With such a large metropolitan area, there are countless choices where one could take photographs. However, some of the top destinations are in the very center of the city. More weddings, and especially receptions are being held in the downtown area each year. All of the places on this list will give you a variety of backdrops and gorgeous shots all within a close distance of each other. Her is a look at ten top locations for urban portraiture in Kansas City.
The River Market is located at the northern end of downtown Kansas City. It is a historic and culturally rich area as well as Kansas City’s oldest neighborhood. No one can miss the region’s largest farmer’s market in the heart of the area. There is also a variety of parks throughout the space and along the edge of the Missouri River. Throw in the brick streets, old store fronts, decorative lamp posts, and local eateries and you have got a little bit of everything to choose from.
The West Bottoms is a great area that shows off some of the historic factories and office spaces Kansas City has to offer. There are a variety of antique shops, restaurants, and empty buildings to offer you some interesting backdrops. Another popular feature of the West Bottoms is the easy accessibility to the train tracks. Not all of these tracks are out of commission, but depending on the train traffic those days, you can get some great shots with all the historic old factories in the background. There are also many areas with less traveled streets and bridges you can take photos on as well. This is a great place you should explore and find a few hotspots to bring your clients to.
Power & Light
Kansas City’s Power & Light is the new, hip place to be. This area continues to grow as a nighttime hot spot for the city. There is a variety of contemporary architectural styles in Power & Light that provide a nice setting for your bride and groom. Power & Light is a great place for night shots with all the colorful fluorescent lighting located throughout the district. You also have a variety of exterior spaces to shoot in some of the larger outdoor bar and cafe areas.
The Crossroad is the art district of the city, with a interesting fusion of old and new architecture. There are lots of exciting places to photograph with rustic old factory doors and exterior spaces, wall murals and graffiti, and a multitude of interior and exterior art galleries. This is a great place for any photographer to explore and find a few good spots to come back to again and again. There are lots of nooks and crannies, and dead end streets that have great photography waiting at the end.
Union Station is a classic spot for great photos. This historic train stations has beautiful stone walls and huge windows to give you a variety of spaces to shoot. There is also the impressive grand hall and kissing clock which are popular photogenic locations. Don’t forget to utilize the exterior of the building which has a nice lawn space in front.
Liberty Memorial is located just south of Union Station, and is one of my favorite places for portraits. This beautiful memorial for our World War I veterans offers an impressive monument and museum space. There is a impressive green area with terraces to the south and a fountain in front of the large bronze doors of the museum entrance. Climb the stairs at the north side of the memorial to photograph your bride and groom in front of the Kansas City skyline. There are also two museum buildings on the east and west sides that have large pillars and colorful wall tiles for backdrops.
Country Club Plaza
A favorite stop for locals and travelers, the Country Club Plaza is a great place for photography. The Spanish influenced architecture offers a colorful backdrop. Plus, there is a large collection of fountains and sculptures located throughout. Throw in a carriage ride or a snack at the sidewalk cafe and you’re ready to go.
Nelson-Atkin Museum of Art
Located just east of the Country Club Plaza is the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art. You’re not allowed to take portraits inside the museum, but there is an impressive lawn area to the south of the building. With many pieces of sculpture and a variety of vegetation, there is a multitude of creativity waiting for your clients. You also have the exterior of the two museum buildings, the older more classical main building and very contemporary backdrop of the new addition.
Kauffman Memorial Garden
Just south of the Nelson Atkins Museum you will find the Kauffman Memorial Gardens. This beautiful space offers three main garden spaces with multiple alcoves and private areas for a variety of shots. This is a popular setting for senior and engagement portraits, as well as weddings.
Loose Park is a favorite in Kansas City for outdoor weddings, and for good reason. This is another historic site with beautiful landscaping, and a walking path. Loose Park also has a famous rose garden with a beautiful fountain nearby. There is also Loose Lake and a few buildings scattered throughout to give you a variety of locations to take images of the bride and groom.