Mini Session Time!

It’s Mini Session Time!

*Please note this post has been updated to include afternoon sessions on 10/14 at Manhattan Beach Pier!*

This year I will be offering mini session October 14. These sessions are 20-30 minutes long and include 2 files, or more if you upgrade. Rain date for all sessions will be October 21.

Mini Session

I only offer this pricing for my mini sessions, so if you are looking for some annual family portraits, engagement portraits, head shots, or holiday card portraits this is the time to book it! Regular full hour portrait sessions are available year round.

Below is my availability, and I will try to update this post as bookings come in so that you can see what times I have available still.

Saturday Morning October 14 at Palos Verdes Cove and surrounding area:







Here are some samples of images I’ve taken in the Palos Verdes Cove and surrounding area:


Book your Palos Verdes Mini Session here:

Mini Session

Saturday afternoon/evening

Location has just been chosen by first client to book! These sessions will be at Manhattan Beach Pier and the surrounding area.

3pm – BOOKED




Contact me with questions.

Image examples from Manhattan Beach Pier and surrounding area:

Book your Saturday afternoon Manhattan Beach Mini Session Here:

Mini Session

Thank you so much to all my incredible loyal clients, I look forward to seeing you all soon! (And shooting you in the face, of course).

Liesl Diesel

Mexico Seaside Destination Wedding

Mexico Seaside Destination Wedding

I was so honored to be commissioned to photograph a Mexico seaside destination wedding at the Generations Riviera Maya resort in Mexico.

Mexico seaside destination wedding portrait by liesl diesel photo

Although a week trip to an all inclusive resort is always a welcome job, this wedding was particularly special. Alana and I worked with on a special art project to raise funds for Twist Out Cancer. Alana is a cancer survivor, you can read about her story here. Her husband Ivan is one of the kindest hearted men I’ve ever had the pleasure of meeting. Thank you both so much for choosing me to be part of this phenomenal celebration!

After a relaxing morning of preparation, then gentlemen begin their ceremony!

Generations provides a picture perfect location for a seaside ceremony! A sun-kissed bride and her teary eyed father.

I love kids!

After a beautiful ceremony by the sea, everyone moved to the rooftop deck for an evening under the stars. A beautiful sunset coupled with live music and good people made for a perfect outdoor wedding reception!

Thank you so much for having me be a part of your Mexico seaside destination wedding, and I do believe a week long destination reunion is in order!


Balboa Park Family Portraits

Balboa Park Family Portraits

Balboa Park Family Portraits

I recently had the opportunity to take a short trip down to San Diego to photograph the Stitt family during their family reunion vacation trip! We chose to meet at Balboa Park, which has such a beautiful setting for portraits!

san diego zoo balboa park family portraits by liesl diesel photo southern california lifestyle photographer family lifestyle portrait photographer liesl diesel photo southern california san diego balboa park

As most of you know, personality is very important to me! Even when given a limited time to get a variety of group and individual photos, I try to work with each person, couple and family to capture what makes them and their relationship special.

grandmothers who play liesl diesel photo san diego family portrait

Of course, that perfect California light doesn’t hurt my efforts, either!

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Thank you, Stitt family, for sharing your family with me and for taking time out of your vacation to let me photograph you!

If you or someone you know is looking for a portrait photographer in the Greater Los Angeles area or around the world, please contact me!

Liesl Diesel

Southern California Spring Mini Sessions – Back by Popular Demand!

Southern California Spring Mini Sessions by Liesl Diesel Photo

For all of you who have been asking, yes I will be doing southern California spring mini sessions once again! The date has been set for February 28 and I will be offering sessions from 8am-11am and again from 2pm-6pm. Contact me to sign up!

first birthday daddy throws toddler blue sky palm trees liesl diesel photo beach portrait

This is the perfect opportunity to get a fresh portrait without purchasing a full one to two hour session! Sessions will be 20 minutes long, which is perfect for families with children or dogs who won’t last a full one hour session!

liesl diesel photo mini session family dog

The early morning sessions will take place at Malaga cove (PV Cove). This location is beautiful in the morning and has a nice trail. Good walking shoes are recommended. The perfect spot for couples, families, and dogs. Contact me to reserve your early morning spot between 8am and 11am Feburary 28!

liesl diesel photo palos verdes estates family photographer

The cost of my mini sessions are $100 for the 20 minute time slot. This includes 2 retouched files, each of which you will receive in color and black and white. Additional files are $25 each, or you can purchase the entire set from your session for an additional $200. I only offer these prices during my mini sessions, so please don’t delay! 
 liesldieselphoto minisession san diego family

The afternoon and evening location will take place in Palos Verdes Estates. This location is grassy, not a dirt trail, so dressier shoes are possible here if desired. This location has a beautiful overlook of the ocean with Malibu in the background. This location is perfect for couples, families, dogs, and any of you who might want an outdoor lifestyle head shot.  If you want a sunset time slot please sign up ASAP! 


