Best of 2018 {Tara Gresens Photography}

I decided to start something new this year – post all of my favorite photos from photo shoots I have done throughout the year, and write about why they are my favorite. Some are my favorite because of the lighting, or the way they were shot – others are my favorite because there is a story behind them, some type of meaning. Take a look below to see some of the shots that stood out to me most!


Ashley Farms Wedding {Yorkville, Illinois}

  • It was SO unbelievably hot on this day at Ashley Farms in Yorkville, IL. You would not know by the love that was shown between Amanda and Jeremy that it was over 100 degrees and extremely humid! They had the most beautiful day, full of laughter, love, and happy tears!

Summer Star Ranch Wedding {Helena, Montana}

  • Another beautiful wedding I was able to photograph was in Montana at a ranch in Helena. Our friends got married on a beautiful day out West. It couldn’t have been more picture perfect!

Summer Photo Sessions

Montrose Beach, Chicago, Illinois

  • I have been working with this family for almost 5 years now! I photographed them when Finn was just one year old, and now he is five! It is crazy how time flies. Love them!

Winnetka, Illinois

  • This was one of my favorite sessions all year! The family was so happy to have their photos taken, and also because I was able to capture the first time their son went in the lake water on camera! Not to mention, they were so photogenic!

Chicago, Illinois

  • I have been photographing this family below for almost four years now. Having the opportunity to document their childhood is so rewarding. The first  time I met them, Penelope was two years old, and mom was pregnant with Carmine. Time is flying too fast!

Lincoln Park Conservatory {Chicago, Illinois}

I have been photographing mom’s twin sister now for almost two years, so it was so fun to get to meet her and her little girl, Reese! She had quite the variety of different facial expressions, making our  shoot super fun!

Northfield, Illinois

  • This was my first year working with the S. family. They have three boys, two of which are twins! We had so much fun working with them, each of the boys having such a fun and vibrant personality. It felt more like a play date than a photo shoot!

Naperville, Illinois Engagement Shoot {Naperville River Walk}

  • I have known Ashley and Kyle for what feels like forever! It is always very rewarding to photograph people you know, because you can get them to pose for the camera without it feeling awkward. I have been photographing their sweet little Nora for almost two years now, and it is so wonderful to watch her grow! I was honored to photograph their engagement shoot, and even more honored when I was asked to shoot their wedding this coming August! Love them!!

Newborn Photo Shoot {Glenview, Illinois}

  • Jen reached out to me just before Baby Nora was delivered to schedule her newborn session and I was so happy to document her being home! Her older brother was so sweet with her, not to mention they are Cubs fans! I am so in love with all of their photos, it was hard to choose my favorites!

Bucktown, Chicago Photographer

  • My sweet cousin has the most beautiful babies ever who are so good at posing for the camera! I love to practice on them, whenever I’m over there. Roman and Leonardo, you  are just both so handsome!

Jefferson Park, Illinois Photographer

  • I also get to practice on my sweet nephews, who are TRIPLETS! They are all growing too fast for me, and also the most handsome little boys ever! I love photographing them in action when they are playing with their Uncle Chase. We love spending our summer days with Nico, Xander, and Ryan!

Chicago Extended Family Session

  • There is nothing like a beautiful family session on 4th of July when everybody is in town! Everybody showed up in red and was ready for their photos!

  • Normally, photo sessions are a lot of work when it comes to working with extended families. However, this family was so prepared and ready to go that we finished our session way quicker than expected. Everybody was smiling and photogenic, so excited to get their photos taken. Northbrook is such a beautiful area, I love photographing there!

Wheaton Mini Session {Northside Park}

  • I love this family and have taught their oldest son. Their mom does a phenomenal job with all of the boys.  The photo shoot was so much fun, getting to see each of the boys’ personalities shine!

Chicago Newborn Session {Prentice Women’s Hospital}

  • Our sweet niece, Addison, was born on October 1! I was so honored to get to go photograph her newborn session on her first day in the world! She was and still is the most precious little baby. She has amazing parents who just love her so much! We love you Addison! I can’t wait to photograph all of your milestones.

Logan Square Photographer 

  • Addison is growing so fast, see her one month and two month photos below!!




Fall & Winter Mini Sessions {Chicago, Illinois & Elmhurst, Illinois}

  • Fall and winter mini sessions are always a blast. I can say that I normally photograph more families during mini sessions than I do all year, people are trying to squeeze in their time slots with me to get photos for their holiday cards! I normally see dozens of families, babies, and furry pets during mini session weekends. They always turn out great whether it is from the vibrant leave colors from the trees, or because of the festive holiday backdrops. Take a look at some of my favorite shots from 2018 mini sessions!


Showers, Showers, Showers!

  • I photographed more showers this year than I ever have before! Baby showers and wedding showers are always so fun!

Chicago, Illinois Baby Shower

  • Going to photograph this baby shower was awesome for two reasons: I got to see my friend Ashleigh’s beautiful creative decorations and planning, and everybody was so down to earth and fun! Ashleigh had the cutest decorations, foods, etc. She also had a craft where everybody got to choose a decal (that she had designed on InDesign, by the way) and iron it on a baby onesie. They hung up all of the onesies, which were sent home with the mama for the baby! Thank you, Ashleigh, for having me and making me feel so comfortable! Your shower was a hit!

Schaumburg, Illinois Wedding Shower

  • Being at Dave and Brit’s shower just melted my heart. Dave, my cousin, married the love of his life this past June. I was lucky enough to photograph their wedding shower in April 2018, and you can just see the sparkle in their eyes when they look at each other. Now, they have been married for 6 months!

Evanston, Illinois Baby Shower

  • Brenna was the happiest pregnant woman I have ever met! She was so happy and appreciative of everybody who made it out to her shower on this beautiful summer day!

Maeve: Elmhurst Milestone Session {1st Birthday}

  • Maeve is the cutest little girl, who has better style and fashion than me! I photographed her last year as a sweet little newborn baby, and now she is already one whole year old! There were too many good ones to choose from because she is just so photogenic! Happy 1st birthday Maeve!



Thank you to all of my amazing clients for making 2018 another successful year! I am so excited to see what 2019 has in store for me!