McClanahan Studio Expansion

Businesses in Ames have been suffering recently due to the economy, but there’s one new business for which the sky is the limit. Many Ames High seniors over the last four years have been photographed by the husband and wife team Dan and Alex McClanahan. This year, they are taking their business, McClanahan Studio, to a whole new level. “We love downtown and we’ve been renting space in this building [208 5th St.] since 2009. When it went for sale it got us thinking about where we want to be five and ten years from now,” said Dan. The duo recently announced on their blog that they are buying 208 5th Street and renovating it with the hope that they can improve downtown Ames. Current tenants of 508 5th Street need not worry, however; Dan and Alex plan not only to keep the current businesses where they are, but also hope to bring in some fresh faces. “There are several vacancies in spaces that are cosmetically unattractive. The plan is to fix up those spaces and lease them out to groovy tenants,” said Dan. While the purchase won’t mean a change for the other businesses, the McClanahans have a big plan for McClanahan Studio thanks to the street-level vacancy. “We will be extensively renovating [the street-level space] into a swanky storefront gallery that will be our new HQ… We will be keeping our [current] third floor space as a shooting space, but moving our workstations and gallery down to the storefront,” said Dan. The timeline for the changes is unclear this early in the game, however the McClanahans hope to be done with construction in mid-summer. In addition to the move and renovation, the McClanahans recently had one more big announcement. Along with the expansion McClanahan Studio is experiencing comes the need for another pair of hands. They recently hired their first employee, office manager Kristin. “She’s incredibly personable and creative… This will allow us to spend more time doing what we do best, being in front of a camera, and help us increase the quality of our customer experience,” said Dan. McClanahan Studio specializes in commercial, wedding, and senior portraits. It is clear that this little business will be moving in leaps and bounds over the next few years.