Ali McLaughlin Photography bio picture

    Hi! I'm Ali, a natural light, on location photographer in the Northern VA/ D.C area specializing in portraits. I love seniors, families, and children. I also take on a limited amount of intimate weddings a year. When I'm not working I love traveling, antique shopping, wineries and spending time with my family.

    I think each individual is unique and beautiful in their own way. I try and capture that in your photographs and let your personality shine.

Sydney & Deson { Engaged, Sky Meadows Park, Delaplane, VA}

I met Sydney and Deson at Sky Meadows State Park for their engagement session, I love this spot for portraits! The beautiful views and mountains in the distance and the old Stone house are gorgeous. I was so glad when they mentioned this spot, even though they were coming from Alexandria and Baltimore. The weather had rained all day and was looking ominous, but the rain stopped and come out in time just for these two!

I loved getting to know them a little bit during the session, how they fell in love quickly and dated through college. They are so sweet together! They are actually having a wedding out in Utah soon, best of luck to you two, hope you have a beautiful wedding and many wishes for a beautiful life ahead!


May 26, 2016 - 10:39 am

Petra - Beautiful photos, Ali!

Schmelzer Family { Warrenton, VA Family Photography, Pearumund Cellars}

I first knew of this sweet family through my neighbors, the Girards, aren’t they just a gorgeous family?

Melissa reached out to me for a family session, Melissa is a photographer herself, and it was fun capturing her sweet family and lively dogs, Forester and Hudson. You can clearly tell they love their fur babies so much and are a tight knit part of the family! It was so special to see the love between the four of them.

The weather was rainy all morning and we were nervous we would have to reschedule the shoot, but the sun came out just in time for our session at the beautiful Pearmund Cellars.

A perfect gift just in time for Mothers Day. I so enjoyed meeting your sweet family Melissa! You all are lovely, and your sons so well behaved! Hope to see you all again soon!


Pursuit 31 Gainesville Retreat 2016 { Personal, Faith}

One thing I have learned in the last year is when God is calling you to something to listen. When I first started leading Pursuit 31 Gainesville, it was scary to step outside of my comfort zone and lead, and when he called me to join a couple small groups my faith was strengthened by reading the bible and praying for others. God put it on my heart to lead a retreat this year and what a blessing the weekend was! Little did I know when I rented the house the owners of the Joshua House were also Christians, and when I walked in I loved seeing all the framed art with bible verses. It’s amazing to see God work. I have tried living life for far too long in my own strength, miserably failing many times, and I can’t explain the joy it is to give God your heart!

Not only did we have a blast, the girls shared their hearts, shared testimonies, formed friendships and thanked God for all he has done. My favorite part of the weekend was sitting on the dock doing our small group bible study on ” Lord, teach me to pray” while taking in the beauty of his creation around us. We baked, we worked out, we did headshots, Candice taught us a mini class on posing, we ate way too many cupcakes and cookies, and we finished the night by watching ” War Room”. If you haven’t seen it what an amazing movie on prayer! I was so encouraged by each of these women, and am thankful for new friendships. When it was time to leave I felt a little sad, leaving this amazing house and wonderful women. I can’t wait to do it again!

” Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and lean not unto your own understanding, in all thy ways acknowledge him and he will make your paths straight” Proverbs 3;5-6


April 18, 2016 - 3:02 pm

Petra - Beautiful ladies, scenery, and photography! Great post too – very encouraging! ❤️❤️❤️

Springtime at the Biltmore { Personal, Travel Photography}

Asheville has always been on my list of places to visit. Especially the Biltmore. It’s such an exquisite Mansion. When you step on the grounds you feel like you are transported to Europe! Everything was just starting to bloom in the gardens, which was gorgeous. The theme was Wedding Gowns on Film and the mansion was filled with fresh flowers, wedding gowns and the history of actors from famous films.

We took a little detour for the weekend on the way to Florida to spend the weekend here in Asheville. What a beautiful city! It was a lot smaller than I thought it would be for some reason. I loved the artsy vibe of the city. Oh, and the Southern food? So good! The first day I had already blown my healthy eating habits on fried chicken and biscuits. So worth it.

A little history behind this mansion, It was built by George W. Vanderbilt in 1889, and was the largest private home every built in the United States. It was just he and his wife and daughter who lived here. Can you imagine a house this large? It was home to many lavish parties and events back in the 1800’s. I can imagine stepping back in time and being a fly on the wall for something so grand! Due to the Depression it was sold and later opened to the public  as a National Historic landmark.

I highly recommend a trip to the Biltmore, its just a 6 hour trip from D.C and so worth the visit! A few more favorite things to do in Asheville:

The Antique Tobacco Barn ( If you love antiques like I do! there is a huge wharehouse full!)

Early Girl Eatery and Tupelo Honey Cafe.

Breakfast at the Corner Cafe.

Drinks at the Omni Hotel ( the views are amazing!)

Walking through downtown, loved the cobblestone streets. Super dog friendly!

River Arts District, shopping in Biltmore Village.

Next time, I will explore more of the scenic parks and waterfalls, there just wasn’t enough time. Till next time Asheville!



March 29, 2016 - 6:07 pm

Petra - Beautiful!! We always talk about stopping at the Biltmore on the way to or from TN, but never seem to find the time. It’s on the to do list. Love the photos!!

Rachel & Adam { Old Town Alexandria Engagement Photography}

Rachel & Adam are engaged to be married Oct 1, 2016 at Amp in Bethesda, Maryland. They both enjoy city living and wanted their venue to reflect a more urban feel, and it’s even within walking distance from their home which made it an easy choice.

We met last weekend for their engagement session in Old Town Alexandria, it was still a bit of a chilly day, before this warm Spring like weather rolled in. I love getting to know my couples a little bit more from their engagement session, we chatted a bit about how they met while working together and some of the things they enjoy, while exploring Old Town. They are such a sweet couple, and I am so excited for their beautiful wedding!

Congrats again Rachel & Adam!




March 14, 2016 - 4:12 pm

Petra - Love the photos! You are awesome. As usual.

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