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Rochester Mayo High School Standout Swimmer

For as long as I have know Lindsey, she has been a standout swimmer for Mayo High School and the Rochester Orcas.  We knew we definitely needed to capture some unique images of her in the pool as part of her Senior Portrait Session.  She certainly made a splash in these fun pool photos!  You can tell she is completely at ease in the water, but watch out when she puts her game face on and is ready to compete!make a splash outdoor senior pool portraitsawesome senior pool portraitsswim standout lindseysenior eyes goggles poolrochester orcas swimmersenior breaststroke swimmersenior in swimming poolCracking up because your friends crashed your session and are spying on you.  LOL! ^^^^^^

When she’s not in the pool, you can find Lindsey studying and hanging out with her friends.  She’s a super smart, down-to-Earth girl who is just as beautiful on the outside as she is on the inside <3
senior girl in black and whiteedgy senior in alley rochmnriverside senior with backlightingsenior black and whitesenior girl river photoWe absolutely HAD to photograph Lindsey in this aqua shirt.  She’s been wearing this shirt or one the same color in pretty much every school picture.  It’s tradition!river senior picsrochester mn mayowood road

Thanks Lindsey and family for spending the day with me.  Also, for treating us all to pizza after the session!beautiful senior in field

Nicole Mathison Photography specializes in custom portraiture of newborns and high school seniors in Stewartville, MN and surrounding areas including, but not limited to, Rochester, Byron, Spring Valley, Kasson, Chatfield, Hayfield, Plainview, St. Charles and Pine Island.

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Stewartville MN Americana Inspired Senior Portrait Session

When people ask me what my favorite session is, I always say the current one I am working on.  It’s true!  I get so excited to bring to life the vision of each of my clients.  Seniors are always the most creative.  They know exactly what they want.  As a custom portrait artist, I love being a part of that creative process.  What sets me apart from the hundreds of other photographers out there is the amount of time I spend with my clients and my desire to bring their perfect session to fruition.  I don’t limit my clients by placing outfit and time restrictions on them:) So if you are looking to add Americana style, unique sports images, and top secret locations that are different from where your friends go, I am the photographer for you!

Initially, my clients will tell me what they are looking to achieve from their session.  We e-mail, talk on the phone and many times get together to plan the perfect session, incorporating their favorite things.  Wardrobe, locations, props.  We brainstorm ideas to make their experience unique and memorable.  Some sessions are pretty low key and others are very involved.

I have known Marie for several years, as she is a runner for the Stewartville High School cross country and track and field teams.  She is a girl that knows exactly what she wants!  Her main focus was documenting her love for America, fireworks and water.  We definitely nailed all three:)

Our initial session date had to be rescheduled since baby Cooper decided to arrive a couple weeks early, but it was clearly meant to be.  That day was chilly, dark and gray.  Definitely not fitting for someone as bright and full of life and adventure like Marie!  We hit the weather jack pot on our rescheduled date!

Marie had several Americana and American flag inspired pieces in her wardrobe.  Plus, the most amazing Grandparents that drove all the way to Wisconsin to ensure we had the perfect fireworks for photo day!  The pre-planning payed off and we had everything layed out for a fun-filled day with a timeline of locations, the perfect outfits to match them and of course, fun props!

Session Day:

We started our session with timeless portraits in a gorgeous field, then Marie changed into this beautiful white dress to keep the focus on Old Glory.  She is simply glowing in the golden hour lighting.  We ventured to one of my favorite private locations to capture two more of her Americana theme outfits.  That jacket is seriously AMAZING!!!  As was the incredible sunset we were blessed with.  Finally, we hit the lake for our fireworks part of the session.  Marie LOVES fireworks, even though she had a accident from them….YIKES!  We had fun playing around with different techniques to highlight her passion for them.  This was absolutely hands down one of my favorite unique ways to customize a senior portrait experience!!!!

If that wasn’t enough, we still incorporated her love for water.  Marie told me that the blue plaid shirt was her favorite, but because she already had so many pictures and selfies taken in it, she doubted my ability to top them.  Well, I absolutely proved her wrong!  She looks completely amazing in these and love them more than she dreamed possible <3  She was more than willing to hop in the river and even splash around!  Changing directions gave us even more lovely scenery as a backdrop to another cute dress.

