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Des Moines and Waukee Family and Newborn Photographer

About Me

I’m Mandy of april + august photography, Des Moines Newborn, Child + Family Photographer, aka total Mamarazzi.   I'm a wife, mom, and lover of all things Chick Fil-A.  I feel like I am not fully functional until I've had 3 cups of coffee (at the minimum.. then it's on to Diet Dr. Pepper, Sparkling Ice Caffeine or a Bubbl'r!!).   As a natural-born night owl, I face the daily struggle of choosing between a nap and being productive.  I love taking pictures so much, that if I had a million dollars, I'd photograph everyone for free... But I don't have a million dollars (total bummer), so I work from home so I can be available for my children while they are young.  


I grew up in New England and met my husband while he was stationed in Norfolk, Virginia while serving in the US Navy.  We had our first son in 2009 while we lived in Florida.  Before he turned a year old, we decided to relocate to Des Moines, Iowa, where we live now. 

I’ve been documenting for other moms since 2013. 

If I had to describe my photographic style in three words, I would choose candid, vibrant and emotive.

  • Candid, because my main goal in every photo I take is to capture the realness of my subject.  I would rather have an imperfect image filled with emotion than a technically perfect photo that is lifeless.

  • Vibrant, because I love seeing brightness and vivid colors in photos and strive to include this by bringing along a blanket or encouraging families to play up patterns and colors. 

  • Lastly, I would choose Emotive as my third word.  I would like to think that my photos express some sort of feeling; whether it’s a baby giggling or a mom comforting her child.  It has to express something.  I’m always trying to encourage closeness in the family and emphasize hugging and touching.  I want to feel the connection when I personally view the photo.  I show up to every session with an open heart and hope that it catches on and I can document it.  

I’ve always been intrigued by photography and used to coax my younger siblings to perform as models for me while I snapped away on my 35mm film camera.  It wasn’t until I had my daughter in 2012 that I felt a strong desire to create something that could help me to cement the memories of childhood and knew photography was the way to go.

I'm what you would consider a Shoot & Share photographer.  I believe that the cost of the session should include giving you the digital files, as opposed to just selling prints and products (all online galleries do have the option to purchase products;  but I take these pictures for you, I don't want to keep them for my wall)  I want to build a relationship with the families I photograph.  I would love to work together frequently and to treat everyone I work with as my friends.  I aim to make our session together light and fun.  I strive to capture real emotions to create images that you will cherish for a long time.  In the end, I want you to feel free to share your digital files of those you love most with anyone you choose!

Des Moines and Waukee Family and Newborn Photographer
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