Hank + Johanna - Urban & Rural Engagement

Last week I was honored to photograph Hank & Johanna's love for one another and they brought along a special guest. Rudy - their fur baby. I was able to have these three in front of my camera last fall (almost a year ago). I'm so thankful for the friendship we have built over the last year & how much I have learned with photography since then. 

Fur babies are always welcome at my photoshoots. I highly encourage it. I know my dog is part of me & I want my couples to be completely themselves. So bring the doggie! 

I am so excited for their wedding this coming May. Hank & Johanna are the type of people you can be completely yourself around. If they're laughing, they're laughing with you. They are encouraging and supporting of me as a person, an artist and of each other. We need more people like them. 

Their session was so easy. Because that's what their love is. Easy. It comes naturally for them, at least that's how I interpret their relationship. Congrats you two on your engagement! Can't wait to photograph your vows! 



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 When you see your dog just simply existing. 

When you see your dog just simply existing. 

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Dave + Amanda // MARRIED

Wedding season has officially kicked off and I'm so excited to share my favorite images from this Memorial Day weekend wedding in Springfield, IL. 

If you have followed me since the end of 2017, then you would have seen Dave & Amanda model for my styled bridal photoshoot at Lincoln Memorial Gardens. They were naturals in front of my camera then and followed suit on their wedding day. 

Tom & I became friends with Dave & Amanda through Hope church. Some of those people you just connect with as if you've known them for years. 

I feel so honored and blessed to have captured their wedding day as a photographer and a friend; that I was able to witness Amanda reading Dave's letter, spy tears roll down her mother's face, and watch her dad kiss her before they walked down the isle together. 

Dave & Amanda - thank you so much for trusting me with THE most important day of your lives so far and allowing me into your hearts. I wish ya'll MANY years of happiness, laughs, adventure and tons of "spicy" moments. :) 


Wedding Coordinator: Carolyn Johnson - CP Events

Hair: Willow & Birch Hair Salon

Makeup: Sarah Wilks

Cake: Specialty Cakes

Bride's Dress: Elite Bridal in Champaign 

Bridesmaids Dresses: David's Bridal

Men's Tuxes: Men's Wearhouse

Caterer: Hamilton's Catering

Reception Hall: Erin's Pavilion



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 Starting a GO FUND ME to help homegirl out with a new screen, LOL

Starting a GO FUND ME to help homegirl out with a new screen, LOL

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 When #meetmeinthemiddle (a.k.a. the Bride's song) comes on

When #meetmeinthemiddle (a.k.a. the Bride's song) comes on

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 The Bride & Groom were big on "icing" people and successfully pulled off icing the bridal party during photos!

The Bride & Groom were big on "icing" people and successfully pulled off icing the bridal party during photos!

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 Mr. Springfield & his Bride.

Mr. Springfield & his Bride.

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 The small details are my favorite. 

The small details are my favorite. 

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 -Lay with me while our world stands still-

-Lay with me while our world stands still-

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 Remember how I said the Bride & Groom were big on "icing" people? Yep, the Bride successfully iced the Groom. 

Remember how I said the Bride & Groom were big on "icing" people? Yep, the Bride successfully iced the Groom. 

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Samantha & Alex

A month ago we shot Samantha and Alex's engagement session in downtown Springfield and at Lincoln Memorial Gardens. If I could describe the photoshoot in one sentence it would be, "Do it for the picture".

We started the photoshoot in a random alley and in front of a random, old, abandoned wear house, where I made them run towards my camera only 50 times. From there, we took it to the next level. That is, next level in my photography career. We brought along smoke bombs, which are actually quite terrifying in the fact that you can feel the spark on your hand. Alex, being a cop, was the perfect candidate to hold them (insert hair flip emoji). Then these two daredevils stepped into Lake Springfield when it was 34* outside. Who knows how cold that water was. 

But like I said, they did it for the picture. When they got out of the water, I asked Alex if it was worse than he expected and he answered so quickly, "Yes, that sucked". HAHA

(Samantha, I hope you're thinking it was worth it.) 

These two are some of my favorites. So easy and go-with-the-flow, yet also very prepared and make my job so easy. I am soooo excited to shoot their December wedding here in Springfield! 

Take a peek at their love story. 

"There are not enough words in the world to describe how amazing Samantha is. She is the most beautiful woman I have ever seen. She is the most caring person I have ever met. She has the sweetest voice I have ever heard. Her smile melts my heart. She is amazing in every single way. I feel more love from Samantha in one minute than I have felt in the rest of my life combined. She is my best friend and she is the love of my life. Marrying Samantha is the most obvious and easiest decision I have ever made. She truly is perfect."

