I met with Ariel for a Fall Senior Session at Shawnee Mission Park right outside of Kansas City! We were able to sneak in four outfits for this session! I honestly love when my seniors want to incorporate their own style in a variety of ways during the time we spend together shooting!
At Shawnee Mission Park we started underneath the trees where the perfect amount of leaves had fallen and given Ariel the best area to work in! Her first outfit was dressy but comfortable! I love that it found that perfect sweet spot between trendy and timeless. That white and denim combo is a fav.
But we couldn’t leave this Fall Senior session without adding in a bit of spice to her outfits! Check out that INSANE red dress she brought!! She brought the fire to add the perfect amount of flare to this session! I love all my seniors that come to me for their sessions! It’s such an exciting time in their lives, and it’s fun to document that. We laugh, joke around and just have the best time! It makes me so grateful to be a Kansas Senior Photographer!!
Thank you Ariel for the best evening!!
This October couples session was sooo much fun with McKenzie + Ian! The first location was a cozy, cuddly in-home photoshoot at their house. The second location was at Tiffany Castle, which was perfect for their classic, spooky October photoshoot!
My packages include multiple locations as long as time allows. I love finding versatile spots to help my couples feel comfortable in front of my camera! Whatever location you have in mind, I’m totally down to try anything that helps us capture your unique love story!
You don’t need to wait til the weather is warm to have your couples shoot! In-home shoots are gaining popularity and for good reason. Exhibit A: these pics of McKenzie + Ian!!!
I looooove doing in-home photoshoots because it’s capturing such a real part of their lives! This is the home Mckenzie + Ian live in together and the couch they cuddle on every day. Plus doing an in-home shoot means that your photos definitely won’t look like anyone else’s. This captures them in an authentic way, especially with how goofy these two are together!
The BEST part of doing in-home photoshoots is 110% hanging out with furry friends. They’re a part of the family, so why shouldn’t they be included? Photos with your pets will forever be a beautiful way to remember them. As a cat mom myself (shoutout to Mozzie!) I loved having these two cuties jump in a few pics. And their adorable dog, Rosie, was such a sweetheart.
Good lighting is KEY to having a beautiful photoshoot. Of course I’m trained and experienced in all kinds of lighting, but glowy, gorgeous lighting is absolutely the way to this photographer’s heart.
We can find good lighting in your house by shooting near windows, like these amazinggggg windows in McKenzie + Ian’s sunroom.
Another tip is to consider the time of day and the direction your windows face. If your windows face west, then right before sunset will help us get the dreamiest pics of you two.
A lot of people get nervous in front of the camera, and that’s okay! If you want to loosen up, let’s kick off our shoot by making a drink. For example, if the two of you love mojitos, I can start photographing you two making drinks together. This movement not only creates ADORABLE candids, but doing something helps you relax a little.
To keep your mind off of the shoot, or to get unique photos, you guys can keep doing things while I take photos. Make cookies together or cook a special family recipe. Don’t try to be perfect – show up as yourself and that will be more than enough!
Try dancing in the kitchen, cuddling on the couch, kissing and hugging your partner. I’ll certainly help direct you, these are just some tips to get super authentic photos!
Some people love dressing up for their photoshoots while some people dread it! My number one tip will always be to find something you’re comfortable + confident in.
If you’re unsure what to wear for an in-home photoshoot, I suggest something a little more casual. I’m assuming that you guys don’t wear formal outfits to hang out at your house together, right??
I love how McKenzie + Ian had colorful, patterned socks on for their in-home shoot. And then because it was quick and easy, McKenzie threw on a cardigan for a little versatility!
When we do an in-home photoshoot, you can totally wear your slippers. Like I said, just wear whatever makes you comfortable!!
They switched into their more formal, spooky outfits for our pictures over at Tiffany Castle. Just like how their jeans matched the in-home vibe, these all-black fits were gorgeous for a spooky shoot!
It’s not a classic October photoshoot without some pumpkins on the porch, right?? I love how these turned out. It’s a great reminder of the details of their engagement season.
