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Feeling Good Is the New Looking Good

Photographer Ashley Hugghins inspires confidence in teens through unique portrait sessions

“Ashley made my daughter Maddie feel like she was the most special, important girl she has ever photographed,” says Kim Engel, “but I guess that’s the sign of a good photographer, because all my friends say the same thing. She has a gift of connecting with each child.”

“High school presents challenges for teenagers across the board,” says photographer Ashley Hugghins. “Most are balancing grades, activities, a social life and more. Many also struggle with self-image.”

Ashley continues, “Modern Portraiture is what I call an experience in styled portrait sessions, where the client feels like ‘a star for a day’. The portraits I create make people feel good about themselves.”

Ashley’s boutique photography brand, Urban Trend Studios, takes fun, modern portraits while providing a one-of-a-kind experience for each client. Ashley is an experienced portrait photographer specializing in high school senior and teen portrait sessions. Ashley’s expertise in posing and lighting, along with her ability to create a comfortable, relaxed shoot, results in photos that capture teens and tweens at their best.

“We asked Ashley to take Maddie’s senior pictures and were blown away by the experience,” says Kim. “The kids really are first and foremost with Ashley. She does an initial consultation with the child to inspire them to take the lead with their own vision. How do they see their pictures going? Where do they think we should take them?”

The day of the photo shoot, Maddie and Kim met Ashley at her studio. There, Ashley had a professional makeup artist on hand to do the makeup for the session.

“Maddie is not one who would normally jump in front of the camera, but Ashley put her at ease immediately,” says Kim.

Then they went to Maddie’s chosen location, which was on the Beltline in front of Ponce City Market.

“It was a very unique experience and not at all cliché,” explains Kim. “It wasn’t the same fountain or wall that hundreds of kids had been photographed in front of. Ashley finds the most amazing poses in the most unique places.”

Maddie brought a few outfits she wanted to wear and Ashley had a pop-up changing tent. 

“Maddie changed her outfit in the tent halfway through the session,” says Kim. “She felt like a superstar with her own portable changing room.”

Just a few weeks later, Maddie received an app on her phone from Ashley, so she could view and share her pictures on social media.

“Ashley’s main focus truly is about the kids and how they feel about themselves,” says Kim. “Maddie’s senior pictures were amazing. The whole experience was like nothing we had ever done before and was way more than we had expected. We were thrilled from beginning to end.”

“Each photo shoot showcases each teen’s individual personality – from the location to the selected outfits to the poses – and allows them to be themselves,” says Ashley. “That’s when I capture their true beauty.”