- Alex

"Loving and being loved by Alex is like the feeling right after you sneeze. Does that sound weird haha! He makes me feel like I’m the most beautiful girl in the world, even after I’ve been working in the yard or sweating my booty off at the gym. He has this way of always making me feel at home, even when we are 300 miles from our front door. He is my family and the other half I never knew I was missing but once he came in my life I knew I couldn’t ever go back to a time without him holding my hand. Being loved by such an amazing man cannot be accurately described in words, only felt. Honesty, Love doesn’t even begin to describe what we have, it is so much more."

- Samantha




Mitch & Jordan - Lake Sara

This is my first official year being a portrait and wedding photographer, however I have heard and read of the boring stories told referring to "the off-season". I have yet to shoot my first wedding (but come May and that'll change!!) so when I refer to the off-season, I'm talking about snowy, cold, rainy, Winter weather. Ain't nobody got tiiiiime for dat. So, that's why this past weekend I advertised for a free photoshoot just to get my creative juices flowing again. And boooy, they got them flowing! (Idk why I'm talking like this, but let's just go with it.)

Jordan volunteered for the job. 

I first met Mitch when he was dating my sister back in high school. Not awkward at all, SERIOUSLY! Life happens for a reason and the people we meet in our lives have a purpose. I finally got to officially meet Jordan at the photoshoot and let me say, Mitch & Jordan are such a beautiful, lively couple! 

Jordan and I have been so eager to work together. If I could name one person to uplift my artistic soul, it's her. Not to mention, she's freaking gorgeous and would look good in front of any camera. 

We shot out at Jordan's cousin's lake house. There's something about photographing near water that makes me so excited inside and leave with a photographer's high. It was so quiet, peaceful and cold! But they were troopers. Mitch said "I've just learned to smile when taking pictures with women". AMEN! Lol. Boys- take notes. 

Totally looking forward to future sessions with these two ;) Enjoy these photos!




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 Told ya, GORGEOUS!

Told ya, GORGEOUS!

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 Double exposures are my absolute faaaaav 

Double exposures are my absolute faaaaav 

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 Probably my top pick!

Probably my top pick!

 So classy 

So classy 

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Meg & Zack- Downtown Springfield, IL

I have been so excited to blog this engagement session that took place downtown Springfield, IL! Springfield has grown on Tom and I so much since we moved here a year and a half ago. We have such a great community of friends through Hope Church and both of our jobs. I fall in love with downtown more every time we take a visit for dinner (that's saying a lot coming home a "no neighbor- living in the country" kinda girl). I am a true believer in putting your money and time back into the town you live in because if you don't, who will take care of your town? 

I first met Meg working at MMC on the neuro floor. I remember hearing this loud, pitchy voice, then seeing this tiny little body. "I am small but mighty". :) 

She is the one of the sweetest people I know! I know for a fact that if I needed to stay at her house, eat her food or need her advice, she'd be there. Hopefully Zack wouldn't mind me kicking it on the couch. (don't worry, I don't plan on leaving Tom EVER)

I loved the idea of Meg and Zack documenting their love throughout downtown Springfield. This town has such beautiful structure and Abe is ever so romantic. :) Hope you enjoy this shoot as much as I did! 



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 Sweet little Dana Thomas House

Sweet little Dana Thomas House

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 The Old Vinegar Hill 

The Old Vinegar Hill 

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 The State Capitol

The State Capitol

 What's up Abe?!

What's up Abe?!

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 Near Lincoln's Home

Near Lincoln's Home

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 The Old State Capitol

The Old State Capitol

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Styled Bridal Photoshoot

The day I have been waiting for with high anticipation finally arrived this past Saturday. The day of my styled bridal shoot graciously sponsored by Candice's Bridal in Springfield, IL. 

The models chosen are some of Tom and I's best friends, Dave and Amanda. We met them through Hope Church youth group. They were the perfect couple for the job due to being engaged and setting a date for May 2018. The fire and passion came easy to them, even kept all of us warm throughout the shoot. 

Another special part of the photoshoot is the fur coat Amanda wore. The coat was my Grandmother Ann's. She is the reason behind the name of Blue Willow Photography (more detail in my About section). Took a special woman to wear a special representation of my family. 

We were extremely blessed with the weather on Saturday, couldn't have asked for a better day. 

If you are a recently engaged bride and looking for a photographer for your special day, contact me through here, on my website. I'd love to see if we're a good fit and hear about all your excitement. 

Now booking 2018 weddings/engagement sessions. 

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Models: David Lee and Amanda Trancoso

Set up/design crew: Tom Shoaff and Rylee Mills 

Dress and veil: Candice's Bridal in Springfield, IL. 

Table decor: Joann Fabric and Crafts

Location: Lincoln Memorial Gardens