stories

Walnut Woods Wedding | Kristy & Rogan Roosa

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Kristy & Rogan are married!! 

Leading up to Saturday, we were checking the weather ever hour on the hour. There was a 60% chance of rain from 12pm-6pm, the exact time that Kristy & Rogan had me booked for their wedding day. Needless to say we were a bit nervous because the wedding was all outdoors. Well guess what..?? It didn't rain :) Well okay, it rained a little bit, but just enough to use our cute umbrellas for a few photos. 

Kristy and Rogan are emotional beings, and knowing that, they didn't want to say their vows in front of everyone at their ceremony, because well.. they wouldn't have been able to get their sweet words out. So they decided to say their vows after their first look on a small private beach in Walnut Woods State Park in Des Moines, Iowa.

Now, me also being an emotional being, it was hard for even me to keep it together for their vows!! Everything about it was so beautiful and intimate. It was exactly what they wanted it to be! Their whole wedding day was full of love, family and friends, and a laid back vibe that made everyone feel comfortable and full of love.

Kristy had asked her dad to make a wine box for their unity ceremony. What he delivered blew away everyone! He made this detailed and exquisite "box" equipped with wine glasses, a bottle of wine, shooters, a photo album that showed the making of their wine box, AND secret locking pins to lock the drawer they will keep their letters they wrote to each other in. It was the most careful creating of love I have ever seen, and Kristy's reaction says it all :) 

Their ceremony was performed by their friend Tina, who did an absolute amazing job!!! There were laughs and there were tears, but in the end there was nothing but love. 

We ended the night with a casual Champagne shower, which was absolutely epic!!! This must turn into a thing at every wedding :)

 

Kristy and Rogan are the sweetest people and were so much fun to work with. I know I say this every wedding or engagement shoot, but I really mean it: I have the best clients and I am so pumped that I got the chance to capture their special moments. I get such a rush shooting couples and capturing their love and telling their stories. :)

 

Until next time,

Hannah!

Des Moines, Iowa | Summer Wedding | Emily & Jacob

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Emily & Jacob are married!! I had such an amazing time shooting their wedding and hanging out with their awesome family and wedding party!! 

Sweet words about Emily and Jacob's love story 

from the bride | 

When I first met Jacob I knew he was a good one. He was kind and thoughtful and really listened to everything I had to say. Our first meeting was at a bar in Pella. He came up and started talking to me and then we danced the night away. Honestly with alcohol involved there isn’t much we remember. Jacob texted me the next day asking me on a date. We set it up and decided on going to a movie. We went to ‘The Intern’. It was a great movie but the conversation Jacob and I had for 5 hours afterward was even better. We stood in that movie parking lot and got to know one another. This conversation affirmed my opinion. Jacob was perfect. From then on our relationship moved fast, but I wouldn’t have it any other way. We moved in together about 6 months in and this allowed us to know 100% that we could make it together forever. After 1.5 years together Jacob and I decided it was time to buy a house. We picked one and we were ready to move in, but first we had some painting to do. Jacob woke up early one morning and told me he was going for a run, but he actually headed over to our new house and painted some words on the wall. I had no clue this was going on. We arrived to the house before our families, who were coming to help us paint. Jacob told me he had something to show me upstairs. I opened the door to our soon to be bedroom and saw the words “I love you” .. so cute!! But then I turn around and see Jacob on one knee and the words “will you marry me” on the wall behind him... freaking adorbale! My heart melted and I managed to say yes and then we celebrated when our families arrived. It was perfect!!

I love his thoughtfulness and kindness. He truely and deeply cares about every person in his life. He is an amazing listener. He is also super weird and hilarious.

from the groom | 

Emily and I went to the same small college for three years together but it wasn't until after college that we met.  We were both back in Pella for Homecoming the year after Emily graduated.  Some friends and I were hanging out at the bar when Emily and her friends walked in.  Emily caught my eye right away due to how beautiful she is.  I was super nervous to go talk to her but I did and not too long after, we were on the dance floor for the rest of the night.  I'm sure it was an absolutely wonderful night but it was kind of a blur due to too much liquid courage. I could feel that she was special the first night I met her.  Our first official date was going to a movie ("The Intern") but it was what happened after the movie that made the night so memorable. We talked in the parking lot until 3:00 am getting to know each other.  I couldn't get enough of her and so we went on multiple dates soon after and took a couple trips to Chicago and Kansas City together.  Next thing we know, we were moving in together after 6 months of dating. It felt so good to live with my best friend and the person that I was in love with! We decided to buy a house after a year of living in our apartment.  Emily and I coordinated a paint day with our family members.  What Emily didn't know is that I had a little something extra up my sleeve (or in my back pocket) and a very important question for her.  I had painted a few words on our future bedroom walls that morning (I told her I was going on a 9 mile run for our half-marathon training). Right before our family got to our place, I told Emily I wanted to show her something upstairs. We walked into our bedroom and she saw the words, "I love you", on one wall.  When she turned around, I was down on one knee and the words, "Will you marry me?", were on the wall behind me.  I nervously said how much I loved her and asked her to be my wife and...... SHE SAID YES!

I love how caring and hard-working she is.  I love how outrageously beautiful she is.  I love how she always makes me smile and laugh.  I love how smart and thoughtful she is.  I love that she has such a passion to teach her first grade students.

 

 

If that doesn't melt your heart, I hope these photos do :) 

Enjoy!

