Senior Guy - Iowa City

Carson - West High Class of 2019

When I met with Carson and his mom to plan his senior portrait session I was immediately excited to put together an experience that completely matched his style. Each of his outfits were totally unique to one another and I had a blast partnering them with locations to finish the look. We started out with his most formal look at Hancher Auditorium.

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Next we found a more stadium-esque location for a more athletic vibe with his hoodie and shorts.

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After that we ventured to the downtown Iowa City area for a couple outfits. I like to take seniors downtown bc there are so many location options that add variety to the session. For a cool urban location I chose to match his black T and jeans with concrete and an underground parking garage entrance.

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After that we had to find some sunshine for Carson’s shades…so we ventured to a diff spot downtown with bricks and ivy.

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Fitness is a huge part of Carson’s life and something he is very passionate about. So we just HAD to get his weight lifting gear and head to a gym. We were able to get into the Liberty High School brand new weight room and it did not disappoint. I even found awesome window light!

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Thanks Carson, for an amazing session and having awesome style!



Urban to Country Senior Feature

Megan - Highland 2019

From start to finish Megan's session was a so fun!  We met at Zen Salon and Spa where Frankie did her hair and makeup then we ventured into the back allies of downtown Iowa City.  Her first outfit was this edgy red crop top with jeans and a leather jacket.  Perfect fit for murals, graffiti and metal stairs.  


Personally, one of my all time favorite things is camo.  Camo anything.  So I was super excited to see Megan's camo dress outfit with jean jacket.  I paired this look with another of my favorite things...a parking garage.  If you've been following me a while you know that I shoot in parking garages all the time.  I always find creative ways to photograph and interesting light patterns.  Plus Iowa City has so many great parking ramps to choose from!  


For the next two outfits we went to the art building area of the U of I campus where we found two completely different looks right next door to each other!


And now for something completely different.  Megan wanted a well rounded session from urban to country so we hoped on the road to her next two looks.  First stop...Highland HS softball field. By this time the sun was starting to set and the light was just dreamy!


For the grand finale we grabbed a hat and moved into the classic Iowa prairie grass during golden hour.  What better way to end a session?  




Iowa City Senior Feature

LAUREN - twenty nineteen

Lauren's Luxe Senior Session was amazing to say the least.  After hair and makeup at Zen Salon and Spa we headed out into the downtown Iowa City district for her first and most formal outfit.  Her classic black and white striped romper goes perfectly with the clean and modern design of the U of I Voxman Music Building.  A few of her friends even jumped in for  shot!


Her next outfit lent itself well for bricks and ivy.  I love how her jacket pops against the greenery!  We even got a few shots of Lauren with her family in this outfit!


Next it's time for something a bit more casual.  Lauren wanted to showcase her love for Iowa with a fun tee and we picked a funky mural to set it off.  On our way to change we can across some steps with the perfect yellow stripes and just had to stop and use them!


After having some fun in the Iowa tee we ventured over to the Northside of downtown Iowa City where we found a backdrop to compliment Lauren and her sisters maroon outfits.  Aren't they the cutest sisters ever?  I couldn't resist getting a couple images of Lauren's sister Anna by herself as well.


If you've been following me on social media you know that I like urban settings for seniors, however this more natural location might be my favorite of Lauren's session.  The light was AMAZING at the Fossil Gorge and we found a field of clover as well as those striking birch trees.


As if this session wasn't epic enough we ended up at the Coralville Lake Beach for a grand finale.  The sun was starting to set giving us the sweetest light yet.  Lauren was even up for getting in the water!  Her bestie was right there with a towel as soon as we were done.  We even managed to escape stepping in goose poo!




Senior Fashion - Summer Edit

Show Those Shoulders!

Planning your outfits for a summer senior pictures?  One of the hottest trends right now is off-the-shoulder tops, dresses and rompers!  Whether you're at the beach or in town there is a cold shoulder look to fit your style.  These Iowa City and Washington, Iowa senior girls aren't afraid to show off their summer tans with bare shoulders.




Product Feature

Books and Albums

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Each senior I photograph is unique and so are their sessions.  Between multiple outfits and personalized locations they usually get to see from 40-60 finished images.  Needless to say, it's not easy for them to pick just a few favorites!  That is exactly why books and albums are a great choice to include in the order.  The Signature Album pictured above includes all the portraits from their session in a custom design that perfectly showcases the images.  There are so many cover options that there are countless ways to add their personal style from linen and leather to acrylic and metal.  

