• Tue, 08 Sep 2015 21:00:00 +0000

    Now Scheduling Fall Mini Sessions!

    Now scheduling fall mini sessions!

    I kind of hate to say it.. but it's that time of year again! Grab your family and get ready to have fun in the crisp, cool air!

    Location will be determined about a week beforehand. The decision will be based on how leaves are looking - I always hope for big piles on the ground and pretty colors in the trees! :)

    Hope to see you there!
  • Wed, 02 Sep 2015 20:30:00 +0000

    A Beach Session on a Chilly August Day - Minneapolis Newborn Photography
    I'm sure you'll recognize this bunch. I used to work with Tara before Olive was born, which was also before Tara had kiddos of her own. Not long after Olive was born, Claire arrived, and then Leah came along just before June, and now they have a third little one, named Owen. It's been so neat to photograph their growing family and compare them year to year!

    I met this little family of five on the beach at Lake Harriet in Minneapolis on a mid-August morning. And guess what? It was SO WINDY and really chilly, too! I suppose the upside to this was an empty beach and beautiful wind blown hair.. but man was the weather not fitting for the location! But thanks to their adorable outfits and post processing - they look happy and warm and perfect. ;)

    You're probably wondering about the newborn aspect of this session. Here he is.. little Owen. :)

    Welcome to the world little Owen! And thanks so much for braving the chilly beach with me! :)

    To see more, take a peek at the full gallery.
  • Tue, 18 Aug 2015 23:20:00 +0000

    Emmalie + Joseph's downtown St. Paul Wedding
    I first met Emmalie and Joseph at Cafetto, a little coffee shop in the Lowry Hill East neighborhood when they were searching for a wedding photographer. I learned a bit about both Emmalie and Joseph and was excited for the opportunity to photograph their wedding!

    Weather permitting their ceremony was planned for Rice Park in downtown St. Paul, with the reception to follow in the Landmark Center. Thankfully the weather cooperated and we enjoyed ourselves outdoors - though the sun was keeping me on my toes - popping in and out of the clouds every few minutes!

    Emmalie and Joseph are one of the few couples that I have recently worked with who wanted to wait until the ceremony to see each other. Despite this, they still wanted a "first look"... without the look part. Emmalie's friend scoped out a few great options inside the Landmark Center and we settled on a beautiful door on the 4th floor.

    With some coordination from Emmalie's friend, I set out to photograph the groom and his guys downtown while the ladies stayed hidden inside the Landmark Center. We went for a short walk during which my husband's cousin, who lives in Cedar Rapids, IA, called out my name and waved - she was in town to attend a wedding just across the park from ours. How funny! We found a couple of great shady spaces for photos and stopped inside a candy shop. The guys had a great laid back attitude about them, which makes photographing wedding groups really enjoyable and fun for everyone!

    The guys headed back inside while I waited for the ladies in Rice Park. The sun was bright and the shade was spotty in the park but we found a few great spots to hang out. But with little variety available we soon took a short stroll to the side of the library.

    The ladies and I were having a bit too much fun together.. it was time to rush over to the ceremony site to prepare for what all of this is about... time for Emmalie and Joe to get married!

    Like I said, the sun and cloud combination kept me on my toes and the wind threatened to blow a few folks away... but in the end everything was beautiful and went as smoothly as possible.

    After the license was signed I snapped a few quick shots of the entire wedding party and immediate family and then it was on to some solo time with the new married couple. I really love when couples have their priorities set and a significant portion of time is set aside for photos of the couple!

    I had a blast walking around with Emmalie and Joseph. They're both laid back and comfortable in front of the camera. Emmalie's mom is a professional photographer.. it was pretty obvious that she is used to having her photo taken, which is always super helpful!

    They had a few special requests for photos but other than that we just wandered around and I gave them some tips and pointers as needed.

    I left Emmalie and Joe upstairs where we thought being announced from would be really awesome - looking over the balcony down at their guests. We enjoyed a delicious dinner together followed by wonderful speeches from the best man, maid of honor, and father of the bride.

    Like I said, I had a blast with this couple. Their personalities totally shine through in this little cake cutting series.

    After dinner and cake a small band played for about an hour as guests mingled and explored the Landmark Center. Members of the band used to be neighbors of Emmalie and Joseph.

