Top 10 Photographs of 2017

Top 10 Photographs of 2017

As 2017 comes to a close, it’s time to select the best work we’ve created together this year.

I had a lot of notable firsts this year! I tried my hand at underwater photography and officially switched to lifestyle newborns. I was hired to do my first commercial work for a dentist office in Kingsport. I also did school photos for a local Christian school.

The rules of my Top 10:
The image has to be from a paid session.
The image must be taken by me and 100% edited by me.
The image must encompass all that I strive for my brand to be: sharp in focus, emotional and genuine.

Each image selected stirs some emotion in me as the author and creator. Please take a moment, read the story and think of how it makes you feel. Photography can be so emotional.


I think #10 last year was a prom photo too. Jacinta had a prom date but that didn’t work out and she was still going to rock going to prom stag…and SHE DID! She looked fierce and her images are some of my favorites from the whole year! PS-She did her own makeup!


Nursing photos are so special. I know all time is “fleeting” but nursing your baby is something that is usually over before you know it. Every time a mom asks me if it would be ok if I captured this time during a session, I always respond with an “ABSOLUTELY!” Ashley wanted to celebrate making it to one year with Adaley so we did this during her cake smash!


My first ever adult cake smash. Wendy is so fun and I JUMPED, nay, LEAPED at the opportunity to do this session with her! Every detail here was thought out. I swear, 30 never looked so fun!


My first wedding of 2017. It was a cold day in February but you’d never know it by looking at this image. Amanda was absolutely gorgeous and it’s moments like these where you can just feel the love and emotion of the day. I literally pulled a bobby pin out of my own hair to pin hers back for this shot!


I’ve really struggled with where I want to be with newborns. I’ve tried it all! But the stars aligned this day when I went to Kate’s home and captured this full lifestyle session. Who knew these would absolutely be a joy to capture and edit? I drove to Abingdon for this session. It was my 3rd go at this type of session. I was starting to feel more comfortable doing this and the new parents really welcomed me in and we got started. This was about 30 minutes in, I always look (hope) for a shot like this. I generally wrap the babies in the beginning and then later unwrap them. Sometimes, in a perfect world, the babies will just stretch out as soon as they are un-swaddled. Not only did Kate stretch, she smiled and stuck her tongue out, too! THIS is the perfect newborn photo!



I really really wanted this shot. Why? Because Morgan, the bride, really really wanted this shot. Right before her wedding, she sent me a couple of “pinterest ideas” for me to look over. had lighting like this. OK, great, I can do this, it’s kind of my jam. Well, you can imagine my disappointment when the ENTIRE DAY was nothing but clouds and no sun to be found anywhere. People, I tell you, as Morgan walked down the aisle, the clouds opened and the sun peeked out and stayed out until it set. This is about 20 minutes before sunset and I KNEW I had captured her dream shots of her wedding and the sunset.



I talked a little bit about this image on my Facebook business page when I posted it. But, you have to know this couple. They have been together since they were young teens. They are still madly in love and it’s so obvious their love is new every day. I’ve done family sessions with them where he can’t stop kissing her or sweeping her off her feet (literally!). So, this is actually their daughter’s wedding, but this image was one of my favorites because it’s a candid moment of that feeling. {Maybe I love this one so much because I’m married to my high school sweetheart and I still feel the same way!}


Uhhhh, do I even need to elaborate on why this one made the top 10? The light, the colors, the location, the senior! Kelli has one of the sweetest hearts you’ll ever meet. Her sister accompanied us to this session. For this particular shot, I said something ridiculous and told her to look at her sister. I’m sure this was a “I have no idea what she’s talking about” kind of laugh but it turned out PERFECT! { If I even told you where this was, I don’t think you’d believe me! 🙂 }


You all know I love emotional photography. I love capturing the true essence of the most important moments of your life. While I was snapping away at this Fresh 48 (yes, this was actually in the hospital!) this dad was so overcome with looking at his daughter that a single tear slid right down his nose. This girl is so loved and for this dad, from this moment, she will always be daddy’s little girl! Though the future will hold much joy and some heartache, even as he walks her down the aisle on her wedding day, this is little girl he will always remember.



This is actually kind of funny. I love these images SO MUCH but do you know where I found this location? In the parking lot of the church! NO JOKE! We were about to head out to shoot on the campus of the VA but I saw this, the light was literally perfect and I thought, “let’s grab a couple here before we go”. Needless to say, we NEVER left the parking lot.

I picked this as my favorite of 2017 because this location was such a surprise and turned out to be my favorite location of all my weddings this year. It was nearly impossible to select ONE to show off this location, so here is one more that showcases it. Yes, he is praying for their marriage right here…IMG_9311

Honorable Mentions


Here’s the same dad from the wedding dance above. I loved this candid moment of he and his baby girl at the end of the aisle, about to hand her off to her groom. No tears here, he is truly beaming with pride.


This image could have EASILY been the top of the top but the rules are the rules. Obviously this was not a paid session. When I started planning this editorial, I wanted it to be REAL. I wanted a real couple who wanted to really renew their vows. I knew that keeping it as real as possible would make the best images of all. I was right. This couple was perfect for this vow renewal at the vineyard. There were moments I almost cried. I don’t even cry during weddings. Guys, marriage is not easy, but these two have persevered through more than I can even write here. One day, I’d like to have their permission to share their story. (Side note: We had the best vendors ever!)


I got to work with the Trail of the Lonesome Pine Outdoor Drama again! This 15-minute promo shoot was perfect for Jack and June. If you’ve seen the drama (you have, right? If not, do it!) you know June lays her eyes on Jack while he’s fishing so this spot was a perfect selection for the 2017 season.


I’m going to try to keep this short. HA! As most of you know, we DROVE to California and back this summer. There were 11 of us total in a Transit van. Yup. It was SO MUCH FUN. Back to the photo, I actually did not even know it was POSSIBLE to see the milky way with your bare eyes. I thought it was something that had to be captured through long exposures. NOPE. This was actually our 2nd time seeing it on our trip. Me and our friends literally spent about 30 minutes taking these photos. We would change angles, location and how we decided to light the trees up. In the end, I love it and this image makes me so happy.


Another first this year! Underwater photography! This is my daughter and in the back, her friend Riley. They let us come over and try this out. For my first go, I am crazy pleased with this image. I picked it because the sun really lit up her pumpkin colored hair and she is smiling, as she generally does when she’s swimming. I’m biased, but this kid is gorgeous and I had such a blast capturing my first underwater images!


Hey! I'm Robin, wife to my high school sweetheart, mother to 3 beautiful children (Lucy, Molly and Bruce) and lover of photography. I have been a hobbyist in photography since 2010 until finally creating the official business of Robin Collins Photography in January 2016. I strive to create unique and beautiful images for every session and event. My images are clear, sharp and emotional. I do lifestyle and posed images in each session to provide a variety to choose from. Things I love: God, Family, Laughter, Harry Potter, Traveling, Ice Cream, Italian food, Fun hair colors Things I don't love: My food touching, Romantic Comedies that don't have a happy ending, Cleaning

This Post Has 2 Comments

  1. Robin, You are SO incredibly talented! These photos are not only gorgeous, but just reading your words proves how much heart you put into your work. I am in tears after reading. Thank you for being you!

  2. All the photos are absolutely gorgeous! I especially like #3. Not only is Kelli a natural beauty, she is my youngest granddaughter. I loved them all! God has given you a wonderful gift.

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