The Importance of Location

The location of your senior photos can be important for a variety of reasons. Maybe you spent lots of time as a kid going to Quarry Hill? Or perhaps your most fond memories are being on stage in the school musical? Maybe, you have great memories of a picnic with friends complete with a charcuterie board at the Plummer house? Whatever the case may be, a location can be merely a beautiful backdrop for your senior photos, or it can be a way to capture those favorite memories of senior year. Whatever the reason I am here for it! New locations are fabulous, but I also love the challenge of photographing familiar locations but making it look new and unique for each person.

Alternately, if you are in the market for an updated headshot, be sure to scroll through these locations for a few ideas. Because backgrounds in headshots are shot with a shallow depth of field, (which results in the background being out of focus), any of these locations would be perfect for a headshot.

Keep in mind that locations photograph differently at different times of day or even at different season of the year.

Historic 3rd Street

4 3rd St. SW

Historic 3rd Street is a vibrant location, full of lights, old buildings and lots of interesting backdrops. There is a parking garage at the end of the street or metered Parking. Parking on weekends any time of weekdays after five is available behind Terza Restaurant. Because if its location, relative to the sun it makes a great location for photos at nearly anytime of day. Easy access to the Zumbro River and beautiful views of the Civic Center makes this a great location.

girl in black boots and red beret jumping up in air

The Plummer House-Daytime

1091 Plummer Ln SW, Rochester, MN

The Plummer House is the former residence of Dr. Henry Plummer. It has lush grounds with well manicured gardens that is open to the public. It is sometimes booked for weddings, so it is advisable to check their calendar before choosing this location. Daytime is beautiful and affords lots of variety.

The Plummer House-Dusk

1091 Plummer Ln SW, Rochester, MN

The Plummer House is the former residence of Dr. Henry Plummer. It has lush grounds with well manicured gardens that is open to the public. It is sometimes booked for weddings, so it is advisable to check their calendar before choosing this location. This mansion is surrounded by trees, so the light disappears quickly as dusk approaches but it can yield some beautiful shots too!

Ironwood Building

300 3rd Ave SE

Ironwood Square Office Building is located in downtown Rochester. The building has a parking lot that is open on weekends and after business hours. It features great views of the Mayo Civic Center, the Zumbro River and is located directly accross from the Government Center. Great photography location that has covered shade for bright days. Perfect for headshots that feature a bit of the city and some nature too! Park in the lot on the side closest to the Zumbro River.

Mitchell Student Center-Mayo Medical School

226 2nd St SW

The Mitchell Student Center was originally the Rochester Public Library and now houses the Alix School of Medicine. Built of limestone and accented with 1940's lamp posts it makes a beautiful backdrop for photos.

Plummer Building

100 2nd St SW

The Plummer Building in Rochester, Minnesota is one of the many architecturally significant buildings on the Mayo Clinic campus. It opened in 1928. It is on the U.S. National Register of Historic Places and is U.S. National Historic Landmark. Great location for photos.

Quarry Hill Nature Center

701 Silver Creek Rd NE

Quarry Hill Nature Center offers over eight miles of hiking trails, a cave and climbing wall. In addition to its beautiful trees it also has a pond and prairie, making this a great location for nature lovers!

Second Street Parking Ramp-Top Level

14 2nd St. SE

This parking garage is close to the other great locations, (the waterfront of the Zumbro River, Historic Third Street, etc...) It makes a great place to stop for some Urban and Nature images It is even a great place at dusk for headshots. See below:

Quarry Hill Park

2100 9th St NE

This park has a playground, softball field, and tennis courts near the hiking trails to Quarry Hill. This location is know for its beautiful tall pines and gorgeous nature trails. Please park in the public parking on the North Side near the Tennis Courts.

Second Street Parking Ramp-Ground Level

14 2nd St. SE

These pictures below show how you can make a highly functional and not very apealling parking ramp look amazing as a backdrop at dusk. And the second set of pictures show how you can take the sunset splashing on the Olmsted County Government Building several hundred feet away into a beautiful warm backdrop.

Third Street Parking Garage

100 3rd St SW

100 3rd St SW

This parking garage's top floor is often empty which affords us beautiful views of the downtown including the classically designed Plummer Building

Rochester Skyline

Park near the old Silver Lake Fire Station # 2. Walk over the pedestrian bridge towards the bike trail that leads under the 7th Street NE Bridge. Go under 7th St. Bridge and arrive up near a small patch of grass on right that has a great view of downtown!

Silver Lake

Silver Lake is gorgeous year round. Offering four seasons of beautiful vistas, stone bridges and playground space it is great for High School Seniors, headshots and fashion shoots. Meet at the East Shelter for plenty of good parking.

Cafe Steam Alley

315 Broadway ave

This cozy coffee shop has brick lined walls with art from local artists making the inside a great place for photos. Behind the coffee shop in the alley way there is a great set of stairs, a fun platform with a painted backdrop, a white door frame with orange sherbet polka dots, a patio with twinkle lights and a beautiful ivy covered brick wall.

Center Street Parking Ramp

11 W Center St

Close to Victoria's Restaurant, the Hilton, and the Kahler Hotel, this parking garage is great at all times of the day but especially at dusk when the neon sign of the Kahler Hotel lights up and makes a great backdrop!

Downtown Rochester- Near the Residences at City Hall.

This beautiful building and it's Art Deco style make a stunning backdrop for photos. Paid parking is available at the third street parking ramp. Parking is free after 5 p.m. and on weekends

Civic Center Parking Ramp

This parking ramp boasts beautiful views of downtown, and is across the street from the Civic Center and Rochester Art Center for even more fun location shots. Parking is free after 5 p.m. and on weekends

Forager Brewery

1005 6th St. NW

Forager has a great outdoor mural and a patio that makes for a beautiful Photo Op. Permission is required to utilize the indoor spaces which are very unique and fun!

The Meadow One

There are two meadows at this location. This one gets beautiful sunsets in the fall and has warm shade in the summer.

The Meadow Two

This meadow has great sunsets in the Summer and a beautiful dirt road with some wildflowers . Bring your own wildflowers for spectacular images at sunset.

The Chateau Theatre

15 1st St SW (Street Level)

Rochester, MN 55902

This historic theatre makes a lovely backdrop for high school senior photos, headshots or fashion inspired images. Parking is nearby at the Civic Center Parking Ramp.