Sheldon High School Class of 2017 {Haley}

How do I even start to describe this girl? I've known Haley and her family for over 6 years now, and I can't believe she's a senior already! She has a zest for life, loves to laugh, is fiercely loyal, and has such a giving heart. Her senior year is going to be so fulfilling- in addition to her schoolwork, Haley will be busy with her involvement in lacrosse, National Honors Society, and a work study program with the school finance office. She will also be playing a big part in the Mr & Ms Irish Pageant as the head coordinator and contestant! Mr & Mrs Irish is Sheldon High's "Kid's Helping Kids" program that raises money for Children's Miracle Network, which helps provide medical equipment vital in care for premature babies (as well as sick children and infants)  to Sacred Heart Medical Center.

Haley loves to serve, but she also loves to express her creativity through makeup, painting, and chalkboard lettering. Her talents also extend into the kitchen- she is a wonderful baker and a member of her school's cupcake club, whose profits all go to local charities. After graduation Haley plans to attend Brigham Young University, but for now she is focused on enjoying her last year of High School, as well as spending as much time as she can with her family and siblings, who are also her best friends. 

Sheldon High School senior girl takes senior photos outside of Eugene, Oregon.
Class of 2017 Sheldon High School senior girl wears long floral dress for pictures with McKenna Rachelle Photography

Haley's senior session took place just outside of Eugene, Oregon- she wanted to shoot on her family's property, where she spent a lot of her growing-up years. It couldn't have been a more gorgeous evening! 

Portland senior photographer based out of Hillsboro, Oregon travels to Eugene to take senior portraits.
High school senior photographer serves Portland, Hillsboro, and Beaverton Oregon. 

Desert Hillside Bridal Photos {Celeste & Tyler}

Celeste and Tyler's bridal session had me falling in love with Boise's landscapes- something I thought was impossible when we first moved to the area. I'm an Oregonian through and through, and after four years in eastern Idaho, I was desperately missing the evergreens of the Pacific Northwest. As opportunities opened up to us in Boise that we couldn't pass up, we made the move as I tried to keep an open mind. It didn't take long to find out that Boise is nothing like eastern Idaho (and nowhere near as cold), and it quickly felt like home! Now, after two years in Boise, we've found our way out to the Portland area, but I'll always have a soft spot for that high desert town that is friendly beyond belief. I'll never understand the "City of Trees" designation... but I'll let that one slide. We're lucky to have family in Eagle, so we will be able to visit often!  

Bride and Groom portraits on hillside at sunset with sagebrush.

Celeste and Tyler opted to take their bridal photos two weeks before their wedding at the Boise Temple so they could minimize the chaos of the day. This allowed us to shoot during golden hour, wherever they wanted- the foothills never disappoint! We had this spot all to ourselves until we were joined by a herd of deer who silently watched us from the hillside. 

Intimate sunset bridal photos with Oregon wedding photographer.
Young bride with lace wedding dress is twirled by her groom during bridal photography session.

This session was so relaxed, and I loved how much these two were able to just enjoy each other's company in excited anticipation for their wedding day. I have no doubts that Celeste and Tyler, truly best friends, will always stay so sweet to one another. 

Natural light fine art wedding photographer takes bridal photos in Portland, Oregon
Bride and groom embrace during bridal session with Oregon photographer McKenna Rachelle Photography.

Sunset Anniversary Session {Alyssa & Zach}

Life has brought us such a long way since Zach contacted me about a surprise engagement session years ago when he proposed to Alyssa! I truly love the friendships that evolve from client relationships, and these two are no exception. Getting together with them (and their new pup Zara) for some updated family photos to hang on their walls was such a fun reunion. And talk about the best clients ever- they drove five hours from Eastern Idaho so we could shoot together again!