    Emmalie and Joseph had informed me that they were not planning any additional lighting for the Landmark Center which meant when the sun went down it was going to get pretty darn dark. I went back and forth trying to decide how I was going to tackle that. There are many different options but it's always best to be prepared and have a game plan ahead of time. In the center of the main space the ceiling is four stories high so bouncing flash off the ceiling is obviously not an option. I hoped to be able to bounce off of some of the pillars in the room during portions of the reception, which worked really well, but I knew I would need something else when photographing the dancing in the center of the room.

    I settled on using two flashes, one with me and one set up as a "rim flash" near the DJ. Unfortunately when I first started using flashes I wasn't overly educated about them and, about a year apart, purchased two of the same model. The two speedlites that I have function only as slave flashes - in this setting I need a master and a slave. The master generally sits on the camera and triggers the slave. What I did was a little extra work but, with what I currently have available to me, it worked out well.

    I set up a speedlite (Canon 430exii) on a light stand right by the DJ. My camera, with a small, lightweight lens, was in my right hand. In my left hand I held my other speedlite. The 430exii flashes do not come with bounce cards so I stuck a business card on the front. On my camera's flash mount I had a trigger which would trigger both of the speedlites to fire at the same time. This was somewhat helpful because I had more flexibility with the flash in my hand - I could bounce of a pillar, hold it up high, to the side, etc. which is not an option when it's stuck on top of the camera. Having a small lens on the camera in my right hand was also keep since I had to shoot one handed. In this case it would have been awesome to have something like a Spider Hand Strap.

    The rim flash added a really neat element to the dancing shots and I will certainly be using that again and again - even in well lit dancing situations. See for yourself below and let me know what you think!

    Congratulations Emmalie and Joseph! Photographing your wedding was tons and tons of fun! Their entire wedding photo gallery can be viewed here.

  • Tue, 04 Aug 2015 04:32:00 +0000

    Fiber Huis Product Photography
    I really really REALLY have to play catch up with blogging, don't I?

    In an effort to get back into the habit again... Here... Is a post! Big thumbs up to me!

    A few weeks ago, Brittany, my friend Brooke's sister, sent me an email proposing a trade. I do a lot of trading and rarely ever turn one down, so I was happy to accept!

    Brittany operates a few different Etsy shops. What I have to show you today is from her hand knitting shop, Fiber Huis. She sells handmade looms, thoughtfully sourced yarn, instruction booklets, etc. Everything can be purchased in a kit or a la carte.

    The trade? A loom kit for me AND for Olive! Which works out more than perfectly because I was going to put a loom from Fiber Huis on Olive's wishlist. So her (blue) loom is put away and ready for gift giving. Perfect, right?!

    Brittany came into town last weekend and brought some kits along. I set up shop in our sunroom with Olive and June attempting to break the darn door down. Because oh my goodness June just can't survive without me. I'm just that good. :P

    Product photography is always a challenge but a lot of fun when I get it figured out and finally get to editing. I thought I would share a few of my favorites with you but be sure head over to Fiber Huis and take a peek at everything she has to offer. And, as always, feel free to check out the entire gallery, too!

  • Thu, 14 May 2015 04:36:00 +0000

    Olive + Some Slugs
    Our grass is long. Tyler still needs to service our lawn mower but hasn't really had the opportunity. But long, lush, green grass... it photographs so well. And feels so good. I prefer it.

    We only took a few photos the last time Olive wore her new Fresh Pressed Prints shirt so when she decided to wear it again I jumped on the chance to get some more photos. Every two months we get something from Fresh Pressed Prints in exchange for photos. It's tons of fun!

    I discovered Olive singing songs and trying to do cartwheels and flips and such by herself in the backyard. So I was sneaky with a few photos through our sunroom windows.

    She did a little dancing.

    And running.

    And stuff.

    And this.

    I can't help it. These are so fun.

    She's a pro at levitation.

    June was also there.

    June spends a lot of time cleaning the backyard. Olive assisted.

    And then.. the snails.

    It's a family. Obviously. This is the baby.

    Quite possibly the sweetest photo of a kid and slugs ever.

    "Hey June! Come see these slugs!"

    Slug kiss.


    If you want to see more photos, check out the gallery here!
  • Mon, 13 Apr 2015 01:28:00 +0000

    Olive + June at the Flower Garden
    There are a few places I want to make it a priority to visit frequently. They're close to home and really wonderful. These photos are from a recent trip to the Eloise Butler Wildflower Garden and Bird Sanctuary.

