Stephanie Sunberg Photography: Blog en-us (C) Stephanie Sunberg Photography (Stephanie Sunberg Photography) Mon, 07 Aug 2017 07:48:00 GMT Mon, 07 Aug 2017 07:48:00 GMT Stephanie Sunberg Photography: Blog 80 120 Pompeii in 35mm It's officially been a month since returning from what felt more like home than anywhere else, Italy. For three months I lived, I photographed, and  I fell in love.

It's time to start sharing my stories. 

I plan to make a printed zine for those of you interested in physically possessing these memories to keep on the coffee table or to adorn a perfectly cluttered bookshelf. 

I did myself the biggest favor this trip overseas and packed up a bag full of film for my few months of meandering. During the month of May I spent all month in the Amalfi Coast region, mainly Positano,. This time around I finally made it to Pompeii after bypassing it the last time was here a few years ago. I will post another blog with my digital photographs but for now I'd like to share only film to separate the two. Especially since I shoot film differently than I shoot digitally. 

I never expected to see so much life taking over the ruins that were Pompeii. The poppies were flourishing in the sun and the heat, looking like fields of fire.

We spent an entire day getting lost in the city. You can't help but to enter every building and home and try to imagine living in this place. I can only imagine it being paradise before it turned into Hell. 




]]> (Stephanie Sunberg Photography) 35mm advertisement american blog blogger destination destination wedding europe european photographer explore feature film film camera film photography flights food hotel italian italy italy wedding photographer kodak marketing minolta passport photographer photography pompeii portra summer tourism tourist travel photography traveler traveling photographer travle trip wedding wedding photographer Mon, 07 Aug 2017 07:38:07 GMT
Emily + Jono's Wedding, West Virginia E+J-129E+J-129


My wedding season of 2017 has officially begun!

I'm already getting excited for my 2018 weddings (trying not to get too ahead of myself here, but when you have a wedding in Ireland...) and I'm still booking for August, September, and October Midwest weddings for 2018!

So, before posting about all of the new weddings, I'd like to showcase one of my favorite weddings I've photographed for my dear friends, Emily and Jono. 

Their September wedding on Emily's family farm was pure romance, through and through. Starting with the ceremony overlooking the rolling hills in the Appalachian Mountains and ending with overlooking a scenic gorge at sunset I watched these two fall in love with each other all over again.   

The love these two have for one another is so real, so honest, and I need to share it with you.



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This wedding will forever hold a place in my heart. 

Thank you,  Jono + Emily





]]> (Stephanie Sunberg Photography) blog blogger booking bridal bride california chicago colorado destination destination wedding east coat france groom illinois iowa italy midwest minnesota new photography romantic spain stephanie stephanie sunberg stephanie sunberg photography travel traveling photographer wedding wedding dress wedding photographer west coast wedding photographer wisconsin york Mon, 31 Jul 2017 07:01:20 GMT
To L.A. and Beyond  

For those of you keeping up with my journeys across the globe for the last six months or so, I'd like to rewind to about four or five months ago... 



Teetering back and forth whether I should travel to California before jetting back to Europe again, I figured, why not go on another adventure?

Here I was, back in Minneapolis after learning some tough, yet important, life lessons on my own from making [more] stupid decisions. Part of me is glad that I made those decisions, because things happen for a reason. I wouldn't have been boarding a flight to LAX if I was still stuck in Iowa City.

 The only advice I can ever give to anyone is to try not to live  life with any regrets and always do whatever it is that makes you happiest, although, that is easier said than done just try.

I thought coming back home would be good for me but I found myself longing to see the unfamiliar again. Nobody tells you how coming home could be as depressing as it was.  It becomes easier to fall into bad, old habits. Especially when you see the people that probably weren't the best for you when all you're trying to do is reconnect with what you used to know, you remember that there's a reason why you left home in the first place. Maybe one day I'll want to call this place home, but for the moment, Minnesota just isn't enough. Having no photoshoots for the week meant I had no reason not to go, so I boarded a flight to Los Angeles, CA the next morning. 

Bags packed and camera clung to my shoulder, I was ready to leave Minnesota again. 


Jonah and John had been traveling across the country documenting their time spent in Jonah's trusty Ford Taurus, Airbnb's, friend's couches, and the most scenic destinations in North America for The Great North American Tour.

We talked about me making it out to meet them along the way, which one thing people should know about me is when I say I'll travel to come visit you somewhere, I mean it.

I can't thank Jonah and John enough for the invitation, the journey, and the memories. edit-4edit-4

Landing in LAX at 9AM, groggy from only two hours of sleep, I come down the escalator to see Jonah, with his camera in hand, awaiting my arrival at the airport. I was so happy to see that bashful smile of his. Made our way to the car and headed for that LA traffic. We drove back to Beverly Glenn area where he was staying with Anna and John. Both from Iowa as well, checking out LA to make the big move in the near future. I've always thought maybe I would be happy in California. People always tell me I come off as a SoCal girl... So, this trip I decided to take note of my surroundings as to how they made me feel, especially to consider for my next home, temporary or not.

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Jonah's talents go far beyond just videography. His love for film made him someone I could easily connect with.

He has truly been an inspiration to me in pursuing work that he's passionate about and staying true to the art of film. 

The shots he snagged of me are 120mm film, I think he was happy to have a new subject to photograph on the second leg of this trip (no offense John ;)



I wish I would've flown out earlier to enjoy more time with these two lovebirds as well as Jonah. 

I don't think I've ever laughed that hard at absolutely nothing when we were slap happy, sunburnt, and exhausted waiting for our dinner at In-In-Out Burger.

But those are the moments we never forget, right?

The love and the laughter. 


California has such spirit and radiating energy for the creative souls. Instantly you feel like you're a part of a community, everyone is there chasing a similar dream. 

Here are some shots from a perfect day spent at Manhattan Beach:


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I was supposed to stay in Los Angeles for about a week but I had such a wonderful time with Jonah, John, and Anna I didn't want it to end. Jonah told me they were headed to San Fransisco the next morning after dropping Anna off at the airport and there was enough room in the back of the car as long as I didn't mind squeezing in next to the camera gear.

Leave it to me to make a spur of the moment decision to road trip over 1,000 miles up the West Coast. 