Golden hour sunset engagement photos with dog, Northwest portrait photographer
Man's best friend photo shoot, dog photography with Oregon photographer
Sunset engagement photos with dog in grassy field with Pacific Northwest photographer, McKenna Rachelle Photography

Cliffside Prom Dress Senior Session {McCall}

Every once in a while all of the pieces fall perfectly into place for the making of something wonderful, and this session was exactly that! After we found out we were moving to Portland, Oregon, and I had to start turning down Summer sessions, I had been itching to pull together a personal project, to shoot for myself, and to push my creativity. As soon as I saw photos of McCall in her gorgeous beaded slate blue prom dress pop up on Facebook, I knew I needed to ask her to model for me. For anyone who knows McCall, there is no surprise that she graciously agreed to help out, even with a busy school schedule! 

High School senior girl wears prom dress for senior pictures.

A beautiful dress needs a location to match, and up on top of Boise's Table Rock couldn't have been a better fit. The cool greens of the sagebrush were such a compliment to the overall feel of this session, and the cliffside views speak for themselves!

Senior girl in blue beaded prom dress takes senior portraits on Table Rock.

As it the views weren't enough, the wind picked up toward sunset, allowing us to showcase the movement of the layers of tulle in McCall's dress (as well as that long thick hair every girl envies!). Obviously, she worked it and wore it beautifully! This evening convinced me that prom dress senior photos need to happen more often- plus, what girl doesn't want an excuse to wear their dress again?

Portland Oregon senior photographer, McKenna Rachelle Photography, photographs senior girl in flowing prom dress.

I kept telling McCall I wish dresses looked like this when I went to prom! I will always love my prom dress (pickups and all) and the memories associated with it, but seriously- that flowing tulle and intricately beaded gold bodice with the sheer back?? Stunning. 

Senior photographs on a cliffside among sagebrush.

I couldn't wrap up this post without telling you a little bit more about this amazing multi-talented young woman. McCall will be graduating as Senior President of Centennial High's class of 2017, and in her high school career she has played two years of basketball, three years of women's lacrosse, and participated in one season of cheer. She is also involved in the National Honor Society, mock trial team, and student council. Even with all of that, she still manages to find some free time to read her favorite author, Agatha Christie. 

Her favorite memory of her time in high school so far was at a basketball game she was cheering at- Centennial's boys team defeated the best team in the state with a buzzer beater! Of course all of the students went crazy, storming the court to congratulate the team in that chaotic crazy excitement that we all remember from our high school days!

McCall, thank you again and again for spending this evening with me- you are such an inspiring soul to be around, and I know your senior year is going to be a blast!

Portland Oregon photographer now booking Class of 2017 and Class of 2018 High school seniors.

Girl's Best Friend Senior Photos {Emily}

Emily and I met in downtown Boise, Idaho for a few photos at Freak Alley to start off her Senior photo session. For those of you in Oregon who are unfamiliar with Freak Alley, it is the largest outdoor mural gallery in the Northwest, constantly evolving and changing. To read more about the artists and the gallery, visit their page here

After a quick drive out to the foothills, the remainder of Emily's session was spent near Military Reserve Park with her sweet pooch who kept us on our toes with her never-ending energy. I loved seeing the relationship between the two- this dog seriously loves her human, and vice versa! 

McKenna Rachelle Photography photographs a high school senior girl and her dog in the Boise Foothills.
Girl and her dog take senior portraits in the Fall. 
Portland photographer takes High School senior portraits in the Fall at sunset. 

Golden Hour Senior Session {Rachel}

A girl after my own heart, Rachel has an interest in photography herself! She has quite a talent for product photography in particular, and I'm excited to see where she goes with it. No matter what she pursues, Rachel will no doubt be successful. Her love for learning and making a difference, coupled with a go-getter attitude is a recipe for success! I loved spending the evening with Rachel, laughing, and talking about her dreams for the future!

Oregon senior photographer, McKenna Rachelle photography, photographs senior girl in open field

We ended up shooting on some property in Eagle, Idaho that belonged to friends of Rachel's family, and we couldn't have asked for a better day. There was a little bit of rain as we started our session, but it quickly cleared up, allowing that golden hour sunshine to flood into our photos! Rachel's floral dress, fresh sunflower bouquet, tall leather boots and floppy hat gave off an Anthropologie vibe as we shot in open fields and along the wooden fence lining one edge of the property. She did her own hair and makeup- can you believe it?! Let's just keep adding to the list of this girl's talents!

