Tender In-Home Newborn Photography in Wilmington, NC

Boy, was this session pretty! We celebrated the beautiful formation of a growing family. It was an absolute pleasure to photograph this family. I was so inspired by them! This session was held at the family’s home. The family’s warm color scheme of dusty blues and purples, combined with the rust hue of the quilt on their bed is everything! I love their decor. It added so much to this in-home newborn session.

This sweet in-home newborn session, in Wilmington, North Carolina, was a gift from the mother’s friend, who lives out of state. Her friend contacted me a few months before; she expressed interest in purchasing a gift certificate she could give to her mom-to-be friend at her baby shower. Photography sessions are such a lovely, unique gift for families documenting periods of change and growth. Not to mention, I happen to think the gift of photography is one of the nicest anyone can give or receive.

I’m excited to share this in-home newborn session. This session was so much fun, and I could tell that mom and dad are truly in love. Aren’t they the most adorable family? I love photographing new parents and watching them experience the deepest love they’ve ever felt – a new love for their baby, and a new meaning to their lives. Not to mention, a deeper love than the parents have ever felt for each other as they embark on a new chapter together. Their love for each other emanates from all their images from this session!

The whole newborn session was incredible, from the beautiful family to the warm hues. It was one of those sessions where everything came together so beautifully, and I was happy to be the photographer capturing and creating it.

in-home newborn details with flokati and oatmeal colored swaddle
sleeping newborn lying on white flokati with navy colored muslin swaddle with white dots; new mom wearing dusty purple blouse with yellow chevron curtains in background
new baby with rolls sleeping on mom's shoulder; black and white image of newborn baby asleep on mother's shoulder
new mom and dad kissing with their newborn in between them; new parents looking lovingly at their baby who is cradled between them; newborn looking at camera lying on elephant crib sheet
peeking into a newborn's nursery with an arrow chalkboard sign reading Olivia's Room; through the crib slats view of a new baby girl; yawning baby girl on an elephant crib sheet
new mom looking down at her baby girl lying on a rust colored quilt with fall colored accent pillow; new dad looking down at his baby girl as she looks up at him on an orange quilt
newborn baby girl smiling at the camera lying on an orange quilt and wrapped in a dusty blue muslin swaddle with white polka dots; new parents looking down at their newborn baby girl; in-home newborn

Fall Family Photography at Abbey Nature Preserve

I’ll start with the details, like the awesome location for this session. The Abbey Nature Preserve is located right next to Poplar Grove Plantation in Wilmington, NC. It’s a great location for a rich, woodsy background. It allows lots of room to roam for a family session, too. It’s also a popular location for walking on the many winding trails. The trails end at a cute pond which reflects all the pretty fall colors of the surrounding trees.

Some clients are a bit disappointed when the skies are a little overcast for our time together. I’m so glad these clients trust me as the professional. The cloudy weather brought a certain glow to these images. I love how clouds allow the viewer to see all the pretty and unique natural elements of the setting, in detail. It really gives these images that “wow” factor!

Today I’m sharing a session with clients I am simply enamored with. How cute are their little girls? I swear, this family is blessed with the amount of affection they clearly have for each other! I hope to photograph them again in the future.

For a color scheme, my advice for this particular family session was to go with traditional neutrals, but with differing textures. The classic wardrobe shades really complemented the moody sky and natural setting, working so well together.

Pre-Deployment Family Photos at Abbey Nature Preserve

This family was super sweet, and the amount of love between them was palpable. Dad was getting ready to deploy, so they wanted to remember this time together as a family, especially as dad was deployed over the holidays. The girls adore their dad, and mom and dad were super affectionate and happy throughout the session. These trail sessions are wonderful for capturing sweet hand-holding shots and action shots of kids running down the trails.