The second location was Tiffany Castle, a beautiful Kansas City castle built in 1909! Someone actually lives here but McKenzie and Ian got permission to use their house as a backdrop.
The spooky vibes were amazing with their dark clothes. And the red shoes McKenzie chose were adorable!
I love how we got to celebrate McKenzie + Ian’s engagement with a photoshoot that showed off so much of their personalities and their lives together. The October theme and in-home setting really tells their love story in such a unique way!!
Photoshoots always make for the perfect date night but here are some other really great fall date ideas.
For more fall photo session inspiration check out Sofi + Robert at Shawnee Mission Park and Chelsea + Thao at James A Reed.
Everyone deserves to have their picture taken by a professional, even your parents. A photo session would make an amazing gift for any occasion; birthday, mother’s day/father’s day, Christmas, or an anniversary. Here are the top 3 reasons you should book a photoshoot for your parents.
It’s probably been years since your parents have had professional photos taken of just themselves. Whether it was family photos 10 years ago or their wedding day 25 years ago. Time flies and life gets busy, but everyone needs updated photos of themselves throughout all stages of life.
You’ve given your parents a ton of gifts over the years, it gets hard to think of something unique, creative, and something you haven’t given them before. A photoshoot is a great option because it’s not only a gift for them, but the pictures can then be given to other family members or even passed down through future generations.
If your parents have celebrated a lot of anniversaries they’ve been going on dates for YEARS. Sometimes it’s hard to break out of a dating rut and bring new creative ideas to the dating side of their relationship. A photo session can be an amazing date idea. They get out of the house, get to go to a beautiful location or spot that is meaningful to them, and take photos together. During a photoshoot they’ll be able to have fun together and show their love for one another in a new way.
Those are the 3 main reasons I encourage you to book a photoshoot for your parents. It makes for a great gift, is a lasting keepsake, and is a different date night than they’re used to. Instead of giving them an object they don’t actually need or already have a million of; give them a gift that is truly priceless. Photos of themselves in a new stage of life that show the true growth of their relationship. Having photos of their love will be timeless. A true memory everyone will cherish forever.
When Amanda booked this session for her parents she also included her grandpa. Amanda’s mom, Connie, was overjoyed when she realized she would get updated photos of her and her dad.
There will come a day when these photos mean more than the world to this family, your family deserves to have these memorable moments preserved too.
If you’d like to book a session with me please fill out my contact form here.
If you want your wedding to really stand out from the crowd you must think of a theme that’s a little more non traditional. EvanLee and Brad have always been huge fans of Halloween so when October 31st was going to be on a Saturday they had to take the opportunity to have a Halloween wedding in Lawrence Kansas.
EvanLee and Brad went ALL OUT for their wedding. They dreamt up amazing ideas and DIY-ed for months to make their vision a reality. Brad hand built a beautiful ceremony half moon arch out of wood, twigs, and branches. EvanLee had seen an inspiration photo of a hanging upside down cake in a coffin cake stand so they built that too!
For a wedding this nontraditional and alternative they needed a venue that would fit the theme. A black barn in the middle of Lawrence Kansas with a giant silo. Absolutely beautiful in the golden hour sunset, and completely fitting for a Halloween wedding.
Their wedding was all about having fun with their family and friends, since they wanted more of an alternative wedding they wanted to have a unique wedding reception. Since it was a Halloween wedding they figured the night wouldn’t be complete without a costume contest for all of the guests.
There were different categories guests could compete in; best kid costume, best couple costume, best group costume, most unique costume, and much more. Brad’s grandmother won for best solo costume!!
At the end of the night the sky was clear expect for the bright full moon. I photographed EvanLee and Brad in the moonlight for a couple spooky husband and wife portraits. It was the perfect ending to their amazing Halloween wedding in Lawrence Kansas.
Check out Evanlee and Brad’s smoke bomb engagement session here on the blog.
