matthew | lake quivira kansas senior portrait photographer

I think it’s safe to say that shooting a senior session for a guy is MUCH different from when it’s done for a girl. Girls are fun because they bring a fierce desire to be beautiful in their images, giving smeyes (that’s code for smiling with the eyes for all you non-Tyra Banks watchin’ folks out there) and bringing with them a carload of clothing options, shoes and enough accessories to start their own jewelry boutique. Guys are the complete opposite. They bring with them the one pair of jeans and shoes they are already wearing and, if you’re lucky, they’ll change their shirt for you. That may or may not require a lot of coaxing and a promise that, “this is almost over.”

With that said, guys are chill. They make for a really easy-going and laughable session. For Matthew, this was no exception. I should start a business sheerly for the purpose of selling outtakes from sessions – family members would kill for the kind of blackmail I have once or thrice had on my hard drive. For fear of embarrassing him by saying too much or too little, I’ll simply state that we had a good time. He’s a cool kid and I think he’s going to be a professional at having a good time while in college. I’ll pray for his parents, that’s for sure. 🙂

Congratulations on your graduation, Matthew!

love (cool kids),


ashley | lenexa kansas senior portrait photographer

There was this one day, many moons ago, when I was asked to choreograph a very special Modern solo for a very special girl. Ashley walked in all sorts of shy and, as the choreography shaped, so did she. When we first showcased her solo to the masses of her dance studio as a trial run before competition, she floored me. This unbelievable power surged from every twist, turn and thrash she danced. I cried. The class was left speechless. She had transformed us through the story she told with her movement.

Ashley is a 2011 graduate and embodies everything I have hoped to see in our future generations. She stands for unity and love, supporting an incredible organization known as Invisible Children (found on Facebook as well). She seeks change in the world and has a huge heart. She’s, simply, incredible.

Ashley, darlin’, you know I love ya. Like…for real. Never forget the way you moved people with your dancing that day in class…harness the impact you have on others through your actions and your heart…and never let it go. Take this time right now and experience the amazing journey of adulthood…be good…be safe…and go out there and knock ’em dead with your determination to make a change. I love you so much!

Whoop Whoop – LOVE!

love (seeing the possibilities of our younger generation),


This kid…he makes my heart melt. Call me slightly partial…

…okay…completely biased…

but this guy…he’s the cats meow. But – I have to say that – he’s my kid cousin.

  • The first one I remember watching grow up from (sometimes poopy) diapers into an extraordinary young man
  • The first one I snuggled and rocked to sleep because he was such a cuddlebear as a toddler
  • The one who told us he was going to come to “Tansas” and live with us when we made the big move
  • My guy – my sweetheart of a cousin – Aaron

And he’s all…sniff…grown…sniff sniff…up….baaaawwwwwwwwwwllllll!!!!

Aaron – I love you more than you’ll ever know. I’m stoked that I get to see you in just over a week for the wedding and am even more elated to see you grow into a man who will show this world that your generation is phenomenal. Keep your heart steady and always loving and your head in the books (because there’s always something fascinating to learn) — and tell all those soon-to-be college girls that you have a cousin with a baseball bat in her trunk who is always down for a roadtrip should they try to suffocate that fire I see in you…I love you always…welcome to the start of the next phase in your life!

Did I mention I did this session in my hometown of Cumberland, Maryland? Gotta love those trees!!

This is a view of my hometown from Constitution Park…just a little town in the middle of a valley of green…absolute beauty!

love (watching their journey begin),


When scheduling her session over the phone, her Mother spoke of her passion for all things cinematic. Directorship. Which is totally not a word…but I’m rolling with it.

I also found that Allie would be attending K-State, my alma mater. So, naturally, I looooved her!!

Allie was down (or up) for anything. Charismatic and incredibly photogenic, she embraced the art of photography and really just let me do my thang. Which was totally awesome. And she brought along some really awesome props. Like her Director’s chair. And her pups: Rocky and Mickey. And her friends…and her friends’ galoshes.

And it was all totally rad.

Allie, God bless you my love. I pray for nothing but blessings upon blessings raining on your heart as you venture into your next big journey!!

love (wonderfully beautiful young women),

the joy

I experience it everytime I cuddle my pup, schmooze my kittens, love on my favorite little ones, laugh with my friends, hug my heart and find the perfect spot to lie on the shoulder of  my husband-to-be.


Yesterday was yet another fulfilled moment of joy. Spending hours upon hours outdoors in the greatness of Kansas and the city limits of Missouri, capturing love and joy in the sweet midwestern sun. Driving home at the end of my evening, with the sun hanging low and the day beginning to go gray, it dawned on me…

…this is what I was born to do. Windows down, music up (probably BEP because I’ve loved them like woah for like…eons), camera to my right and an open road to take me home…it’s joy. And it can always be found if you just allow yourself to know it exists in everything the Lord has touched.

I can’t wait to share with you the amazingly fun senior session and engagement session I had yesterday. Stay tuned later this week for the full blog post on both!

love (springtime joy),


I’ve told everyone who knows I went the way of the Photographer that this year would be one of the most difficult for me in the way of senior sessions. This is no understatement, especially as I post the photos of Elle.

Only knowing her for two years, this young lady is a ray of sunshine that screams “love”. Love everywhere. Love in every thing. Love despite all faults and fears and trials. Love.

Elle, our coffee talks have been a more cherished part of my life. Accidentally happening upon slam poetry readings and “Stanley”…coffee will never be the same without you. I know that whichever college you select, you’ll go the path God provides. You’re a Believer like that. And at the sweet age of 17, I admire that about you. You know where you stand with Him. And you know you will prevail. I love you and am so stinking proud of you, my darling moderina.

*jenifriend wipes more tears away*

View Elle’s entire senior session here.

love (slam poetry coffee talks),


Things happen for a reason; I always tell myself this because I believe this.  How glorious was God’s perfect plan to give me the confidence to build my business during the year of the Tiger: 2010?  In my opinion, it was perfection He set it up this way.  Had things not worked out the way they did, I never would have had the opportunity to be Kristin’s senior portrait Photographer.

Baby girl, I have known you since before you knew Paramore existed…I knew you when your pirouettes were unbalanced and your smile was crooked…watching you grow up over the past five years has been a dynamic journey for me as well…you know I never had a sister.  You and Lindsay have always been those surrogates I adore as if you were family.  Thank God for your Mom letting me be your babysitter.  I am so proud of you…I never doubted your abilities as a mover and a shaker and I can’t wait to be there on your first opening night for your first big show.  The American Academy of Dramatic Arts would be silly not to take you…you are stunning from your skin straight through to your heart…and I love you so much.

*jenifriend wipes tears away*

View Kristin’s entire senior session here.

And she tried to say she didn’t have sass!!  Props to Papa Taylor for creating this outfit – it’s wickedbad!  🙂

“You have a vivaciousness and fieriness to you Kristin that no one can compete with…”

My favorite from the session.  Reflections are the new black.

If you happened to be at the Legends and heard sweet sounds coming from the depths of the parking garage…it was Kristin.  Her voice is a force to be reckoned with!!

A little Paramore tribute I knew you’d appreciate.  🙂


love (big aviator glasses and shoes aplenty),