I always have fun “chasing” my client families around on the trails at Abbey Nature Preserve. If this is your element, too, book with me today!

black and white tween portrait, tween portrait on the trail at Abbey Nature Preserve
portrait of a little girl with big brown eyes, family of 4 portrait in Wilmington, North Carolina, black and white image of sisters holding hands and wearing dark blue jeans
military family portrait, family of four with two daughters, mom, dad, two little girls, dad kneeling on a wood bridge in North Carolina while his two little girls kiss his cheeks
couples portraiture, Wilmington, NC, military couple portrait, Abbey Nature Preserve couples photography, Erika Rigger Photography
pre-deployment family photo session, Abbey Nature Preserve family photography, Wilmington, NC, mother-daughter portrait with leading lines
dad and his girls, family of four wearing classic outfits all embracing, fall family portrait session, Wilmington, North Carolina, Erika Rigger Photography, two sisters holding hands and running on a trail through the woods

Cozy Newborn Photography in Sneads Ferry NC

This cozy newborn photography session was photographed in mid December. It was cold outside, which made this lifestyle session extra intimate. My in-home sessions are always cozy, though!

I aim to make all my sessions as easy and comfortable as possible for my clients. I go with the flow, encourage feedings and soothings as needed, engage with siblings so they don’t feel left out, and simply aim to artfully document what those first few days at home with a newborn is like.

Big brother was super sweet. He was very calm and helpful during the session. I think it’s always a big transition for an only child to get used to the arrival of a sibling, but this guy was just delightful and cool as a cucumber. It probably helped that he and daddy spend quite a bit of time together in another room while I spent some time photographing mom and baby in the bedroom. Something undeniable, even for a toddler, about an in-home cozy newborn photography session, is that overwhelming comfort of home.

In this Sneads Ferry, NC home, kids will grow, love will grow, and memories will grow. As a photographer, there aren’t many things better than witnessing the natural connections that happen at home! Mom and baby snuggling, dad and big brother playing together – this environment made for some amazing captures.

Are you ready to see those meaningful connections create lasting memories? Let’s partner together. Contact me for details.

mother kissing her newborn baby backlit by a big window, father wearing a black t-shirt holding his new baby with big brother giving the baby a kiss on the head, new family of 4 sitting on the bed
black and white image of a dad holding his two young children in his arms, newborn baby in foreground with father, big brother, and mother in the background, striped blanket, black and white macro photography image of baby feet
new mom wearing a gray top looking down at her new baby who is swaddled in white, Erika Rigger Photography
mother holding her newborn's feet in her hand, mom sitting and looking down at her new baby who is wrapped in a white swaddle
cozy newborn photography, mom holding her new baby on her shoulder, reflection of a mother nursing her newborn on the bed, new baby smiling on their mother's shoulder
Erika Rigger Photography, looking through the crib slats at a new baby sleeping on a sheet with stars, dad holding his newborn in the nursery
baby with strawberry blonde hair asleep on a crib sheet with stars and elephants, mom holding her newborn on her lap with her legs outstretched to the pillow on the coffee table, cozy newborn photography

Autumn Colors Wilmington NC Family Photography

With the show that Mother Nature displays for us, it’s no wonder that autumn is the most popular time of year for family photos! The vibrant colors, soft, diffused lighting, and often cooler temperatures are all busy season signs for photographers!

Nothing says autumn like the changing leaves. Even in our part of North Carolina, this means beautiful hues of red, orange, and yellow, which create a nearly perfect fall backdrop. This session was captured at Hugh MacRae Park (now Long Leaf Park), right here in Wilmington, North Carolina. I love these late fall, November sessions! I chose this location because this adorable family really wanted an autumn look to their session.

The family was visiting from Virginia and found me online. Hooray! I love making new friends.

Pro tip for my fellow photographers: don’t be afraid to place your families right in those leaves! And once you get those more traditional poses out of the way, capture some images of your families joyfully interacting. Darling little Maddy didn’t share her smiles easily, but engaging with her mom and dad? That brought out those exquisite baby smiles. After all, who better to coax out a smile from a baby than mom and dad? Maddy especially had fun playing with dad’s beard! So fun.

If you’re a client here looking for inspiration … not everyone is fortunate enough to live in an area where fall really shows off. But that doesn’t mean that fall family portraits can’t look like – well, fall – almost anywhere you live. Golden hour sessions, and choosing autumn colors for your family’s wardrobe will help you all stand out against more neutral backdrops! Bonus: the sun goes down earlier in the autumn so if you have young kids, golden hour sessions may be simpler for you in the fall.

