Minneapolis – Twin Cities Family Portrait Photographer

Natural light photographer, Alisa Matheson, uses her laid-back, comfortable style to capture the moments of shared joy, with a focus on affordable, fun and unique MN family portrait photography, including child, engagement, maternity, senior and newborn baby photography.

  • Instantly book and pay online
  • 45-60 min session
  • 50+ insta-ready, lightly edited digital photos, ready to be printed and shared
  • Easy to understand, straightforward pricing
  • $150 flat-fee (no hidden fees)
  • Covid aware photographer
  • Rated 5-stars on Google and Yelp
Your Photographer, Alisa Matheson of Attempting Agape

As a mom, aunt, sister, and friend, I know how important it is to capture life as it happens. I am also aware everyone is not comfortable in front of the camera, therefore, I help photography be less intimidating and more fun by making my clients active participants in their session.

I have been doing this for 10 years and know that when we have fun together, the joy jumps out of the final photo.

Scroll down to see my portfolio, favorite MN family photography locations in the Twin Cities Metro and reviews from past clients.

And lastly, I love to travel! Contact me for rates for out of Minneapolis rates.

Can’t wait to meet you and yours,

Alisa Matheson

Session Policies

COVID-19 Update: Currently on pause due to COVID 19, but ARE booking for outdoor, socially distanced photography sessions, after the new year.

At that time, I will be taking the following precautions, masks required, social distancing enforced, contactless payment available via PayPal before or after the session.

Weather Policy: Alisa Matheson works rain or shine, so if you are not willing to be photographed in rain, snow, etc., please proactively cancel your session by deadline to avoid the late cancel charge. Failure to cancel will be taken as a willingness to be photographed in whatever surprises Minnesota dishes out.

Cancellation Policy: You can easily cancel or reschedule at any time up to 24 hours before your session. If I am not contacted, or it is less than 24 hours notice, the $50 deposit will be non-refundable.

Photo Editing Policy: Your digital gallery will be lightly edited as a complimentary service. It does not include Photoshop image manipulation of objects, faces, bodies or clothing.

Photographers don’t take pictures. They create images.

Mark Denman

Photography, to me, is catching a moment which is passing, and which is true.

Jacques-Henri Lartigue

What I like about photographs is that they capture a moment that’s gone forever, impossible to reproduce.

Karl Lagerfeld

Photography is a way of feeling, of touching, of loving. What you have caught on film is captured forever… it remembers little things, long after you have forgotten everything.

Aaron Siskind

My love of photography is melded with the ability to capture what I want to remember in the moment I want to never forget.

Devin Dygert

I think that’s the strength of photography – to decide the decisive moment, to click in the moment to come up with a picture that never comes back again.

Rene Burri

Alisa Matheson previously photographed under the name Beloved Pieces Photography. In 2019, the love of photography and foster care adoption merged under the one umbrella of Attempting Agape, still with Alisa Matheson at its helm.

Here are some highlights from the Beloved Pieces Photography years.

Favorite Minneapolis Photography Locations

Location scouting is one of my favorite parts of being a photographer.  Going to a place and seeing it through the “lens” as it were, with a photographer’s eye is shear creativity for me. 

Below are some of my pre-planned and scouted great spots, where I can tell you where to park, what facilities are there, where the sun will rise and set, and most importantly, what spots are perfect to capture a great photograph. Although I am always open to new locations, it’s wonderful to be able to have this knowledge of a favorite location.

Beard’s Plaisance, 4525 Upton Ave S, Minneapolis, MN 55410. One of Minneapolis oldest parks, this hilly, wooded, scenic riverside park offering a nature-themed playground, tennis courts & picnic sites with grills, overlooks Lake Harriet, in Linden Hills.  It also has this adorable tree with a perfect toddler sized sitting spot in it.  The park was named “The Beard Plaisance” for Henry Beard, one of three men who offered to donate their land on the shores of Lake Harriet for a park in 1884, and “Plaisance” a French term meaning “pleasure ground.” 

Small free 2-hour parking lot of Lake Harriet Parkway, or on street parking at S Upton Ave & W 46th Street.

**Freshly scouted location – be the first to be photographed by Alisa here!

Thomas Beach, 3751 West Bde Maka Ska Parkway, Minneapolis, MN 55410.  Thomas Beach a sandy swimming beach and greenspace right off of West Bde Maka Ska Parkway (formerly Lake Calhoun) that overlooks the distant Minneapolis skyline.  This well-maintained Minneapolis park lets you get close to the water and enjoy the sand, or the luscious grass, reeds, benches, picnic tables.  You also can enjoy this urban park with limited mobility as it is handicap accessible and there are many great spots close to the parking area.  Both paid ($1.25/hour) and street parking are available, although is a popular spot on beautiful days, so can be scarce. 