    From the photos it looks like we're miles outside of a city.. enjoying a rustic adventure all to ourselves. But this garden and forest is actually a small oases in the city and is less than a 10 minute drive down the parkway from our house. An easy bike ride, too.

    I often travel with my 28mm. It's short so it's easy to fit, doesn't take up space when I'm carrying it, isn't long enough to hit things, and therefore has a smaller chance to getting damaged than a longer lens or a zoom with moving parts.

    I love the 28mm for a lot of reasons. I recently started trying to take photos of myself with a kiddo or two using it because it's wide enough and has a short focusing distance. It's much harder than a phone but enjoyable nonetheless.

    Olive made us stop at the map and show Tyler what we were going to do and where we were going to do it. It seems that coming here for the Nature Tots program a few times has made Olive an expert.

    The visitor's center is so pretty.

    There is always a fire burning inside. It's just down the hill when you enter the park. I love walking in to the smell of burning wood.

    This time of the year, when the trees only have little buds, if anything, is nice because you can see so far and get a really good idea of the topography of the land.

    We found one green thing.

    Another great thing about no leaves on the trees is the way the sunlight reaches the forest floor and casts such long and interesting shadows.

    June very excitedly ran up to me with a stick and some mulch he had collected.


    Oh, the light.

    June found a puddle of water on a rock. Olive said it was for deer to drink. June said it was for bathing his mouse.

    Olive stopped at this sign and attempted to read it. "Staie-oon Ta-ra-ah-eye-el" Close....

    A climber and a photographer.

    Then we meandered into the wildflower garden. It's mostly tall dead grass right now. Which is kind of my favorite.

    I asked Tyler to take some photos with me in them. I'm glad I did.

    He took that one, too.

    This is Olive teaching me something about seeds. Or telling me her plan. I don't recall which. But this is her "I'm informing you of something" face.

    She found some seeds in a pod that didn't fall.


    Look! It's me!

    I think June was trying to feed the camera lens.

    If you're a professional or hobby photographer and always behind the lens with your family, I really encourage you to ask your partner to grab the camera and snap a few shots of you with your children. Even if only a few and not very often. It's so wonderful to have and to see yourself in this way. I would even encourage you to schedule a lifestyle session with a professional.. or even trade if you're a professional yourself!

    If you would like to see all of the photos from our little adventure click here.
  • Thu, 02 Apr 2015 04:40:00 +0000

    Quaking Bog Adventure
    This morning we took a short drive to the Quaking Bog. Tyler didn't have to work until 11 and the weather was great, so we squeezed a trip in right before he had to work. I wish we had more time to visit. But it's about 5 minutes from our house.. so we really should go every day.

    Olive and June both brought their DoodleBug mice. June really likes his. :)

    We were the only ones in the parking lot and found a meter with time left - perfect!

    I'm never sure how to transport June. On a short trip wearing him in the Ergo seems like too much of a hassle. And if he really doesn't want to be carried, after having the chance to walk, he'll put up a big fight. He needs to be just a wee bit older so I can rely on him walking and staying somewhat near to me better than he does right now. I also need to give him the chance more often! I think Tyler carries him more than I do, rather than deal with the "trouble" of chasing him or keeping him on task.

    Olive was so excited! We had planned to go the day before but we ran out of time.

    Olive and her mouse explored this old tree stump. Unfortunately she discovered that some previous park goers had used it as a trash can. She was a little amused.. as if they were genuinely confused and made a mistake.

    June was extra snuggly as he's having a few bottom issues at the moment. Poor guy. And more me.

    Have I told you that I love bogs?

    Olive is showing her mouse that the boardwalk we were on is actually floating on water. Unschooling her mouse.

    Do you see that? All of that sphagnum moss? Favorite thing ever. I think the mouse liked it, too. I think it's name is Mousey but I haven't confirmed. Olive found a green vest that fits him quite well.

    Tyler kept an eye out for Olive and I got a turn with June. Of course I put him down right away.

    He was trying to get to some open water off the path but it was kind of big, so I brought him back over to this spot we had already passed. He immediately started dunking his mouse in the cool bog water. It was perfect.

    Olive came over and was upset that he was getting it messy and worried that he might misplace it within the bog. She took it from him so he started dunking his foot instead.

    And then he couldn't resist the call of the sphagnum moss. I totally understand, little guy. It does that to me, too.

