augustine palmer | newborn | detroit, michigan

On his 4 week birthday, I’d love to introduce you to Auggie! Or Augustine Palmer, more properly. I had a blast having him and his adoring siblings and hero parents in my studio— my biggest group yet, at 8!

come back soon, simkins!



traveling to kenya | africa through my portrait lens

Recently, my husband Drew and I traveled to Kenya with group of incredible humans represented by Kids Alive International. 

sunrise from the safari jeep | msasai mara national reserve

sunrise from the safari jeep | msasai mara national reserve

We went as guests of our friends + mentors who encouraged us to join them-- a married couple 30 years our senior, who have experienced life with beauty and love, trial and imperfection, and now exude wisdom and understanding into our life like no one else has. They are invaluable to us. We knew this trip would be good, solely because of being with them! 

sheri + tom | our friends + mentors | nature walk on aberdare national reserve

sheri + tom | our friends + mentors | nature walk on aberdare national reserve

What we didn't know, was, that we would see another part of this world that we immediately loved. We didn't know we'd meet so many incredible, God fearing people, on our team and nationals to Kenya. That we would experience first hand an organization doing so much good, in Jesus' name, rescuing children from poverty, fostering change in individual lives and culture alike. That we'd be amidst so much hope. That we'd leave inspired and encouraged. We didn't know!

We also didn't have any idea what we were in for on our three day safari (!!!). It was incredible. I'm talking, jaw dropping landscape, wildlife for miles and miles and miles, elephants for days, rivers filled with hippos (okay, one river. but it was FULL of hippos!) Guys. It was so amazing! 

There's just too much to tell in a single blog post. But as I do with most life experiences, I'm going to attempt to describe it through photographs. And I encourage you, if you are curious to learn more about Kids Alive, Kenya, or traveling in general, just ask! I love to share and connect through my experiences.

I hope you enjoy Africa through my lens!

{sidenote, I was so drawn to the above tree, and photographed it many times. It's called Crown of Thorns-- the type of tree used for Christ's crown of thorns placed on his head when he was mocked by the Jews, later to be crucified, buried, and rise again.}

thanks for sticking around till the end! 





ellie ray | 10 weeks new | driggs, idaho

I think Idaho is the furthest I've traveled for a photo shoot? 

It may not have been why I went {it wasn't}. But I couldn't be around this cuteness and not document it. 

I was in Idaho this July was because I found myself within four hours {SLC with other dear friends!} of my dear friend Norah and I could not pass up the opportunity to spend 24 hours with her and her family, and to meet Ellie. So we took advantage of the situation and planned it. Being with them = pure joy. Our shared experiences go back to preschool, and now they include motherhood. Read: happy heart.

You may remember I photographed Norah and her new baby bump last Thanksgiving... here she is now with Ellie Ray, the sweetest little peanut who is the closest thing to a niece to me without actually being related. 

Ellie dear, I love you. Till the next time I get to kiss your cheeks and hug your mama, dear one.



the sosnoski family | detroit, mi

whoa, I haven't blogged since January! If I'm honest, the rain and sleet and gray and general winter-ness got me down. Also sick children, sick self, and teething. Oh, baby teeth, why must you disrupt my sanity so much?!

But this past weekend and into this week, it has been sunny and warm and all around GOOD here in Detroit. Whew.

I'm sharing a session from the fall with you because I didn't get the chance to share it in the {delightful} busyness of fall sessions, I adore the lovely people in these photos, and I feel like they must be shared, even if delayed.

This family brings me so much joy. They hold an extra special place in my heart-- I used to be Natalie's nanny when she was just a little babe... she's five now and I can't quite believe it! They are some of the most generous people I've ever known and they care deeply for their friends. God knew I needed them in my life. 

We chose the DIA as a backdrop for their session, and I can't wait to shoot there again. Enjoy!

All this beautiful weather has me excited for spring and itching to get outside... SO the first 3 people who contact me and mention this blogpost upon booking will get $25 off their one hour session! I can't wait to hang with you!