**Freshly scouted location – be the first to be photographed by Alisa here!

Lyndale Park Peace Garden, 4124 Roseway Road, Minneapolis, MN 55409. Japanese inspired public art and winding walking trails make this a unique photography spot, along Bde Maka Ska in the Lyndale Neighborhood and right across the street from the Lyndale Park Rose Garden.

Peak Display for flowers Time: April 15th through June 1st. Bloom period often begins in late-March until frost.

More about site

Guthrie Theater, 818 South 2nd Street, Minneapolis, MN 55415. We will start our time together at the Guthrie, which is my go-to location for a modern, high gloss look). From there we can explore the wooden boardwalk, the grassy hill that overlooks the Mississippi. Then depending on how much walking you are up to, we can explore the Mill Ruins, or walk onto the Stone Arch Bridge, from which we can look back and capture the skyline and Minneapolis cityscape. Many indoor and outdoor options to explore together.

More about location.

Photographer Minnesota Senior Photo Client

Mill City Area, 704 South 2nd St. Mpls, MN 55401. After meeting at the outdoor courtyard of Mill City Museum and capturing the historical brick and exposed metal look as the perfect background for your photos, we will explore the wooden boardwalk, the grassy hill that overlooks the Mississippi. Then depending on how much walking you are up to, we can explore the Mill Ruins, or walk onto the Stone Arch Bridge, from which we can look back and capture the skyline and Minneapolis cityscape. Many indoor and outdoor options to explore together.

More about location.

Minneapolis Sculpture Garden, 725 Vineland Pl, Minneapolis, MN 55403. Home to the iconic spoon and cherry, the wheelchair-accessible Minneapolis Sculpture Garden is a fun and interactive way to show your creativity.

We’ll meet at the Flatpak in the Garden, a one-room version of a larger prefabricated house. From there we will have fun exploring the art garden and capture photos as we go.

The Minneapolis Sculpture Garden is free, requires no tickets for admission, and is open from 6 am to 12 midnight every day.

More about location

Great Locations Outside Twin Cities

Union Depot, 214 4th Street East, Saint Paul, MN 55101. We will explore this blend of modernistic design and historic building structures together. Saint Paul’s Union Depot is a historic railroad station and intermodal transit hub in the Lowertown neighborhood of the city of Saint Paul, Minnesota, United States. Great for those who love history and cityscapes. With both indoor and outdoor photography options, this makes an ideal unpredictable weather (spring, winter and fall) location.

More about location.

Loch Ness Park, 11121 Lexington Avenue NE, Blaine, MN 55449. A beautiful choice for nature lovers in the suburbs. There are nice walking paths, overhanging trees, there is a great little pond and pier, grassy knolls and overlooks. A lovely spot for spring and fall photos.

More about location.

Wood Lake Nature Preserve, 6710 Lake Shore Drive, Richfield, MN 55423. Wood Lake Nature Center is a 150-acre natural area dedicated to environmental education, wildlife observation, and outdoor recreation.  Wood Lake staff offices at the 4,000 square-foot main building, which features many educational exhibits (see hours above).  The park features several wildlife viewing areas, a 100-seat amphitheater, a picnic ground, and three miles of trails and boardwalks. The trails are either blacktop or crushed limestone and most are wheelchair accessible during summer months. More about location.

Downtown Anoka, 1801-1899 River Ave, Anoka, MN 55303. We will meet at The Gathering Place Bandshell, Akin Riverside Park to explore the rustic park together. Then we will wander along the river and then up downtown Anoka, to capture the smalltown feel of Minnesota. If you are feeling adventurous and summery, we can finish up our time together with some good old fashioned messy ice cream cones from Two Scoops. Touch for map

Photography Gift Cards

Whether you are finding a way to memorialize a health victory or struggle, trying to find a gift that your minimalist friend won’t regift or the perfect gift for something for someone who has everything, photography has a personal and deeply meaningful touch.

For many, professional photography is something that is just out of range of necessary and receiving a photography gift card opens up the opportunity to freeze this moment in time and capture the emotions of the moment.   

