Stuart the Snake's Modeling Debut! | Modeling - Springfield, MO

When Mariska's mom Stephanie had posted an image of these two, I jumped at the chance to photograph them together. I quickly learned that snakes will do what they want to do and that they are not slimy! hahaha

My vision was to maintain skin texture much like a beauty portrait while showing off Mr. Stuart. A challenge we faced was keeping the scene and feel of the images age appropriate for Miss. Mariska. I asked for the look a queen would give and she delivered.

Needless to say, we all had a lot of fun and I can now officially say that I have worked with a snake!

When was the last time you had a portrait taken with your beloved pet?

Mariska & Stuart | Portraits
© Tora Anne Thompson

Scroll to the bottom for technical details on how we achieved this look.

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Equipment Used:

• Canon 6D
• Canon 50mm f/1.2 (Set to: 1/160 | f/9 | ISO 100)
• Paul C. Buff AlienBee 800
• 43-Inch Fotodiox Umbrella Softbox
• Savage Seamless - Pecan and Thunder Grey

The Setup:

For this session, we placed a single light source 3 feet in front of our client and raised it just above her eyeline. A white reflector was set up over her legs at waist height for a soft fill and black v-flats were used on each side of her to eliminate light bounce at the edges. The client was seated around 4.5 feet from the backdrop for that rich deep color.


• Models: Mariska Lee and Stuart the Snake
• Agent, Body Guard, and Mother: Stephanie Ann
• HMUA, Photographer, Editor: Tora Anne Thompson
• Studio: Tora Anne Imagery

Springfield, MO Portrait Photographer


Ashley's Visit to Our Portrait Studio | Southwest Missouri Photographer

This session marks my first visit with Ashley. She has such an incredibly wonderful and kind soul. Her eyes speak volumes. It was such an honor to photograph her.

Ashley C. | Portraits
© Tora Anne Thompson

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Springfield, MO Portrait Photographer


Inspired: Creating a Fine Art Piece in Under 25 Minutes. | Fine Art - Springfield, Missouri.

This image was inspired by Kesha's song Rainbow. 

My vision involved a woman standing with her hands in the colors of the rainbow. I didn't want her face to show as I wanted my viewers to view the image and create their own story.

I started with a large piece of paper in my garage but quickly realized that the paint I had purchased was far too runny and inconsistent to achieve my goal. After a brief moment of frustration, I went into my art supplies, grabbed a canvas, paint, a texture medium, and my favorite painting knife and went to town. 10 minutes later I had knocked out a miniature rainbow on an 8x10 canvas.

Jessica was already scheduled to come in for a portrait session so I asked her if she would be up to finishing her session with a shot that would complete this concept. She graciously said yes and we shot this in a matter of a few minutes. I then added her to my painting with the use of photoshop.

I personally find this piece to be incredibly beautiful and it still captivates me when I look at it.

Jessica M. | Conceptual Art
© Tora Anne Thompson

Portraits Springfield, MO