jo ann manolis photography

Welcome to the blog of Jo Ann Manolis Photography! I’m a wedding, portrait, and fine art photographer based in Santa Cruz, CA. I’ve created this blog as a means of sharing my work and life with my clients, family, and friends. I’ll be updating it regularly with my latest work, thoughts and ideas regarding photography and art, and links to many fabulous artists and vendors. So, take a look around, enjoy, and leave me a message here if you’re inspired. I can also be reached directly by e-mail via my website:, or by phone at: (831)359-7948. Thanks for stopping by!

Monthly Archives: February 2009

Guess what we did today?

I had a wet and chilly photo shoot this morning, so you can imagine my delight when I returned home to thiscookie_blog1

They were wonderful. We both ate WAY too many.


I didn’t care though, it was just that kind of day. And now that the little baker with the new haircut is in bed, I may just have one more with a cup of tea…

4 Generations-a family portrait

Jenn and her family are such wonderful clients (and now friends). Their youngest turns one in two weeks and they wanted to document the occasion with portraits of four generations. I was truly honored to be a part of this day, thrilled to be able to get a few images for them.

Jen, her Grandmother, and her Mother…I love this shot.


As you can see, Abuela is fun to be around…02_blog1

She is lovely, full of life, and amazing to photograph.03_blog1

Here we have four generations together…how amazing is that? 18_blog

These boys are so lucky to have their Great-Grandmother in their lives, and such a fabulous one at that!04_blog

The portrait session took place at Jenn’s parents’ gorgeous property in San Juan Batista. This is such a magnificent place, totally worth a visit if you’re in the area. We managed to squeeze in an hour in between the showers.

Speaking of lucky, here is the birthday boy with his lovely Nana. 05_blog

Not sure why I love this one, but I do…06_blog

Y’all know that I have a thing about tree swings.21_blog

…and boys with curly hair.07_blog1

…and cool boots too.08_blog1

Big Brother melts Dad’s heart.11_blog

In true one-year-old form, Birthday Boy was WAY too busy and fast for me to even sneak in a shot. He started walking at 9 months and is pretty much ready to run these days, so I took full advantage of the confinement of the swing!09_blog




Mom and Dad asked me if I could grab a few shots of the two of them together…it was Valentines Day after all! Of course I was honored to. They are such a lovely and laid back couple, and great parents too! I believe that it’s very important for couples to be photographed together without their children every once in awhile.16_blog



This was one of the last shots before the rain returned, the timing was perfect. 17_blog2

And because I’ve been going through old images for my website’s new portrait gallery (coming soon!) I found a few shots of this family from the last year and thought I’d share…enjoy!

Just over a year ago at Jenn’s maternity session:belly_blog

What this family looked like at this time last year. belly2_blog

Last portrait as an only child…a1_blog

And some images from the newborn session.




And finally, both boys about 6 months ago.



Posting these images from the last year reminds me of what our dear friend Tom (who is both a wonderful husband and a doting father) likes to say: “The days go slow but the years go fast…” Amen, Tom. Amen.

Thank you Jenn and Carter, for once again sharing your beautiful sons and your wonderful family with me. You have allowed me to watch your family grow, which has been the greatest gift. May Oliver’s second year here be as happy as his first. With Much Love, Joy, and Gratitude, Jo Ann

New Portrait Portfolio…coming soon!

Very few blog posts lately, but I swear I’m not slacking!


Just hard at work on some new projects that I will definitely let you know all about when I can. I’ve also been updating my website with some fresh images from the last year. Choosing the new images has been such a fun and cathartic exercise, kind of like reading old journal entries…

I finally ditched the text and image on my website’s “about” page and replaced them both with something far more personal and important to me. I wrote the text over a year ago, but wasn’t sure if it actually had a place on my website. For some reason, it just feels right now. The new photograph was taken by Pat while we were on Kauai for Scott and Amy’s wedding. I never get tired of looking at it. Pat has such a great eye and I’m excited about recruiting him this year as a second shooter. Yay! You can check out the new page HERE…let me know what you think.