There are so joyful many occasions in which photography captures a beautiful moment, an anniversary, new baby, birthday, adoption, graduation, co-worker appreciation, health victory or holiday celebration.  There are also lifechanging moments, that while difficult are a moment worth noting through images, such as a health diagnosis or transition into hospice.

When purchasing a photography gift card, you can choose to pay for someone’s deposit ($50) or their entire session ($150).  At the time of purchase, let me know if you would like ME to email them the certificate, or if you would like me to send you an electronic certificate to gift to them yourself.

Attempting Agape would love to help you give the gift of memories.


There’s such a good vibe in Minneapolis. You’ve got an upscale downtown, and yet people aren’t afraid to sit around the fire pit in the middle of winter and drink a beer. It’s amazing.

Philip Winchester

Photographer for the Entire Minneapolis and Twin Cities Minnesota Area

South Minneapolis became my home about four years ago. Moving here from the Forest Lake area, living in Uptown had its adjustments, but I can honestly say that I love it here and can’t imagine living anywhere else. The ability to walk to our favorite park and my daughter’s school has helped us get connected with our community. Minneapolis has stolen my heart like so many before me.

I am still amazed that so many of the amazing Minneapolis and St Paul photography locations that I used to drive 45+ to get to are now within walking distance for me, including Bde Maka Ska (formerly Lake Calhoun), and the Lake Street, Lyn-Lake Area, known for its great street art and murals. Living in the Lyndale / Kingfield area is such a treat. How lucky am I?

I like Hollywood. I just like Minneapolis a little bit better.


Coming in as the largest city in Minnesota, Minneapolis is known for our snowy winters and hot summers, but we are also famous for our diverse community, theatre scene, large art museums, great restaurants, and park system. Some of our beautiful parks and natural settings include Minnehaha Regional Park, Chain of Lakes Regional Park. Minneapolis also is a great place to attend live events and see sweet art, including the Guthrie Theater, Children’s Theatre Company, shopping along Nicollet Ave, Weisman Art Museum, Minneapolis Institute of Art, Minneapolis Sculpture Garden, the American Swedish Institute, and the Mill City Museum.

Minneapolis just embraced me. There are a lot of weirdos here. It’s awesome, because I’m a weirdo. Thankfully, the city embraced me with open arms. A lot about Minneapolis helped carve my musicality and open my eyes. The whole town is so open-minded compared to like, you know, Texas.


Proudly photographing families and children in Calhoun-Isles, Bryn Mawr, Cedar-Isles-Dean, East Calhoun, East Isles, Kenwood, Lowry Hill, Lowry Hill East, South Uptown, West Calhoun, Camden, Cleveland, Folwell, Lind-Bohanon, McKinley, Shingle Creek, Victory, Webber-Camden, Central, Downtown East, Downtown West, Elliot Park, Loring Park, North Loop, Stevens Square, Loring Heights, Longfellow, Cooper, Hiawatha, Howe, Longfellow, Seward, Near North, Harrison, Hawthorne, Jordan, Near North, Sumner-Glenwood, Willard Hay, Nokomis, Diamond Lake, Ericsson, Field, Hale, Keewaydin, Minnehaha, Morris Park, Northrop, Page, Regina, Wenonah, Northeast, Audubon Park, Beltrami, Bottineau, Columbia Park, Holland, Logan Park, Marshall Terrace, Northeast Park, Sheridan, St. Anthony East, St. Anthony West, Waite Park, Windom Park, Phillips, East Phillips, Midtown Phillips, Phillips West, Ventura Village, Powderhorn, Bancroft, Bryant, Central, Corcoran, Lyndale, Powderhorn Park, Standish, Whittier, Southwest, Armatage, East Harriet, Fulton, Kenny, King Field, Linden Hills, Lynnhurst, Tangletown, Windom, University, Cedar-Riverside, Como, Marcy-Holmes, Nicollet Island/East Bank, Prospect Park and University. *Just reach out if not listed.

