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Conversations with Hailey Barao

Today we’d like to introduce you to Hailey Barao.

Hi Hailey, please kick things off for us with an introduction to yourself and your story.
My photography business began on an unexpected whim in college. I’ve always had a passion for taking photos, but in college I began capturing my friend’s love stories through couple photography, surprise proposals, and engagement sessions. One couple without hesitation asked me to document their wedding day, and word got out from there. It’s been an unexpected journey but such a blessing in disguise! I’m coming up on my 100th wedding and I really wouldn’t be where I am today if a couple of friends hadn’t pushed me to grow beyond my comfort zone.

I’m sure you wouldn’t say it’s been obstacle free, but so far would you say the journey have been a fairly smooth road?
There’s so many components to running a business- from email correspondence, website design, marketing, money management, and scheduling, it truly is a one woman show. You wear so many hats, but it’s exciting nonetheless! I’ve definitely witnessed my style grow, my clientele change and my self-worth grow. The biggest struggle for me has been underselling myself – I can be such a giver and I’ve really had to work on my boundaries and knowing what I am capable of carrying and where I should say no. I’ve had to learn how to not let my business consume my life; rather, how does my business fit within my life. Easy to say, much harder to implement on the daily!

Can you tell our readers more about what you do and what you think sets you apart from others?
My life is two-fold: I run a business while also working a full-time time job. In my day job, I serve as the Human Trafficking Outreach Coordinator for Baltimore county. I engage in case management with child trafficking survivors while also educating my community on the signs of trafficking. It’s an incredible job, and I am beyond honored to serve in this capacity; however, I recognize the need for creative outlets in my life.

My photography business has been with me in my highs & lows. It’s my outlet where I find the beauty and celebration in everyday life. While I specialize in couples & weddings, my family sessions are so meaningful to me. My clients are so faithful and it’s such a privilege to experience each new season in their life. I love capturing the glow of my expecting couples, witnessing their smiles and coos as they hold their newborn, and documenting all the milestones of birthdays, holiday photos, and other events. Photography has allowed me to form this special circle in my life where I have the honor of capturing those little moments that are treasured forever.

What do you like and dislike about the city?
I am a Maryland girl through and through. I was raised on a cow farm in Carroll County, but now I enjoy the downtown life of Ellicott City and Baltimore. I love watching my city light up for each holiday and make the most of every season. Maryland is incredible in each season and it’s so fun to watch the landscape differ so drastically from spring to fall. The one thing about Marylanders that I notice is we like to keep ourselves busy- and sometimes we are too busy. I so appreciate my clients who recognize each season as a blessing that deserves to be remembered. I really feel photography is about documenting all the little moments – because in the end, they’re actually the big moments.


  • $300- 45 minute family session
  • $200- 1 hr engagement session
  • $200- 1 hr senior session
  • $200- 45 min headshots

Contact Info:

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