The vacation that wouldn’t end

First this has nothing to do with photography. This is just something fun that we’d like to share with those that follow us and support us. I say “us” because this has always been a team effort from my wife to the kids that come along with us where ever we end up.

We’ve been working a few VLogs and I thought I’d share this with you guys. We’ve been home almost a month and people are still asking and talking about our vacation. I even had someone at church today give us a shout out so it’s been fun. Our oldest keeps his own vlog and posts from time to time…so I thought I’d share it with those that support us (and were worried about us during our “extendedDisney vacation.)

Have a great week!

Music by Joakim Karud

— with Lucy Mejía Riojas, Diego A. Riojas and Sebastián E. Riojas at Walt Disney World.

McAllen Commercial Photographer – Bert Ogden Nissan

The mail man brought us something kind of fun this afternoon.  Recently I did a job for Bert Ogden Nissan but never heard back where and when the photos would be coming out.  Well they made their own magazine and there was the photo.  Made my day.

The funny thing was the amount of work that went in to get that photo.  First when we showed up it was SUPER foggy.  We waited outside for over an hour and it never cleared up it got WORSE.   We came back a handful of times and finally we had an hour or two of sun a few days later.

Over all I was happy with the end result and thought it worked well with the local print ad.


Mexican Imports | business photographer

Mexican ImportsMexican Importer – Jesse Deleon

We’ve had the opportunity to work with Jesse and his team for over 5 years now and have enjoyed watching his business transform from a traditional brick and mortar shop to 100% online. Jesse has several one of a kind items listed on Amazon, Etsy, and several other online stores.

Now in 2017 he frequently travels into deep Mexico to add to his inventory.  You can find amazing items in his online store; anything from antique doors that are over a hundred years old, to creating hand made furniture with recycled materials.

If you’re ever looking to decorate your home or your business make sure you stop by his online shop and take a look.  We’ve used several of his items as backdrops and are huge fans of his antique door collection.

McAllen Artist Headshot – Dania Olivares

One of the perks of this job is you’ll never know who’ll you meet along the way. Last week we had Dania stop by for some headshots here at our new McAllen studios and had an opportunity to catch up with her. She is a mix media artist originally from Diaz Ordaz Tamaulipas now living in McAllen Texas and residing at McAllen’s incubator program. Her artwork has been seen all over Texas and most recently she was the featured artist at the Houston Bayou City Art Festival.

Looking over her collection of art you’d think she had been doing this for years but she began in a totally different field, Financing. She studied in some of the best schools in Mexico but felt she should be doing something else all together. Taking a chance on herself she put down her calculator and started working with paintbrushes and recycled paper. Flash forward a few years and she has worked her way up into headlining one of a kind art shows and has proven time and time again that it’s never too late to start doing what you love (even if you have to start over again).

To look at some of her latest work and even catch her in her next art show make sure you visit her website at:

Happy New Year RGV

[McAllen Photographer] – Happy New Year!

First of all let me just put this out there. I’m not much of a blogger but i’m going to try and make it a point to do more in the new year.  I want you to get an idea of who I am and why I do what I do.

MCALLEN photographer

2016 Photography


There are a ton of photographers in McAllen but how well do you really know them?   Nothing too serious is going to be said but I want it to be something fun to visit and maybe have you learn something new here and there.

So let’s catch up here…Well we made it into 2016 without too many bumps and bruises. Over all it was a great 2015.  We had a lot changes around here, all for the better.  There were no bad break-ups or heartbreaking news but as you may have figured out we’re in the process of going in a new direction.  I’ve always believed that any art (especially photography) should continue to change and evolve.  We’ve decided to keep up with the times and introduce new systems to our work flow.

We’ll still continue working with our existing clients in weddings, family photography, and even lifestyle photography…but for now we’re looking to concrete in only two or three specific areas.


The latter half of 2015 we’ve been mostly focusing on commercial photography /videography here in the McAllen, Mission, and Edinburg area and with various companies in South Texas. We were able to complete several ongoing projects including commercial photography for Simon Properties (The Plaza Mall in McAllen), the new Double Tree Suites in McAllen, South Texas Health Systems (Edinburg Children’s Hospital / McAllen Medical) and even Inpetro Energy in Conroe / Houston Texas.

