A Tribute to Mothers


women empowering women

I’ve always understood motherhood to be challenging.  Or at least I thought I did.  It wasn’t until I became a mother myself that I really began to understand the depths of it.  And no, I’m not just talking about the holy f-caboose that attaches itself to baby train such as dodging debris and diaper explosions, inability to function due to lack of sleep, and trying to get your life back where you left it in a world that seems to be falling into shambles.  I’m talking much deeper.  No one really talks about the redefining moment that happens after you become a mother.  For me, it was self-discovery in its rarest, rawest form.  And part of that self-discovery included seeing mothers in a different light.  

I’ve learned the depth and poignancy of a mothers love.  I’ve learned that motherhood takes strength, courage, sacrifice and absolute selflessness.  And while I just started figuring this out, mothers around me–past and present, young and old–had been doing it all along. 

This mothers day, I am extra grateful.  I am extra grateful for all of us moms.  And to pay tribute, I decided to photograph portraits of mothers with their children that capture the essence of motherhood.  My goal was to stop time in a series of portraits and to show how this experience connects us all.  



Stephanie is a part-time hygienist at Calleros Dental and mama to two beautiful and I mean BEAUTIFUL kids, Nylah and Elijah. 



I am just starting to truly understand and appreciate the true meaning of self-care. As my mind progresses and I evolve as a mother I realize self-care isn’t solely about the moments I am kid free doing things that I want to do, but self-care is more about the choices I make each and every day that help bring me to a place of peace and gratitude, so that I may be a loving wife, mother, friend etc. My self-care includes but not limited to eating foods that nourish me, practicing gratitude, practicing patience, reading, exercising, meditating, managing my thoughts and environment, being present with my family, giving myself and others grace.

— Stephanie

Carissa is a wedding + lifestyle photographer and owner of Carissa Woo Photography.  She’s also an inspirational educator.  While she is killing it as a #momtrepreneur, she’s also raising a beautiful baby girl, Piper. 


The transition to motherhood was so much harder than I thought. I tried to do it all.I easily adapt to things but motherhood did not come naturally to me.It took a year to figure out a good rhythm and system for the household. I learned that I have to outsource as much as possible, I have to
ask for help, I have to say “no” to many thing and I need a good amount of rest. I have to take good care of myself or I can’t take good care of her.

— Carissa



Jessica works remotely as a computer programmer and is able to provide baby William with cuddles all day every day. 


My advice to new mothers: get the right flanges size for your breast pump, have plenty of newborn diapers, don’t be too stubborn and wait to get an epidural, invest in newborn pictures

— Jessica

Zantia is a lot of things:  She is wife to an air force officer, proud supporter of our military members, and mama of three beautiful children–Dylan, Tillman, and Charlotte. 


I feel like they teach me things daily! The biggest thing I have learned from them has been that it’s the little things that mean the most. A snuggle, playing with them on their level, a story or a smooch seems small but means so much to them. The “business of motherhood” can wait sometimes.

— Zantia

chic and elegant decor

Yaya is a fitness instructor and co-owner of Shine Studio in Redondo Beach.  She’s a #girlboss but she’s also mama to little Hero.  



My advice to new mothers would be to connect with other moms and build a tribe, get out of the house, hire a lactation coach (that ish is HARD) and register for gift-cards!

— Yaya


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Nichanh is a wedding + portrait photographer and the owner behind Nichanh Nicole Photography.  She is mama to three sweet children can you believe it? She’s also a lover of fashion and blogs about it here.  I’m pretty sure she just wakes up looking like this.


Being a mother is truely a blessing. It is an honor to love and protect my kids at all cost. It is a love you have never felt for anyone and I would not know how to describe it. It is my job to raise them and bring them up in a way where I can be proud to say that these are my kids!

— Nichanh

mothers day portrait photography

Jacquelin is a full-time mama to baby Meadow but finds the time for graphic design and provides Mediumship + Intuitive Healing readings for clients. 

mothers day portrait photography


Motherhood to me meant stepping into my true purpose. Raising children to continue to help elevate the world.

— Jacquelin




Stephanie is a business strategist and mompreneur coach living in Redondo Beach.  She slays, she slays, she slays.  And when she isn’t slaying she’s hanging out with her darling baby boy, Chase.  She’s also expecting a baby girl in July.  


My advice to new mothers or soon-to-be mothers is that no matter how much you prepare, how much you read, how much advice you ask for…listen to yourself and your baby. Mama always knows best. You can’t predict, plan or prepare, so just go with it! It’s a rollercoaster, but it’s a fun ride.

— Stephanie U.

mothers day portrait photography

Lois works part-time as an Associate Marriage and Family Therapist and is mama to adorable baby Elijah.

mothers day portrait photography


The greatest challenge of motherhood is the change in your identity. You are in a fragile time the first year of your baby’s life where you are now a mother but you are still very much connected with the person you were before. Trying to find a balance between the two and transitioning into a fusion of the past and present you takes time and can be rocky.

— Lois


I’d love to give a special shout out to Anna from Provenance Rentals who not only supplied us with her gorgeous bohemian and chic furniture but for passing on a full and kind heart to her two beautiful boys.  For more portraits and behind-the-scene photos click through the slide show below.   


Thanks for readings!




comments +

  1. Anna says:

    Hannah, not only are you a beautiful person inside and out, you are a wonderful photographer. You capture all the precious, and individual moments so well. All the moms are so lucky to get these moments in time frozen in your lovely images. Thank you so much for including us. It really bring tears to my eyes.

    • Hannah Quintana says:

      Anna, your words are so so sweet and you’ll never know how much it means to me. Thank you for being a part of this special project. It’s people like you that make me love what I do.

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