Favorite Photography Quotes

A good photograph is knowing where to stand. – Ansel Adams

A good snapshot keeps a moment from running away. – Eudora Welty

A photograph is usually looked at – seldom looked into. – Ansel Adams

Contrast is what makes photography interesting. – Conrad Hall

Every viewer is going to get a different thing. That’s the thing about painting, photography, cinema. – David Lynch

For me, the camera is a sketchbook, an instrument of intuition and spontaneity. – Henri Cartier-Bresson

If you can see it, you can shoot it. – Ted Grant

In photography, there is a reality so subtle that it becomes more real than reality. – Alfred Stieglitz

In the world of photography, you get to share a captured moment with other people. – James Wilson

It is more important to click with people than to click the shutter. – Alfred Eisenstaedt

It takes a lot of imagination to be a good photographer. You need less imagination to be a painter because you can invent things. But in photography, everything is so ordinary; it takes a lot of looking before you learn to see the extraordinary. – David Bailey

It’s amazing how photography can capture just a split second of something exquisite. – Kiera Cass, The Prince

It’s not enough to just own a camera. Everyone owns a camera. To be a photographer, you must understand, appreciate, and harness the power you hold! – Mark Denman

Light makes photography. Embrace light. Admire it. Love it. But above all, know light. Know it for all you are worth, and you will know the key to photography.  – George Eastman

My interest in photography is not to capture an image I see or even have in my mind, but to explore the potential of moments I can only begin to imagine. – Lois Greenfield

One advantage of photography is that it’s visual and can transcend language. – Lisa Kristine

Only photography has been able to divide human life into a series of moments, each of them has the value of a complete existence. – Eadweard Muybridge

Only photograph what you love. – Tim Walker

Photographs are just light and time. – Aza Holmes

Photography is about finding out what can happen in the frame. When you put four edges around some facts, you change those facts. – Garry Winogrand

Photography is an immediate reaction; drawing is a meditation. – Henri Cartier-Bresson

Photography is an itch that won’t go away. No matter how much you scratch it. – Dara McGrath

Photography is more than a medium for factual communication of ideas. It is a creative art. – Ansel Adams

Photography is the simplest thing in the world, but it is incredibly complicated to make it really work. – Martin Parr

Photography is the story I fail to put into words. — Destin Sparks

Photography records the gamut of feelings written on the human face, the beauty of the earth and skies that man has inherited, and the wealth and confusion man has created. It is a major force in explaining man to man. – Edward Steichen

Photography takes an instant out of time, altering life by holding it still. – Dorothea Lange

Photography, as we all know, is not real at all. It is an illusion of reality with which we create our own private world.
– Arnold Newman

Regarding the creative: never assume you’re the master, only the student. Your audience will determine if you’re masterful. – Don Roff

Sharpness is a bourgeois concept. – Henri Cartier-Bresson

Stare. It is the way to educate your eye, and more. Stare, pry, listen, eavesdrop. Die knowing something. You are not here long. – Walker Evans

That frame of mind that you need to make fine pictures of a very wonderful subject; you cannot do it by not being lost yourself.  – Dorothea Lange

The art of photography is all about directing the attention of the viewer. – Steven Pinker

The camera has always been a guide, and it’s allowed me to see things and focus on things that may be an average person wouldn’t even notice.  – Don Chadwick

The camera is an instrument that teaches people how to see without a camera. – Dorothea Lange

The eye should learn to listen before it looks. – Robert Frank

The painter constructs, the photographer discloses. – Susan Sontag

The single most important component of a camera is the twelve inches behind it! – Ansel Adams

The whole nature of photography has changed with the advent of a camera in everybody’s hand. – Sally Mann

There is one thing the photograph must contain, the humanity of the moment. — Robert Frank

To me, photography is the simultaneous recognition, in a fraction of a second, of the significance of an event. – Henri Cartier-Bresson

Today, everything exists to end in a photograph. – Susan Sontag

We are making photographs to understand what our lives mean to us.

Ralph Hattersley

What can be proved by a photograph can never be by a word. – T.A

What do we feel when we look at a good photograph? We just want to be there, right at the exact moment that photo taken! – Mehmet Murat Ildan

What I like about photographs is that they capture a moment that’s gone forever, impossible to reproduce. – Karl Lagerfeld

When a moment in front of me appears to be particularly special, whether it be by beauty or experience, I capture it. I usually find a reason to justify taking that photo – symmetry, or color or contrast – and it’s my hope that my photography sheds light onto what I see and do on a daily basis. – Connor Franta

When words become unclear, I shall focus with photographs. When images become inadequate, I shall be content with silence. — Ansel Adams

The camera makes you forget you’re there. It’s not like you are hiding, but you forget, you are just looking so much. – Annie Leibovitz

No matter how sophisticated the camera, the photographer is still the one that makes it. – Doug Bartlow

God creates the beauty. My camera and I are a witness.  – Mark Denman

In my view, you cannot claim to have seen something until you have photographed it.  – Émile Zola

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