Hi there! I’m Kristen, an Oak Park, IL and Livermore, CA Photographer

ISFP, mom to kids and plants, loves bubblegum ice cream and is always on the hunt for a new coffee shop or taco stand.


I was a molecular plant biologist studying flower genes.

I did lots of cool stuff in lab - I worked with petunias, with ferns, and other weird plants to figure out how they worked....

...but family health emergencies highlighted to me that time is fleeting. I realized I wanted to prioritize making memories with my family and capturing those moments through photos.


Then I found my purpose: helping seniors and families show up in photos beautifully, comfortably, and authentically.

After witnessing for myself that our time on earth can be fleeting, I was driven to capture lively, authentic photos as means of beautifully capturing and preserving my family's memories.

When I realized that I could do the same for others and boost their confidence with how amazing they looked I realized I'd found my purpose and my dream job!!

There is nothing better than helping an unsure client skyrocket their self-confidence over the course of a session, or knowing that I've helped a family capture priceless memories that they'll look back on for years to come.

Enneagram 9w1 and your number one hype girl!

Top: me and my family; left: me being my typical self.

photo credit: Abbie Christine Photography


Kristen is the owner and lead photographer at Kristen Hazelton Photography LLC. She's best known for helping her clients feel incredibly comfortable and beautiful in front of the camera.

Serving Chicagoland and the San Francisco East Bay Area since 2019

Yes! I'm a family, senior, and engagement photographer serving Chicago, IL and based out of Oak Park, IL during the school year, and I'm an East Bay Area photographer based out of Livermore, CA during academic breaks. Join the mailing list to be the first to know my travel schedule!

I'm IN!




Salt and pepper kettle chips are the best kettle chips.


I remove eggs from the carton so the weight is evenly distributed.


I collect horrible jokes and am not afraid to use them!


The best part of my job is showing clients how amazing they look on the back of the camera - no Photoshop involved.

Your at-a-glance guide to where I stand on all the truly important things.


Favorite indulgence

Favorite season


Guilty pleasure

alternate universe job:

Plant virologist

favorite place i've been:

Kihei, Maui is my happy place! :)

drink of choice

can't live without

Fancy English tea

usually craving

Taco Pros green salsa

beach vs mountains

100% Beach!!!

favorite Houseplant

my 5' papaya tree!

Selected publications



The Wall Street Journal
Senior Style Guide
Senior SZN Magazine: Best of 2023 Edition
Senior Luxe Magazine
Lensational Magazine
Inspiring Teens Magazine
Senior Szn Magazine
seniorMUSE Magazine
Junior Szn Magazine
Senior Poise Magazine
Teen Years Magazine
Modern Teen Style Magazine
Senior Year Magazine
Dance SZN Magazine
Monochrome Seniors Magazine
Chicago Parent Magazine

Awards & Publications

National Association of Professional Child Photographers
The PosePatch
Finding North Photography Collective
Senior Post
The White Wren


Expertise.com 2022, 2023, 2024 Best Chicago Family Photographers
Expertise.com 2022, 2023, 2024 Best Chicago Portrait Photographers
Expertise.com 2022, 2023, 2024 Best Oak Park, IL Portrait Photographers
USA TopRated Best Family Photographers in Chicago, IL
Best Firms Rated Best Portrait Photographers in Chicago
2022, 2023 Senior Style Guide Hot 100 Recipient - Community Choice Award
2024 SeniorInspire Top100 Photographers

Get On the List

Join the mailing list and be the first to know when my booking calendar goes live, and about limited edition snow and cap & gown sessions, :)

I send out just a few emails annually and will never share your email address.

yes, I'm in!

Want to hear about limited edition sessions?