Hey guys! I'm Chelsea,
thanks so much for being here!
I'm a wedding photographer, based in heart of the Cedar Valley, located in Janesville, IA. I shoot mainly throughout the state of Iowa (occasionally beyond that, too)!
I love working with sweet, down-to-earth couples and capturing raw, in-between moments.
I first picked up a camera when my oldest daughter was about 6 months old. I was a new mom, head-over-heels in love with this tiny, magnificent little human. Time was flying by. so. fast. I was desperate to slow it down. I never mastered the art of actually stopping time, so I settled for the next best thing - memorializing milestones and moments through photographs :)
I began to fall in love with photography. I loved it SO much, that I spent every second I wasn't working or sleeping on learning the craft.
I photographed my first wedding in 2012 - and I've been evolving and growing both my business and artistry ever since! I launched Chelsea Dawn Weddings, a full-service wedding photography experience, in June 2015.
I am a HUGE introvert (INFP, to be specific) who weirdly LOVES to be around extroverts!
I believe in equality, not just in marriage, but in life. Love = love <3 CDW is LGBTQ friendly
I am a US veteran. Happy to be done with my time in the service, but still pretty dang proud of it
Don't let my soft spoken nature fool you - I was a sailor for nearly 7 years. These ears have heard it all! Rowdy weddings are totally welcome :)
I'm really into streaming shows. My favs are currently: Lost, The Leftovers, The Handmaid's Tale, The Office, Parks & Rec, The Good Place, Breaking Bad, Dexter, Grey's Anatomy, Westworld, GOT, Big Little Lies, Haunting of Hill House. If you're a fan of even one of the above, I'm a fan of you <3
I recently began volunteering for a non-profit organization called Now I Lay Me Down To Sleep. We give the gift of lifelong memories through photographs to bereaved parents of infants who have passed before, during, or shortly after childbirth. Please check out the organization below if you feel at all called to do so. We hope to bring as much awareness to their mission as possible! If you're a Cedar Valley photographer (or maybe you know someone who is), please consider joining us! We are very short-handed and would be grateful for the help.
Short answer: it completely depends on what you are wanting! We offer everything from a couple of hours to complete full-day collections with custom made albums. We also offer associate photographers, as well as smaller ceremony & elopement coverage.
→ weddings 3200.00 +
→ engagement sessions 500.00 +
→ hourly (M-F) 500.00
Most of our couples spend between $3600 - $4500. We do our best to work with a variety of budgets and have tailored our collections to provide our clients with the most in-demand services and products. However, sometimes you might want something different! We are happy to customize a collection just for you!
Every engagement session and wedding collection comes with high resolution digital images, an online gallery for easy printing & ordering, and the print release to make unlimited copies for the rest of forever
A signed contract and a retainer fee of $1200 is required to book the date. We book on a first-come, first-serve basis and in doing such, we cannot offer courtesy nudges if someone else inquires before you've booked.
What about after you've booked? Well, to be honest - we are not at all about booking you and immediately falling off the face of the Earth. We want to get to know you - a) because you're awesome and worth knowing, and b) because we want to know what's important to you, so we can best deliver photographs you'll love for the rest of forever!
Join our bride tribe & groom room on facebook once you've booked, so we can best stay in touch!
We book most of our couples about
12-18 months out
It is never too early to reach out so
get in touch as soon as you can!
Love stories are why we do what we do - Lets get your story out for the world to see!
All you need to do is show up and be ready to play!
We'll take it from there!
Prior to our wedding, Chelsea took the time to meet with us in order to determine the style and feel we wanted from our photos., which included us wanting natural and candid moments. She was also willing to shift her photo packages around to meet our needs. Chelsea was always available by phone or email if we ever had questions prior to our big day (and even after!) The day of our wedding couldn’t have been smoother! Chelsea arrived early and began taking photos of our venue as well as small details. My husband and I are naturally not photogenic! However, Chelsea was able to talk us through how she wanted us to pose. She made us feel comfortable and natural while getting our photos taken. I wouldn’t have felt comfortable with anyone else other than Chelsea; she has a soothing voice and is naturally easy to be around. She also takes the time to learn names, so when she addressed family members, she used their names (which was awesome!) Honestly, I was looking forward to the photos more than anything else during our day! Chelsea sent us two sneak peeks THE NEXT DAY and had her blog post up by the end of the week with over fifty photos for us to look at. Within three weeks, all of our photos were given to us…. And they are BEAUTIFUL! Every person I have shown pictures to says they deserve to be in a magazine! I will be recommending Chelsea for my friends and family’s photo needs. I will also only use Chelsea for any big event in my life which I want documented with photos. Thank you so much Chelsea!!!
"Chelsea is the BEST of the best!! From the beginning of booking her for our engagement to wedding photographer to receiving the photos, she has been wonderful! Her eye to capture natural and candid moments between you and your loved ones is a natural talent that she has perfected. She truly loves what she does and it shows in her work! She was flexible, patient, assertive, and kind. She made the whole process so much fun!"
"We were referred to Chelsea Dawn from our close friends, who also had photographed their wedding. When we first met, it was obvious that Chelsea was very professional in her work, but also incredibly friendly and upbeat. She immediately had a plan and concepts to suit our personalities. Not being the most photogenic person, she made my engagement (and later wedding) pictures so much fun and enjoyable while also capturing our romantic side. I was completely comfortable and thoroughly enjoyed our experience. Our family and friends are amazed at how amazing the turnout was and are already looking to get prints processed for interior decoration. While her work speaks for itself, we truly could not be happier with the results. Chelsea's professionalism, attention to detail, and being able to adjust on the fly separates her above her peers already. Her fun-loving attitude and catering to her audience make her the best option available."