<YAWWN> THAT Sounds “interesting”

MCALLEN photographer Actually it’s a lot of fun!  We’ve made a lot of new friends and went back to what we used to do and love back in the 90s: VIDEO!  We produced some fun spots here and there for clients big and small.  The nice thing about the internet in 2016 is the availability of information via youtube and other video platforms.  Instead of writing out a long drawn out story (like you’re reading here…yeah, I know this is ironic) you can now have your message delivered to customers via video.

Check out a few videos from our archives.The fun thing is we’re going to start producing our own videos to educate our portrait clients on what they should wear, gain an idea of what to expect, and a lot of behind the scenes fun.  #BTS for all the hashtaggers out there).  You’ll be able to see some birdseye views with one of our drones and even see what we see behind the camera angles with our GoPros.

So what will 2016 bring to your photography?

MCALLEN photographer

McALlen Memorial Senior Portrait


If you’re looking for our work or portfolio older than 2015: most of it is gone.  We decided to be bold and start posting only our latest work.  It’s been on my mind for a while; we’ve had so many different adventures, but I think it’s time we start focusing on just a handful of things.  Don’t get me wrong… I know we’re able to handle almost anything that comes our way.  It can be anything from a commercial hotel project to a newborn baby.  But the reality is we want to show what we love to do: portraits both in natural light, and indoors here in our McAllen / Mission Studio.

Finally: this is going to be the ongoing part of our website.  As we meet people we’ll be able to share their stories and talk about what fuels them.  I wish I could tell you how often new material will be posted but I’m going to try and aim for at least ONCE a week. I”m thinking Fridays.  Heck I might just REALLY step out of my comfort zone and add a video to the blog posts. That’s it for right now but if you have any comments or questions just shoot me an email and I’ll get back to you ASAP.

McAllen Fashion Photography

[McAllen Fashion Photographer]

Ever wonder what it’s like to be on a photo set? Just a quick behind the scenes look at some of our studio work here at Abel Riojas Photography!  Now this was a lot of fun as all the models and make up artist were based right here in the Rio Grande Valley and it was our first calibration together.  The secret behind the fashion photoshoot was being efficient and knowing what our client wanted.  Each look was shot, edited, and delivered for social media with in 48 hours.

This all started when a friend of ours, Giselle Dominique Mascarenhas-Villarreal, called and said “we need your help with one of our fashion campaigns are you in?”  SURE!  And the rest is in history.  One thing about Giselle she’s always ahead of the trends in her Public Relation business and always working on the next biggest thing.   Looking back on the whole  thing it was probably one of our busiest projects for 2015 .  We had a total of three make up artists going all at once, a stylist pulling clothes and double checking everything, and our friend Dom capturing it all for social media behind the scenes.

Fashion photography is one of our biggest areas of growth in our business model and we’re always looking for new team members.  We love to work with like minded make up artists, stylists and even fashion bloggers to team up with to keep up with the latest trends.  And on the other side of the coin, commercial photography, let us know you’re interested in doing something for your business or boutique here in the Rio Grande Valley. Don’t be shy send us an email or stop by our Mission photo studio if you’re in the Sharyland area.  We’re always looking to work with new teams and provide quality work with breath taking results!

High School Senior Photoshoot #BTS

McAllen High School Portraits

Someone once asked me “What’s the greatest thing about your job?”  Every day is a new day and you can have the opportunity to have fun.  I asked a friend of mine, the very talented Dominic Sanchez, to figure out a way to get glimpse of a studio photoshoot here at our Mission / McAllen location.  I was pretty impressed with what we came away with.

If you still haven’t booked your Class of 2016 High School Portrait session why not book today? We are conveniently located right in between McAllen and Mission here in South Texas.  Rain or Shine we have a full working studio to capture your memories in a fun environment.

Abel Riojas Photography specializes in fashion portraiture, commercial head shots, family, and senior pictures.   To see more of Abel’s work, please go to or visit his Facebook page at

McAllenPhotographer | McAllen Family Photographer | McAllen Senior Photographer
McAllen | Edinburg | Mission | Pharr | South Padre Island Texas | Spaces are very limited and fill early.  Booking in advance will ensure a spot on Abel Riojas Photography’s schedule.