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.

Pursuit Gainesville Model & Headshot shoot ( Warrenton, VA)

Last week our Gainesville Pursuit group met up in Warrenton, VA to do a model shoot and headshot swap. Since Summer is coming and wedding season is upon us we didn’t have the turnout we usually do, but we still had a blast! Kayla, a makeup artist from Iva Bella Salon came out to do hair and makeup. She even joined us in a few shots! Laura, Kayla, and Nikki all did a fabulous jobs rocking the modeling! Thanks again girls! Thank you to Virginia Kerns Allen for hosting and setting up the models, and letting us use your studio! It is fun getting out and shooting just for fun from time to time.  If you are a creative, and want to join us, or know more about us, see our mission below, we would love to have you!

Who We Are

We are a Christian community of creative entrepreneurs – more specifically photographers, bloggers, writers, shop owners, calligraphers, and graphic designers – dedicated to cultivating the art of community and building the Kingdom of God as He uses us in our families, neighborhoods, and the world.




Laura getting to model a wedding dress for the evening… isn’t she lovely?



Kayla, our makeup artist, rocking out the edgy model looks… I’m envious of her makeup skills, if you need a makeup artist call Kayla at Iva Bella Salon.






Nikki looking like a Greek Goddess..

Oh and couldn’t forget a few fun group shots! What a great group of sweet girls to work with!


18SBHaving a little fun before the sun went down. I also got to take a few headshot for one of the lovely girls in our group, Kelly, from Kelly Hudgins Photography. I love her.. she is So sweet!  I also loved hearing the story behind her tattoo, Paz, which means Peace. Heather and Virginia didn’t want to be behind the camera. 😉 I had so much fun with you all, hope to do it again soon!



Our Mission

We believe in helping women strike a sweet balance between a healthy home life and a brave business.


We believe in communities fueled by authenticity, real conversations,
and the kinds of individuals who see life as a wild adventure – not a waiting room.


We believe in the power of well-timed prayers, unexpected coffee dates, bold stories, and tougher questions.


We believe loving harder today than the yesterday that passed us by.


We believe in taking steps back to unplug from the chaos of everyday life to hear the whispers of God.


We believe in joy and commitment and hustle and harvest. *

We believe in stitching purpose into all that we do and creating purpose into all that we do and creating from the spot inside of us that has always to do good and spark change.


We are reshaping what it looks like to pursue what you love and build into what you’ve been blessed with.

May 20, 2015 - 4:26 pm

Jessica - So sad I missed it. Lovely shots!

Anna { Rapunzel themed session} Burnside Farms, Haymarket, VA

You may remember Anna from our Frozen session this last Winter. See, Anna is not only a 5th grade teacher, but she also runs a side business doing kid’s themed birthday parties as different princesses.( Costume Teacher on FB, check her out!). She hired me to do some shoots for promotional purposes. It’s always so much fun to see how she will come dressed up.. and let me tell you, the little girls LOVED her at the tulip farm. They all wanted pictures with her. This has been something different for me to shoot, and so out of my box which is fun!

It was tough with the harsh light, we started after 5p.m but sunset is 8 now which makes it tricky.. and even with the hoards of tourists, we still got some great images! I just did a lot of photoshopping people out.:-)

Anna is so sweet she even gifted me a little macaron case I just love and bought me a bouquet of tulips! So sweet when clients are not only great to work with, but also remember the little things about you. Thanks again Anna! I can’t wait to see what princess you will be next! She has some fun ideas as Aurora at an old abandoned mill next.


Sascha { Aldie, VA Headshot Photography}

I  first met Sascha’s daughter Olivia last year when she modeled for a senior session for me with her friends, and let me tell you her mom is just as stunning! I see where she gets her good looks from! We met up at Historic Aldie Mill for a headshot session bright and early last Friday. We did a few casual shots as well, because every woman needs a good updated head shot that makes her feel pretty!

Sascha said it was out of her comfort zone to be in front of the camera.. but you couldn’t tell a bit, isn’t she gorgeous??. I shared with her that even as photographers, it’s awkward at first to be behind the lens! She kind of reminded me of myself. We both had daughters in our early 20’s, she loves fitness and traveling. We both got married in 2011 and took trips to Costa Rica with our husbands .Ok, sorry for stalking your Facebook Sascha! 😉 I enjoyed spending the morning with you!


