Meet Jillian – Brainerd High School 2017 Senior

160522_PB Model Shoot_0260-2-Edit.jpgWhen asked what she likes to do in her spare time, Jillian said “play piano”.   It is her happy place, a way to decompress and get lost in the moment. When asked to list three things she couldn’t live without, music made the list, right after her family and phone, of course.  🙂  Jillian also plays the flute, but while music feeds her soul, this girl is also a hard core athlete as the pitcher for her high school softball team, and a straight A student with goals of pursuing a career in the medical field.  She seems a little shy when you first get to know her, but take a little time to get to know this young lady, and you’ll find an articulate, well-rounded young woman destined for success.  Thanks for joining the model team, Jillian!  I can’t wait to see what the future has in store for you!

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Need help finding something to wear for your photo session, or just need to find a fun outfit that makes you look good?

2017 Senior Model Team, Box Car, Paul Bunyan Land, dmitzseniors
This boxcar provided a perfect backdrop that is reminiscent of a TV Series poster. Model’s clothing provided and styled by Fashion Affection Boutique.

What should I wear?  For many of us, it’s a daily question, but when it comes time to decide what we should wear to have photos taken, many of us go into complete panic mode, and then we head out shopping.  Wouldn’t it be nice if you could have someone help you who knows fashion, what works on different body types, and what will photograph well?  Someone to give you peace of mind so you can come to your photo shoot confident and feeling fabulous?  Well, I happen to know the someone who can do that for you…her name is Jennifer, and she’s the owner of Fashion Affection Boutique, located in the Fitquest Center, right across from El Tequila.  The moment you meet her, Jennifer will make you feel completely at ease, like you are having a conversation with a good friend.  Just tell her what you need an outfit for, and she’ll ask you a couple of questions, then begin to work her magic, finding you exactly what you need, even though you weren’t even sure where to start!

Jennifer, Fashion Affection Boutique owner and fashion guru
Jennifer, Fashion Affection Boutique owner and fashion guru

Earlier this year, when I was putting together plans for my Senior Model Program, I approached Jennifer about working with me on a model shoot, and quickly found that we shared a similar passion in that we love to help people feel empowered and beautiful.  We go about it in different ways – she by helping women select outfits that make them feel beautiful, and me through the lens of my camera, but we both knew that by working together, we could have an even bigger impact!

I knew Jennifer had a gift from my own experiences in her store, but it really hit home when the models and I met with her to select their clothing for the model shoot.  She had asked 3 simple questions of them ahead of time, and we arrived to find that she had selected outfits for them as a starting point based on those three questions.  She invited them to tweak their looks, and let her know what they did or didn’t like so they could change it up, but she was absolutely spot on right out of the gate!  The moms in attendance were shocked at how well Jennifer was able to do without knowing their daughters, when they likely wouldn’t have fared as well knowing them their entire lives.  To say Jennifer is good at what she does would be a gross understatement!

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So… if you’re trying to figure out what to wear for your upcoming photo shoot, or you need a fabulous outfit “just because”, stop by Fashion Affection Boutique and meet Jennifer or one of the other ladies.  They’re all fabulous by the way, and will help you find clothes you just can’t wait to wear!  And one other thing… in case you’re thinking you’ll have to drop a lot of cash to have this experience, think again – there is nothing in the store priced over $50!  That’s a pretty lofty goal, and Jennifer has done it with fashionable clothes you’ll love to wear.

Jennifer and her mom, Sue, can regularly be found in the boutique, along with recent high school graduate, Hannah, not pictured. They are all fabulous at helping you find the perfect outfit!
Jennifer and her mom, Sue, can regularly be found in the boutique, along with recent high school graduate, Hannah, not pictured. They are all fabulous at helping you find the perfect outfit!

Check out the fabulous clothes on the girls in these photos – they all came from Fashion Affection Boutique.  Tell Jennifer and the ladies I sent you when you stop by – you won’t be disappointed!

The carousel provided a fun backdrop for our model shoot at Paul Bunyan Land. Model's clothing provided and styled by Fashion Affection Boutique.
The carousel provided a fun backdrop for our model shoot at Paul Bunyan Land. Model’s clothing provided and styled by Fashion Affection Boutique.
Model shoot at Paul Bunyan Land. Model's clothing provided and styled by Fashion Affection Boutique.
Model shoot at Paul Bunyan Land. Model’s clothing provided and styled by Fashion Affection Boutique.
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One of my favorite senior session venues in the Brainerd Lakes Area…Paul Bunyan Land!

Deb Mitzel Photography 2017 Model Team on location at Paul Bunyan Land
Deb Mitzel Photography 2017 Model Team on location at Paul Bunyan Land

There are so many great places in the Brainerd Lakes Area to photograph seniors, but one of my favorites has to be Paul Bunyan Land.  Yes, I am talking about the amusement park, but there is so much more to it than that.  Since I am always on the lookout for fun locations to take photos, I contacted them a couple of summers ago to see if I could possibly bring some clients out for a photo session.  Lois and her whole family were extremely accommodating and welcoming.  The Rademacher family owns and operates the park, and it is obvious from visiting with them that it is a labor of love.  They take great pride and pleasure in seeing their guests enjoy and appreciate the park.   I have been out there several times, and see something new and different each time I go.  And you don’t have to have kids with you to appreciate it.  You could wander for hours in The Pioneer Village alone.  The artifacts and antiques they’ve collected over the years are incredible to see and appreciate.This Old Farm-2558.jpg This Old Farm-2524.jpg

Vintage fire trucks remind us of those who protect and serve.
Vintage fire trucks remind us of those who protect and serve.
The main street boardwalk provides the perfect backdrop for classic photos.
The main street boardwalk provides the perfect backdrop for classic photos.