Next Stop: San Fransisco 

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We drove all day and all night not stopping until close to midnight. I reached out to my cousin, Jenna, that lives in San Fransisco and she offered me a warm bed and puppy snuggles for the night. Thank you, Jenna! Isn't that the best part of traveling, seeing familiar faces in foreign places? It proves this world is smaller than we all seem to believe. 

The next morning we were up bright and early. Jenna and I took the ferry into the city and said our goodbyes. I walk outside right as Jonah and John pull up to the curb. We were ready to start our day as tourists at the Fisherman's Wharf. Our first order of business: Coffee.

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After the Fisherman's Wharf we'd had our fix of seagulls and the smell of lobster rolls that we so badly wanted but it was still too early in the morning to have. Our check in time for the Airbnb we booked wasn't until 1pm so we had all morning to kill being it was only 9am. The Mission District was suggested by a few for some thrifting and street shooting. What used to be heavily populated by latinos still is but has it's fair share of homeless occupying almost every street corner and lots of car break ins that seemed like the norm to locals. The number of homeless people was something I had to get used to. I lived in New York City for a little while and although the homeless problem there is pretty bad, nothing compared to San Fransisco. 


Anyways, our peers were right about Mission District. If you're looking to do some wicked street shooting come here for a few hours. The colors, the people, the old cars.   edit-15edit-15 edit-68edit-68 edit-65edit-65 edit-33edit-33 edit-61edit-61 edit-17edit-17 edit-32edit-32         edit-96edit-96


It started to get closer to check in time so we went back to the car in search for what turned out to be the sweetest Airbnb right around the corner from Haight-Ashbury. Although, we had no idea what we were getting ourselves into being in this area...  edit-30edit-30

This area still prides itself as the start and rise of the hippie movement of San Fransisco in the early 60s. It's now a tourist attraction for those visiting but also one of the best spots I've seen for some rad vintage shops. My little hippie soul was in heaven surrounded by retro dresses, suede jackets, and turquoise jewelry. 

The people were quite interesting, to say the least. A large number of drifters whom absolutely intrigue me. Back in Columbia, MO, during my undergrad I met a few young drifters from all over the country just hanging out, living life day to day, not sure where they would be tomorrow. I remember sitting there with them for over an hour listening to them jam out together and bullshit. They let me photograph them and I gave them a few dollars each for their time and smiles. Unfortunately, in Haight-Ashbury area I wouldn't recommend trying to photograph these travelers. They are not afraid to harass you and possibly even take your camera (something I was told by locals).

I did however try to sneak a few here and there.

edit-14edit-14 Our Airbnb was stunning. A photographer and videographer's dream flooded with natural light, white walls, and charming details.

Jonah took full advantage of this picturesque room and caught a quiet moment of me... edit-50edit-50

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The most beautiful place we wandered to were the Sutro Baths along the coast. A little history behind the Sutro Baths, in 1896 they opened as the World's largest indoor swimming establishment built by the former mayor of San Fransisco, but in 1966 it was destroyed by a fire later determined to be arson. The ruins are an urban playground for photographer's, hikers, and explorers with beaches, caves, colorful rock formations, and rough waters leaving you drenched if you're not careful.

We were blessed with rain and wind.


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Later that night we got to meet up with an old friend of mine that recently moved to San Fransisco, Bryn. Unfortunately I didn't get any good photos of us since that night consisted of too m any tequila shots mixed with remincing over Pacificos with lime. I woke up the next morning remembering why I don't take shots now that I'm 24 and had to endure a brutal hangover. Jonah suffered through it with me while we got coffee, explored more of the city, and found a film shop to develop and pick up a few more rolls of film. That night all I wanted was Thai food (like I always do when I'm hungover or feeling sick) so he hunted for the nearest spot which ended up being one of the best Thai restaurants in the area. The lights were dreamy inside. I was finally able to look at a screen at this point and brought my camera to dinner with me to make a portrait or two

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The next morning we packed up and headed towards Portland.

 This would be my last leg of the trip... but we'll pick up on that next blog posting.


Thank you for your eyes and time, my friends.



]]> (Stephanie Sunberg Photography) blog blogger cali california canon creatives drive explore fisherman's wharf golden gate bridge la lifestyle mission passion photographer road trip san fransisco sf shoot stephanie sunberg stephanie sunberg photography street photographer sutro baths travel traveling photographer videographers west coast Thu, 27 Jul 2017 19:23:36 GMT
Amanda, Iowa City Hello +

Another fun shoot with Amanda that I thought I'd share with the world because she's damn hot... So, here's a little somethin' to get you through Monday.

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Love workin' with ya, lady




]]> (Stephanie Sunberg Photography) Blog Boudoir Boudoir Session Fashion Fit Fitness Freelance Health Iowa Iowa City Iowa Photographer Lifestyle Lingerie Midwest Minneapolis Minnesota Minnesota Photographer Photographer Photography Photoshoot Portrait Portrait Photography Sexy Stephanie Sunberg Stephanie Sunberg Photography Style Workout blogger photoshoot Mon, 30 Jan 2017 22:43:23 GMT
First Look for Emily + Jono, West Virginia Hello +

Back in September I had the honor of shooting my first college friend's wedding out in West Virginia on her family estate. With rolling hills, fluffy cows, and the most wonderful, genuine people, it was a fairytale. Everything about this weekend was so intimate and pure and one of the most memorable moments was documenting the first look.

Emily was a STUNNING bride.

Always at ease and that smile on her face, she's the type that draws your attention the minute she walks into the room. 




Emily + Jono chose to do their first look in front of the family chapel just across the way from the farm house. Luckily it was mostly in the shade which really helped on such a hot, sunny day.   

This was my first destination wedding and I couldn't have worked with a better couple and family. They made me feel so incredibly welcome.

Unfortunately it had taken me longer to edit this wedding than I anticipated due to some personal problems that I couldn't seem to avoid no matter what I tried to do. A sick puppy with lymphoma and then going through a recent breakup was never planned. As a photographer you want to pride yourself in quick turn around time, so for that I hold myself accountable, and I thank Emily + Jono for having been so patient to see your incredible day through my photographs.

Today I decided to give you all just a glimpse inside of their love.   

The First Look says it all. 