Another, more affordable option is a Book, the Signature Album's little sister, pictured below.  It includes up to 25 images from the session with multiple solid cover options.  It makes a great companion to it's larger counterpart, ask about a duplicate design discount!

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What to Wear for Senior Pictures

"What do I wear?!"

The most commonly asked question by seniors (and parents) after booking their senior portrait session is "What should I wear?".  Well that is an easy answer, wear your all time favorite cloths!  Picking outfits for your session is one of the best parts of your senior portrait experience, and with a little help, is easy too.  Don't stress!  Not only will you get a What to Wear Guide in your welcome packet to give you ideas and places to shop, but I can even help you put together the perfect looks during your in-home styling consult.  

The key to picking outfits for a well rounded session is variety.  Choose looks ranging from formal to super casual including different types of tops and bottoms.  Don't forget to accessorize.  Hats, jackets and scarves can switch up the whole look without having to change cloths, like two outfits in one! 

Emma's session is a good example of outfit variety.  She chose to start out with a classic little black dress paired with the cutest pale blue heels to put her own twist on the look.  


Emma's next outfit was perfect for a more funky location.  Trendy and fun, this crop top and mini skirt went perfectly with the ally way graffiti for a more urban yet casual look.


Everyone has a favorite pair of jeans, right?  Emma wore hers with a chunky sweater for that laid-back look.


And finally we ventured just outside of town and into some prairie to show off her love for Iowa.  Most casual outfit yet; Iowa tee, oversized cardi and shorts. 







Whoa, it's been a minute since I've blogged and way over due.  I am so excited to share this session with you.  Jade and I met a few years ago when she came along to her sister's senior portraits and has been excited for her senior portraits ever since!  We started out at the Cedar Rapids Public Library with an urban look.  I love the glassy cool tones of the background that perfectly set off her skin tone.  



After this spot we ventured a couple blocks away to an old building with the most amazing blue garage type door.  I could not get enough of this location!  Her outfit looks KILLER against the blue and perfectly matches the color of her eyes.  


From there we wanted to go for a more natural look with greenery so we headed out to Palisades Kepler State park.  Her floral dress went with the grass and trees perfectly and that last outfit in the die for!


Thank you Jade for an amazing time during your session.  It was a blast and the images turned out amazing.  Good luck with the rest of senior year!



For Photogs - Essentials for a "Photo-ready" Makeup Kit

Why offer makeup enhancement?

We all want to stand out in the photography field right?  That means finding something different to offer than the next guy down the street.  You might choose a different album company or have a totally unique post processing style, but it's not always easy to stand out in the crowd.  One way I differentiate myself among competition is offering a few different session types for senior clients to choose from.  I have a basic session that is fewer outfits and no makeup, usually guys choose this one.  I also have an "all-inclusive" session that has tons of outfits and includes pro hair and makeup for those that want a full on luxury experience.  But my favorite session, and the most popular by far, is a session that lands right in the middle.  Just the right amount of outfits and Photo-Ready Makeup Enhancement.

What is Photo-Ready Makeup Enhancement?

Just that...enhancement.  The senior comes to the session with foundation and concealer already applied and I do the rest.  There are tons of makeup trends right now that don't photograph very well, like shimmery highlighters and very nude lips.  These thing look great in person but for a photograph aren't the best choice.  You don't want your client looking like a shiny face with no lips right?  Don't worry,  it doesn't take much to give them a "no makeup makeup" look and it's easy and fun too!

Want to start your own makeup kit?  Here are some essentials...


PROFESSIONAL BRUSHES.  You wont believe how much easier makeup application is with a good set of brushes.  Morphe and Royal & Langnickel both offer full sets at reasonable prices.

BLUSH.  Elf Cosmetics has these two blush pallets that include a color for any skin tone and are very easy on the wallet!


DISPOSABLE APPLICATORS are a must!  Essential items are:  mascara wands, lip wands, sponges, makeup remover wipes and Q-tips.  You can get these and a variety of disposable applicators at Sally Beauty Supply


MULTI-PURPOSE PALLET with matt contour shades.  I found this pallet by Smashbox at Sephora (online) and it includes a few things you don't want to be without;  two of which are contour/highlight shades with NO shimmer and brow wax.  It also includes a few nice eyeshadow shades and two brow filler tones.


