Make it right

Friends, the official news broke last night. I got a message first thing in the morning, asking if I had seen the preview on Monday morning. Of course I did. I had been warning about Bella Rose Photography for over 2 years. Unfortunately, too many people were snowed and taken advantage of by this company. Wedding days. Newborn moments. Last days in high school. Family gatherings. It’s horrible. To me, unthinkable. (Not to mention how upset I was that they were the “Official photographers” of my favorite hometown team, the St. Cloud Rox) while balking their contracted duties.

Those are moments you can’t get back.

And they were CHEAP, as far as professional photography goes. $1000 for a whole day wedding, with prints and album. SHIT. I can’t feed my family on that! Think about it, you saw the best of the best they had. They hired out photographers, ones with openings still on their books, at ridiculously low wages. The outsourced photographers are pissed. In forums. In messages. They are enraged that the work that they were hired to do, work they put their hearts into, got gobbled up by greed and no bride or groom saw their images. OR, they were handed RAWs (you should never ask for those, trust me) and the couples were sitting there with a dud, no editing, no culling…nothing to show for their investment.

I couldn’t compete with Bella Rose Photography if I had wanted to. I’m not a networking person. I’m not a sales person. I’m an honest person who just can’t make idle small talk and false promises. I cry when I get sick and can’t deliver on deadline. I don’t submit to all the publishing places, I don’t do bridal shows. I instagram, facebook, meet people over coffee. I carve out space in my heart for every single client I photograph. I keep anniversaries and birthdays on my calendar. And still miss them by 3 days.

But I’ve NEVER not delivered a wedding.

I’ve missed Thanksgiving with my family, Christmas time prepping for feasts, to deliver client packages. I’ve been called horrible, nasty names. I’ve been groped, fallen off docks, climbed on top of rooftops, hiked, and frozen my toes.

But I’ve NEVER held clients’ memories hostage.

My heart aches for all of the special moments, lost now, to so many people. I can’t go back in time and make them happen again. But what I can do is pull together with other vendors in the St. Cloud area and have a styled wedding session for those who want one. FREE OF CHARGE. This is a HUGE undertaking, and I’m hoping some other generous souls out there want to instill some happiness and spread love where there is so much hurt. If you are willing to help, please comment or shoot me an email. Let’s stop the hurt and start the healing.

Our vendor list:
event space TBD
florals TBD
hair/makeup TBD
linens TBD
Formalwear TBD

Late April/early May


Keep on putting love out there folks. You never run out and we all could use more of the good stuff.


Sartell Senior Session Erik

Sartell Senior Session Erik

Senior sessions. You’re thinking, “gah. another varsity-jacket, sports star, hands in pockets lame photography post” right?

NOPE. Not the Emmazing experience. We ask key questions to really get to know our seniors from what they like to do to favorite colors to silliest guilty pleasure. I got to photograph TRIPLETS this year and each one was a completely different experience and a ton of fun. Today, I’m featuring Erik, an Eagle Scout, introverted dude with some serious modeling skills. {Even his sisters said he should look into it as a side job so you know it’s true} We treked in some woods, (ahem, got scolded at for tresspassing by a nosy neighbor) found a huge granite boulder, got dusty in some cornfields and found some good brick. And his mom, Madonna, was the best assistant with hair and lights since the wind was feisty. Thanks Madonna!

Cheers to all your accomplishments and best wishes for your new journey, Erik. You’ll kick ass, I guarantee it.

So, enough words right? Let’s let Erik have his spot in the sun. Leave some love!

To book your senior session, email me via my website or directly:

Being fired and how it was awesome

Being fired and how it was awesome

Failure sucks. Period. We all know that. But with failure comes resolve and experience that really form us. (Preachy, I know. Hang in there with me.)

I’ve always been an overachiever. And a rebel. I learn life lessons better “the hard way”. I was the National Honor Society/Captains and Leaders/All-State/Student Council/Prom Committee kid in high school. I joined the military and kicked ass. Serious ass, but more on that another day.

And I’ve been fired twice in my life.

Once from a now non-existent upscale wine bar and restaurant for taking a bowl of soup before the chef said to run it, and the one that hurt: a couple after their engagement sessions. That one stung for a long time. But, I am publicly thanking them today.

The anxiety. The self doubt. The “i really suck so why do i even bother” mantra kept running through my head over and over and over again. I sent the gallery to friends without context. I sought advice in photography forums.  I had a reshoot with the couple. They were still not happy and left me THE VOICEMAIL. I had my lawyer draw up a termination agreement.


My photography is personal. It’s art. But I couldn’t let my art be just all the Pinterest pins they had envisioned. I have a personality. I’m quirky and witty. That was not what they REALLY wanted. It was winter. Sessions were cold. Sorry dudes, it’s Minnesota and that’s how the cookie crumbles. It was ME. All me, that they didn’t like.

And that stung.

But out of that, the images I shared were the most liked on Facebook that I had posted that year. I still had my voice. And instead of suffocating that voice, they set me free. Free to keep growing, to find those kindred souls, to immerse myself in love stories instead of just pressing that shutter button. They were right to fire me. We weren’t a fit for each other. For that, I am grateful.

Thank you, A+M, for firing me. You helped me grow more than you will ever know. I wish you all the happiness in the world, from the bottom of my heart to the tips of my (frostnipped) toes.

I am grateful.true love scrabble forever scrabble SJU

Tidwell Family | Remer, MN Family Photographer

The first time we got an email from L, I thought it was a hoax. Someone from Australia wants to hire US to do their family lifestyle session? Yeah, right. We’re good, but not well-known in central MN, let alone on the other side of the world. So, I Googled and no hoax was going around the photographer community. I hit that ‘reply’ button with trepidation, not knowing what to expect. L and her family are so REAL it’s amazing. I got to road trip up to Remer and spend a weekend in Walker. And the best part? I get to see them every year when they come back for their vacation. This year they got relocated to Malaysia which means slowly but surely, our international fame is spreading 🙂

Flash to when it was a warm summer day, perfect for a boat ride on the lake and a jump on the trampoline. See what a Lifestyle session is really like with us. They’re fun and we’re not afraid of anything.

Stay toasty!
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family, MN, Emmazing Photography

family, MN, Emmazing Photography
family, MN, Emmazing Photography
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