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Vintage gas pumps and antique cars take you back in time.
Vintage gas pumps and antique cars take you back in time.

The old buildings and antiques have such great character, colors, and textures – it’s a photographer’s dream for backdrops and props.   I appreciate how welcoming they’ve been to me, and would really encourage you to take a trip out there this summer.  If you haven’t been there in a while, you’ll be surprised at all the things to do and see.  From amusement park rides like the Tilt a Whirl, Frog Hopper, and the Ferris Wheel to a walk down the streets of The Pioneer Village, where you can imagine what life was like as a dentist, banker, or photographer in the pioneer days, there is something for everyone.  Visit their website at www.paulbunyanland.com if you want to plan ahead, and add Paul Bunyan Land to your To Do List for this summer.  You won’t be disappointed!

The carousel provided a fun backdrop for our model shoot at the park.
The carousel provided a fun backdrop for our model shoot at the park.

 

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What did you accomplish your senior year of high school?

151010_Hannah_0145-Edit (1).jpgIt’s high school graduation time, and for most 2016 seniors, this means final tests, finalizing college choices, and hanging out with friends as much as possible.  But, for several high school seniors who recently completed their first triathlon, this last semester meant hours and hours swimming,  biking,  and running in preparation for the big event.  Believe it or not, this is an actual high school class, and these young people faced the ultimate in final tests – an actual triathlon!  I don’t know that I have it in me, but I was super impressed with the grit and determination of these young people as they made their way through the course.

Two of my 2016 Seniors participated, and I was happy to capture photos of them throughout the race, and be there as they crossed the finish line.  Hannah Johnson and Taylor Pratt, I am so proud of you!  Congratulations!

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Senior Model Shoot at Paul Bunyan Land

2017 Senior Model Team, Box Car, Paul Bunyan Land, dmitzseniors
Paul Bunyan Land is a an awesome location for senior photo shoots. This boxcar provided a perfect backdrop that is reminiscent of a TV Series poster.

A while back, I announced that there were some exciting things happening with Deb Mitzel Photography for the 2017 Senior Season, namely the Senior Model Program, and the introduction of the Model Team members for 2017.  I’m happy to report that we recently had a very successful kickoff with our model shoot at Paul Bunyan Land!   We started the day off with hair and makeup from fabulous duo of Melissa Paulson and Ashley Nordby from Moxy Hair Studio. They came rolling in with their goodies, and got to work making the girls look and feel absolutely incredible. Then it was time to slip on the outfits the girls had chosen with the help of our personal fashion consultant, Jennifer, from Fashion Affection Boutique.  Each girl had chosen outfits that reflected her own unique personality, and one by one, we captured that personality in photos.  These young ladies are such a fun and vibrant group, and I am excited for you to get to know them over the course of the coming year.  Stay tuned to the blog for more stories and photos from this fabulous day!  And follow us on Facebook at Deb Mitzel Photgraphy, and Instagram and Twitter at dmitzphoto.  It’s going to be a great year!

Back L to R - Hanna, Molly, Sam, Jillian. Front L to R - Sydney, Jaelyn, Caitlin.
Back L to R – Hanna, Molly, Sam, Jillian. Front L to R – Sydney, Jaelyn, Caitlin.

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Prom 2016

160416_Prom 2016 Fine Line_0822.jpgThe dress…the hair…the makeup…oh, and of course the right date…  These are some of the key elements to a successful high school prom experience.  Do you remember yours?  Whether it was a month ago, 5 years ago or 25 years ago, you can probably remember the feeling of excitement and energy that surrounded that time of your life.

I recently spent the afternoon at The Fine Line with this group of girls getting ready for their high school prom, and oh what fun it was!  From the fabulous hairstyles and makeup, to the absolutely gorgeous gowns, these girls were all stunning as they readied themselves for a fun night of dinner and dancing.

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It’s all about the experience!

Anderson, Amie Proofs-1I’m often asked why I do photography when I am already so busy. If you didn’t know, I also have a full time career in the business world, but I love portrait photography so much that it doesn’t feel like work to me.  There is just something about working with a client one on one that I truly enjoy. And the more I work with folks, I find that many of them have had a prior experience that was less than pleasant, which makes them dread the thought of doing it again.  I take great pride in providing a fun and relaxing experience for my clients, so when you contact me about taking your photo and tell me you “hate having your picture taken”, you need to know that is a personal challenge for me to make sure that’s not the case THIS time.

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Happy Mother’s Day!

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Mothers and Daughters share a special bond, and it was obvious during my session with these two.  If you spend a couple of minutes with them, you will quickly realize that they are extremely close, and share such a strong connection.  The smiles, laughter, hugs, and inside jokes were abundant and so fun to capture. Happy Mother’s Day, Jessica – you and Hailey are lucky to have each other.  And to the rest of you moms out there…Happy Mother’s Day!

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