downtown Urbana

Layla | Mahomet-Seymour Bulldogs Senior

I texted my friends an hour after this session: “Life-giving senior session tonight!” Gosh, I really do love photographing seniors, and Layla and her mom puts lots of thought and planning into her session and it showed! I loved her outfits and all the locations that we planned together.

When I was in college, the Boneyard Creek was a nasty place that you avoided at all costs unless you really wanted to go get a tetanus shot afterward. Broken glass, smelly, who knows what floating in it… LOL — but several years back a lot of work and money was put into it to make it clean and beautiful again. I have always been intimidated to go down to it for the above reason, and because I just didn’t know how to get in even though I’d seen other photographer friends’ images from there. I am so happy to say that we tackled it and it was SO WORTH IT.

Layla and her mom wanted to do an homage to the veterans in their family, so we started out at the war memorial by the Champaign County Courthouse in Urbana, and then did the first 1/3 of the session in the super cool downtown Urbana area.

Part 2/3 was the Boneyard Creek stretch that goes through the Bardeen Engineering Quad on campus. The weather was perfect, and the water level was low, just up to Layla’s ankles. THE LIGHT WAS AMAZING. If you’ve been on a session with me, there’s a good chance I uttered the words, “I love the light coming through the trees!” And the stars aligned for this set (especially the biggest star!)

The final part was at the Hazen Bridge north of Mahomet where the sun was just beginning to dip under the horizon. This bridge is in the National Register for Historic Places. It’s a pretty cool spot!

Thanks, Layla, for an amazing session!! Obviously I’m partial to redheads, but you totally killed it! Best of luck with your senior year at Mahomet-Seymour High School!

Stefanie + Matt | Crystal Lake Park Urbana engagement pictures


Stefanie + Matt met at work, recently got engaged and are looking forward to their happily ever after! They drove over from Bloomington-Normal to meet me in Urbana for their engagement session at Crystal Lake Park and then downtown Urbana. We were blessed with a gorgeous, mild and sunny December day and I am so happy with their images! These two were so easy to pose -- I remember after the first pose/set, Stefanie commented on how she was glad I told them what to do. :) That is one of the perks of choosing an experienced photographer who specializes in posing -- lots of different image options and not having to worry about how to stand or how you look. I take care of all of that, so your part is to show up and look pretty for my camera! Text me to book your session - 217-737-0971!Crystal Lake Park steps engagement

she said yes engagement pictures

he put a ring on it in downtown Urbana

orange door and alley photos

engagement pictures with graffiti

painted mural walls as backdrop

Catlin | Holly Birch Photography Intern + Senior Model


Today I'd like to introduce you to Catlin (aka Cat), my current intern! Cat does anything and everything around the office for me -- prepping blog posts (you may have seen her as the author of several wedding posts lately), culling photos, some light editing, prepping wedding consultation folders, filing receipts, and assisting at sessions, plus more. She has been a HUGE help and time saver to me this summer, especially since my two kiddos are with me most days. She's helped me stay on top of my ever-growing list of image editing and album design. I'm only able to employ her for a few hours each week, so to reward her, I supply her with coffee from our Keurig when she comes over (ha!) and the photo session you'll see below. Cat is very into her cats (haha... no pun intended? :)), Bubbles and Maja, and also very into fashion. I knew she would have the perfect outfit for our night-time photo session, and I LOVE the hat and accessories she brought along. Perfection. Technically Cat is a senior at the University of Illinois, but I wanted to use this session also to market to high school seniors in the area, as I think this would be a fun, unique way to portray a senior session. We had SO MUCH FUN doing this session, and would have kept shooting except for the rain that rolled in and started making me nervous for my equipment. Enjoy!! cat pet photography

sequin backdrop high school senior pictures

off-camera flash senior photography

Crane Alley senior pictures dramatic lighting