Spring in Iowa can be unpredictable as a toddler. 2019 has been no exception! Even though Savannah & Harrison got married just about an hour outside of Des Moines, and halfway through May, I actually wore a sweater to their wedding. Crazy! Regardless, a little cloud cover had nothing on the bright ball of energy these two bring to the table. They’re going to take this world by storm and I just can’t wait to watch what they do together!
Let’s revisit the past. My personal history, if you will. These are photos that made me…while I was making them.
This sweet family was the very first to hire me for family photos way back when I first arrived in Ames for college! Erin found me on Google, and the rest was history. Ben was a newborn (literally like 3 months old!) and I did a mini-session the next fall, when he was about 1. But other than a random grocery store run in, I don’t think we’d crossed paths since then!
You never know what the weather will do in Iowa during spring. I’m thankful that we’ve had some really lovely, sunny days! However, Katie & Eric’s engagement photo evening threatened rain, so we had to work fast. Thankfully, these two are super adorable together and we got plenty of photos in the 40 or so minutes we had together. (And yes. If they look familiar to you, I took a few photos in November of them with Odin, their pup!)
Spring is the perfect time to catch up on family photos. Not only are the kiddos thrilled to be able to run & play outside after a long winter, but the weather feels warm and the green tones refresh the soul! I had the pleasure of photographing some of the most energetic and excited children in Des Moines last week. These siblings love each other, obsess over their newest baby brother, and made a quick friend of me!
Sophia and I met two & a half years ago at Iowa State. She was a freshman, walking through so many life changes and adventures! We met up a few times to talk, but our paths didn’t cross as much the following year. Now that I’m running my photography business in Des Moines, instead of Ames, our paths never cross. Until last week! Sophia decided to take me up on my mentoring sessions, and the Lord gave us a perfectly beautiful day!
THE most frequent question I’m asked (after, “Is photography really your full time job?” …which it really is!) usually is, “So, how much time do you spend editing/do you like editing?” And while so many photographers dislike editing, I really really enjoy it.
Not only is Elizabeth one of the most naturally gorgeous women I know, but her interior beauty shines more than her physical! She actually modeled for my in my fledging photographer days, at least once, maybe more. I had some silly ideas, but she put up with them in typical Liz style— encouraging, laughing, and having fun! We also shared some memories detasseling, if I recall correctly. Good ol’ Iowa summers!
When people I know have a new baby, I find a way to go catch some newborn snuggles. FAST! ;) Little lady Abigail was no exception! Her mom grew up in my home church but was enough older than I that we were never friends, just acquaintances. Fast forward a while and with Facebook, we’re now “friends”.. haha! Anyhow, Alison and I connected when she was looking for someone to watch her baby this summer. I met her & her husband, all three of us hit it off (this is gonna be a long friendship, y’all) and everyone was just eager for baby to come.
Gabby and David share a passion for life. They met in college, dated for two years, and got engaged in the fall of 2018! This year has been full for the two of them, working towards graduation and planning a wedding together. We have met up multiple times to talk about wedding timelines and photography, but we finally made it to spring when we could shoot their engagement photos! It was the perfect spring evening, and these two did a wonderful job getting each other to laugh and smile. :)
It’s long been on my heart to find a way to throw a party for the brides who choose to hire me. After all, I take this job and responsibility seriously! It’s a HUGE honor to be chosen, out of the countless other photographers in the area… let alone the world. I’m just a simple girl with a heart to help brides have high quality memories and moments on their wedding day. And so, to show my gratitude, I invited the women who had hired me for 2019 to come for an afternoon of treats and learning!
These two were married in Ames last May. We took their engagement session in early April (almost exactly a year to the day of this anniversary session!) but it wasn’t a very warm or green day yet. Thankfully, Preston landed a job in the Washington DC area after graduation and they moved out this winter. DC is about the same latitude as Kansas City, so just a bit warmer and earlier to change seasons than Des Moines and the rest of central Iowa.
What to even write!? Alyssa and Carter will be long-time friends of mine, even after their November wedding. I just know it! We had only communicated via email and the phone until the afternoon of their engagement photos. I was nervous (always!) but oh, so excited to meet these two. Click through to see their magical spring engagement session in a downtown Des Moines garden!
Oh friends! This trip was a DREAM. Literally never wanted to wake up (although I also was exhausted by the end of this trip— so much so that I slept in my car for an hour at a rest stop 1.5 hours away from home). I really fell in love with DC. Low key trying to decide if I want to move there now. (semi-no joking.) Of course, this may all change when I visit NYC for the first time but for now… I really do think Washington DC is both the capitol city of our nation & my heart.
My fall mini-sessions were such a great success, that I’ve decided to offer spring mini sessions as well! Spring is just such a gorgeous time of year, especially with all the budding and blossoming trees. It only comes around once a year, especially with the apple (or cherry or whatever they are!) blossoms at Water Works Park! We’ll definitely be fighting the crowds, but it will be worth it!
Travel has been part of my life since birth. (Literally!) Most of you know that I’m always down for another adventure— especially a cross-cultural one. One the last Saturday in March, I had the wonderful opportunity to travel to Nepal… but not really. :) Although India & Nepal have long been on my bucket list to visit, this wedding was a blend of Nepali and American culture just up the road in Madrid & Johnston, Iowa!
Elizabeth & Paras met in college, on their first day of classes, I believe! It’s always fascinating to meet others around my age who were in school at UNI. Although I was never technically a UNI student, I was on campus enough my first three years of college to confuse a lot of my friends there. Ha! It’s a wonder I never met these two back then. Regardless, we’ve got mutual friends and that’s how I ended up connecting with the couple & photographing this wedding day.
Cherry trees may be the most gorgeous of all God’s blossoming creations. My ultimate dream would be to visit Japan & see the original trees there, but the right opportunity has not yet come up. Instead, when my friends Shelby & Preston moved to the Washington DC area this winter, I decided to see about a trip there. After all, the Tidal Basin blossoms draw thousands on onlookers each year for the Cherry Blossom Festival!
Coming up with new ideas for engagement shoots is a dream for me. If you want to do something cool, adventurous, or epic… just ask me about my bucket list of photography ideas! Two years ago, Chris and Elizabeth woke up before sunrise to meet me at the Iowa State Capitol for engagement photos. It not only is a gorgeous space, but boasts a stunning view of downtown Des Moines!
It has taken me a long time to finally get around to blogging some of my sweet fall family mini-session photos! I love meeting the Hornberg fam—the two girls gave me a run for my money, but we had a blast chasing each other around in the grass. There are so many family photographers in the Des Moines and Ames area… it really was a treat to be chosen by mom Katie, to update the family photos! I can’t wait to see these sweet girls grow up over the years.
Cassie and I have been friends since childhood. We were never “best friends” but our lives overlapped a lot in elementary and high school years. She brought the party to any gathering, and never showed up quietly. ;) Wes entered her life in high school… and never left. Ha! They got engaged a few years later, and actually came to me in Ames for their engagement photos. It was cold and wintery, not unlike this day. It didn’t work out for me to do their wedding, sadly. And since they live in Cedar Rapids, and I in Des Moines, we haven’t crossed paths in person since then.