Hi! I'm Jonlaya.

The name of my studio LUEM is a mash-up of my little girls' names: Lucy and Emry. Pretty cool, right?

My style of photography is unrehearsed and candid, which results in a collection of natural portraits from your wedding day. It is my goal with each and every couple I work with, to capture moments that are raw, unfiltered, and full of emotion.

I take great care in making sure you are comfortable and having fun, while in front of the camera.

  • Born in California, but call Virginia home.
  • I'm Thai + Chinese (talk about great food choices!)
  • I am constantly searching for plants to take home from the clearance section in Lowes!
  • Flowers and gardening are my jam.
  • I've been photographing love stories since 2017
LUEM Photographer

A few more things I enjoy...

Color portrait of chickens free range

My Chickens

These guys are fun to watch, and I can't help but lavish them with wonderful treats from time to time.

Portrait of a pink peony

Being in the garden

Flowers are my love language. Don't believe me? Ask anyone who knows me. Peonies are my favorite, with hydrangeas coming in a close second.

Photo of the beach from the sand

The calm of the ocean

The calming rhythm of the waves, soothes my soul.

Portrait of the Birdseye view view of coffee and a muffin

A good cup of jo

Am I a purist if I can only drink my coffee hot?

Black and white photo of couple sharing a moment in front of the reflecting pool
Black and white portrait of couples engagement in DC

My Wedding Story...

Back in 2011, my husband and I eloped on a very cold December morning. While our plan was to elope and let the family know afterward, it's not necessarily how it all went down.


My sister caught wind of what we were doing after I asked her to do my makeup- she insisted on being there and I thank God to this day she did, because she brought a camera with her. 

The handful of photographs we have are only because my sister forced herself to attend our elopement! A handful of photos that I treasure and look at every single wedding anniversary.


My personal wedding story is why I am so passionate about capturing wedding memories for my couples. Couples that value the importance of having photos to feel, reminisce over, and pass on to generations to come. 

Our girls weren't around to see my husband and I get married, but they do get to see that special day in the photos we treasure, and display in our home.


And should the day come when our girls have children of their own, they will be able to share our wedding day with our grandchildren. How cool is that?! It gives me goosebumps thinking about it! 

Bride and groom walking together hand in hand

Emma + Matthew

Jonlaya was, frankly, incredible to work with. She was personable, punctual, talented and had an artistic sensibility that matched our own. We can't recommend her enough for the stellar work she did, both pre and post production. We are so, SO happy with her work.

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