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The love these two have for one another was something I hadn't quite seen before in a younger couple. They were so gentle, laughing all of the time, and no problems ever phased them. It's something you see in a couple after 20 years of being in love, but I think they've already got it figured out...

More blog posts to come of Emily + Jono's West Virginia Wedding.




]]> (Stephanie Sunberg Photography) Blog Boho Boho Wedding Bride Destination Destination Wedding Engagement First Look Flower Crown Flowers Groom Hills Hug Iowa Kiss Love Midwest Mountains Photographer Photography Stephanie Sunberg Stephanie Sunberg Photography Travel Wedding Wedding Photographer West Virginia blogger lovers midwest photo photoshoot wedding Fri, 13 Jan 2017 17:04:07 GMT
Jean-Yves + Annie, France  

It's an early morning to rise again on the Guillou Fern Island Farm in rural Quimper, France

. Jean-Yves and Annie were up milking the cows at 8am in the frigid, foggy morning. I walked around the farm with Ashley again, this time with my mother and little brother visiting the farm.



After the morning milking, Jean-Yves and Annie had some down time. I decided to grab my camera now that I finally get the chance to capture the tender love these two have for each other. The amount of books in their house made my heart sing. I could sit and watch them read together all day long. There was great comfort in their silence. 



When I think about what kind of person I want to grow old with it will be hard not to compare this [imaginary] person to Jean-Yves and the way he loves his beloved Annie. Jean-Yves picked up his guitar to sing his favorite, Bob Dylan. Annie watched, still blushing and smiling. Singing along with Jean-Yves, Annie's hair swayed side to side, in sync to her body moving to the rhythm of his voice.



Annie got up reaching for Jean-Yves hands to follow her. They headed for the door grabbing their jackets and shoes on the way out. I wasn't sure where we were about to go. Annie tries to tell Jean-Yves to translate, "we are headed for the tree, Annie's favorite tree." I grab my jacket and try to catch up. They stop for a moment, probably waiting for me as I couldn't get my boots zipped while my socks were falling down to my toes. I look up, finger on the trigger, focus, and shoot, staying silent watching as the moment continues...



We went out to see her favorite tree that Jean-Yves told me she planted around ten years ago, a tree from Virginia, if I do recall correctly. She showed me her favorite part of the tree where the bark curves perfectly into a pattern of stripes that spiral around the middle of the tree. Annie and Jean-Yves chased each other around the tree, playing in the leaves, he grabs her to warm her up in the cold.



I gave them a moment to take in the warmth from the sun, he held her closer, keeping his lips against her forehead as she spoke to him. They keep laughing and Annie took off running back to the farmhouse. She wanted warmer clothes, as did I...


Annie added more wood the fire. We took our time warming up before heading out for a walk with each of their pups. 



After this moment passed I had to go back to make sure I caught every second of it... That look he gave her, the way she held him in her hands, it's a moment I will hold with me forever. I found myself journaling later that day about this. I remember thinking that I have yet to be looked at like that, so infatuated, so purely honest and completely mutual. Thought maybe I had, but I don't think it was real.. Not like this. This was thirty years in the making. Thirty years of blood, sweat, tears, and hopefully an immense amount of love. 

Such tender moments...




I can't thank the Guillou family enough for sharing their warm home and meaningful moments with me.  

You've taught me a lot during my stay... about myself; learning how to listen and communicate with a language barrier. About love; seeing Ashley and Fanch's new, tender love with a growing family of soon-to-be three, along with Annie and Jean-Yves' thirty years of love for each other. This simpler way of life has left its mark on me. 

Bisous, bisous



]]> (Stephanie Sunberg Photography) Couples Couples Session Europe France Love Marriage Midwest Paris Photographer Photography Quimper Stephanie Sunberg Travel Wedding Photographer anniversary blogger books candid destination fall family farm life lovers midwest moments passport photographs photos photoshoot play read rural simple wedding winter Mon, 02 Jan 2017 22:04:44 GMT
Versailles: A Mini Series Today we visited Chateau de Versailles and it was everything I've been told it would be. I was happy to be there and to see the beautiful structure and its interiors but I wasn't compelled to take photos of the grounds or any of the art...

We entered one of the many great halls. I sat on the floor. Looking up I watched as the tourist zombies meandered listening to the voices from above.

These photos followed...

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]]> (Stephanie Sunberg Photography) Art Fine Art France Mini Series Paris Photo Series Photographer Photography Series Stephanie Sunberg Stephanie Sunberg Photography Travel Versailles Voices Fri, 02 Dec 2016 01:55:33 GMT
Fall Mornings at the Guillou Organic Dairy Farm An early morning wakeup call from my anxious thoughts woke me at 6am, on the dot. I was happy about that for the first time in quite some time. I went downstairs to find coffee was freshly brewed and Jean Yves was gathering wood to build a fire to heat the house. We said our 'good mornings' and I sat down at the table with my computer and coffee as he sat on the chase to read his book. In silence we worked until 8am when Annie woke for the morning milking. Jean Yves followed her out the door and they started their day. 

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I got dressed and came downstairs to find Annie had left me a breakfast spread on the bar, a croissant, clementine, and toast with apple sauce. I was grateful for their small gestures of such warm hospitality. I finished eating my breakfast with Ashley and we got ready to see the farm. Bundled up in lots of layers we put on our winter jackets and work boots to take my first tour of the farm.

I stepped outside to feel the air was of course colder than I imagined it being. Bundled up to the nines and still don't think I was ready to feel the cold, not like this yet. Iowa City has barely gotten it's first frost and it's nearly December...

We arrived to the milking barn to watch Annie and Jean Yves doing the morning milking.  

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Being organic dairy farmers they only use essential oils for their dairy cows making me appreciate all their work even more.

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After watching the milking process we went to see the calves in another barn. These little guys were the sweetest beings. If only the bull wasn't in the same cage, I would've tried to snuggle up with one of these babies. The morning light was unreal. Watching their warm breath hit the cold air was mesmerizing. 

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Fanch so happy on his tractor! Next it was time to let out the chickens from the coop... and the terrifying goose. I had no idea those things were so vicious, we were chased out of the gate. Rude.. But we got quite the laugh from it after. Quimper (251 of 502)Quimper (251 of 502) Quimper (253 of 502)Quimper (253 of 502) Quimper (323 of 502)Quimper (323 of 502)           Quimper (283 of 502)Quimper (283 of 502)

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Mornings so calm and still... Makes you wonder why some of us choose the noise and chaos. 




