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St. Louis' Best Photographer

Me. The Artist behind MDKauffmann Photography.

I am a wedding and portrait photographer. 

25 years ago, I didn't know an f-stop from a bus stop (that's a bad photo joke). I had some portraits of myself done for a special occasion, and when I saw the results I almost cried.

They were horrible.

I looked stupid.

The photographer didn't know how to pose me or control light so that a quality portrait could be made. My already low self-esteem crashed.

Fast forward 10 years. I was starting to learn photography, but really didn't have much of a clue yet. I was newly married and excited to look through our wedding photos.

Despite a ton of attention to detail in planning our wedding, and a beautiful bride, the photos were meh.

Two separate once-in-a-lifetime moments I wish I had decent photographs of myself and neither will ever exist. 

vowed that no one else would ever be subjected to that, so long as I could help it, and I poured myself into learning everything I could about the art and science of photography. Today, my work is characterized by a nod to the classic and timeless with precise control of lighting and attention to details

I exist as a photographer to give you a feeling of confidence, knowing that you have a photographer who cares so much about you and your legacy as to spend half of his life to perfecting his craft so that you and your event will be remembered with pride.

Matthew in action, photographing a model.

A few of my Favorite Things

Beaches * Dancing * Lifting Weights * My Kids * Cooking * Social Causes * Dadding * Blackberries * Whisky * Coffee * Creating

FILMS & TV-SHOWS

Wag the Dog * Kevin Smith Anthology * Monty Python * The Matrix * Reservoir Dogs * Pulp Fiction * Fawlty Towers * Emergency! * Boston Legal * Andy Griffith Show * MacGyver *He-Man * Looney Tunes * Twelve Angry Men * The Usual Suspects * Matchstick Men * The Ladykillers * The Blues Brothers * Princess Bride * Hamilton

BOOKS

I Am * Bible (NIV) * Here I Stand * Light - Science and Magic * Christian Doctrine * Citizen Soldiers

INFLUENCES

Joe McNally * David Hobby * David Ziser * Eric Harkins * Richard Avedon * Rolando Gomez * James DiGiorgio * Seth Godin * Will Hahn * Stephen J Patterson * Martin Luther

My Biography

My biography

Christian. Daddy. Photographer. Foodie. Athlete.

That's the short list and will tell you 90% of what you need to know about me...wanna know more? Keep reading

I'm a musician. I play the trumpet; well. I love playing big-band jazz dance tunes. I love listening to a wider variety of music than most people. My favorite musician is Jimmy Buffett.

I am an Eagle Scout. In my younger days, I was very involved with the Boy Scouts. I earned 78 merit badges. I worked for Boy Scout Camps for 7 summers. At my peak, I was the program director of a camp in California. We expanded the program by 40% that year, and had the following season booke d full before the end of the existing season. I am a Vigil Honor Member of the Order of the Arrow. Currently, I am the Vigil Advisor for Nisha Kittan Lodge and Cubmaster for Pack 28, Lebanon, Illinois.

I was a member of Boy's County & Boy's State.

I was a member of National Honor Society.

My high school activities included band of all varieties and Knowledge Bowl. I was team captain my senior year.

I went to college at the University of Minnesota, Morris. I got a double major in 4 years: History & Speech Communication. During that time I was also very involved with Jazz Ensembles and Lutheran Campus Ministries.

I went to Eden Theological Seminary for 2 years. Then I realized that wasn't my calling. I left on good terms and with decent grades.

From there I became an EMT, then a Paramedic, then a Critical Care Paramedic. During that time, I've saved countless lives including one "resurrection,", delivered 2.5 babies, and showed love to thousands of patients.

I have two baby girls rapidly-maturing daughters whom I cherish.

I am a Christian. My favorite analogy of Christianity says that we are not a group of saints trying to save sinners; we are merely one starving beggar telling another starving beggar where to find bread. I know that I am a sinner, and that there is no earthly reason I have been blessed the way I have. Still God chooses to love me, and all I can do is be thankful, try to love others, and try to live in a thankful way. My faith has gotten me through a lot. I trust God totally, and know with all that I am He will get me through, even though I don't know exactly how.

I love photography and cherish the artwork I am able to create. My "why" is to create artwork that people are proud to display in their homes; that they might feel cherished by their families and friends who view it with awe and pride. I see my clients more like friends and believe in meaningful relationships, experimentation and clarity.

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