Daric & Holly: Salisbury University

Last month, I was able to take a weekend to see friends in Salisbury, Maryland, where I resided from 2016-2018. A couple who I loved doing life with during those few years were Daric & Holly. They showed me how to love Jesus and love people in such practical ways, being constant fun, encouraging presences at meals, Bible studies, movie nights, and the like. Daric even offered to teach me guitar and we had a few great sessions… before I flaked!! They both supported me both financially and in being good friends during my time as Cru staff, and those years in Salisbury would not have been the same without them!! (I’ll especially always hold dearly the time a friend and I visited Daric at work and got a FULL tour of a crematory!!) Y’all bring much joy to me and others, and it was SO fun to photograph y’all that weekend. ūüôā

Enjoy some favorites from my session with Daric & Holly around Salisbury University!!

A Swing Through 2019

Hello, friends! Happy 2020! Having time this month to slow down, regroup, and pray & plan for 2020 has been so refreshing. (Aside from the week I spent nursing my sick younger sister (a freshman at CNU) back to health from a virus, only to catch some kind of the bug myself and be out of commission for a week. Ah well, tis the season.)

As I look back over 2019, I am so humbled by the faces that fill folder after folder on my harddrive, from engagements, families, expecting parents, and more. As I posted on Instagram recently, 2019 was a year where love for the camera and really truly learning people, serving people, and enjoying people with photography came back to life for me. Selecting a slew of photos to share in this post was so hard because I wanted to use them all!!!! My smile kept growing as I put this selection together. Y’all have been such a joy to work with. I am beyond thankful!!!! I want this business to be a vehicle where people feel the love of God and know the value they hold as His creatures. While I have dreams and goals for Debbie Dean Photography in 2020, I pray that stays primary in all the work I do. Y’all are beautiful, unique, and emulate joy in your own ways. I love the gift it is to capture y’all. Instead of planning today, I’ll just continue scrolling through highlights of 2019, thankful to God for you all and humbled that I get to work with so many different image bearers of our great God!!!

Rivera Family: Oak Grove Lake Park

The Navy isn’t always our friend here in Hampton Roads, often stealing loved ones away for months out at sea. But one joy of photography is getting to capture families together in a memorable photo experience that they can hold onto when those big ships come calling to take sailors away on their all-expenses-paid cruises to foreign waters.

The Riveras are one said family, with Papa Jonathan having just headed out for a few months. Taking their family photos recently in Chesapeake was all kinds of fun, especially knowing these images are now printed and sitting on Jonathan’s desk on the ship!! Enjoy some of my favorites from our Oak Grove Lake Park adventures!

Will & Beth: Historic Greenbrier Farms

Oh how I’m loving these fall photo sessions! A few weeks ago I gallivanted around Greenbrier Farms in Chesapeake, VA, with these two sweet friends from my church, Will and Beth. Beth in particular has been a sister who’s care and wisdom for me is continually a source that humbles and refreshes me! She challenges me faithfully in how to practically live out gospel truths and she exemplifies quiet servitude. I am so encouraged by how she and Will serve our church body! We had so much fun at Greenbrier Farms and I hope you enjoy some of my favorites from our session.

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Proposal: Matt & Tara

I seriously don’t know how to begin this post. What are you supposed to say about the engagement of one of your very best friends in the whole world?? How do you describe the flashmob proposal her boyfriend arranged with 30+ people that ended with a human tunnel leading her to her boy down by the water?? There are no words.

When Matt Facebook messaged a bunch of us with his proposal plans, I quickly¬†volunteered to take photos. I was honored he wanted so many of us involved in this special night, and nothing would make me more glad but to document it. We all arrived at City Center (Oyster Point) in Newport News with plenty of time to spare before Tara would be led there by roommates, under the false news that they were going to celebrate a few friends’ internships and acceptance to grad school at one of the restaurants. Little did she know what was waiting for her…..

(Note: I switched on and off all night between using my strobe and shooting with a slooooow shutter speed…… I have so much to learn about night photography!)

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So so SOOOOOOOOO excited for you two!!! Matt, I know you’re one amazing guy to win the affections of my dear Tootie. She’s a gem.Take good care of her! Love you both!!!!

Arielle – Roommate Shoot

It’s not like we¬†planned¬†to call each other “spouse.” “Husband” and “wife.” It just kinda happened. And before you start freaking out and thinking weird things, I should say that my roommate Arielle and I love the Lord, love men, and God has richly blessed our friendship.

