Gibson Ranch Park Children Photography Location | Sacramento - Sergey Bidun


One of my best outdoor locations for family, children or senior photography is the Gibson Ranch Park that’s in Sacramento, California. For a long time, I was looking for a perfect photoshoot location that will have beautiful views, easy access and work well for different season pictures. Although there are many different parks around the Sacramento area, not all of them work well for photo sessions.

A lot of photographers spend time driving around scouting different places in order to find a location that works great for the type of photo session they are looking to have. Being a photographer myself, I did lots of scouting as well, searching for unique locations that would have that beautiful and dreamy feel for authentic family and children photo sessions, at the same time being a safe place for both the photographer and the clients

The best outdoor location with a good balance of open field, woodsy and rustic backdrops for creative photo sessions in the Sacramento area is the Gibson Ranch Park, in Elverta California. Located a little more than fifteen miles away from Downtown Sacramento, this park is a great family destination with the pristine natural countryside

This park will give you beautiful backdrops for family, children, senior portraits and not only that. Gibson Ranch Park is very well maintained as it’s also a great place for hiking, horseback riding, recreation, campgrounds and even weddings and events all year round. Every time we visit this park as a family outing or as Bidun Studio Photography portrait photoshoot, we always come back with positive energy and lots of great memories made.


Getting to the Gibson Ranch Park from downtown Sacramento, California only takes about 25 minutes in good driving conditions. The best way to get to the park is by taking Highway 5 toward Yuba City/Marysville and exiting on W Elverta Road. There are quite a few parking designated areas which makes it very convenient for visitors that come here for recreation, to celebrate and event, or for a photo session. This park is open 7 days a week and it opens at sunset and closes at dusk.


Choosing a natural countryside photoshoot location definitely has many advantages, especially for family, children and seniors pictures. Many high school seniors want to have their portraits taken in outdoor locations where they can be around nature and rustic locations. Gibson Ranch has all that and more! At this park, you will find a beautiful open field, lots of areas with green grass and big trees, a big pond right in the middle, as well as a creek running down on a side. These types of backdrops can help make any photo session more authentic and creative.

In the spring-time, you will find lots of blooming trees and gorgeous green landscapes, and in the fall-time, the trees will turn into beautiful colorful backdrops for more seasonal portraits. The Gibson Ranch Park is a nature preserve that lets us create very authentic pictures at different spots in this 325 acre-area. If the client chooses to have more greenery and trees in their portraits, we go for those shots. If another person wants to have a balance of woodsy & rustic pictures or photos by the creek - Bidun Studio Photography can do that as well!


The “golden hour” as it’s often referred to, is the perfect time for taking those beautiful warm sun-lit portraits in the natural countryside. Like with every outdoor photo session that Bidun Studio Photography photographs, we always plan to be at the location two hours before the sunset time. This will give us enough time to take photos at a few different spots in the park, and not worry about needing to hurry through the shoot.

Considering that some families’ availability may not allow for a sunset photo session, we could take pictures during the sunrise time as well. If waking up super early is not a problem for you, we could make it work at the sunrise time as the park is open already. One of the advantages of taking pictures at Gibson Ranch Park is that you will certainly have areas with good amount of shade which is preferred during the sunny summer days.

During Scarlett’s fall portrait session we knew how important it was to capture her portrait at this beautiful location at the perfect time of day. Bidun Studio Photography team always strives to arrive at photo sessions slightly ahead of time to properly plan out each photography location and timing.


THE FIRST PHOTOGRAPHY LOCATION SPOT at Gibson Ranch Park where we took portraits of Scarlett was by the haystacks. This spot worked really well with her first outfit and a cowboy hat. The hazy backdrop added a touch of mystery to this photo session. Even though the photoshoot took place during sunset time, there was no direct sunlight as the air was hazy that day.

On a sunny day, we could have gotten more flare in the portraits and could have played around more with the sun rays, but overcast days definitely have their advantages as well. I was able to have very soft and even lighting throughout the whole photoshoot, as you will see in the gallery below.

THE SECOND SPOT where we took teen portraits was on a short strip of a road inside the park. When scouting location spots, I really liked how the empty road looked with the leading lines disappearing far away in the haze. When using the portrait and zoom lenses, we could get the main subject really stand out and be the center of attention.

On one side of the road was a long wooden fence that we used for the next set of images. Scarlett’s outfit matched so well with this setting and the gorgeous rich background. The beautiful fall trees with their colorful leaves created an amazing natural backdrop for our photo session. Using the photographer’s creativity and different angles, we managed to take some of the most beautiful fall portraits for Scarlett.

THE THIRD PHOTOGRAPHY SPOT at the Gibson Ranch Park was using natural surroundings and props that were present at the location. We took some pictures by a very rusty tractor and they turned out super amazing! There were also some buildings in a distance that served as a great backdrop for some of our pictures. As photographers, it is our task to keep our eyes open for interesting surroundings that might make our pictures even more authentic.