Late Summer senior portraits in floral dress and floppy hat
Trendy senior girl takes senior photos outdoors in an open field
Country senior session in front of barn and fence with Oregon photographer

Piercing light-blue eyes and a gorgeous smile- Rachel is a classic beauty with a zest for life. It was an honor to take her senior photos as she's getting ready to embark on her next adventure to Brigham Young University!

Pacific Northwest senior photographer outdoor senior pictures

Eagle High School Class of 2016 {Austin}

It's not too often that I get to photograph high school senior guys, so this was a fun change for me! Austin adds so much fun and personality to our family- it's always a party or some kind of adventure when he's around! We wanted to get some of the traditional senior portraits and showcase his involvement with the Eagle High Lacrosse team, but also left room for some more fun and goofy shots as well, adventure backpack and all. 

Austin has been very involved in many organizations during high school, including student council (serving as the ASB co-president during his senior year), National Honors Society, speech and debate, and many choir groups. After graduation, Austin will be attending a Summer semester at Brigham Young University, then heading to Germany in September for two years to serve a mission for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. 

Outdoor portraits taken by Portland Senior Photographer
Senior lacrosse player graduates with the EHS class of 2016.
Portland high school senior photographer photographs in Boise, Idaho
Eagle High School lacrosse player takes senior photos with McKenna Rachelle Photography

Sunrise Picnic Engagement Session {Elaine & Phil}

Cheers for Elaine and Phil, who were up for meeting me in the early hours of the morning for their picnic-themed engagement session! I wasn't available to photograph their wedding day, so I was thrilled when Elaine still wanted to collaborate on their engagement photos for their save-the-dates. She wanted to create a unique session to showcase their couple personality, so we got to planning right away! 

Both Elaine and Phil are romantics, but they wanted to show off her sweet side and his fun & playful side. I feel that this picnic at sunrise fit them perfectly, as it allowed for a relaxed and intimate session where they felt free to joke, laugh, and simply enjoy each other's company.

Engagement photos at sunrise with Oregon wedding photographer, McKenna Rachelle Photography

Elaine is a photographer herself, and has a great eye for detail- she put together this super sweet picnic basket, complete with fresh flowers and macaroons (thanks for sharing them with me)! The light corals and blush pinks of the flowers subtly hinted at their wedding color palette. She also did a wonderful job coordinating their outfits for this chilly early Autumn morning. They opted for a dressy-casual look: he wore jeans and a grey blazer over a white button-up, and she wore a light pink dress with tall leather boots. I loved the touch of lace on her boot socks that complimented the lace on her dress.

Young couple engagement photos, picnic theme, wine, macarons 

Phil is an avid collector of comic books, and Elaine wanted to make sure we included some in a few of their engagement photos as we wrapped up our session. I love how she takes a genuine interest in what Phil loves- that's the kind of simple, selfless love that makes for a happy marriage!

Engagement session, morning picnic and comic books with Pacific Northwest photographer

First Look Bridal Session {Lauren & Thomas}

The first time a groom sees his future wife in her wedding dress is a beautiful moment full of love and emotion, whether it's seeing her turn and start walking down the aisle, or sharing a private moment together for a first look before their ceremony. 

For the bride and groom who opt to forego tradition, a first look allows couples to share a quiet, intimate moment with each other to talk, embrace, and take a few moments for themselves before all eyes are on them as they say "I do."  From a photography standpoint, we are then able to do formal couples photos as well as bridal party photos prior to the ceremony so then the new Mr. and Mrs. are free to enjoy their reception and party with their guests! 

Ultimately, the choice to do a first look or not is up to the bride and groom- whatever will bring them the most happiness on their day is the best decision! For Lauren and Thomas, they knew they wanted to take their bridal photos before their wedding, so it made sense to do a first look before the start of their session. I loved witnessing that look of pure love on Thomas' face as he turned around and saw his sweet Lauren!

First look bridal session photography in Boise park.
First look bridal session photography in Boise park.

Lauren and Thomas met in middle school, and each had a big crush on the other. When Thomas was 16, his family moved out of state, so the two went their separate ways and never expected to see each other again. 

