Location: Kalona, Iowa, United States

Husband and Wife wedding and lifestyle photographers based in Iowa.

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    27 November 2008

    Happy Thanksgiving Weekend!

    I hope you all are enjoying your Thanksgiving weekend, whether it's filled with family, football, friends, and/or food.  Remember to take a few minutes and thank God for the blessings you have in your life.  If you can't think of anything right offhand, start with thanking Him for life... health... sound mind... you get the idea. :)  Among many other things, Jodi and I are so grateful for all of you who read this blog and support our lives, either as our friends/family and peers, or as clients and blog-stalkers who push us to keep on being creative and feed us encouragement.  Keep it coming!! :)


    During an ice storm in San Antonio, TX, 2 years ago, Jodi and I shared a cab ride to the airport with the Eifferts, a photographer couple that we had always looked up to in the early stages of our business (and still do).  They were from Omaha, and we only saw them when Heidi was scooping up awards at our local association meetings. :)  Fast forward 2 years, and now Troy and Heidi live a few miles down the road from us, joining the list of great local photographers we are blessed to call our friends!  So, we wanted to give them a shot at making us look good, and capturing the energy of our kids and the spirit of our family.  They did a great job!  Click here to go to Troy and Heidi's blog and see a few more images from our session....

    I have had this feather pillow ever since I was like ten.  The time had come to part ways with it, because the feathers had turned into dust.  So, as Troy and Heidi walked into our house that day, it hit me... hey, lets destroy the pillow for the pictures! It was pretty nasty, actually, but the kids had fun, and 7 of 10 doctors say it's healthy for families to sneeze together. :) There were feathers everywhere... In fact, just this past Sunday (I swear this is true), 4 wks+ after the shoot, I found two feathers (from the pillow) on the sweater I was wearing to church. :)   


    26 November 2008

    Rylee :: Children

    It's "Take 2" for Rylee, as she was back in the studio for her 9 month pictures last week!  She's a little sweetheart, and has those great big brown eyes we always love!


    24 November 2008

    The Bontrager's :: Family

    Larry and Virginia have been friends of ours for a long time.... in fact, Jodi grew up going to church and school with Virginia.  I spent some time talking to their oldest son (pictured below) the other night, and he is VERY proud of his baby brother! He also got pretty excited when I showed him our new little baby. :) It's awesome to see their family expanding, and being able to capture these special moments in their lives.  

    *Because, folks... your family will never look the same way it does today, so go get those family pictures taken today!*

    Anyway, on to the images....

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    19 November 2008

    Hallie • Cobi • Miley :: Kids

    These. Kids. Are. Beautiful.   There's not much else to say, other than little miss Hallie ought to be a kid model.  She is very well behaved, and is always a pleasure to photograph.  She and her brother, Cobi, recently welcomed another addition to the family!  Congratulations guys!


    18 November 2008

    Happy Birthday!

    Hey everyone... sorry I missed my post yesterday. I was at a youth church camp this past weekend, and didn't get around to getting a post online. :) Saturday was Jodi's birthday and we are celebrating it today since I was away over the weekend. 

    Here's a preview of what's coming on the blog this week....

    13 November 2008

    Taryn + Kyle :: Forever

    Taryn wins the "Bravest Bride of the Year (so far)" award in our book.  I would guess it was about 33˚ outside, snowing and crazy windy.  She didn't bat an eye, but said "Ooooh it's snowing, yay!!!"  So we headed over to Cornell College where we found a beautiful yellow tree, and a sweet spiral staircase to shoot with.  Thanks for the great attitudes, guys!

    We can't feel our fingers, but the bride is still smiling!!

    When we got back to the church we found a sweet pink wall in the guys' dressing room. 

    After the wedding, we wanted to go downtown Mt Vernon, and get some photos with the Christmas lights.  Well, someone didn't get the memo, and they weren't lit.  So, time for plan B.  We drove past this nifty little coffee shop where the owners were closing up, and sweeping the floors.  The limo stopped and we ran back to the store to see if we could come in.  They graciously obliged, and we're so grateful to Fran & Cherie from the Skillet Cafe and Bakery for letting us come in and keep them from cleaning up! And as a bonus, they had the Iowa football game on TV!  This picture was taken about 2 minutes before the Hawks kicked a last second field goal to beat #3 Penn State!! 

    Groom's cake

    Taryn + Kyle... thanks for letting us be a part of your wedding!  God bless your lives together!

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    11 November 2008

    "Flight deck, this is Piper Cub niner-one-niner... over"

    I obviously do not have a solid grasp on "pilot-talk", but I do have one request for all of my future commercial flights.... I want to sit in the cockpit.  (like that'll ever happen, but it doesn't hurt to dream, kids.) It's the coolest, being able to see out the front window. 

    I remember the first time I rode in this same little Piper Cub to take aerial photographs.  I distinctly recall thinking "there's room for TWO people in there?!" Then I wondered if the same people who determine the man-capacity of tents in the camping department of Cabella's must be the same people who build small airplanes.  For example, a "Four-man tent" really means a "Two-small-boys-and-a-napsack tent", and a "2-seater airplane" really means "your-legs-aren't-that-important-anyway-so-you'll-need-to-remove-them-to-get-into-this airplane." 

    Now, the reason that I was in the airplane in the first place.... This is the second time we've been commissioned by Gingerich Well & Pump Service to photograph a drilling site, and both times Jodi emphatically stated that she would NOT be the one riding in the airplane.  This is due to a severe case of motion sickness.  In fact, while I'm typing to you, I'll tell a story about Jodi's motion sickness.  Once upon a time, she was riding with an engaged couple scouting locations at which to take their future wedding photos.  The groom-to-be was driving, and apparently it was not suitable to Jodi's weak stomach.  After a few too many side streets, bumps and turns, she had had enough, and sweetly asked to be excused from the moving vehicle.  Upon her rapid exit, she visited a telephone pole where the motion sickness won the battle of wills.  The location searching continued, but with each person in the car a different form of embarrassed.:)

    All of that to show you a few shots of my ride in a tiny airplane over Columbus City, Iowa.... 

    Terry Spitzer, the pilot.  

    One more thing.  The next time it's 33˚ in your neighborhood, go for a little drive.  Get your car up to about 70-80 mph, and then lean out of the window, and you'll have a pretty good idea of how glamourous aerial photos can be in November.  Now, to re-attach those legs....

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    10 November 2008

    Time Got Away From Me....

    Sorry, it's been a while.  Last week was pretty crazy.  We'll have some official images of Stella coming eventually, but for now, here's a shot I took of her the other night before we left the house. :)

    03 November 2008

    Million Voices Tour

    Happy Monday everyone!  I'm back from my two day gig with the Million Voices Tour.  There are three bands on this tour... Brooke Barrettsmith, whom you may remember from Season 5 of American Idol, Jimmy Needham, the most down to earth famous person I've ever met, and the headliners BarlowGirl, three sisters who know how to rock.  I've never photographed live music, and this was a blast!  I had an All-Access pass, compliments of my dad (the truck driver on tour), so I had free reign of the stage, the catwalks, and everywhere in between.  It was just as much fun getting to know the bands and crew as it was to shoot, though.  At the end of the first night, it felt like I was one of the family.  

    These images are a mix of the two shows, and the first show was on Halloween night which explains the costumes. :)

    Brooke Barrettsmith w/ Jimmy's band

    Jimmy Needham


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