LIP COLORS.  Lips are the last thing to put the finishing touch on a makeup look.  Have a wide variety of colors available.  Some of my favorites are from ColourPop or you could get a pallet that includes colors you can use alone or mix for a perfect shade like this one by Anastasia Beverly Hills.  

Other things in my kit that I LOVE and highly recommend...

Morphe Eye Shadow Pallets

Covergirl Lashblast Mascara (bc it comes with a cap that's not an applicator)

Setting Spray - Urban Decay All Nighter or Elf

Victoria Secret Vanilla Lotion (bugs don't like it)

BandAids and Headache medicine

Hand Sanitizer

bathmat - for customer to sit on the back of my SUV

rags - for wiping brushes or just random cleaning of things

big floppy hat to protect hair and makeup from drizzle/wind while on or en route to location


*Please note that I am not a licensed Esthetician and have all my customers sign a waver that they are aware of that.  It is not illegal to apply makeup without a license in Iowa.  I do not have this service listed for sale on my pricing nor do I advertise that I am a makeup artist.  Thank You for stopping by, I hope this info was helpful!






Iowa City Senior Guy

Nathaniel - class of 2017


I would have to say that this photo shoot with Nathaniel was one of the most interesting this year.  He is super smart and surrounds himself with super smart friends.  I had so much fun learning about the dynamics of the group and aspirations of both Nathaniel and his good friend Valerie who came along to assist.  I truly believe they will do great things for our planet and the people who inhabit it.


We ventured around the downtown Iowa City area looking for spots to compliment Nathaniel's personality and style.  Valerie was kind enough to do some snapping for me.  Make sure to add me on snap chat (je.photog) to catch BTS of other photo shoots and shenanigans


Nathaniel, thank you so much for spending an afternoon with me.  I had fun talking with you and Valerie.  So much luck to you wherever you decide to continue your education!



Senior Gal - Iowa City

Mikayla - Class of 2017

Mikayla's style is a little bit more simple and I love that about her.  We had so much fun looking for places in Iowa City to feature the fall leaf colors and talk about her love for books.  We hit the colorful foliage jackpot and I couldn't be happier with how her session turned out.  

Thanks for hanging out with me Mikayla!  Good luck with your freshman year at the U of Iowa!



Iowa City Autumn Gal

Claire - class of 2017

Claire and I (and her mom) had such a fun day enjoying the warm fall weather.  I have been so lucky with weather this fall.  It is by far the busiest time of year for all photographers and if the weather sucks, it's not fun!  Claire picked out great outfits to compliment this season.  After doing her makeup we started out on a pedestrian bridge with a fun jacket.  Then headed into a nearby ally with some unexpected shooting spots.  So much fun exploring!

As you can tell I loved this brown leather jacket paired with the pinky/mauve dress.  I intended to take Claire to a spot with stones and trees, but the brick fit with her look so great I just had to stop and  pose her in the beautiful light.  We then ventured down the street a bit to find more of those beautiful fall leaf colors.  We used great foliage with both of her remaining style choices.

Thank you Claire for letting me create a great photo-ready make up look to go with all your style choices.  I had a blast!  Good luck with the rest of senior year and your freshman year at ISU!



Iowa City Guy

Jarren - CHS class of 2017

thank you Jarren for a great time at your session the other day.  I can't wait to find out what crazy cool stuff you will do in the science field.  Good luck with the rest of senior year!  



City High Senior

Kenya - class of 2017

I am so thankful that Kenya's mom showed me a brand new location right in the middle of Iowa City.  It has the coolest rocks and went perfect with her green jacket!  I just love the accessories this time of year.  Kenya had great jackets and scarves.  The weather was beautiful!

Kenya told me during her photo shoot that she aspires to be a pharmacist.  I can't wait to find out what kind of adventures she will go through reaching those dreams.  For the last outfit we found an old basketball hoop to focus on her love of basketball instilled in her by her dad. 

thank you Kenya for a fun photo shoot!  I'm so glad to have enjoyed a beautiful day outside with you and your mom.  Good Luck with your senior basketball season!




Elaina - WHS class of 2017

Elaina loves nature and being outside and it was important to have that represented in her senior photo shoot.  We started out at a rustic bridge surrounded by the changing leaves.  Perfect for her casual and laid back style!

The second spot brings out the yellow in her dress.  I love the stone and yellow leaves we found at this spot.  You would never guess we were right next to a busy highway!