Every outfit Marie picked out was on point and the locations matched them perfectly.  If you are looking to maximize the number of looks with your session, follow Marie’s lead and bring options that layer well.  For example, she knew she wanted to focus on red, white and blue.  She started with a simple plain red tank and gorgeous detailed white skirt…one look.  Then added a casual blue denim button down shirt for a completely different look and feel.  Finally, she turned up the edge and fashion with an Americana statement jacket!

At the end of her session, we were able to focus on Marie’s talent for running.  Many of my seniors choose to capture images of their sports and the other high school activities that they are involved in.  It’s just another way to customize their portrait session:) We headed over to Bear Cave Park because I knew we would be set up for the perfection location to capture images of her with a beautiful sky and open fields for running.  Wow, did it ever pay off!  Mother Nature was on point, with an amazing fall evening sky and the pefect amount of wind to give her hair movement!  Seriously, so in love with everything about this session!

Nicole Mathison Photography specializes in custom portraiture of newborns and high school seniors in Stewartville, MN and surrounding areas including, but not limited to, Rochester, Byron, Spring Valley, Kasson, Chatfield, Hayfield, Plainview, St. Charles and Pine Island.

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Rochester Minnesota Senior Portrait Session | Urban and Country

Rochester is a great place for senior portraits!  There are so many options to meet the needs and style of every senior.  For Travis’ VIP Senior Session, we decided to do a mix of photos downtown near Mayo Clinic, then head out to a great secret location perfect for outdoor, country photos.  The weather was a little iffy and we had a hard time deciding if we should go ahead or reschedule.  Dodging rain clouds and showers made for a memorable experience!

One of the most iconic spots in Downtown Rochester is right in front of the Plummer Doors.  Each door is 4,000 pounds and 16 feet tall!  The ornamental patterns repeated on the doors are not only incredible gorgeous, especially for portraits, but they are filled with symbolism, perfect for a young man heading into the medical field.

Travis, a senior from Mayo High School, was active in Debate, Model UN and Knowledge bowl.  Seriously one smart kid to boot!  He has always had an interest in politics and volunteers his time to work with his local politicians and party.  Travis is also one of the most modest kids I know.  He’s so quiet about his impressive accomplishments.  He is definitely the type of young leader this country needs so keep an eye out for him in the future!

In addition to his academic involvement, Travis is also an avid runner.  He competed on both the cross country and track teams for Mayo High School.  I always look for a unique way to showcase each senior, and with Travis, I wanted to showcase him running through a field.  The last image in the set turned out to be one of my favorite senior images and it’s easy to see why Travis and his family chose that image for his senior grad banner!  This image highlights his quiet strength, confidence, determination and showcases someone who definitely knows where he’s headed in life!  Definitely a one-of-a-kind image:)

Loved Travis’ red shorts!
Of course, I had to include the image where Travis was photobombed by an ambulance!  LOL!

Nicole Mathison Photography specializes in custom portraiture of newborns and high school seniors in Stewartville, MN and surrounding areas including, but not limited to, Rochester, Byron, Spring Valley, Kasson, Chatfield, Hayfield, Plainview, St. Charles and Pine Island.

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Running is Life | Senior Photography for Athletes

I have known Chrissy for a long time through running via cross country and track & field so I was thrilled to say yes when she asked me to take her senior portraits! Of course, when planning her custom portrait session, we had to incorporate her love for running!

Chrissy really is the All-American girl next door.  The type of person, who the second you meet her, feels like you have been friends for years!  She is fun, adventurous, uplifting and has a kind, sweet personality.  She LOVES being outdoors!  So you will often times find her camping, walking her dog, Millie, hanging out anywhere near water and running.

As a student at Stewartville High School, Chrissy was active in cross country, track, National Honor Society and choir.  She was also Student of the Month, which is an honor for exempilary students in the senior class.  Chrissy served as a great role model to those around her and often led by example with her impressive work ethic!