I have four roommates, but¬†technically¬†you would say I have one roommate and three housemates. And Miss Arielle Poe is my technical¬†roommate. We met sophomore year and have lived together junior and senior year. It’s been great watching our friendship grow as we’ve experienced the struggles and joys of friendship and roommateship (yes, that’s a word). We have many inside jokes, funny memories, and would-be-awkward-to-anyone-else-but-ourselves moments.We are blessed to share the room in the house that looks like it would be the master-suite, and at some point last year, we fell into calling eachother “husband” and “wife.” (Maybe this is TMI, but take it as you will. Haha.) I love how weirdly we joke and how our friendship has a special bond because of our living quarters. It’s wonderful. :):)

I’ve been telling Arie forever that I wanted to do a photoshoot of her (she was BORN a model), and this past Sunday I finally got around to it. And let me tell you, she’s a¬†stunner, folks. I’m stoked to show these photos. Please leave her some love in the comments!!

Without further adeau…. Miss Arielle Poe.


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Grace & Megan

I looooove these two featured in tonight’s post. Both Megan¬†and Grace go to CNU, love Jesus, and are absolutelytotallycompletely wonderful. I’ve known Megan since her freshman year last year, but Grace was a freshman this year and I remember when I first heard she was coming to CNU. Grace has two awesome older sisters, Britney and Kathryn Fitzgerald, who both went to CNU (’10 grad and ’12 grads) and when I heard ANOTHER Fitzgerald was coming, I knew she was gonna be ridiculously amazing and was almost scared to meet her! (Silly Debbie.) She DID turn out to be totally amazing and loveable and crazy and gorgeous and QUITE the comedian, and I’m so so glad she came to CNU! I’m so blessed to know both Megan and Grace. They bring SO much light into my life. Megan disciples (mentors) Grace and the two of them make a ridiculously amazing pair. This shoot I did of them last week is one of my favorites from Finals’ week shoots!! Enjoy.

First jump….. (These girls are crazy.)

Waiting on the median for the cars to pass…

Final jump!!

Kate & Bethany

Another shoot of two darling girls! Kate and Bethany go to CNU and are involved in Cru with me. Kate is a sophomore and disciples (mentors) Bethany, a freshman, like I do with Lauren. They are real sweet and real funny girls, and I had so much fun with them! We took these last week during finals and it was a GREAT stress relief for me. Enjoy my favorites!!

Megan & Lauren

I don’t know where to begin with these two. Cheesy as it is, my heart overflows with joy and love when I think of my darlings Lauren and Megan. I’ve been in love with them since their freshman, my sophomore year last year, and this past school year that love has only grown.

Lauren recently joined Young Life at CNU and has started leading at York High School (whoop whoop!!). She has such a heart for high schoolers and I can’t wait to see her THRIVE at York! She also plays tennis for CNU, and on top of that is an excellent soccer player (baaasically is just an amazing all-around athlete). Lo is one of the most compassionate, sweetest girls I know and she cares deeply for those around her. She is a faithful friend and someone you just want to be around all the time! I’ve had the joy of getting to know her even better this past year through “discipling” her (Cru term for biblical mentoring) and every week when we’d meet, I’d look forward to learning from her!! Lo gives great hugs, has the BEST laugh, and seeing her makes my day 20584084360280x brighter!! Lauren truly shines the fruits of the Spirit found in Galatians 5:22: “love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control.” I hope to be more like her one day!!

Megan is a crazy, goofy loveable dear who is always on the move and ready conquer the world! She’s the president of T.A.P. (The Africa Project, an organization at CNU that Megan started to raise money to build an orphanage in Africa), she participates in what seems like EVERY intramural sport offered at CNU, she’s involved in Cru, and she loves Jesus, isn’t afraid to call you out, and can often be found wrestling dancing in my living room with my roommate and one of her bestfriends, Rachel Hrovat. Megan can make me laugh like none other and is an incredible encourager on bad AND good days. She has a passion for the Lord that provokes me to run after Him more. She is a faithful doer of the things He’s put in her path, and she desires to please Him as she lives out His purposes in her life!

Both girls are (OBVIOUSLY) amazing women and I can’t believe I get to call them my friends!!! I am so blessed!! I did this shoot of them a few months ago, and have had the folder of pictures sitting on my desktop, staring at me for me to go through and post! Tonight, at home in Northern VA away from them and CNU, I find myself missing them terribly. Lauren & Megan, I love you girls always and forever. Enjoy these MUCH overdue photos of your gorgeous faces!

Freshman Suite Photoshoot

Another spring shoot of some freshman suitemates at CNU!! These girls were darling. They kept me laughing, and patiently waited for many a runner to pass by on the Noland Trail during the shoot (silly runners…. trails and bridges are for photoshoots, not afternoon jogs!) I absolutely LOVED the girls’ simple but classy outfit coordination. Enjoy my favorites!!