High school graduation came and went, as did two years in Africa for Thomas and a college degree for Lauren. One (fateful?) day, a Facebook notification popped up, letting Lauren know that it was Thomas' birthday. On a whim, she wrote him a message on his wall, wishing him a happy birthday. He happened to respond, and the rest is history! The timing was perfect- she had accepted an internship in Utah, where he was living at the time.  The power of social media to reconnect old friends and help them find their happily ever after!

Bride and Groom under arbor with vines
Bridal Photos with Portland, Oregon wedding photographer, McKenna Rachelle Photography
Wedding photos at Kathryn Albertson park in Boise
Bridal portraits taken with groom during sunset at Kathryn Albertson Park in Boise, Idaho
Wedding dress details and bridal bouquet for bridal session with Portland, Oregon photographer

See that little white beaded heart on the back of Lauren's wedding dress? Her mom took beads from her own wedding dress and sewed this tiny heart onto the back of her daughter's dress. Such a beautiful interpretation of a bride's "something old!" 

Teton Idaho Wedding {Niki & Sky}

Niki and Sky's wedding day was the quintessential backyard wedding- simple and sweet, set against the country backdrop of small town Teton, Idaho, and filled with an overflowing love of friends and family members as they vowed their lives to one another.  I hope you can feel the emotion in these images that I do- I look back with so much fondness on this wedding, and anyone who is blessed to know Niki and Sky is well aware of the lasting impression they can leave on you, just by being the amazing and giving people that they are. Their foundation of love, friendship, and respect is so strong, that I have no doubt these two will find so much happiness and joy throughout their lives, no matter what life throws their way. Thank you Niki and Sky for your trust, your friendship, and for sharing your sweet love story! 

My heart was pounding with joy as Niki and Sky shared personalized wedding vows, exchanged rings, as well as their first kiss after they were pronounced husband and wife. As Niki was first telling me a little bit about her and Sky, she told me about how they met at a BBQ, how they went 4 wheeling and fishing, and fell in love along the way. I felt so connected to their love story, partially because parts of it mirrored my own. Dating in small Idaho towns brings carefree floats down the river and raw country entertainment of demolition derbies and figure 8 races- as couples, we shared these common experiences, and I loved being able to reminisce with Niki leading up to their wedding day!


We snuck away after the ceremony for bridal party photos, as well as photos of the bride and groom. Niki and Sky chose to take these photos where it all began, just minutes down the road at one of their favorite fishing spots. 

Niki shared her proposal story with me as we chatted about the meaning behind this little tucked-away path. 

"We had fished there all day just enjoying the warm weather and our dog playing in the water just relaxing. We had gone to friends BBQ later that evening, and then he told me he had left his wallet down where we had been fishing. He said he needed me to come help him find his wallet, so we went back to that spot. When we walked down, I saw that there was a picnic blanket laying right by the river which had a bunch of candles with my favorite wine and two wine glasses and chocolate covered strawberries. My fishing pole was there too, with the engagement ring on the hook! He then knelt down, proposed, and I said YES!!! I bawled of course, then my sisters and brother-in-law came popping out of the bushes and had it all on video!" 

Niki looked nothing short of stunning in her lace wedding dress. Those buttons all the way up the back, and the lace appliques over the sheer tulle back... Swoon-worthy!

Let's talk about all these handmade and DIY details! Their color palette of corals and creams tied together just lovely with the burlap and lace accents. And come on, those little fish on the "Mr" and "Mrs" signs? They thought of everything! With the help of friends and family, the rustic decor for this summer outdoor reception was executed beautifully, and brought an even deeper meaning to the day.

This naked cake and tiered cupcake creation by Cakes O' licious in Idaho Falls was the perfect fit for this wedding! I love that the fishing theme was subtly tied into the cake with this cute cake topper!

Confession. Father daughter dances ALWAYS get me teary-eyed. The bond between a father and his (now grown up) little girl is one of the sweetest things to witness on a wedding day. Niki not only got to dance with her dad, but her grandfather as well. Of course there wasn't a dry eye around- it truly doesn't get much sweeter than that.