For our session, Chrissy was game to try anything!  She ran in the dark, through sprinklers, waded through a river, crouched in weeds, jumped in a sketchy alley, wore high heels….you know, all the fun things that aren’t standard with every day photo sessions 😉  We had so much fun and Chrissy had so many completely unique images to set her session apart from her friends!
summer river senior portraitsbeautiful senior girl in a flower fielddowntown Rochester Peace PlazaRochester MN senior girl urban photosurban alley senior portraitsfield and sky high school senior Senior portraits with petsstunning stewartville senior red and greenfun in a field senior photos roch mnTrack star!
2016 track lanes for senior athletestrack and field star athleteThat sky though <3 <3 <3
pink blue and purple sky running silhouette

Chrissy’s distance running coach, Mrs. T, would have been so impressed by the amount of running that Chrissy put in during her session.  I am not going to lie, I may have asked her to run back and forth over and over and over and over again, but I love the resulting images!  Silhouettes are hands down my favorite way to cap off a session!
running with balloons high school senior girl portrait session
Nicole Mathison Photography specializes in custom portraiture of newborns and high school seniors in Stewartville, MN and surrounding areas including, but not limited to, Rochester, Byron, Spring Valley, Kasson, Chatfield, Hayfield, Plainview, St. Charles and Pine Island.

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Ch-ch-changes! Newborn and Senior Photography in Stewartville, MN

You’ve probably noticed that things have been pretty quiet around here and my other social media sites.  I have been busy behind-the-scenes prepping for another amazing fall senior portrait season!  Every year, I re-evaluate my business.  What is working well?  What can be approved upon?  What do my clients love about the images I create for them and the value of the services I provide?  What can I do to overall improve my customer service?  Does my pricing allow me to run a successful, profitable business that can be sustainable?  What images did I create in the past year that truly made my heart sing?  How can I further my education to keep providing my clients with the best photographic products and images?  Where did I completely fail and how do I push past that?

When you are a small business owner, you wear many hats.  For me, the least amount of time is spent actually photographing sessions.  I could easily pump out session after session, throw a preset on your images calling it “editing”, and place the images online, on a CD or even a USB drive and give them to my clients.  Where is the joy in that?  How is that providing I get my greatest satisfaction and customer service to my clients?  Are those images ever going to be printed and displayed in the way they were meant to be?  When I am able to sit down with my clients, help them to plan a custom session, create images they love and help them to select timeless products that they can display in their homes, that is everything!

My favorite sessions in the past several years have been newborns and seniors.  Why?  They are each major milestone events in life that cannot be replicated.

Your baby will never be that tiny and new again.  Even a couple weeks later, your baby will look completely different.  Newborns grow and change so quickly, but it’s important to document their delicate little features, how angelic they look, how proud and amazed you are that you created this perfect little being.  After sleep deprivation sets in, you can hardly recall those details.

Senior year is full of lasts.  Your last first day of school, your last time to play on your home court, your last prom and homecoming.  Senior year flies by the quickest of all of them.  It’s important to take time to enjoy the little moments.  Cherish the friendships.  Embrace the struggles and celebrate the successes!  These moments only come once and before you know it, senior year is over and they are expected to have it all figured out.

These are the moments I want to focus my greatest energy on!  As a new mother (again) to a 1 and 3 year old and a mother to a 2015 senior, I have experienced the rollercoaster of emotions that comes with these milestones.  I am so glad that I made the decision to take the time to document them properly.  My home is filled with images of my children.  When my three year old looks up at the wall, she points to the photos and says, “That’s my framily!”  LOL!  We have already established the importance of family and belonging <3  My oldest, even though he is away at school, understands that he is still an important part of our family.  We miss him dearly, and even though life continues on, he always has a place to call home.  That is the magic and power of what professional photography can give you.  All of those memories and emotions come flooding back to that time in your life when you walk past your favorite image displayed proudly on your wall.

With this re-evaluation of my business, I realized my current branding no longer represents my style of photography and the message I would like to portray to my clients.  I create timeless images and products with a clean look that are not going to go out of style.  I invest an incredible amount of time with each client, from first contact to product delivery and beyond.  I want to focus on the little details so you don’t have to.  I want to be there each step of the way, to answer all of their questions and find the absolute best way to showcase their imagery.  I am not going to be the photographer for everyone, but if you are family driven, want something that sets you apart, busy and active and want only the best, I am the photographer for you!

Thank you to everyone that has supported my business the past 6 years!  Special thanks to Tiffany Kelley Design Company for bringing my rebranding to life.  I love the new look!  If you would like to see more from my rebranding, check out her blog post HERE!

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