    Tyler and Olive were making their way along the path - our meter was running out and Tyler had to start heading to work.

    They were across the bog from us. I kept telling June just to follow the path to get to them. He would stop every so often to wave to them excitedly.


    Can we live in a bog?

    When we got to the end of the boardwalk entrance/exit, June stepped off the path and climbed back onto the board walk via the side, under the railing. He seemed really excited to do this.

    But it was slanted downhill quite a bit and he had a rough time standing up. I loved it.

    We hurried up and down hills, over mud and gravel. June did great. He fell down a few times but wasn't too phased.

    Pinecone stop.

    If you would like to see the rest of the photos from our trip to the bog, click here!
  • Tue, 31 Mar 2015 17:27:00 +0000

    Last week Olive and June received adorable handmade mice in the mail from DoodleBug. These mice are inspiration to be adventurous and get and explore. The goal is that there will be a community on Instagram to share and inspire adventure and exploration.

    The day after we received the mice was chilly and windy and we were without a car.. so we took our mice on a pancake adventure. I was eager to play with them right away and wanted to do something fun, but outside didn't sound like a fun option.

    Our kitchen is mid mini renovation. Don't mind the.. textured.. backsplash.

    The mice helped me prepare everything.

    Olive did all of the work while June looked on and supervised the mice.

    This is June's mouse.

    Olive requested that we make pear pancakes. Good idea!

    Hi, Olive's mouse.

    Olive stood on her kitchen stool while June stood on a chair. I think I might modify our kitchen stool into one of those DIY learning towers that I keep seeing all over. We didn't have a learning tower for Olive.. she did fine with the stool. But with two kiddos it would be nice to not have to worry about June falling (or climbing!) while I'm busy with something else.

    June was keeping the mice entertained but kept trying to hand Olive her mouse while she was busy working.

    With mice in hand we went to the other side of the kitchen.

    June made the microwave beep while Olive worked on pancake cooking.

    And mouse face smashing?


    I can't get enough to sharing stories via lifestyle photography.

    To see the entire gallery click here.

  • Mon, 30 Mar 2015 23:15:00 +0000

    Olive is Four
    Olive turned four in February. The weeks after her birthday were filled with sickness and activities.. so we were a few weeks late getting to her birthday portraits. When it was finally time we went to the Guthrie Theater. We got a late start so the theater was already buzzing with activity but we found a few quiet corners and did our best.

    After seeing the photos that I took of Ben and Ali at the Guthrie, Olive wanted to go to the same spot for hers. It had been a couple of years since she last visited.

    June was much more interested in running around than sitting still for anything that might pass as a photo of him and his sister.

    Olive will rarely, but occasionally, smile when asked. But it's a little... forced looking.

    For kids of all ages, I really prefer lifestyle type sessions where there is no pressure placed on anyone, especially the kiddos. But with the theater filling with patrons, we were in a bit of a hurry and I had to go the "look at me and smile" route a bit.

    It was a good try.

    June saw some ladies.

    Isn't June's back just lovely?

    I wanted to get a few photos of Olive wearing this dress that I won from an amazing handmade clothing company in Vermont, DoodleBug.

    At this point she wasn't overly enthusiastic about being photographed. So.... jumping!

    At some point she tripped and her mood went quite sour.

    Smile? Please?

    Just a little one?

    Just because I'm a photographer doesn't mean I'm able to take the best photos of my own kids. It's actually more challenging, generally.

    So we tried her last outfit.

    Can't say it really helped though..

    Olive was eager to get moving so we planned to head to a different room.. which was just what she needed.

    We took a little break out on the endless bridge. Again.. totally full of patrons.

    So we made our way to the amber lounge, which I assumed would also be packed.

    We started by checking out the construction of the new football stadium. The amber lounge offers impressive, albeit somewhat amber hued, views.


    We switched to the east side of the space and found one little corner void of people.

    I'm so glad we did. These are, by far, my favorite.

    If you would like to see the entire gallery of Olive's four year old portraits, click here.
  • Mon, 30 Mar 2015 11:57:00 +0000

    DoodleBug Bonnet
    DoodleBug is bringing back the bonnet. Especially for boys. Because, as they say, boys rock bonnets, too. And June... more than rocks a bonnet.

    June's drinking face.... ha!

    His bonnet is reversible.. the ears are removable.. overall it's pretty amazing. If you want to see more really cute photos of June in his bonnet, check out the gallery.
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