Meet the Ivory House Team

I started Ivory House Photography as a one-woman show, working out of my mom's house, hustling and hoping that someday I would have a team to support my big, big dreams. The ladies in the photo above are truly the arms and legs of my business. Without them, this ambitious endeavor would never have gotten off the ground.

When someone joins my team, they also join my business ideology. At Ivory House, we believe every person is important, unique, and capable of making a difference. While we are creating images and memories that last a lifetime, we are also leaders, organizers, movers and shakers in our community. Ivory House is a place for people to gather and meet new people who impact Des Moines in positive and innovative ways.

These women have signed on to this mission in full force, supporting me in every way a person could be supported. These women are my friends, my co-workers, and my inspiration. Ivory House would be lost without them.

Whitney Warne: Photographer and Owner of Ivory House Photography

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I do my best to live out my core values, which include showing passion for my community, engaging with people, and demonstrating that every individual is valuable, beautiful, and that each person can make a difference. I strive to be a resource for my community, creating opportunities for people to get involved in big and small ways.
Originally from Des Moines, I attended the University of Iowa for a dual degree in journalism and photography. I then moved to Rochester, NY, where I got my MFA in Photography. Living and working in Rochester after graduation was when I really fell in love with portrait photography. I spent four years working for my best friend and photographer Natalie Sinisgalli. Moving back to Des Moines to start my business was one of the best decisions i've ever made. In just two short years, Ivory House has grown from a hopeful dream of mine to a full-fledged company. I can’t imagine doing business and living life anywhere else.

Lucy Wendell: Studio Manager

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I was hooked on getting Lucy on our team the moment she mentioned bacon in her cover letter. Lucy comes with a background in publishing and is currently working on a successful true-crime/comedy podcast. (Listen to the sassy ladies of Wine and Crime here!) Her empathy and attention to detail make her a great addition to Ivory Houses team. She is quick to laugh, takes time with the tough tasks, and appreciates the importance of a well-maintained schedule. Because of her, I am able to enjoy my nights, weekends, and travel time knowing that she's got it all handled.

 

Megan Brannen: Production Assistant

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Megan came to me my very first summer in business. She possessed the ability to appear magically out of thin air every time I found myself in a photographic pinch. When I realized I was in desperate need of a production assistant, Megan was the first person I turned to. Today, she works behind the scenes to ensure the highest quality for every image leaving the studio. She takes on every challenge and every task with enthusiasm. Working with her is a dream, and I could not do what I do without her. She is currently attending DMACC for photography and one day hopes to use the skills she’s learned here as a professional photographer.

 

Rachel Peterson: Media Maven

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There was a time last year when I didn’t know what I needed, but knew I needed someone. And then Rachel appeared, with her myriad skills and saintly patience. She is a jack of all trades and a master of many. Rachel manages my website, produces our videos, and oversees all social media. While she also contributes her time and talent to other companies around Des Moines (see her website here), she truly understands the mission of Ivory House and focuses on that message in everything we put out into the world. She is an irreplaceable part of our team dynamic.