Child, Baby, Pet, and Family Photography Spring Blitz – Burlington & Ft Madison, IA

It’s Spring Blitz time!

It’s spring! It’s warming up, the grass is greener, and the flowers are in bloom.  It’s my favorite time of year! And it is the PERFECT time to get out of the house and celebrate with new professional portraits of your kids, pets, and family!

Our Spring Blitz is YOUR chance for a free mini-session with me or Devan!

We have limited dates and times available, and you don’t want to miss your chance. These 20- minute sessions are a perfect way to get some beautiful new portraits on your walls, and freshen up your life!

Call us today at 319-753-3061 or email!


Almost Full Moon – April 2011 – Burlington, Iowa – Wendi Riggens Photography

I shot this Saturday night, hanging out of our car window in the Taco Bell drive thru.
Taken with my Canon 5DMkII & 70-200 2.8 IS
Shot at 200mm, ISO 100, f/2.8, 1/320

Almost a full moon, just a sliver is missing. I’m not sure this is at the right orientation, either. I was shooting this from our car in the Taco Bell drive-thru, and the moon was almost behind us, so I was hanging out of the car window just trying to hold still.  It’s cropped in pretty tight, too.

It’s still beautiful! I want to go there some day. No, seriously, it would be incredible!



Photography Tips for Professional Head Shots

Professional Head Shots by Wendi Riggens Photography

Wow!  Last week, Devan and I attended a photography meetup-conference-seminar-workshop-whatever you want to call it hosted by our lab.  For the second year, I was asked to teach, and I spent 3 of the 4 sessions doing just that. I’ll post more about my classes in a day or two, including some images of our beautiful models and the people in my classes!

Last year, after the group photo of everyone at the event, I was roped into doing some unexpected head shots for a few of the attendees, and we had such a blast. I absolutely LOVE doing headshots, and this year decided to actually schedule a time to do them.  With the help of my friends Dave Wolanski of Dover, Delaware and Joe Weaver of Nashville, Tennessee, we photographed dozens of photographers, and had a great time doing it!  I focused on natural light headshots, while Dave worked with OCF (off-camera flash) head shots, and Joe broke out his Lensbaby for some unique focus ones!

As I let people glance at their head shots after I took them, I heard over and over, “how do you do that?!”  My goal with head shots, or any image for that matter, is to get it as perfect SOOC (straight out of camera) as possible.  Here are my tips for creating professional head shots using natural light!

1 – Lighting – look for consistent lighting and aim your subject approximately75-degrees to the source. For these shots, we shot outside the hotel against a light-colored wall with light sidewalk.  The sun was to the right of the subjects peaking around the building. I did not use a reflector. I tend to over-expose my head shots by about 1/2 a stop, just enough to hide some of the natural flaws and wrinkles that people hate to see, but without blowing out the image.

2 – Angles/Posing – My subjects kneel on the ground in front of me, or I stand on something to keep myself elevated above them.  Shooting down is the most flattering angle, but you don’t want to be too high up. Their body is angled 90-degrees to mine, and I have them turn their shoulders to me slightly and their head even more so. I then adjust my own angle and show them how I want them to adjust their head, to account for each person’s features and to find the best angle for them.

Here’s a shot that Dave took of me shooting. Nothing fancy at all!

3 – Smiling – I never take just one or two shots when doing head shots.  I aim for three faces.  The first is their serious face, the posed, “I hate being in front of a camera” face, to get it out of the way.  Then I talk to them, loosen them up, and usually get the two faces I am looking for: 1-the natural smile, and 2-the natural laugh. These are always the shots that they love!

It’s a quick, easy, and relatively painless process, and I LOVE how the shots turn out!  When doing quick-and-dirty head shots like these, I proof them straight out of camera.  For professional clients, we do minor retouching to make them look even more amazing!


Jim Cayer - First let me say it was a pleasure meeting you Wendi and thanks so much for the headshots. Looking forward to another year and another 5k. Thanks again.

Dave - Great explanation Wendi! It was fun doing the shooting with you!


Last Call for Senior Spokes Models and Reps in Burlington!

Class of 2012 Senior Spokes Models

Last call for our senior rep program!

We are wrapping up our applications for our Class of 2012 Senior Spokes Model team!

Have your senior pictures done by the freshest studio in Southeast Iowa!  The combined team of Wendi Riggens and Devan Whitson brings you the most natural, unique, and fresh images possible. We want you to look and feel amazing in your senior portraits, and we know how to photograph you to make that happen. With our combined experience, you know you are in the best hands, and that your senior pics are going to be amazing!

Be a representative for Wendi Riggens Photography and earn rewards for referrals including cash, special limited-edition products, and even an iPad!

Fill out our application today at!

Jeanene Lewis Dean - Wanted to tell you that this is such a great idea that you have!


Introducing Silly Booth – A Charity Based Photo Booth by Wendi Riggens Photography in Burlington, Iowa

Introducing the Silly Booth!

There are a lot of photo booths out there, but none can compare to the new Silly Booth! We at Wendi Riggens Photography developed Silly Booth as a fundraising venture for local organizations and events!

All profits from Silly Booth are donated to the event at which we are set up, or our Charity of the Month!

Come see us today at Westland Mall in West Burlington, Iowa at the Day of the Child!  Our charity for the event is the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation!

Also find us Thursday, March 31st at the Port of Burlington for Next Step Christian Childcare and Preschool’s Relocation Fundraising Silent Auction!

For more information about having Silly Booth at your event, email us at or call the office at 319-753-3061!

Miranda Wallace - I think this fundraiser idea is absolutely adorable and I would love to learn more about it. If you would please email me with information and pricing I would much appreciate it.

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