This blog displays an elopement in Smith Rock State Park outside of Bend, Oregon photographed by adventure elopement photographer, Traci Edwards. This blog also gives you tips and suggestions for other state parks to consider for your elopement!
a year in review…
Welp….this is it, the last day of 2018! I always spend the last few days of the year to review the year and make plans for the new year.
I must say HOLY COW what a year!!!
The first part of the year I prepped for opening business and moving to Arizona. I drove across country with my two cats in my car arriving to my new life on Valentine’s day.
I jumped right in full force, my first week here I photographed an intimate wedding in Northern Phoenix and and in home maternity session. As the year went on I worked on building a portfolio of adventure elopement and anniversary sessions to show clients just some of the amazing options for their wedding day. I met A LOT of new people in the industry and outside of the industry, got to know my new city, did some intense continued education within the industry, determined a style and a brand and traveled a lot. In between it all, I even launched a wedding dress rental program for all of my elopement and intimate wedding brides. The year was BUSY and not at all what I thought it would be, but does anything go as we plan???
If you have ever moved out of state you know that the first year is usually….odd. Lol. It is a year of adjustment, change, learning and reworking relationships. It was not a easy year at all for me emotionally and I must say I am very excited for a new year. I think 2018 was my year of change, growth, grounding and wonder. I am hoping 2019 will be my year of growth, blossoming and success. I am so grateful for the clients I had this year, the new friends I have made here in Arizona, to live somewhere with mountains and for supportive family and friends.
I’m also so blessed to have found the path within photography that I am extremely PASSIONATE about!! Graduating college with a BFA in Photography only 4.5 years ago I had no idea what I was going to do to with it. I knew I liked working with people and helping style photo shoots, but that was it. I went to work for an RV company photographing product to then a studio and golf photography job. While I loved my job and doing the work the all-around passion was missing. I truly think I have found my home in photography and couldn’t be more excited to go into the next year with further knowledge I gained this year to help couples pick a location for the elopement, help them plan, give them tips on awesome local vendors, be able to help them with a wedding dress if they’re eloping on a shorter time frame and document the most special day of their lives.
Cheers, ya’ll to 2019!
I consider my first accomplishment of the year to be moving to Phoenix, Arizona. I can tell you first hand it really makes a huge difference to love where you live. Then would come the official launch of my business! I took a leap of faith and went from working at a commercial photography studio that mainly focused on golf to turning my focus to couple’s in the wild and photographing elopements!! I feel so honored to have been featured in my first year of business by Looks Like Film, Wandering Weddings, Tacari Weddings and interviewed by the Phoenix Voyage. I also launched a wedding dress rental program for all of my elopement brides!! I offer designer wedding dresses from size 0-10 that brides can select from without the time lines and stress of shopping at a store, not to mention saving closest space later. Of course, the overall achievement of surviving my first year in business.
Locations of 2018:
In 2018 I visited, scouted and photographed at the following locations: Joshua Tree National Park, Yosemite National Park, Lake Tahoe, Zion National Park, Bryce Canyon National Park, Anacortes, West Palm Beach, Flagstaff, Sedona, Hanging Rock State Park, South Carolina, Louisville, Southern California Sand Dunes, Arizona Rim Country and Coal Mine Canyon.
Upcoming Travel for 2019:
In 2019 I will be traveling to the following locations for elopements and intimate weddings: Lake Powell, Asheville, North Florida, Sedona and the list is growing. Some places on my travel list for the year not yet scheduled would be Smith Rock, Oregon, Grand Tetons National Park, Yosemite National Park, Colorado, Alaska, Mt. Rainer and of course Iceland (it is always on the list!)
I can’t wait to see where all 2019 takes me!
I am also excited to bring in the new year with a new logo!!
Be on the look out for some big things and new changes on the website. I'm so EXCITED for the new year!
