Interior photography: a sweet, cheery nursery

Interior photography: a sweet, cheery nursery

Happy Fall!

It’s been a busy summer of food photography, festivals, a little bit of relaxing, and staying cool in Chicago. Luckily, fall is by no means expected to be a slow season of work or play. But as the temperatures drop and the days gradually become shorter, I’m starting to switch gears and, gulp, start preparing for the holiday season!

I took a little bit of a break from blogging over the summer in favor of short-form posts on social media between projects, but now that we’re entering “indoor” season, I’m planning on getting back to a regular schedule. Starting with sharing some projects from the past month!


Summer and fall has been solidly-booked with on-location food photography shoots, so it was refreshing to take on an interior design shoot and some events!

A few weeks ago, I met Chicago interior designer Dawn Chanath-Wojnar of Chanath W Interiors to photograph the nursery she’d recently designed. Dawn came to me a couple of months ago looking for a photographer to create photos of the nursery for her website and portfolio.

The design was inspired by a painting of an elephant and a bunny in a hot air balloon (pictured in the second image below), and the the plan is featured on her website, described as “a gender-neutral nursery…[with] a whimsical feeling of adventure within the space. The color palette is soft with a punch of yellow to add depth. The space overall displays a mix of traditional and contemporary pieces for a transitional look.” The baby animal theme continues in the small details and personal touches around the room, with bunnies, giraffes, and elephants popping up in the decor.


The nursery has one north-facing window which let in a modest amount of soft light, which is perfect for photography. This softness matched the cool, cozy color palette.

Clients commissioning all kinds of on-location photography using natural light have expressed concerns to me about north-facing windows, dark rooms, and cloudy days, but I’ve always said not to worry! Shooting on a cloudy day or in a dim room is almost always the best lighting scenario for interior photos. Soft, diffused window light distributes the light throughout the space, creating an even illumination. When the window light is TOO bright, we’ll be dealing with harsh shadows and blown-out hot spots. This can be remedied by layering sheer curtains and light modifiers, or in extreme cases, blocking out the natural light and creating a natural light look with artificial lights, but it’s usually a trickier situation overall.


The unfinished wine crates are mounted over the changing table and feature a small chalkboard, elephant and giraffe figurines, and a hardy jade plant.


A closeup of the dresser/changing table hardware:




The nursery turned out adorable, and I am happy I was able to photograph the design. Thanks, Dawn!


Find Dawn, Chanath-Wojnar, the Principal Designer of Chanath W Interiors, at, which lists her services, current projects, and ways to get in touch for a design quote.

If you are an interior designer, realtor, or architect, and interested in interior/exterior photography quote for the city of Chicago or Chicagoland area, you can reach me at


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