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Best Portrait Photographers in San Rafael, CA

Our Recommended Top 5

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Our goal is to connect people with the best local professionals. We scored San Rafael Portrait Photographers on more than 25 variables across five categories, and analyzed the results to give you a hand-picked list of the best.



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San Rafael, CA 94903 Rating

Review Sources

5.0 (10)
5.0 (2)

Why choose this provider?

Serving the residents of the San Francisco, Marin, and Sonoma, as well as the East Bay, Natural Portraits & Events is the professional photography business of Norm Levin, who for over 12 years has provided "photography with spirit” to his many clients. His works capture the essence of a subject, event, or moment, resulting in lasting vivid memories of not just what the event looked like but what it felt like to be there. Norm specializes in weddings, engagements, bar/bat mitzvahs, family and children portraits, corporate events, and headshots; he has photographed local youth sports for more than a decade. His background in photojournalism informs his work with precision timing, anticipation, and vision. As a father of three, Norm is deeply committed to treating everyone kindly calmly and with respect, and clients commend him for his ability to work well with children and put everyone at ease in front of his camera. His work wins top awards at the Marin County Fair, has been published in regional newspapers such as the Marin Independent Journal and the J. Weekly of Northern California.

San Rafael, CA 94901

Why choose this provider?

FreshPortraitStudios by Tracey Pettis is a photography studio that was founded in 2014 and based out of San Rafael. They specialize in beauty portraits, personal branding, headshots, newborn portraits, family portraits, and fantasy portraits. Photos can be used for business and personal needs. FreshPortraitStudios by Tracey Pettis is also available to provide both in-studio services and on-location services. The studio works with clients to customize photo sessions to the client’s unique needs. Multiple awards include The Portrait Masters and the Falkirk Galleries. Past clients remark on Tracey's ability to capture family relationships, turning vision into reality, endless creativity, and overall fun experience.

San Rafael, CA 94903 Rating

Review Sources

5.0 (33)

Why choose this provider?

SF Portraits is a professional photography business located in Marin County. The company specializes in portraiture and offers clients such services as lifestyle and dating portrait sessions, family and child photo shoots, event coverage, wedding photography coverage, fitness and lifestyle photo sessions, and business or corporate photo shoots. Backed by more than fifteen years of experience in commercial photography, SF Portraits is available for both in-studio and on-location photography sessions. Featured in such publications as Sunset, US Weekly, and Travel & Leisure, the company can be contacted by phone for bookings.

San Rafael, CA 94903 Rating

Why choose this provider?

Ray Raisedana Photography handles portrait photography in the San Francisco Bay Area and is backed by over 25 years of professional experience in the field. Individuals hire the studio for headshots for business, real estate, and actors/actresses, and photo services are also available for dance, fashion and beauty, families and children, and high school seniors. Clients can ask about special photo services for schools as well, and the group is known for capturing authentic, genuine images every time. The photographer's past clients have included modeling and talent agencies as well as models who have worked in advertising campaigns for the likes of Nascar, Coca-Cola, Ford, Calvin Klein, and Target.

San Rafael, CA 94901

Why choose this provider?

Susanna Frohman offers various photography services and is based out of San Francisco, California. Services include portrait and headshot work, as well as on-location photography for special events. Clients can visit Susanna Frohman's website to view a gallery of previous photo shoots and sessions. Susanna Frohman, owner and operator, has a Master's Degree in Visual Communication from Ohio University and a BA in Broadcast Journalism and Film from Indiana University. Previous Clients include UCSF, AVIS BUDGET Group, Marin General Hospital Foundation, The San Francisco Foundation, a myriad of other publications and businesses. Susanna Frohman has also received numerous awards for her work from the National Press Photographer's Association and others.

Compare our Top Portrait Photographers

NameExpertise RatingAddressPromotionsLearn more
Natural Portraits & Events
San Rafael, CA 94903
Fresh Portrait Studios by Tracey Pettis
San Rafael, CA 94901
SF Portraits
San Rafael, CA 94903
Ray Raisedana Photography
San Rafael, CA 94903
Susanna Frohman
San Rafael, CA 94901


  • Introduction

    Portrait photography can be the perfect way to capture special moments for adults, children, couples, and families. It's a popular option for occasions, such as graduations, weddings, birthdays, and various milestones reached throughout childhood. However, you don't need a special reason to get a portrait professionally done, as there are many photographers eager to work with new clients at a reasonable rate.

    Professional portrait photography takes years of practice, and the right photographer can achieve results that go far beyond the typical selfie. A magnificent portrait can bring out the subject's inner qualities, allowing their unique personality to shine through for generations to cherish.
  • What is portrait photography?

    Portrait photography is the art of capturing a sitter's likeness with a camera. While this may sound as simple as snapping a quick shot with your mobile phone, the truth is that a truly good portrait photo is difficult to achieve. The goal of a high-quality photo is to capture the personality and emotions behind the subject.

  • What is the history of portrait photography?

    Since the invention of the first camera in 1839, portraits have been one of the most popular kinds of photos. However, way back when, photos needed an exposure time of 20 minutes or more, meaning you would need to sit completely still for that time or else end up with a blurry image.

  • Where can you learn portrait photography?

    Many art schools across the country offer degrees in photography, and some even have specialized classes in portraiture. This can be a good option for young photographers who want a well-rounded skill set. However, many dedicated portrait photographers are self-taught and rely on their portfolios to serve as their credentials.

  • How do you start a portrait photography business?

    Before starting a portrait studio, it's best to gain experience shooting your friends and family so you have a strong portfolio to show clients. Once you're confident in your work, try making a website where you can direct new businesses interested in having their pictures taken.

  • How to eliminate shadows in portrait photography?

    The secret behind many photographers' success is that photography is 50% editing. If you're working digitally, you can open up your pictures in editing software, such as Adobe Photoshop, and use its digital tools to manipulate shadows and highlights. If you prefer to work analog, the best way to mitigate shadows is proper lighting.

  • What are the four categories of portrait photography?

    The four categories of portrait photography are constructionist, candid, environmental, and creative.

    1. Constructionist photographs involve working with a photographer who will sit you in different poses and lighting to create the perfect shot from the ground up.
    2. Candid photos are taken with minimal setup, trying to capture their subject in the moment.
    3. Environmental photos try to capture subjects in their natural environment.
    4. Creative photography uses a variety of experimental techniques and elements to create an original image.