Living in the middle of the midwest we are lucky to have a wide variety of location options when it comes time for photos. Whether you want a natural area or more of an urban feel to your photos there is always a place that will fit what you’re looking for. Chelsea and Thao wanted a more natural location for their fall photos because they wanted to capture the autumn colors. We decided to do their fall couples photos at James A Reed Memorial Wildlife Area.
James A Reed Memorial Wildlife Area is in Jackson County, near Lee’s Summit Missouri. As a Kansas City photographer it was a great location to add to my list. Chelsea and Thao had been to the area many times, they love to take their golden retriever, Thor, there to run and play. The area is also great for fishing which is one of their favorite past times.
This made choosing to do their couples photos at James A Reed Memorial Wildlife Area even easier because it’s a place that’s more sentimental to them, rather than just another park or a place they’ve never been before.
I always suggest my couples choose a location that means something to them over somewhere that’s just “pretty”, backgrounds are important but the way the location makes you feel makes all the difference.
The area is HUGE we had so many different spots to choose from, I’m surprised we didn’t get lost! We found really beautiful places in wide open fields, near the water, and spots to really capture the beauty of fall.
We had a great time exploring the park and finding all these great spots. We were all smiling the entire session, especially watching their dog get so excited to be outside.
Check out my blog for other photographer recommended Kansas City locations for your next photoshoot, especially this session at Shawnee Mission Park
As the air begins to cool, the trees transform from green to orange, red, and yellow. The leaves start to fall towards the earth and all is calm. Autumn has arrived in the midwest. The best way to capture this new season is by taking fall couple photos at Loose Park in Kansas City.
Loose Park is one of my favorite locations for couples and engagement pictures because there is such a wide variety of breathtaking spots for backgrounds. In the spring the roses are blooming and in the fall the trees are bursting with color.
Nena and Tony hadn’t had professional photos of themselves taken since their wedding day. This year they wanted to get some fall couple photos taken at Loose Park. They both wore comfy sweaters and paired them nicely with jeans. I always encourage couples to wear outfits they feel comfortable in, that way we aren’t limiting ourselves to certain poses or prompts. The more comfortable you are in what you’re wearing the more confidence and happiness you will radiate through your photos.
We started our session in the Rose Garden and to my surprise there were still some roses blooming which is rare for late October, the best time for the roses is late May through September.
We then headed down towards the pond stopping by beautiful trees on our way. It was a pretty chilly autumn day so I was sure to give them lots of cuddled up poses and prompts with lots of movement to help get them warmed up.
The photos turned out gorgeous with such great pops of color. If you’re interested in booking a session with me at Loose Park fill out my contact down below, also please know that Loose Park requires all professional photographers purchase a photo permit a few days before their session ($25/hour fee).
Check out Bridgette and John’s summer engagement session for an example of Loose Park in the warmer months.
The plan originally started with a big wedding in downtown Kansas City on the most popular wedding date of the year; October 10, 2020 (10/10/2020). As the coronavirus quickly made its way around the world Dakota and Jake decided to change plans; they went from a large wedding to an intimate elopement in their neighborhood.
The uncertainty of the pandemic definitely made for an interesting challenge when it came to trying to make wedding plans. On top of that Dakota and Jake found out they were pregnant with a beautiful baby girl due close to the end of the year.
They thought about keep all of their original plans of a big wedding the same but moving the date up earlier in the summer, but because COVID effected rates were starting to skyrocket they thought it would best to keep their original date but downsize their wedding as much as they could.
Dakota, Jake, and their boys moved into a new house in the most beautiful neighborhood surrounding a gorgeous lake. They knew outside by the water would be the perfect spot for their intimate fall elopement.
They downsized their wedding by cutting their guest list, only hiring the necessary vendors (me their wedding photographer, a videographer, and catering from Jack Stack BBQ). Everything else they did completely on their own. Their families helped with decor, ceremony seating, a beautiful cross as their backdrop, Dakota even made her own bouquet with flowers from Trader Joes.
They invited only their dearest friends and family to witness their sunset ceremony right by the water. Dakota and Jake promised to love each other, their boys, and their, soon to arrive, baby girl for all the years to come as the sun cast a golden light across the lake.