THE FOURTH SPOT where I like taking photos at this park is by the tall trees that are close to the property buildings and the farm animals & barns. When taking pictures during sunset time, this location gives a beautiful warm backlight that is perfect for children and family photo sessions. There are quite a few tall trees like that at Gibson Ranch park, which help create a more beautiful background.

THE FIFTH LOCATION and probably my favorite one is at the back of the park on an off-road. This beautiful alley with trees on both sides creates a gorgeous natural backdrop. This location is so pretty and unique at every season of the year. Families often opt-in for portraits at this scenic location, and I couldn’t agree with them more. Portraits taken at this location look straight out of a magazine, and these types of images will be treasured for many years.

THE SIXTH LOCATION SPOT is an open field area close to the Gibson Lake. Often times having that open field look is what can help create a very clean family, children or couples photos. Keep in mind, this area looks really amazing both in springtime when everything is nice and fresh, as well as during fall time. And if you luck out with a great sunset, your portraits will be incomparable to anyone else’s.


Gibson Ranch Park which’s in Sacramento - is a wonderful location for senior pictures, family & children portraits and even couples photo sessions. Given the big variety of location spots at this park, the photographer can spend a good few hours taking photos here, and the pictures will all look beautiful and unique. There are many gorgeous corners at this park that are within walking distance, although the creek is a bit farther down which will be best to drive over to.

What I noticed from my previous photo sessions at the Gibson Ranch Park, coming for a photoshoot during weekdays will lower the chance of having too many park visitors - which in turn will benefit you during the photo session. Every senior, children, and family photo session that I’ve shot here, has given me only positive feedback on how they loved their portrait images at the Gibson Ranch Park.


Scarlett’s photo session started with portraits by the haystacks that were close to where we parked as we entered the park area. The day turned out a bit gloomy and hazy so I knew that I was going to have consistent low light up until the sunset time. Mom helped her prepare well for the session with nice outfits and a variety of hats, which I knew would come handy during this session.

The first outfit that we photographed in and the brown hat, really worked nicely at the given location. The tones and textures complemented each other really well and helped Scarlett stand out in her pictures.

We managed to get a good amount of portraits as well as full body shots at this location. Scarlett was very natural in front of the camera and was super excited to try out different locations throughout the Gibson Ranch Park area.


As we got enough images at the first location, I spotted a new place that I thought will look great for portraits. The road in front of us was empty and with the current haze it looked really interesting and mysterious, creating beautiful leading lines in the background. After a quick outfit change, we started photo shooting on the empty road.

The session took place during the fall, with pretty much everything around us yellow and dry. The backdrop looked pretty simple and minimalistic, but that only helped for our photography subject to stand out. Scarlett’s unsophisticated dress fit very well to the surroundings and helped to make her facial features and hair pop.

The fence that was on one side of the road served us as a prop for a few more images. The beautiful colorful trees in the background really show off the beauty of California fall. We kept taking more beautiful portraits by the fence, experimenting with the different hats that Scarlett brought with her. The images we took on the road and by the wooden fence are definitely our favorites from the whole gallery, there’s something so interesting and storytelling in each of those portraits.


Gibson Ranch Park has so many natural props that could be used by creative portrait photographers. Anything from haystacks, wooden fence, rustic walls & objects, to the little creek can be used as clever ways to enhance your photos. Photographers are talented creatives, and for us, it’s a fun challenge to be able to use surroundings and incorporate them into the photo session.

Each portrait photographer has their own vision and way of seeing everything around them, and the end result will always be different and unique. That’s what motivates us, at Bidun Studio Photography, to keep pushing our creativity to produce exceptional product every time.

With a good variety of portraits and wide-lens shots, we started experimenting with the props present at the location. First, we took some images with an old & rusty tractor which looked pretty cool with Scarlett’s new outfit and change of hairstyle. Then we did a bit of walking towards the buildings, taking images as we went. This type of image variety really comes handy when designing an album or wall collage of prints.


Bidun Studio Photography is an award-winning boutique photography studio that specializes in providing custom kids portrait photography experience in the Gibson Ranch Park and all Northern California. At Bidun Studio, we specialize in modern, fashion-inspired custom children portraiture and customize each photo session to each of their unique personalities. Our portrait photography team strives to make every photo session a fun and creative experience, as we capture authentic portraits that reflect the unique personality of each client.

As one of Sacramento’s top children portrait photographer studios, we aim to take photos that will take your breath away and an experience that you will remember for many years. Our boutique photography studio is located in Sacramento, California but we are happy to travel and provide services as Sacramento modern children photographer, Roseville children photographer, Rocklin children photographer, Lincoln children photographer, Granite Bay children photographer, Folsom children photographer, El Dorado children photographer, Elk Grove children photographer, Napa children photographer, and the surrounding areas.