May 7, 2020

How I Became a Photographer

As far back as I can remember, I have always had a natural interest in photography. As a young girl, I was always the one taking the photos in my family. I didn’t even realize photography was a thing, I just knew I liked taking pictures.

Even with this natural love for photography, I only saw it as a hobby, it wasn’t a “real” job in my young mind.

It wasn’t until I found myself at Cal State University Fullerton that my eyes were opened. I had applied with a Liberal Arts major, but just one semester later, I quickly changed it to Photocommunications. It was the first time, I started to see this love of mine as a possible career. But even then, it was through the lens of journalism and not portraiture.

But I struggled. My natural style was clashing with the journalistic approach my professors taught. I vividly remember one class, it was critique day, and boy did I dread those. While students had submitted gritty, dark, and edgy street images, I had submitted a candid portrait of a grandfather and granddaughter. I loved it, it was a beautiful moment, but in class, it was teased and laughed at, it was too “Hallmark-y” they said.

After that, my love for photography was lost. Heartbroken and defeated, I stored my camera away.

It wasn’t until three years later that I went looking for that camera. It was the day before my scheduled c-section and I wanted to photograph my very pregnant self. I set up the self-timer and a few clicks later my “maternity session” was done.

I didn’t share my pictures with very many people, but enough to eventually be asked to take a friend’s maternity photos, and then another, and then another. Slowly but surely I began to fall in love with photography all over again and I saw the path to a career that makes my heart skip a beat. But this time, it was my photography, my style, my way.

This dream of mine, of being a photographer, wouldn’t have happened had it not been for my daughter. And so, to honor her, I took the last four letters of my name and the last four letters of her name, and Lina + lena Photography was born.

About Me

With a simple and natural style, filled with light and love, each session is embraced with purpose, filling images with sweet moments and beauty.

I'm Paulina, a catholic believer, photographer + mom from Socal. 

As a maternity, newborn, and family photographer my passion is to capture the magic of motherhood and to create a community for women, no matter their season of life. When I'm not shooting or editing, you'll find me being a mom to one fearless eleven year old. I call the historic city of San Juan Capistrano home. And if we’re gonna be friends, you should know that I don’t like coffee at all, I will send you dog memes every day, and I absolutely will make you dance against your will. 


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I’m real and sweet and I promise a little bit funny.

We always get so many compliments on the pictures she takes of us. She is great with children! She always made my girls feel comfortable and at ease, which shows through their expressions in the pictures. If you are looking for a children or family photographer, I highly recommend Paulina!

I can not rave enough about Paulina. Her pictures are magical! She has taken pictures of my family for the past two years and all the images we received were amazing. 

You're so easy to work with and I cannot wait to print these photos and display them in my home! You're so talented! Thank you again so much from the bottom
of our hearts.

Oh my goodness Paulina, I am in love! Thank you so much for capturing my little family. I absolutely love all of the photos.

The pictures came out so gorgeous; got so many compliments and I am very happy with her work. Thank you so much Paulina!

I had a wonderful experience with Paulina. She was very patient, very easy to work with, and I felt very comfortable.