]]> (Stephanie Sunberg Photography) Blog Calves Chickens Cows Dairy Dawn Documentary Farm Farmers France French Goose Guillou Hens Midwest Mornings Northern Organic Photographer Photography Quimper Rural Stephanie Sunberg Travel Winter coffee Wed, 30 Nov 2016 13:55:44 GMT
Quimper, France Life in Quimper, France is just as slow and quiet as I had imagined. It feels like the alternate world I would love to live in where vacation days trump work days, and incredibly enough this is real life for my friend, Ashley. She is newly married and she is expecting her first child with her husband, Fanch. They are truly the sweetest.

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I reached out to Ashley a few weeks ago when I was planning this trip. I had recently shot her little sister's engagement photos and will be photographing her wedding come August, and she had mentioned her sister now lived in France on her husband's family dairy farm gushed about her beautiful new life abroad. I remember daydreaming about such a life. It sounds like fairytale. I'm very thankful she allowed me to come visit so I wouldn't have to daydream any longer.

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We arrived by train yesterday morning, about 4.5 hours northwest of Paris.  Quimper (16 of 400)-2Quimper (16 of 400)-2 Quimper (75 of 400)Quimper (75 of 400)

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When we arrived Ashley was waiting for us at the train station and helped us find my mom and brother's Airbnb. Crepes were next for lunch and after lunch Ashley drove us to the coast to see the beach and cliffside. Quimper (141 of 400)Quimper (141 of 400)

Point de La Torche was so quaint and quiet. I can only imagine what it's like in the summer time bustling with tourists. It was strange seeing surfers walking by when we're bundled up with winter coats, hats, and gloves. 

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The ocean breeze felt cool, and refreshing on my face. I could taste the salt in the air. I wanted so badly to take my shoes off to feel the sand on my feet but of course the cold kept me from doing so. 

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We walked a circle up to the top of the cliffs and back down to where the surfers and paddle boarders took on the waves from the winds. 

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I chased the elderly couples that walked holding hands and exploring past the ropes we weren't allowed to cross. I couldn't get enough of them. Ashley caught on and now stops the car for me to take photos of old couples walking by.

Thank you, Ash. 



]]> (Stephanie Sunberg Photography) Beaches Cliffs Commercial Elopements Europe France Midwest North Passport Photographer Photographs Photography Quimper Surf Surfer Travel Traveling Photographer Weddings candid golden hour looks like film love lovers old sunset vibes winter young Mon, 28 Nov 2016 12:44:20 GMT
Kelsey + Anthony  


Today I am sharing the wonderful engagement session I shot in Minnesota at the beginning of October. 

These two were so much to shoot with and on top of that they were unbelievably cooperative and determined to help me get the exact shot I wanted for them. We started at a park on Lake Minnetonka and luckily beat the crowd of dozens of Homecoming high school students getting their photos taken.

Of course we had to shoot right at Golden Hour to get all of the shots needed for their beautiful (ok... maybe I'm being biased) engagement photos. The trees had just started to turn yet we dealt with a strange heat wave that afternoon but these two had no complaints. I absolutely love them and can't wait to photograph their wedding next Summer!

Meet Kelsey & Anthony.


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After getting the shots we wanted from the lake we were told there's an old farm house on the other side of the park that is usually rented out for private parties but...  three's a party, right?! We snuck through the fence and I'm so happy we did.

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Then the best part of the shoot happened.

A bonfire.

As the sun was getting close to setting I had an idea to take them to my old house since I knew my family was planning to have a bonfire that night. Kelsey and Anthony are total Minnesotans through and through and I absolutely love it. SO, what better way to end the night than a fall bonfire with s'mores and coffee?

 It was LIT. 

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Thank you again Kelsey & Anthony for allowing me the honor of capturing all of the love you two have for one each other. 

P.S. I'm apologize for all of the "That's what she said" jokes." This is going to be a fun wedding.



]]> (Stephanie Sunberg Photography) Engagement Lake Minnetonka Minneapolis Minnesota Minnetrista Mound Stephanie Sunberg autumn blankets blog blogger bonfire bride camp canon engagement ring engagement session fall fall fashion folk folk good freelance groom lake love mexican blanket midwest natural outdoors photography photoshoot rustic smores urban vsco wedding wedding photographer wilderness Tue, 25 Oct 2016 14:30:00 GMT
R.A.D Henna +Hello,

Another Autumn day, this one being gloomier than the last. Woke up a little later than expected cutting it close to our scheduled photo session at noon. With our french press rusting away I felt a little impulsive to run downtown and buy myself a Chemex. They're just so pretty, and damn do they make a good cup of coffee. Quickly returning home I lit some pumpkin spice candles and incense and started to boil water for the Chemex. Who knew that fall days would make you crave coffee and a henna session...  


 About thirty minutes later Rayna arrives with her henna kit in tow. Rayna, owner of R.A.D Henna is based in Des Moines,  IA and drove all that way just to do a collaborative session with me. Makes me really appreciate other artists and what they will do for their work. I was originally connected with Rayna through social media a while back but had yet to meet this talented lady in person. Then, while out in West Virginia, I made some new friends while photographing a wedding that reconnected us and finally got us together this time. To say that her work is stunning is an understatement. The skill and talent one must have to achieve this kind of work is pure brilliance. Rayna's steady hand and endless creativity really sets her apart as a henna artist based in the midwest. 

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 No doubt there has been a rise in henna seen throughout the fashion industry, which is really no surprise considering that it's such a beautiful and captivating art form.

Fun facts about Henna: Henna is the Persian name for a shrub known as Lawsonia inermis. It's native to Asia and the Mediterranean coast of Africa and now thrives in warmer climates all over the world. It has small, four-petaled flowers that produces a red dye which is what stains the skin with hennotannic acid, a dye that bonds with the collagen in the skin cells and keratin of fingernails and hair. The henna plant is one of the oldest cosmetics ever used to date and is extremely safe - so leave your worries behind.

Watching Rayna work was mesmerizing. Keep an eye out for this lady's name because she's definitely on her way to doing big things!