The Ivy in the third spot couldn't have been more perfect.  I love how Elaina's skin pops against the colors...and those eyes!

thank you elaina for a great time finding spots with nature!  P.S. really jealous of your "drug rug" ;)



Senior Pictures - Downtown Iowa City

Abbi - West HS class of 2017

After starting out with some family shots of Abbi and her mom and brother we stayed in the rustic ally to get some of her in black dress.  The wind was a little out of control but blowing hair is never a bad thing!  We stayed in the downtown Iowa City area for 3 of her looks.

Abbi's looks were all so different and it's hard to pick a fav, but the third outfit might be just that.  I love how it paris with the sidewalk and greenery.  Even the twinkle lights in the background add just the right touch.

Thank you Abbi for a fun photo shoot with so many great outfits!  Good luck with your senior year and I can't wait to show you more from your session!



Dreary Day Senior

Taleah - IC West - class of 2017

I am so glad Taleah decided to go ahead with her senior photos despite the somewhat nasty weather we were having that day.  We had so much fun trying to ditch the drizzle, even heading near the Iowa City farmer's market for one of her outfits.  We blocked traffic for a bit and randomly found a splash of red leaves on the way.  My favorite location was with her third outfit...

This romper really pops in front of the stained concrete under this railroad bridge.  We had to work around the heavy-ish traffic and enjoyed waving at all the gawking passersby.

thank you taleah for a crazy fun photo shoot!  Good luck with your senior year and I hope you rock your last softball season.


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Fall Senior Photo Shoot

Ali - class of 2017

Ali's photo shoot was so much fun, especially after getting to know her and some of her volleyball teammates at their poster shoot.  We started out at a local park in Iowa City with cool old bridge and some great fall foliage.  Little did I know her bestie would show up with a neat woven blanket.  You'll have to stay tuned on Snap Chat to catch a glimpse when her gallery goes live.

add me on snapchat today!

After dodging some garbage and making friends with a chipmunk Ali added a bit to her makeup look and we ventured into an ally to find an interesting rooftop.  I was a little slippery but I managed to stay on my feet and get some really fun images!  After that I wanted to find a casual lighter toned area to compliment her fuzzy cream sweater.  Ali's session was full of laughs and a truly great time.  

Thanks for a really fun photo shoot Ali!  Good luck with the rest of your volleyball season, I can't wait for you to see the full proof gallery!

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Iowa City West HS Senior Gal

Jess - Class of 2017

So over the moon about the images of Jess from her senior photo shoot.  She has such a fun and unique style with a totally laid-back personality to match.  While putting the finishing touches on her makeup we talked about the different things she's into and I became even more excited about the session we had planned.  Her first look was more formal with a black one-piece and gold heels.  It was perfect for the clean and modern design of the brand new U of Iowa School of Music building.

Could you tell we actually stayed within a block of the music building for 3 of her looks?  Yep!  If you don't already know, I love parking ramps.  We used my favorite one for her red leather jacket and right across the street was the perfect wall of Ivy.  I had a hard time choosing just a few of my faves from Jess's session so I'm keeping her track/running pics as a surprise.  Stay tuned on SnapChat (je.photog) for when her proof gallery goes live to get a peek at some of those!

Thank you Jess for letting me capture your unique style.  I can't wait to show you the rest!



Williamsburg HS Senior Guy

Isaiahn - class of 2017

Last weekend's weather was perfect for Isaiahn's senior photo shoot.  We started out at an old basketball court in his hometown to capture his love for the sport.  Who knew there would also be great fall leaves and access to a river!

After grabbing some sweet shots by that river I mentioned, we explored the area and found a couple old buildings to use for his casual looks.  Isaiahn's school just got a brand new gym so we couldn't pass up the chance to get some edgier basketball images there.

Thanks, Isaiahn, for sharing your love for basketball with me and good luck with your last high school season.  I can't wait to get some track pics in the spring!



Product Feature - PhotoBook

the PhotoBook

I can almost guarantee that there will be more photos that you love from your senior session than you can get on your wall.  Wall art is great, but nothing compares to having all your favorite images in a custom designed PhotoBook.  Preserve your images on the silky deep matt paper.  Choose from many cover options from distressed leather to classic linen to metal.  We work together to create a book that perfectly showcases your images and personality.  A book that you will want to show your friends and family (at a grad party per say?).  A book your friends will drool over...hopefully not on! ;)