Life captured beautifully.


The Acton Family : Extended Family Photo Session

This on-location family session was just down the road from my studio! It was a beautiful Saturday afternoon and everyone had gathered for a little celebration.
The two sisters were going to be together with their husbands, grown children and all their spouses and grandchildren, so it just struck them as the perfect opportunity to get a family portrait captured.
Once your kids have grown and married we all know how hard it is to get everyone back together at the same time. I was so glad they decided to give me a call, and though it was a little short-notice, we were in luck and it just so happened to work out for me as well.
Normally though, if you want to schedule for a specific date, especially a weekend, it’s good to call at least a six weeks in advance.
We did lots of fun combinations of the smaller family groups and then the whole big clan. By the time we got done, the kids were really tired and ready for their naps. I have to admit, I was ready for one too!
Loving Older CoupleFamily Portrait
Little boy photo Family Portrait Little boy photo Little girl in Grass Big Family with three boys and dog three boys in grass serious four boys climb fence Grandma and Grandpa with Grandkids Large family group.  Grandma & Grandpa, kids and grandkids Grandma & Grandpa play with kids

Kalina : Senior Portraits : Manly, IA

As we come up on the Thanksgiving holiday, I just want to say how thankful I am for my wonderful customers… especially these lovely senior girls I got to photograph this year! (And a few guys too!) 😉
This here is the lovely Kalina. I had a great time with her and her mom. She picked some great outfits to wear with lots of variety on the dressiness level and lots of fun colors!
We had to do the classic white dress in the field of flowers image, but we made sure to get some more unique shots as well.

My favorite images were with her puppy, Muffin. She’s a cocker spaniel bichon mix, and looks like a stuffed animal! Seriously, a cuddle-magnet!

We also stopped at a top secret location that only I have access to, for this rocking image with the sunflowers.

And what do you think of this image of her playing the piano with her reflection??? She’s so gorgeous!


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Kendra : Osage High School Senior + Berg Family Portraits

Well, I had a very fun and very busy day when I drove down to Osage, Iowa to meet with Kendra and her mom for a morning of on-location portraits in their hometown. I photographed Kendra’s older brother, Kolby a few years back and so they were all very excited to create some amazing images for this beautiful young lady.
I’m always honored when my customers return to me. And I’ve done lots of returning families with younger siblings becoming Seniors this year, which makes me VERY HAPPY! I know just how many other photographers there are out there these days, creating facebook pages and trying to lure my customers away with lower prices or fancy photo treatments. I know I’m doing something right when people tell me they want MY EXPERIENCE, MY TALENT… I love that they enjoy the simplicity of my images and the natural expressions I am able to coax out of their loved ones.
I can’t imagine trying to do anything else. This is who I am, this is my style and my brand. I dabble in the props and cutesy stuff a little bit with newborns, but I just can’t help myself… what else are you going to do with a sleeping baby??? LOL!
But back to Kendra, and her images…
We did some at her grandparent’s place where they have this fantastic gazebo built into the bluffs overlooking the river below… such a magical location!

Then we went down to the river itself, and around town… finding sources of inspiration everywhere we looked!

We also took some with her (very tame and docile) award winning heifer… it’s almost like it’s a girl relaxing by the tree with her horse! A beautiful creature indeed!

After the morning festivities, we gathered up her immediate family for a little session at their home farm.

But, we still weren’t done!!! Once we finished that, we drove over to Kendra’s grandparent’s farm to photograph the whole Berg clan!

Look at these cute little cousins she has! They are just too cute!

All in all, it was a jam-packed day and I was darn happy to set my heavy camera down at the end… but it was definitely worth it when I saw all these great memories we created together.


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Mandy & Justin : Family Portraits

It’s hard to believe, but it’s been 5 years since I stood in the sweltering July heat, on 7-7-07 as a bridesmaid in my good friend, Mandy’s wedding. It was really, a beautiful day. Hot, but beautiful at Schell’s Brewery gardens. Did I mention it was hot??? 🙂 LOL! I was probably a bit hotter than usual since that was the summer I was preggers with Collin. Luckily, that worked out just right since I still looked good in the bridesmaid dress… Collin wasn’t due till January.
I’m happy to say Mandy and Justin have stuck together through the ups and downs of life and the challenges we all face as newlyweds. It’s not easy. That’s for sure.
They are happy with their family of four… their two dogs, Sammie and Molson (aka Mo).
Who knows, maybe someday soon there will be a two legged addition??? LOL! Who am I to tease? It took me 5 years of marriage before Andy and I were ready for kids.

I love all the fun, playful images we captured.

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Engagement Portraits : Sylvara-Petersburg

I’m sharing a few portraits this morning from a recent engagement session I photographed for a couple from Clear Lake, IA.
The bride had heard about me through friends at work (she’s a nurse at Mercy) and the groom was in a wedding I photographed last summer.
Once I heard that, I was like… “Oh, well, you’ve seen me in action, you’ve spoken directly with my past customers, this should be a no-brainer!” LOL! Right?! Like I would ever say that. (Well, I thought it anyway.) 😉
At first they decided maybe it was a little beyond their budget to go with me as their wedding photographer and booked with someone else. But after an unfortunate experience with that person, it wasn’t long until they contacted me again.
This time they were convinced the old adage, “you get what you pay for” was indeed true and sometimes you need to just go for it and invest more than you had originally planned, but if you know you will be happier in the end, you’re much better off.
I know they will be thrilled with these great, relaxed portraits. Don’t they look so in love???

They also brought their baby, Lia. She’s a chocolate lab and a very sweet dog. I love this image of them with her.

I can’t wait for their wedding coming up in July!

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