But Erika, you may be thinking, fall skies in North Carolina can be dull and gray. What golden hour? Well, overcast skies create beautiful, even (read: flattering!) light.

Cooler fall temperatures also mean that families can play without getting icky and sweaty. There’s no better time to interact naturally and connect with each other.

family of 3 at Long Leaf Park in Wilmington, North Carolina, autumn tree and pond in the background
3 horizontal images stacked vertically, dad and mom holding baby daughter's hands as she stands between them, baby girl laughing while she plays with her dad's beard, black and white family photography, baby girl with blue eyes wearing a floral dress and holding onto her parents' hands
dad holding his baby girl as mom looks at them and smiles, gazebo with blooms in front of it, North Carolina family of three standing among pine trees during the golden hour, Erika Rigger Photography
cute family of three standing in Long Leaf Park, Wilmington, North Carolina, two ducks, pond, fall tree, pine trees, fall leaves
image collage of a vertical image and a horizontal image of a father and his baby daughter, Wilmington, NC, Erika Rigger Photography
fall family photography in Long Leaf Park, Wilmington, North Carolina, family photography with dog, fall family portrait outfits

Contact me here. Let’s play a game of chase among the trees, or maybe have a family leaf-throwing fight!

Winter Wrightsville Beach Family Photography

Hello, friends!

This Wrightsville Beach session was exactly what I needed. Let me tell you, I was only 8 or 9 weeks pregnant with my second child at the time, and my morning sickness was really kicking my butt. I felt so sick, couldn’t eat or drink, and was generally miserable! This session almost got cancelled. I really didn’t think I could get through it. My husband encouraged me and reminded me that some fresh beach air and change of scenery (I had been in the bathroom most of the day) would do me good. He was so right. My clients are always so amazing, too! Running around on the beach with them and putting my nausea on the back-burner really helped me forget I was so nauseous for an hour!

We met up at the south end of Wrightsville Beach. Mid-November is pretty chilly, but a little bit of sun is all we need. What a fun winter season it was! I’m going to have so much fun sharing all the seasonal goodness. This session, in particular, turned out so dang cute! Plus, you know it’s going to be a great session when a family’s toddler shows up dressed like a little model. I mean, come on.

Winter Beach Family Photos by Erika Rigger Photography

We kept this family session mostly with that iconic Wrightsville Beach sand and grasses as a subtle point of focus. Lots of pretty light, along with the cutest little boy, assisted me with this session! How perfect is that wintry beach scenery and how cute is this little guy?! Obsessed.

Lucky for us, Wrightsville Beach isn’t crowded during the winter months. We had lots of space to work with when deciding on the scene for this family session.

I love seeing layering from my families, and this color scheme was classic. The result was sweet, wintery family session perfection!

winter sky, dad tossing his smiling little boy into the air, green plaid shirt, fleece vest, khaki toddler boys pants
3 small horizontal winter family beach session images stacked next to a vertical photograph of a little boy wearing classic American style clothing with North Carolina beach grasses in the background
Ralph Lauren style portrait of a family of three, cheeky toddler boy with his tongue out and walking on Wrightsville Beach sand
classic family portrait style, blonde mother wearing a navy cableknit sweater and denim shirt, toddler boy wearing a green plaid shirt and tweed vest, father wearing a blackwatch plaid shirt, Wrightsville Beach grasses in the sunny background, black and white portrait of a family of 3 at Wrightsville Beach in North Carolina, parents kneeling with their little boy in beach sand

Off-season beach photo sessions are a wonderful way to capture beautiful winter memories! Contact me today to set up your next session!


I'm Erika and I am a maternity, newborn, and family photographer based near Wilmington, NC. I'm also a mom to two cutie boys, wife to a handsome captain, lover of backyard gardening, wine and Amazon Prime.

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Serving Wilmington north carolina and surrounding areas

910.719.3633 hello@erikariggerphotography.com