My gorgeous gal, Sarah Ziegenhorn, came over to be our hand model for the afternoon. We all sipped on coffee and listened to Sylvan Esso Radio on the porch taking in the scent of a fresh rainfall. 


The second session was shot at Sarah's adorable Moffitt that I couldn't help but sneak some extra photos of her bohemian bungalow. 


So many windows lit her entire first floor. I always think that's one of the most magical feelings - the warmth of light pouring into a space and allowing yourself to take it in and enjoy it. 


First thing's first - coffee. 

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This yoga teaching med school student is the definition of a total bad ass. I'm so glad I ran into her in the bathroom at the Clinton Street Social Club and gave her my number to shoot sometime. And yes, that's normally how I find my models. You just can't be afraid to put yourself out here in this industry.


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Above is what the henna looked like three days after the initial application.

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Thank you Rayna + Sarah



]]> (Stephanie Sunberg Photography) Stephanie Sunberg Photography bohemian boho bridal canon decor des moines henna henna designs henna tattoo home iowa iowa city lifestyle madewell midwest models moffitt photography photoshoot target tattoo urban wedding wedding henna wedding photographer Thu, 13 Oct 2016 15:00:00 GMT
Goo-Goo Gah-Gah for Baby Max Hello +

While in Minnesota for a weekend of work I got to finally meet and photograph this little stud, Max.

He was the sweetest little human on this planet. Barely 2 months old he did quite well for his first photo session, he even fell asleep halfway through the shoot which honestly made it a little easier on me to get some great shots of Mama Alex, because she is absolutely stunning.

Alex and her husband Derek just moved into their new cozy home they just built. The lighting was great in every room (this is heaven for a photographer). It literally smelt and felt like Fall as soon as I walked through the front door. Great vibes.

This was also the first time little Max wore shoes in his entire 2 months of life! Glad I got to capture it for him :) 

He was the sweetest little babe and had the Blue Steel down better than Ben Stiller! 

If photographing babies doesn't give you [ladies] baby fever then I must be the only one... Because LOOK AT HOW CUTE HE IS!


Photographing babies isn't for the faint of heart, but if you're patient enough to get the shot then have at it and have fun! It's quite rewarding seeing a new mom so happy having these moments captured to cherish forever. These are some of the happiest moments in our lives and words can't describe how amazing it is that my job is to capture them for my clients. So much love and happiness.







]]> (Stephanie Sunberg Photography) Blaine Fall Iowa Iowa City Love Midwest Minneapolis Minnesota Stephanie Sunberg autumn babies baby baby photography blog blogger family family portraits infants kids lifestyle lifestyle blogger newborn photography photoshoot travel Tue, 04 Oct 2016 22:03:09 GMT
From Paris, With Love ☽ Meet Andriana + Christian 


It seems as though everybody wants to go to the city of love with their lover. I wish I had gotten to, but instead I got to see another couple with a love so pure I fell in love just watching them.


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They met at a book reading about a year a some months ago and thank goodness they did. The world is a better place with their kind of love. 




a love that shines bright like no other.




Just look at Christian's face when he sees Andriana change into a white dress...







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sweeter than heaven and hotter than hell, these two.



So gentle, calm, and pure. Their romance was contagious making me miss my loved one. They acted as though nobody else was in the room, just the two of them. Even though there was a slight language barrier we never got lost in translation. 

They knew how to love and that was all they needed to know.

↞        ↠​


Christian puts on some James Brown to set the mood. I watched in aw as he swept Andriana off her feet. Literally.

Editing note: I decided to shoot this session with a super high ISO in order to get lots of grain. I think I just really miss film and I wanted to emulate that film look as much as possible. Fellow photographers, what is your take of shooting with high ISO? 







"The one thing that can solve most of our problems is dancing.
Sometimes you struggle so hard to feed your family one way, you forget to feed them the other way, with spiritual nourishment. Everybody needs that.
I just thank God for all of the blessings." - James Brown






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"from the day that i met you I stopped feeling afraid"




    " your arms I feel safe." 

↞        ↠​



I suppose I failed to mention Andriana being an aspiring model, she made my job incredibly easy...


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it was only a smile but my heart went wild.


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Then, this pillow fight happened and it was the greatest thing a photographer could ask for (and I didn't even have to!). Their laughter filled the room accompanied with such an incredible vibe.

We were all in sync with laughter and love..



their laugh.




her touch.



her kiss.



their love.







Love; it's what we all seem to strive for at the end of the day... It's what makes us want to get up in the morning, whether it's just the love for ourselves and wellbeing or for the one lying next to us. 

Keep on loving and life will be good to you in the end.


And this is why I do what I do, and love it with all of my love addicted heart. 




]]> (Stephanie Sunberg Photography) Couples Cuddle Dance Engagement France Kiss Light Love Paris Photography Pillow Fight Stephanie Sunberg Story Travel Wedding boho city film free people girl guy metropolitan model paris model photoshoot plants urban xo Thu, 25 Aug 2016 18:44:40 GMT
Summer Revival +Hello

This has been one heck of a Summer. I thank you all for keeping up with me. 

I'm excited to finally share this blog post from a mid summer shoot I did with Revival Clothing Store in Iowa City. 

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Revival is literally one of the only two places I shop in Iowa City, and they are the best when it comes to consignment or buying new.

With brands ranging from Dolce Vita & Free People footwear to Knot Sisters apparel or consigned Levi's for the win! 

You truly get the best of both worlds.


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This lifestyle shoot was SO much fun, hanging out, listening to some tunes in Teah Depover's beautiful cottage. 

The vibes were rad. 

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Wearing: Free People


Revival also has a sister shop right next door that has all of the apothecary your heart desires. These Harlow candles were dreamy. Slowly but surely I will be filling up my entire house with these babies.


Free People Kimono I'm learning that hats and bolo ties are the way to go.


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Free People kimonos + Candles = A happy Teah <3

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These babes remind me of Florence Welch from Florence and the Machines looking like angels in white. Heaven. 


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Knot Sisters Cactus Top

Alexis wearing Knot Sisters Cactus Top sipping on her matcha.

La Dolce Vita... trying to make a pun.. I suck lol but tell these girls aren't total goddesses in these booties!

Dolce Vita Shoes

Doing shoots like these are what make my job so fun and keep me driven.

I truly can't wait to keep working with Revival. 