Snapshots from Charleston, SC { Personal, travels}

We have this tradition where we head South every Spring break. It’s the perfect time to get away from Virginia after the harsh Winters we usually have. I was ready for some sunshine, a change of scenery and time with my family. We decided to stop halfway in Charleston on our way to Florida. I love this city! It’s so beautiful.. it may be one of my all time favorite cities! Usually it’s just a quick overnight stay.. I love to bring my camera and just take in the beauty of the city. This year I really wanted to explore King St. and I was able to capture just a small glimpse of how beautiful Charleston is. We found a beautiful cemetery tucked away amongst the Spanish Moss.. the Spring flowers were just starting to bloom, it was stunning. After we walked for a couple hours, we headed to the Waterfront to see all the gorgeous homes, caught sight of a few dolphins, then had a Southern meal of catfish and cornbread at the Hominey Grill, I even tried boiled peanuts for the first time and liked them! Be prepared if you ever want to get in to the top ten restaurants… there is really long wait!

The next day we explored Magnolia Plantation. It’s a must see! I really wanted to explore Boone Hall as well, but time just didn’t allow it… I guess I will just have to come back soon.. this time with a few more days to really take it all in! Charleston.. you are gorgeous!





























April 7, 2015 - 7:54 pm

Shaun - Thank you for sharing these beautiful photos of Charleston. My son will be attending College of Charleston in the fall and I have only seen a tiny area of downtown. It is nice to see why he fell in love with this beautiful city.

April 7, 2015 - 8:26 pm

alim - How exciting for your son! I’m jealous! I’m sure he will love living in such a beautiful city!

April 7, 2015 - 11:28 pm

Cindy - Wow – you need to send these to their tourism board! Get spring photos Ali!

Thoughts on Community and Serving Others { Pursuit 31 Gainesville, VA}

One of the plainest expressions of Love in Scripture is Fellowship or sharing with others. One of the most valuable things we can share is ourselves, our time, our talents and energy serving others. One thing I have learned this year is that to share yourself with others is one of God’s greatest blessings!

” Give and it will be given unto you. A good measure, pressed down, shaken together and running over, will be poured into your lap. For with the measure you use, it will be measured unto you.”  Luke 6:38

When I was asked to take over the Pursuit 31 Gainesville group this year from Elle, it was a little scary, but exciting! Sometimes God asks us to take even a small step forward for him. What good are we if we hide our faith? It may be out of your comfort zone at times, but I really felt God whispering on my heart, you got this. At first I thought to myself,  what do I have to offer these ladies? Then God reminded me that serving others takes no special talent or ability. The reason most of us do not see opportunities to serve others is that we are continually thinking of ourselves. We have not learned that we are not to look at only our interests but the interests of others.

Competition has no place in the fellowship of believers.  Sometimes even the simplest act, whether it is to use the talent God has given you to speak, or maybe it’s just being an encouragement to someone else who is going through a tough time. I can tell you that God sees you, and he blesses you for it.

We are on our third meeting so far, and let me say, wow, what a blessing the Pursuit Community has been to me! These ladies have taken their time to speak, be a shoulder for someone who is hurting,  to sharing their knowledge with each other and just overall show the love of Jesus to each other. Some of the ladies, God bless you, even let me borrow props! My hope is that there will be no place for drama or jealousy in our group. I know that at times, we bring our personal hurts and feelings onto others, but we should always remember to treat someone else how we would want to be treated. To be a friend. I am so looking forward to gettting to know each of these ladies personally this year and can’t wait to see where the year takes us, and the memories we will make! We have some fun meetings planned!

Thank you ladies for the cupcakes, the coffees, the lunches, the dinners, the learning and everything in between! A big Thank you also to Stephanie Messick for sharing her business knowledge with us this week on Orginazation and Taxes. You are all Boss ladies and I am so thankful for each one of your sweet hearts!







March 19, 2015 - 2:13 pm

Petra - Love this! And I love that you have found a place with this seemingly amazing group!! ❤️

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