Hi! I'm Mikki!

Born & Raised Nebraskan. DOG MOM. NATURE LOVER. WIFE TO THE CUTEST HUSBAND. Photographer.

I'm Mikaela Stephenson , the face and heart behind Tripods & Tails Photography in Southwest Nebraska. My friends call me Mikki, and you can feel free to do the same! I am a lover of dogs, family, lists, and the great outdoors! My husband (Tristan) and I live in Grant, NE where he teaches Art. I love avocado toast for breakfast, working out, and pouring into color-coded planners. Above all, I love getting to authentically know and serve other people. The name Tripods & Tails was inspired by our rescue tripawd (three-legged) pup and her zest for life despite having only three legs. I specialize in family, newborn, and senior portrait photography with dogs (as well as other pets) in Southwest Nebraska and the surrounding areas; however, I do a little bit of everything. My official business venture began in November 2020, but my journey with photography started well before. 

After being incorrectly diagnosed with Non-Hodgkins Lymphoma three days before my and my husband's first wedding anniversary, I gained a genuine gratitude for the life I have. Suddenly, I started paying more attention to little "in-between" and seemingly unimportant moments of life, and in these moments is where I found the most unexpected beauty. I never set out to become a photographer, but I am a firm believer that the best things in life aren't planned. Those in-between, candid moments are the moments I strive to capture for clients and reflect through my work. 

A big thanks to the Perkins County Schools Ag Business Program who asked to create this video for me!


Happy Clients


Year Founded





- Pretty sure she is half frog (she always lays on the floor with her legs out like frog legs)
- The newest rescue dog member of the family adopted in May 2021
- Professional snuggle bug
- Smallest dog of the bunch
- Doesn't like being alone

- Favorite hobby is napping
- Rescued from the ditch with a broken leg (and now only has three)
- Takes up more space in bed than a normal human
- Official watch dog
- Gorgeous, strong-willed pup

Lab/Pit/Chow-Chow/Border Collie

- Will never turn down a run or a game of fetch
- Thinks naps are bad
- Loves doing tricks, watching tv, and refereeing
   while other dogs play 
- Protects the house from squirrels
- Can basically hold a conversation with humans

Border Collie/Blue Heeler


The Stephenson Pups

Something I shouldn't be allowed to do

Open cereal bags because I tear them wide open every. single. time

favorite food

Bacon cheeseburger pizza, brussels sprouts, or anything Mexican

Favorite Series

Avatar the Last Airbender or Brooklyn 99

My unpopular opinion

Staying in is wayyy better than going out

Things I love

People who love dogs
Videos of dogs & cute rescue stories
Lavender lemonade
Making lists
A Clean House

Books I Recommend

Unbroken - Laura Hillenbrand
The Book Thief - Markus Zusak
A Dog's Purpose - W. Bruce Cameron

(I cried in an airplane, my bath tub, and in the car reading this one)

Just for Fun

"Mikki's creativity is insane! She also takes the time to get to know her clients before hand. Such an amazing human! She is such a bubbly and positive person. I loved her positivity and the love she radiates."
- Abby

"100% RECOMMEND TRIPODS AND TAILS PHOTOGRAPHY! ...Something that really stood out to me about my session was that Mikki knew I loved Elton John, so she put together a playlist of songs and played them the whole session. The planning process was so easy and stress free! i love how Mikki is less “okay try this pose” and more “I really want to see your personality shine through in these photos.” I’m usually nervous when it comes to taking pictures but I felt so comfortable, thanks to the woman behind the camera. I promise you won’t walk away from your session without a new friend and some gorgeous pictures to capture the memories of your evening!"
- Kylah

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After being incorrectly diagnosed with lymphoma in 2019, three days before our first wedding anniversary, I realized how fragile life can be and how quickly things can change. I've spent the last few years realizing how special every single moment and emotion (both good and bad) are and capturing those moments for people like YOU. 

I am married to the most handsome and kind man on the east (and west) side of the rockies. My husband is an art teacher and artist who specializes in painting. We met in high school and have been together almost nine years! He continues to inspire me to be more creative and be a better person. I'm obsessed with him, and he shows up frequently in stories on Instagram. <3

It won't take you getting to know me long before you realize that I am also totally OBSESSED with my pups. The photos of my dogs out number all other photos on my phone COMBINED!!! Our sweet pups, Nova, Scotia, & Kacy are the inspiration for the name of my business! 

Dog Mom


My Why

More About Me

What I'm Working With

Camera & Lenses:

Nikon z5 & Nikon z6ii
Nikkor 24-70mm f2.8
NIkkor 85mm f1.8
Nikkor 50mm f1.8
Nikkor 30mm f1.8


16 inch MacBook Pro
Apple Mouse

Ready to book?!

"We LOVE Mikki! She makes every experience amazing! She communicates so well and makes you feel beautiful in every session! She does an amazing job with the pets and is so patient! We would choose her over and over again for every moment of our life that needs captured!"

"I can’t recommend Tripods & Tails enough! My husband and I had such a fun session with Mikki - we felt so relaxed and comfortable the entire time, resulting in beautiful candid photos! (I usually do not love photos of myself, but these are definitely going to be printed!!) I LOVED the dress I borrowed from Mikki’s gorgeous client closet! She is creative & suggested prompts that had us all laughing so hard, creating natural smiles! Tripods & Tails is professional & dependable yet down to earth and caring, doing whatever it takes to create photos you’ll love forever. Mikki is the absolute best photographer and we can’t thank her enough for these photos we will cherish for a lifetime."
- Sophia

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