I can’t wait to see all your smiling faces, email me with any questions!

And don’t worry, my Chicago friends! I will be offering spring mini sessions in Chicago in March!


Anchal’s Graduation Portrait

Anchal’s Graduation Portrait

The Singh family recently hired me to photograph their daughter’s graduation portrait and reception at H.T. Grill in Redondo Beach. I was thrilled for several reasons. First, as you can see, they are an incredibly sweet and gorgeous family so it was such a pleasure spending a few hours with them! Second, everything from portraits to the party took place within a few blocks of my home in the South Bay. That does not happen often!

liesl diesel photo black and white portrait graduation

We started at the Hopkins Wilderness Park for portraits, it was a soft cloudy day so the light was easy to work with!

liesl diesel photo redondo beach wilderness park family portrait liesl diesel photo redondo beach wilderness park graduation portrait

After a quick portrait session and missing the rain, we headed to H.T. Grill for her reception.

liesl diesel photo redondo beach riviera ht grill event photography graduation

I loved watching this beautiful tight knit family converse and enjoy each other’s company!


liesl diesel photo redondo beach ht grill event photography

Congratulations Anchal!


Surprise Proposal on Pomona Campus – Kabir & Sneha

Surprise Proposal on Pomona Campus – Kabir & Sneha

I met Kabir quite some time ago when he helped his brother, Dev, plan a surprise proposal for his girlfriend. You can see Dev and Trish’s surprise proposal here!

Kabir planned his surprise proposal for Sneha well in advance as well! The families had both agreed to the union and he planned to propose to her during their portrait session the day of their engagement ceremony, which was held at their home. The portrait session was nearby at the Pomona College Campus, which is so beautiful!

liesl diesel photo pomona college campus engagement indian sari pink orange greenThe campus is full of beautiful gardens, sculptures and architectural elements.
liesl diesel photo engagement session pomona college campus indian bride groom ocf sari

Kabir and I discussed ahead of time how we could decide when to surprise Sneha with the engagement ring and proposal. Since I had never been on the campus, we agreed that when I found the perfect picturesque spot I would say, “What an ideal location!” When I saw this beautiful tree and lawn I knew it would be perfect. I posed Sneha with her back to Kabir and started shooting. He dropped to one knee and then I directed her to turn around.

Of course, she said yes!

liesl diesel photo surprise proposal engagement session pomona campus college quad indian bride groom sariliesl diesel photo engagement session pomona college campus backlight california lifestyle diamond ring indian bride groom

liesl diesel photo engagement session pomona college scuplture garden

We walked around the campus and found so many beautiful places to photograph! We finished the portrait session by this beautiful glass building which is surrounded by a reflective flat pool. A beautiful piece of architecture with a stunning couple!

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Finally we headed back to the house to celebrate with friends and family and hold the religious ceremony.

liesl diesel photo abstract architecture indian engagement portrait bride groom pomona campus

liesl diesel photo engagement party indian bride groom coconut prayers

Thank you so much for hiring me and I hope you both have a blessed life together!

Liesl Diesel

Manhattan Pacific Realty Head Shots for Realtor Julie Haynes!

Manhattan Pacific Realty Head Shots for Realtor Julie Haynes!

