ppa magWriting a bio about yourself is never easy. Most of the time you’ll find that I’m a pretty modest person, but right now I’m going to push myself out of my comfort zone and toot my own horn for a bit!

I’m pretty proud of the fact that I started the studio when I was only 21 years old. I wrote up a business plan, talked to my family about it, went to the bank and they gave me a loan. One part of my brain says “Wow, were they crazy?! Who gives a 21 year old kid a loan?” but another little voice says “Hey girl! You deserved it! They knew you were good! They knew you were special. kennyBe Thankful!” Which I am.
I love teaching and helping other photographers both locally and across the nation. In 2013 the Professional Photographers of America awarded me my Craftsman Degree for teaching and mentoring.
A year later I found myself on stage with 100 other photographers from around the world along with country music legend Kenny Rogers, receiving my Master of Photography Degree (and yes, I do have a photo with him 😉 ). I’m proud to say that I’m the only photographer in Clinton County who holds both titles of Master Photographer and Photographic Craftsman.

Yet, I didn’t build the success of my studio all on my own. I studied with some of the best photographers in the country and pushed myself to be the best I could possibly be. masters-1Many of those mentors are now close friends, and I couldn’t be more grateful for the knowledge they have given me. Through their observations,
I now realize that Unforgettable Photography is one of the largest and most successful studios in the state of Illinois and St. Louis Metro East area.

It’s been a gratifying 12 years. I’m humbled to be chosen for Kodak Awards, ‘Best of’ Awards, and to be published in Professional Photographer Magazines.

 

One of my favorite shirts says

MOMBIE:

(n.) Mom-be: A sleep deprived supermom who feeds on Starbucks & Ski.

 They survive on sticky kisses and messy smiles.

Mombies are master multi-taskers and suck it uppers.

 .

I think that pretty much describes my mantra on both a personal and business level. baby pooI’ll do whatever it takes to make you happy. I’m not afraid to get messy or work hard to achieve extraordinary results. I’m not ashamed of the fact that sometimes I’m bossy when things need to get done. I’ve been covered in baby poo. I’ve picked noses. I’ve carried 6 year olds on my back because they didn’t want to walk across the yard to a location I wanted to use. I’ve held the brides dress while she goes to the bathroom. I’ve even switched bras with senior girls before. I’m willing to work up a sweat in the summer and give you the coat off my back in the winter. I work my tail off and yeah, I’ll do it with confidence.

maternity-1After being in the photography world for over 15 years, I’ve gained the confidence to create images that you are going to love. We, myself included, need to stop being so hard on ourselves. I’ve heard it time and time again: “When I lose another 10 pounds I’ll schedule a session.” But guess what? Your kids, my kids, they are going to love us and think we are the most beautiful mom in the world, no matter what we see in the mirror.

Did you ever see this quote roaming the internet? “I wish I was as fat as the first time I thought I was fat.” Yeah; looking back at myself when I was 18, DANG! Where did that girl go?

Well, let’s see…she started a business, got married, had three kids, suffered 2 painful miscarriages, built a home, traveled the country, spent time with friends, and realized how amazing life can be.

So here’s the thing; I want you to let go of all the excuses and love who you are right now! I’ll give you beautiful lighting and perfect posing. I’ll show YOU the best YOU.

kidsI’ve got this kid thing, too! Having three of my own, I know there can be meltdowns, sassiness, and anxiety. I think the reason I have so much success with kids’ photography is because I can handle it! When I need it, I pull out my magic wand…bubble wand that is. You’d be amazed at my bubble skills! If I’m lucky, your kids will see me out and about in public and surprise me with a hug! It happens often, and there is nothing more gratifying! I’ve also been called ’Baby Whisperer’ amongst many of our newborn parents. marriedThey often ask if I’m available for hire in the middle of the night. I always tell them how I found myself singing Darius Rucker’s song, “It won’t be like this for long,” in the middle of the night when my children were infants. Try it. See if it helps your sanity in that hour. However, if it doesn’t, you can call me at any hour, I’ll come and snuggle with your baby till they are back asleep.

I’m just like everyone else. I’ve most likely been in your shoes too. I was once a high schooler. I had the same thoughts, excitement and anxiety that all kids feel as teenagers. I was once a bride, so I know the time and emotion that goes into a wedding day and wanting everything to run perfectly. Now I’m a wife and a mother. Time goes by way too fast. Let me stop time for this fleeting moment and capture something for you that will last for generations. I know what’s important, and I’m here to make you love photography and love having your portrait taken.

ANNA (2)