Prepare yourselves for more to come in the near future!







]]> (Stephanie Sunberg Photography) 119 Apothecary Bohemian Boho Candles Chic Consignment Fashion Free People Harlow Iowa Iowa City Kimonos Knot Sisters Levis Lifestyle Midwest Photography Revival Revival Clothing Store Stephanie Stephanie Sunberg Stephanie Sunberg Photography Style Thrifted Urban Urban outfitters blog blogger Fri, 12 Aug 2016 18:36:59 GMT
Back Across the Pond Finally made my way back over the pond to my favorite continent. First stop: London Town! W59B0010W59B0010

It started off as a long journey having to drive all of the way to Chicago from Iowa City after not realizing there were no direct flights to ORD from CID, and if you are a non-rev then you will understand my stupidity with this one. I normally fly non-rev but wanted a confirmed seat this time around (totally regretting not having taken a chance because there are 10 open seats on the same flight - and in First Class). So here I drove 5 hours in awful traffic to get to ORD, then have to pay for parking, and then my 10:20PM redeye gets delayed... Lovely.

Another side note - don't fly a redeye thinking it will help you get on your destination's schedule. I think it did the exact opposite. 

Not to start this blog post off on the negative end but I'm realizing I was not fully prepared for everything this time around, shame on me. 

Once I arrived to LHR I took the tube to meet with my roomie from college. It was SO GREAT seeing her face again, especially in London where she's totally killin' it! 


She took me to the cutest little cafe after arriving to her dorm room called Eat, Shop, Do. I wanted to move into this place. White walls, wood floors, eclectic tables and kitchen ware. Bright pops of color from teapots and tea cups to cake stands. So sweet. 


This decor was the sweetest!


Ladies were there enjoying tea and cakes along with making flower crowns and playing board games.


Also the food was quite tasty. I wasn't sure to get while in London but I have read that Indian food is the way to go, so I ordered the only indian inspired item on the menu and was not disappointed! 


And so the people watching and street photography begins! 


It was more than a long day for me so I pretty much called it 'a day' after that. I went back to Mal's dorm and slept for a puny four hours before another long day of adventures. 





]]> (Stephanie Sunberg Photography) Abroad Blog Blogger Cafe Europe Food London Midwest Photographer Travel Wed, 27 Jul 2016 22:34:40 GMT
Teah + Logan: Home Friday morning couldn't have started off any better than this: fresh brewed coffee when I walked in the door to meet Teah and Logan in their adorable cottage, homemade breakfast with greens and veggies picked from their garden, so much laughter and chatting about life in Iowa City.  Candles were burning, and the sun flooding their home with warmth and light. 

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These two lovebirds were beautiful to watch. This may sound strange, but part of why I love being a photographer is being placed in a setting to watch how couples cohabit together. How they interact, love, play, maybe even fight.. One class that particularly caught my attention in college (besides photography) was Intimate Relationships. I loved learning about what makes a couple stay together and the culprits that cause them to fail. When you step into someone's home you're immediately out of your comfort zone and in someone else's. It's a scary, yet wonderful feeling. 


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These two have such a magical love story falling in love under the full moon. Teah and Logan are high school sweethearts and moved from the Quad Cities to Iowa City together for school. Married in 2013 they seem as though their love is still fresh and new. 

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More love and coffee, please....

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"You are my sun, my moon, and all of my starts." - E.E. Cummings

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Also, every inch of their house was absolutely stunning. White walls, sun filled rooms, and a total desert bohemian vibe. Plants surrounded you with kitties purring for attention and their spunky pup, Monster talking like he's running the show!


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Considering Logan & Teah live only a stone's throw away, you will be seeing a lot more them on my blog! 




]]> (Stephanie Sunberg Photography) Engagement Iowa Iowa City, Knot Sisters, Minneapolis Minnesota Photography Revival Wedding Wedding Photographer, anthropologie bohemian breakfast coffee desert dresses home intimate midwest photoshoot style urban urban outfitters, Tue, 21 Jun 2016 03:36:01 GMT
Mornings at Sicily [Boutique]  

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Last Tuesday called for an early morning photo shoot with Iowa City's own Sicily Boutique. The sun was shining so bright lighting up their beautiful lofty, white space. With floor to ceiling windows it was a dreamy location to shoot. It makes you wish you could move right in and call it your own. 

Working with Neda and Linsie I've learned to expand my work aesthetic by trying to step outside of my usual "lifestyle, free-spirited" ways. This time incorporating more of a fine art aesthetic. I absolutely loved how these photos turned out for their current Spring/Summer looks. 


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Linsie was my model for the day (and lucky for me she really knows how to work it in front of the camera)! Featured outfit to the left is a Carven blouse and Opening Ceremony skirt with Martiniano leather flats.The jumper Linsie is wearing above is Lauren Manoogian. We managed to get in about 5 outfits for this session but I'll also feature some images from the first session as well which was Winter 2015/16. They became some of my favorite fashion photos taken thus far. 

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Though not quite my style, this Carven dress was absolutely beautiful on Linsie. Totally form fitted with a little flare of a skater skirt. It photographed so well! For some reason I'm obsessed with that baby bun Linsie did to show the zipper detail. 



This is a favorite of mine from the Winter shoot we did around January. Everything about these sweaters is comfy, warm, and so stylish. I just want to wear that sweater forever. 


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The white top is a Maryam Nassir Zadeh piece that has incredible structure yet still having that relaxed look. I was also a huge fan of Linsie's skinny black jeans by Frame Denim. The gold details make them just that much better!

If you're in Iowa City or passing through, make sure to check out Sicily Boutique for high end fashion brands. They have everything from denim to rings & things. Their minimalism branding is on point for the modern, urban chic woman needing anything from basics to evening wear. 

Check them out!



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]]> (Stephanie Sunberg Photography) Boutiques Carven Denim Dresses FRAME Martiniano, Maryam Nassir Zadeh, Opening Ceremony, Sicily Boutique, blouse chic fashion fashion photography, iowa city, jumper looks minimalist photographer photoshoot skirts style urban women's fashion, Wed, 08 Jun 2016 22:09:03 GMT
Derek + Naomi Engagement Finally got around to writing another blog post (I know, I'm not the best at this) but I really wanted to share this engagement shoot I did a couple of weeks ago!