Julie recently hired me to photograph her realtor head shots as she joined the incredible team at Manhattan Pacific Realty! We decided to have the session at her beautiful home in order to give it a warm, friendly feel. This was not a hard task, as you can see, as she has one of the most attractive personalities possible!

liesl diesel photo realtor head shot realtor southbay manhattan pacific realty

We opted to do a few interior photos as well since she is in the business of selling homes!

liesl diesel photo interior design head shot lifestyle realtor manhattan pacific realty hermosa southbay redondo beach liesl diesel photo lifestyle head shot southbay redondo hermosa manhattan beach pacific realty The founder and owner of Manhattan Pacific Realty is Richard, Julie’s son, so we took a few shots while I was there. If you like to keep an eye on the local market, I highly recommend following his blog posts. Richard writes informative, thoughtful articles on real estate in the South Bay.
liesl diesel photo manhattan pacific realty realtor head shot hermosa redondo beach southbay

Julie’s other son Eric was also around for a head shot, so he joined our photo party! He is not a realtor but he certainly could play one on TV. What a handsome family!

liesl diesel photo manhattan pacific realty head shot hermosa redondo beach

And best of all, I was able to convince Julie’s husband Dick to jump into a photo! What a power couple!

liesl diesel photo realtor head shot couple backlight ocf manhattan pacific realty

Thank you for hiring me, Julie, I hope to hire you someday too!


Liesl Diesel



Bond Chapel Wedding and Chinatown Wedding Reception for Xioli & Zhangli

Chinatown Wedding

Xioli & Zhangli hired me to fly out to Chicago for their wedding ceremony at The University of Chicago Bond Chapel followed by their Chinatown wedding reception. It was a beautifully intimate event and their closest friends and family traveled from all over the globe to witness and support their union.

liesl diesel photo chicago bond chapel ivy wedding portrait old wood door chinese bride groom

Xioli of course had two dresses, the first white gown for the wedding ceremony, and a traditional Chinese red silk wedding gown for the reception!


liesl diesel photo chinese american wedding dress gown red white gold bride preparation liesl diesel photo chinese wedding dress red silk bride mua updo

After preparing in her room at the Trump Hotel in Chicago, Zhangli & Xioli had their first look in the lobby!

liesl diesel photo chinese wedding first look bride groom trump tower chicago liesl diesel photo bride groom portrait chinese wedding black and white

It was a rainy Chicago day, so I found this beautiful spot outside the Trump Hotel to photograph some elegant portraits with lights of the city reflecting in the glass.

liesl diesel photo trump tower wedding portrait bride groom tux bouquet chinese couple liesl diesel photo chicago river walk bride groom wedding portrait chinese rain


liesl diesel photo bond chapel chicago university campus wedding party portrait ivy purple pink tux bouquet

I love the beautiful green ivy that grows on the University of Chicago Bond Chapel! Even on a cloudy rainy day it glows!

liesl diesel photo chicago bond chapel christian chinese wedding ceremony liesl diesel photo traditional chinese wedding attire red wedding gown silk tux bride groom bond chapel liesl diesel photo chinatown wedding reception chinese bride groom liesl diesel photo white wedding cake pearl flower white bokeh reflectionliesl diesel photo chinatown wedding reception

Thank you so much for trusting me with documenting your wedding!

Liesl Diesel

Santa Monica Pier Engagement Session – Alex & Michal

Santa Monica Pier Engagement Session

Although my blog is a bit behind I still wanted to share this beautiful Santa Monica Pier engagement session from last year! I first met Alex & Michal over Skype and we became fast friends! After booking me for their wedding we agreed that drinks were a must, and we met up at Culver City Hotel, which I highly recommend! We did bump into a celebrity during this fun evening of imbibing!

One of my favorite shots! I love simple scenes that are all about the couple, this wall was the perfect backdrop for these two love birds and their pink cotton candy!

liesl diesel photo santa monica pier romantic engagement session cute whimsical cotton candy blue wall kiss

These two are so fun and loving!


liesl diesel photo santa monica pier blue wall strike a vogue fun couple engagement portrait session

Michal dominated the vogue pose! Alex, well, he couldn’t keep it together.

liesl diesel photo santa monica park colorful portrait cotton candyiesl diesel photo santa monica park engagement portrait session

It’s not secret that  I love patterns and geometry, so I was happy to work with these awesome metal structures! Alex & Michal make everything more beautiful of course!


liesl diesel photo santa monica park metal abstract sculpture engagement portrait session romantic palm tree

Nothing is quite like California sunsets overlooking the ocean! It was windy and chilly, which was fine with me because it encourages snuggling ;-)


liesl diesel photo santa monica pier romantic sunset engagement portrait session

And no Santa Monica Pier engagement session is complete without en evening shot of the Ferris Wheel lit up at night!

liesl diesel photo santa monica pier ferris wheel carousel sunset engagement portrait session off camera light flash ocf

You two are so much fun to hang out with, I hope we get to meet up soon! I will be blogging your wedding photos soon as well!


Liesl Diesel