Norah {Casper, Wyoming}

Ten minutes of laughter in the Wyoming sunset and we've added to our 25 year long, beloved catalog of memories. 

Living far away from Norah has now become part of my normal. Time together is always special and feels like home to me. 

Our spur of the moment decision to capture their growing family on Thanksgiving day resulted in exactly what I shoot for--  pretty images that speak loud with memories. Thank you Norah and Cody and Baby Kuhn for allowing me to get my photog-fix while on vacation and for continuing to foster friendship with me and my family from afar.

xoxo Amanda

Mountains and Wildflowers {Casper, WY}

Sometimes, I take spontaneous vacations.

Most recently, I traveled alone with my two children {2.5 yrs and 2.5 months} to Casper, WY, to spend time with my mom, stepdad, brother, sister-in-law, and niece. I had been wanting to go visit them since my son was born, but didn't feel as though I had the courage to do it. One day, with some encouragement from my husband, I worked up the courage and bought the tickets to depart the following week. I went! And I survived! Mind you, I felt like I was losing my mind from all of the stares I got with two children in tow in the airport, but a screaming toddler kept me focused.

This trip was pure gold. Mainly because it meant unlimited time with my mom to do whatever we felt like most days. But also because I got to see a little sliver of life out west for my family and it reminded me that home is where the people you love are, and that can be in more than one place. 

Behind the camera is my happy place, and I enjoyed being able to capture nature and my kiddos candidly. I hope you enjoy this view, too. 

{Somehow not pictured are my sweet brother and his beautiful wife. Gah! Next time!}

My fall has booked right up and sessions are very limited-- if you haven't booked yours yet, do it today

The Nowaske Family {Birmingham, MI}

It’s spring! That means more sessions outdoors and that makes me really, really happy. Green grass and trees and new life blooming everywhere as the backdrop to portraits excites me. 

Carolyn and I became friends {through a dear friend} rather recently but I’d say we’ve quickly jumped into each others lives. When I had the opportunity to take photographs of her family, as usual, I was equally honored and nervous to attempt at this role for them. Honestly, I cannot get over how friends new and old continue to trust me with taking their photographs and I hope it never ends. As I am able {currently 32 weeks pregnant, and chasing around a toddler!}, Jesus continues to provide clients and new experiences that continue to bring me so much joy. I believe that work is GOOD. And I hope to never cease to recognize that all good things come from His gracious hands. 

With the light drastically more generous during this session than the others I’ve had recently, I felt much more free to capture candid moments without meticulously checking composition. It made for a very laid back session with the Carolyn, Jeff, Evan, and Joslyn, in which I gladly got to know them better as a family! 

Thank you Nowaskes for a lovely morning and for your friendship! 

And for those who continue to tune in to my photo sharing and personal thoughts about life currently {and those stopping by for the first time!}-- thanks a million. I'm genuinely open to feedback or encouragement or collaboration and I'd love to hear from you! Contact me here!

xo Amanda


Baby Clio {Boston to Michigan}

Lately I've had a {very welcomed} upsurge of newborn sessions, and anticipate more in the future {yay!}. Little Clio and her parents were visiting family in Rochester, Michigan, from Boston. I'm thankful for good friends and connections like this that keep me doing what I love. What's more, I'm thankful for the individuals who continue to trust me behind the camera. Honored, really.

Clio is a precious babe with personality and the strongest neck I've ever seen on an eight week old. She was content and sweet and loved looking at her mama. As it should be. 

Towards the end of our mini-session, Clio made it clear she was tuckered out and needed to catnap. With a little soothing from mom, she dozed off; her sweet face was peaceful and still content as she dreamed.  

I had more laughs in this mini session than I've had in a while-- thank you baby Clio for being so sweet, making me laugh, and reminding me of the squishy newborn joy the babe growing inside me is going to bring in just a few short months.