Photographer |  Hannah Ampe Photography

Videographer | Grafted Film and Images

Florals | HyVee

Cake | Katie Kooienga 

DJ | MandM

Venue | West Des Moines Marriott

Hair & Makeup | Salon Vici

Dress | Bridal Boutique

 

 

Summer Iowa Wedding | McKenzie & Clayton

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Clayton and McKenzie's wedding was perfect :) They got married at the Rose Garden in State Center, IA and had their reception at the lovely Gatherings in Nevada, IA. I could say so much about these people and this day, but I will let the photos speak for themselves on this one!

 

California Couples Session | Rosie & Joe

When in Malibu, hang out with super fun people and take their photos :)

Everything about this shoot was perfect! Rosie and Joe, the lighting, the FREAKIN' BEAUTIFUL landscape, there were dolphins. I mean come on!!! How can it get better than this???

 

I took these gorgeous photos on our US Road trip this Spring. I knew I would be traveling through California and wanted to shoot while I was there. So I asked my friend, Karlee if she knew anyone that could be my "models" for a photo shoot. So she introduced me to Rosie and Joe.

Sidebar | There are moments in life that you can look back and think how a small gesture, statement, good deed, or introduction can change everything. | It may seem dramatic for me to say that this shoot changed me, but it did. Everything was perfect. I was in my element. There was no pressure, no timeframe, and no worries. I was just shooting for the fun of it, and it brought me back to why I started this small little Minnesota photography business in the first place. I love it. I love capturing sweet moments and deep emotional connections between my couples. 

Rosie and Joe hadn't seen each other for a week before this shoot. So it gave them time to be intimate and for me to capture their longing love. 

I was nervous coming into this shoot because I had been shooting mainly landscapes for the past 6 months on my travels. I thought I would be rusty, and I was for the first few shots, but not long after my first shutter clicked, I was in the zone. I experimented with new poses, laughed with Rosie and Joe, and enjoyed a night at Point Dume in Malibu, California with Peter. 

It was a little treacherous getting down to the beach, and only like 5 parking spots, but once you crept down the 100+ steps, you were in another world. Full of dolphins, seals, a few questionable pot smokers, and the smell of sea water and sand. 

I will never forget or stop reliving this shoot. I hope to have millions more shoots like this in the future and will never again forget the feeling I get when I capture these special moments.

 

+ Here are a few of my favorites from Rosie and Joe's Malibu Photo Shoot

Meet Hannah: The Girl Behind The Camera

Since middle school I have always been behind a camera. I’d beg my mom to use her film camera and go on walks to take photos. Eventually, my amazing and generous parents gave me a Nikon D40 for Christmas my sophomore year of high school. I took photos of landscapes on my family’s summer vacations, and shot my willing friends (and honestly, what high school girl isn’t willing to add more photo to her Facebook page). Senior year rolled around and a few of my friends asked me to take their senior photos. They turned out great and I had such a fun time.

 

This was one of the first moments I decided I wanted to be a photographer. I continued getting better and took photography classes at school as elective credits. I even got the chance to take photography classes in Italy during my study abroad experience. Amazing is an understatement.

 

It wasn’t until I was in graduate school for environmental science that I started, at the time, Hannah Hoglund Photography. I asked my engaged friends if they would hire me to film or photograph their weddings. Most said no, or they already had photographers and videographers, but a few said heck yeah! So, I started off charging very little for my inexperienced eyes and ended up with beautiful photos and videos for my friends.

 

I learned soo much from those first few weddings and it only fueled my passion for creating beautiful photos and video and also making my clients happy. Happiness is contagious and I think deep down that’s why I love being a wedding photographer. Selfishly, I love shooting people in love because at the end of the day I come home with the biggest smile on my face. Sore feet, but the biggest smile! It is so uplifting and inspiring to see my beautiful clients having fun and engaging with their partners. I frequently come home to my husband and give him a huge hug. SO MUCH LOVE!!

 

Being a wedding photographer has taught me to always cherish the little moments, communication is key, and love always wins :) Three years later, I launched Hannah Ampe Photography and I can honestly say, as much as I have learned, I still have so much more to go!

 

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If I am ever your wedding photographer, I will usually tear up at the ceremony, especially if you write your own vows, frequently tell a terrible joke while shooting, and always always capture your love and the moments that make your heart skip a beat. My end goal is to always make my clients feel special and give you spectacular photos that you can cherish forever.

 

So that’s my story. My journey hasn’t been simple, but doing what I love everyday is always a blessing :)

 

Sarah + Blake | Minnesota Winter Wedding

Where to start.. Well, I am finally getting around to blogging about Sarah and Blake's wedding. Currently writing in Puerto Varas, Chile where it is 75 and sunny. Much needed warmth after the windy chills from Southern Patagonia. I have loved traveling, but I am missing my clients and shooting weddings like Sarah and Blake's!! I cannot wait to see what this year brings for weddings and engagements for Hannah Ampe Photography :)

Okay, now on to the happy couple;

Sarah and Blake had an amazing wedding on November 24th, 2017. It was 50 degrees... so not the snow we were hoping for, but The Grands at Mulligans made up for it with their beautiful venue! The pops of red and plaid were perfect against the deep colored woods of the venue. LOVED IT!

It was an emotional day for everyone. Not only was Sarah getting married and going through all the normal emotions of a wedding day, but she had to go through it without her father, who had recently passed away from cancer. I was very impressed and admired Sarah's courage and tenacity during the day and in her life. Her and her family are truly an inspiration to look up to. And then there is Blake, the most caring and laid back groom I've ever worked with. His reaction when he turned around to Sarah for their first look was something I will never forget, and neither will they.

All in all it was a beautiful day, full of love and joy. I feel so grateful to have worked with Sarah and Blake and their families :)  Also, I don't think anyone has ever had a better cake cutting before these two!

Here are my favorite photos of the day.

Enjoy :)