learn about beautiful, intelligent and amazing people. The Squire family is that and more.

We met Jason Squire years ago, but became quite close to him and his family after he performed as the DJ at our wedding ceremony in 2005. He and his beautiful wife, Roni, are the artists and entertainment behind Squire Productions, a mobile DJ entertainment company they started 12 years ago. They are the most amazing DJs and entertainers out there.


As if they weren’t perfect enough, they have four incredible children in their brood. Natasha, Natalie, Jaron and Renee were so enchanting – chasing bubbles in our backyard studio, laughing, enjoying each other’s company, and making it so easy for us to work with them!

Jason and Roni, who still act like newlyweds, were also wonderful to photograph, when we could get Jason’s phone away from him long enough to snap a photo! We only had to confiscate it once.  As you can see, it was well worth it!

We so enjoyed our time with the Squire family. With such beautiful faces on everyone in that family, it would be impossible not to get some amazing shots! What a blessing to have them as part of our extended family!

Categorized In: family photographer | kids photographer | newport beach family photographer | newport beach photographer | orange county portrait photographer | portrait photographer

Our New Sweet Buddy

  • Published May 12th, 2010 by Maria Turley Prasad
  • 1 Comment

I have been so excited and eager to share with you that we adopted the most amazing dog. Admittedly, after years of not having a dog, or any pets, actually, we were a little nervous about this huge responsibility. And by huge I mean nearly 100 pounds of golden, silky-haired, sweet and perfect dog!

Buddy came into our lives a few weeks ago when my daughter Andrea introduced us to her Baby Boot Camp instructor (mom/baby fitness class) who was looking for a home for her dog. The instructor, Nancy, and her husband, James, had been relocated to Russia for work. They knew that if the 14+ hour flight to Russia didn't do Buddy in, any possible time in quarantine would. This is a dog who just wants to be surrounded by his people. He will go to great lengths to make sure he is by the side of the people who love and care for him. Knowing this, Nancy and James began to search for a new home for their boy. Somehow the fates aligned and brought Buddy to us. We knew he was meant to be with us, and us with him.

Though it devastated us to separate Buddy from Nancy, James and their children, Ricky, Fiona and Vanessa, we brought him home in early May and have been having a wonderful time getting to know him. With the help of books and tapes by Cesar Milan (The Dog Whisperer) we have established an amazing connection and relationship with Buddy. Buddy follows us around all the time and just wants to be near us. He is with us when we work, eat, play, and sleep. When we leave for a quick dinner out or a trip to the store, we come home to Buddy's beautiful, huge face smooshed against the glass in the front door, waiting eagerly for our return. He is the most well-mannered and gentle dog whose greatest desire involves a prolonged rub of the tummy or some chewed up tire pieces.

Our granddaughters, Makenna and Annika, finally got to meet Mr. Buddy last weekend. He was in Heaven with all the love they were giving him! They were petting his giant head as he rested it in their little laps, laying their little heads on his belly... they were smothering him with attention and affection. And Buddy has probably never been happier!  

Every morning we wake up and take Buddy out to the Upper Newport Bay near our studio. He loves these hour-long walks and never seems to tire. I'm telling you, this dog is so happy and easy to please. Yes, he loves the belly rubs, hugs and kisses, but he absolutely adores being out in nature as well. You can see him taking it all in - each flower, each bird, each scent. He is really in his element out there.

We can not imagine what it was like before these 100 pounds of love were in our lives. We have been blessed with the most perfect dog and can't wait for you to meet him. Please come and visit our new studio mascot soon!


Categorized In: newport beach family photography | newport beach photographer | orange county pet photography | orange county photography | pet portraits

Sweet Little Princess Naaya

One of our favorite things is photographing children! Recently we photographed the most beautiful little girl, Naaya. She is an absolute doll. We like to call her our little princess! She is smart, funny, shockingly beautiful, and quite precocious. We have the most amazing time when we are working with her. She keeps us on our toes!


She is hilarious. She is so used to us (we've been photographing her since birth) that she walks in, owning the place, and proceeds to do her own little model moves!


Her mother Lishma, is the most phenomenal makeup artist. We have had the pleasure of working alongside her for various occasions and are always amazed at her beautiful work.


It was a lot of work to keep Naaya still for two seconds to snap a photo. We were constantly being creatively challenged, trying to find new games that would help keep her still for a moment to capture her adorable expressions!

But as you can see, it was well worth the effort. This little princess was a delight to photograph and we always look forward to her sessions.

Look at those big, beautiful brown eyes! She just emanates beauty. And mischief!

We can't wait until we get to play with her again.

Categorized In: california childrens photographer | childrens photography | kids photography | newport beach childrens photography | newport beach photographer | orange county photographer | orange county portrait photographer

The Little Miracle Boy

We met Mary and Michael several years ago when they were a newly engaged couple. We photographed the beautiful couple for a Christmas card announcing their engagement and later photographed their engagement session and amazing wedding on the beach. They wanted children for many years and, just when they thought it would not happen, Mary finally became pregnant with a little boy, their Miracle Baby. Baby Noah came to us for his newborn photos. That felt like moments ago. Now he is 6 months old already!

Getting to know Noah has been such a joy!  He's a delightful, happy baby who loves to laugh.  He's surrounded by love, and we can't wait to see him again and capture all those special moments as he grows!

He is just the most adorable little boy. What a joy it is to work with a couple as wonderful as Michael and Mary, and now they've brought this sweet, handsome little man into the world to share with us!

Categorized In: newport beach baby photography | newport beach children's photographers | newport beach family photographer | newport beach family portraits | newport beach photographer | orange county photographers | orange county portrait photographers | portrait photographers