There wasn’t a dry eye in the crowd as they read their vows to each other. The joy was contagious as they shared stories of their favorite memories and joked with one another.
Their day was everything they hoped for; full of love, great weather, and an abundance of happiness. Dakota and Jack loved their decision of switching from a large wedding to an intimate elopement. It gave them the chance to focus on what was most important to them, their family.
Check out Dakota + Jake’s engagement photos with the Kansas City Skyline here.
Other tips on how to downsize you wedding here.
Every year the holidays sneak up on us and before you know it, it’s time to send out holiday cards AGAIN. In this post I’ll share with you the best time to take your holiday card photos and how to make the process stress free.
The best time to take your yearly photos is in the fall between October and December. Depending on your photographer’s turn around time for photos you will have to schedule accordingly.
I’m a local Kansas City photographer and my turn around for a full session gallery is within a week after our session. I do my best to edit quickly and efficiently to ensure you have your photos back in time to turn them into a beautiful holiday card to mail out to all of your friends and family or to post online for a virtual seasons greetings.
If you chose me as your photographer the process can be made even simpler by ordering your holiday cards directly from your online gallery. Once your photos are delivered to you all you have to do is select your favorite image, choose a greeting card template, and place your order. Before you know it your holiday cards will be at your doorstep! Save time by not having to download your photo and re-upload it to a 3rd party site.
Another great way to make the process stress free is to choose a location that is simple but will give you a lot of variety. A local park like Antioch Park (pics featured in this post), Shawnee Mission Park, or Gezer Park are all amazing options. You’ll have a variety of different backgrounds all within one spot!
Check out this blog post for the best photo worthy locations in Kansas City.
To book your holiday photos fill out my contact form down below!
Planning a wedding throughout this past year has been so difficult for many couples. With the future of the pandemic still unknown it’s likely that most couples are having to choose between having a smaller wedding, postponing, or cancelling their wedding all together. I’ll share with you my best tips on how to downsize your wedding and still have an amazing celebration.
As a wedding photographer in Kansas City I had many couples in 2020 struggle with decisions on what to do with their wedding in the middle of a pandemic. Brides would turn to me for advice and we would brainstorm together the best way for them to still have the wedding day they always dreamed of, but still keeping all of their loved ones safe.
My biggest tip for downsizing your wedding is to cut your guest list. I know it can be hard to try to narrow it down but once you start it only gets easier. The simplest way to do it is to choose a deciding point – for example only inviting family, or cut it even more by only inviting immediate family. It stinks having to not invite some friends or people from work but they will all understand. Set up a zoom or facebook live so they can all tune in from the safety of their own home. You can always host a giant party later and invite EVERYONE!
Once you have a smaller guest list you can switch to a smaller venue. You can even host your wedding at a park or somewhere outside. Another great option for downsized weddings is renting an air b&b. These venue options help you save all the money you’d spend on a big wedding venue.
Intimate weddings are always just as special as big weddings. Smaller, micro weddings, give you the chance to actually spend time with all of your guests. It’s a more relaxed day focused only on you and your partner. You’ll be surrounded by the most important people in your lives and there wont be a million moving parts to keep track of.
If you’re faced with the hard decision of needing to have a smaller wedding, postponing your wedding, or cancelling I hope you choose to move forward with your wedding but just make it a little more intimate.
I hope these tips helped you decide on how to downsize your wedding, for more information on having a simple wedding check out my blog posts “How to have a simple wedding in Kansas City”, “Kansas City Courthouse Weddings”, and find more gorgeous photos at Loren and Dimitri’s elopement in “How to elope in Kansas City”
This blog features Randi + Ryan’s intimate wedding with their families.
Venue: The Vintage House
Florist: Chris Miller : The Flower Lady
Dress: Savvy Bridal
Suit: The Black Tux
Cake: Morgana’s Gluten Free Bakery
How they felt on their wedding day:
“So many emotions! So excited and happy, but also relieved that the people that we love were able to safely make it to our wedding.”