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Naomi is a friend of mine and a previous coworker from The Clinton Street Social Club in Iowa City. I was SO excited when she reached out to me to document their engagement announcement! It was an absolute blast. 


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Naomi and Derek had their first date at The High Grounds Coffee Shop so it was only fitting we start the shoot there (plus who doesn't love a coffee shop shoot?). They even had their special coffee mugs in tow. The lighting in this place was so great. 


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After a cup of coffee and the sweetest snuggles between Naomi and Derek we ventured off to a park up the street for some magical shots in the woods with their pup Data. He was adorable! Data pretty much stole the show. 


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I loved how fun and easy these two were to work with! They came totally prepared with a change of outfits, blankets, props, etc. And any photographer will tell you this makes the photoshoot process even better. We love it when you have ideas for us as well, because most of the time we just go with the flow and make do with what we have - so the more you bring to the table the more variety we can give you! 


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Last stop was the Haunted Book Shop - not as creepy as it sounds, quite charming instead. Being that their wedding theme is books this worked perfectly (and it wasn't even in our initial plans). Naomi then told me Derek was an English major and loves to read Naomi poetry so it was another must for locations to shoot with them. So romantic. I couldn't get enough! 



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I could've kept shooting with Naomi and Derek for hours more! The detail shots I captured make me so giddy inside when I look at them. That's when you know you rocked it! So much love, and so much fun. Cheers to these two loves!



Stephanie Sunberg Photography

]]> (Stephanie Sunberg Photography) Blog Blogger Bookshops Bride Chicago Coffee Document Engagement Explore Forever Freelance Hike Iowa Midwest Minneapolis Read Romance Shop Trails bride city engagement groom love photoshoot shoot weddings Mon, 30 May 2016 18:42:23 GMT
Champagne and Sunshine Iowa City has been stuck in a gloomy, fog of cold weather and grey days but Sunday felt like spring might be coming early. 

I set up an informal shoot with my friend Cat Summers and invited our friend Keara to join in on the fun. She was so kind to invite us to her house for a hangout/photoshoot session and everything about this day was absolute perfection.

I was in awe and completely envious at the same time when walking into a friend's apartment for the first time and see that it looks like it was featured in the last Anthropologie catalog. Windows throughout her bright, white and airy apartment were open to let in the fresh aromas from the outdoors.

Coming from the speakers was French music making me feel like I was back in Paris - all we needed were some macarroons and coffee. To substitute for the coffee I brought champagne and a bouquet of fresh, white flowers for Cat to enjoy. I am so in love with some of the images I captured of this lovely moment. I think that's what I love most about being a photographer - you see something so perfect and only you're able to capture the moment but now everyone can see it and feel it. Can't you almost smell the flowers from this photo? 


A little while later my darling friend, Keara, walks in the door and it's a party. 

We pop some champagne, snack on some goodie's from Lucky's Market and enjoy each other's company while I photograph what a wonderful time we were having. It's amazing what some sunlight, champagne, and laughter can do for your soul.


I felt the need to write about this day because it has been a while since feeling this calm and happy. It can be hard to always stay happy and cheery when you can't spend your days exploring the outdoors or traveling to new places. I actually feel as though I could taste the crisp outside air and it made me so very happy and gave me hope for the coming of warmer months ahead. 


Cat's vintage and bohemian vibe is on point with everything of her own and even the way she presents herself. She's a beautiful soul and can't wait to keep working with her.

Check out more photos from this gorgeous day in the album Cat Summers.


Stephanie a. Sunberg

]]> (Stephanie Sunberg Photography) Bohemian Champagne Fashion Funday Iowa City, Photography Shop Local Sunday Sunny Thrifted Vintage Mon, 08 Feb 2016 23:57:28 GMT
Quick Trip to Amsterdam Hello.

Today is my very first blog post and I'm a bit nervous about it (considering I sucked at English due to growing up learning English and Spanish at the same time - thanks Mom). Exactly a week ago I woke up in Amsterdam and two days later I was back in Iowa City and here is how it all went down.

Back on US soil, I made it through 72 hours of multiple flights, most likely a liter of coffee, and an entire 32G memory card. My trip to Amsterdam and back was a success. My mom, my little brother and I spent two nights and two days exploring on our impromptu trip to Holland.

On Friday, Jan. 22 my mom called to tell me about her plans to take my brother on his first 747 flight which I wanted to take part in (side note: my stepfather is a Delta pilot which allows us to hop on a plane with open seats whenever we please). So, finally, an opportunity to travel abroad and I did everything not to miss it. After reworking my schedule I made it happen.

Charged up my camera batteries, collected extra memory cards and packed a backpack for our mini-vacay abroad! Lesson I've learned after multiple trips overseas: backpacks suck! Bring a carryon suitcase with non-fixed wheels and a small backpack or satchel to use for liquids, cameras, and travel documents. Bumping into others on trains and planes makes the fact that you're an American tourist even worse (in all honesty) and your back will thank you later. 

Fly like BirdLittle bird friend in Detroit

Sunday morning I was up and on my way to Cedar Rapids airport to catch a flight to Detroit, MI to meet my mom and little brother, Connor. Managing to make the first flight to Detroit at 7:20AM I had roughly 9 hours to kill before our flight to Amsterdam. If only we were smart and tried to sleep for just an hour, that would have made all the difference. But we didn't. We ate, and ate... Ate some more. Chugged coffee like I was trying to win a contest, and sat on Instagram for far too long. Then 6 o'clock rolled around we were ready to board! Connor was antsy at this point. After staring at 747s all day he just wanted to see the inside for once. We spotted the pilot on his way in to the beast of plane and Connor took a chance at asking the pilot some questions. Might I add this was the most adorable thing I've ever witnessed. 

Connor: "Hello Captain, my name is Connor. Are you flying the 747 today?"

Captain: "Hello Connor, nice to meet you, and indeed I am. Is this your first time in a 747?"

Connor: "Yeah. We're flying to Amsterdam just so I can fly in one before they are gone forever."

Captain: "Smart move. Well, if you board early come up and see me in the cockpit. Your mom can take some photos of you. Sound good?"

Connor: "Yeah. That'd be cool. I have one question, though. Where is the seatbelt sign button? I can't find it in my air simulator when I fly a 747."

Captain: "It's the last button on the bottom of the center console."

Connor: "Cool. Thanks."

Connor Co Pilot of our 747

I melted at how cool, calm, and collected Connor acted in front of what was like seeing a celebrity through his eyes. It was NBD. 

About 30 minutes later we were boarded and ready for takeoff. The flight felt like forever, especially with a baby crying four out of the six hours of the flight. Once morning came we landed at about 8AM and found our way to the tram leading us to Central Station. Our hotel, the Saint Nicholas, was only a five minute walk from Central Station and we made the mistake of taking a tram that lead us way too far past the hotel (lesson learned, trust your gut and don't be lazy). Once checking in to the hotel we were lucky to have our room ready so early in the morning. I was so excited to shower. We get to the room to find it's actually quite large for typical European hotels. The bathroom is also HUGE compared to most I've been in. I was given my own bed which made the trip even better. Right away we all got ourselves put back together from the long day of travel and got ready to explore. At this point we were all hangry and aggressive towards each other so we were on a hunt for food. 

As soon as we hit the streets it all came back to me, remembering which way was toward the Anne Frank Museum, which way toward big shopping stores, and remembering my favorite little spot to grab coffee. It kind of felt normal being there once again. 

toastable.My favorite little coffee shop in Amsterdam

We found a spot to grab some brunch along the same canal leading to Anne Frank's House. We wanted an English breakfast and went to the Greenwood Cafe & Tea Room. Lovely place with an outside patio, the door left open for customer and server access, and an open view of the kitchen. The owner, an older woman of England served us the most delicious salmon Egg's Benedict and cappuccino. Midmeal the exhaustion hit us all. Mom opted out of waiting in the Anne Frank Museum line for a nap back at the hotel. We all passed out instantly and napped for two, almost three hours. Once up again we went back out to explore. 

The Greenwood Cafe

Around 5:30PM we took a Lover's Canal Cruise for about an hour. It was so perfect and beautiful during the sunset. Not quite the golden hour with how cloudy and foggy it was, but the lighting was just fine for my camera. I started taking photos of the couple sitting with us on the cruise. The man and woman were both young, Dutch, and beautiful. I wish I would've asked if I could keep taking their photos. Maybe gotten their information to send them the photos too. Oh well. Next time? 

Lover's Canal CruiseYoung Love across the table

After the tour we went to Dam Square for some shopping. It started to get late and we needed food at this point. First mom suggested we grab a beer at the place we had one the last time we were in Amsterdam together. She got her Heineken and I got my Aflegem Tripel. Seriously, one of the best beers I've had. Connor sipped on a water while we all decided on what we wanted for dinner. I wanted traditional Dutch food but Connor wasn't ready for that. We compromised by going next door to a restaurant that had it all from Dutch to burgers. I got my favorite, split pea soup, my mom got her spare ribs, and Connor got Poffertjes (fluffy, mini pancakes) with whipped cream and chocolate - spoiled. After dinner we were off to bed to prepare ourselves for some city hopping the next day.

It was 5:30AM Central European Time, meaning almost midnight in the US. My internal clock was completely out of whack. I was tempted to get up and wander around to find some food and some perfect photo moments. Instead I laid in bed thinking of ways to fall back to sleep without any luck. Before I knew it the clock struck 9 o'clock and we were all already late to start our day but everyone else's sleep was much needed. We made it for a quick croissant with cheese in the hotel lobby and grabbed an espresso to go. Headed to Centraal Station for the ride to Madurodam. On the way we saw gorgeous windmills and cute sheep farms. I wish so badly I could've gotten off the train to capture some shots of it all. In Madurodam we went to the giant mini city museum. Kind of confusing, I know, but this place is great for all ages. It's an outdoor museum of all of Holland's most historic cities and landmarks made in miniature form for you to enjoy all at once. Adorbs doesn't even begin to describe it. Also, us vertically challenged people get to feel tall for once! Mom got full use of her selfie stick roaming around the mini cities. We spent about two hours going from mini city to mini city until the wind hurt our faces and we decided to head back to the train station.

Pigeons of Gouda

While looking for our train back I spotted the next train headed to Gouda. Mom had always wanted to go there - can't remember if she'd been already or not, found out it was only 20 minutes further south so we did it. It was a great idea. The ride there was even better with more windmills and farms. Once there it was only about a 10 minute walk to the Gouda Markt where cheese is usually traded in the plaza during every season but winter. We got dinner at an adorable Dutch brassarie where we enjoyed Gouda Soup, carpaccio, and some good beer. Our plan was to buy our mass amounts of cheese in Gouda until realizing the shops close early in such a small town at about 5:30PM. We missed our chance due to meandering through side streets. Oops.

Secret Garden of GoudaGetting lost in Gouda

We headed back to the central station to be on our way to Amsterdam again. It took about an hour to get back to Amsterdam and then we proceeded to hunt for cheese before our early morning flight back to the states. We found a cheese shop and got our fix of cheese samples and goods to take home. I don't AT ALL feel guilty after spending over $100 in cheese. I'm proud to say I bought myself one article of clothing while abroad this time and only focused on food, cheese, porcelain, and home goods - I think this means I'm growing up...

The plane ride home was the best. We were lucky enough to fly first class on the 747 with the same pilot that allowed us to come up to see the cockpit before. We went back up to the cockpit to say hello and give him a thank you gift for the last time. The pilot was a true hero for letting my little brother go back up to see the cockpit one more time before takeoff. He even gifted Connor with the flight map and trip information to study. Such a wonderful thing to do to keep Connor's dreams going of being a future pilot. We need more people like him in this world.

747 CockpitHanging out in the 747 cockpit. Thank you Captain Mark of Delta.

With a five course meal and two mimosas I conked out with a food coma and woke up back in Detroit. As much as people said it wouldn't be worth the six hour flight and only two days abroad they were wrong. Any moment of travel is worth it. Any chance you're given, GO. You're an absolute idiot to turn it down. Screw being practical. Make it work. 


Stephanie a. Sunberg  


]]> (Stephanie Sunberg Photography) Amsterdam Baby Beauty Delivery Events Fashion Iowa Iowa City Photographer Stephanie Sunberg Wedding Mon, 01 Feb 2016 19:50:18 GMT