Special thanks to the following folks for helping make 2018 not too shabby for my first year in Arizona: South Mountain Films, AZ Fleuristas, Ruthanne, Lauren Yvonne Design, my PHX ladies hiking group, Ashly, Shane Baker, Everardo, Jen Maclay, I Do Rentals, Platinum Medical Group, the Southwest PGA Section, ALL OF MY AMAZING CLIENTS, all the ladies that modeled my wedding dresses for launch, of course my handsome significant other, Shane Simmons and many more.
Winter Elopement Locations - Adventure Elopement Photographer based in Phoenix, AZ
Hey it’s me here!
I am here to tell you that Winter is still a perfect time of year for your elopement, just check out all of these desert locations!! I recently ventured off to Zion and Bryce Canyon National Parks to hike Angel’s Landing and check out other trails for elopements. I was so excited to see this little spot in Bryce that is perfect for a ceremony if you plan to bring a couple of very important people along to witness the vows. Bryce and Zion are still great elopement locations for a winter elopement, the nights are quiet cold, but the day can be warm. Depending on the day you can catch snow in Bryce, which means cold, yes, but BEAUTIFUL! Tis’ the season right??
Heading more South into Arizona, you have Sedona, Grand Canyon, Tuscon and Petrified Forest National Park as great locations during the winter. If you do want snow but not those negative numbers you may get in other states or countries this time of year then Flagstaff and Payson are perfect options. Heading to Southern California I also recommend Joshua Tree for the winter. Once again it can get cold during the night, but after a perfect day who doesn’t want to cuddle up in a cozy Airbnb?
Thinking of eloping this Holiday season or just during the Winter months in general??? Shoot me an email! I would be happy to chat with you! I have availability over the holidays and in the coming months. Need a dress on short notice?? Do not worry, I have you covered. Check out the designer dresses I have for rent for my adventure elopement brides!
Want to adventure and get married in the most epic winter wonderland???
Arizona Adventure Elopement Photographer - Salt River Adventure Session
With Thanksgiving upon us I’m going to get a little mushy…
Without a shadow of a doubt I am beyond able to say I LOVE my job. I mean I feel like saying ‘job’ can’t even be right?! I get to spend my day with couples madly in love with each other. I get to photograph them in stunning places. It does not come without the hard work of communicating together to make the perfect plan for the couple’s session or elopement, detailed marketing, branding and the typically life of a business owner. This being said it doesn’t hold a candle to all of the other joys it brings me. I feel like in this day and age we are in now so many people have lost faith that true love exits, but I am here to tell you it does! I see it all the time in front of camera and it is so inspiring. Outside of engagements, anniversary and adventure couple’s sessions I feel extremely blessed that I get to witness the most intimate thing I believe a couple can experience, an elopement.
While I am on my mushy train… I just want to say how lucky I feel to live here in Arizona. Yesterday I was driving to Lost Dutchman for a session and was just in awe of the Arizona views; always stunning, especially at sunrise and sunset. A year ago to the date I came to Arizona with my partner to check it out as a possible place to live. It blows my mind to be able to say now we both live here and get to thrive in our work and life in the desert. It is the most magical place to live as an adventure elopement photographer and I am forever grateful.
Special shout out and more thankfulness to Jeff Watkins who invited me to The Gathering where these photos were taken of the lovely Jonnie + Garrett. I am telling you it has been a crazy busy last two months of location scouting for future elopement couples and continued education within the industry.
Tip to future Arizona intimate wedding brides and grooms: you MUST check out Saguaro Lake Ranch as a venue. It is adventure elopement worthy location, but perfect for the couple that wants their closest friends and family there for the celebration.
Want to document your love?! I strongly believe if you’re engaged, married, dating or anything imaginable it is important to document your love!
Joshua Tree is a scared place for many. The vast desert is so beautiful and peaceful, can you think of a better place to elope? Even though the park is popular, you’re bound to find a little nook just to yourselves for those vows. Check out Jax and Octavio’s romantic session and learn more about eloping in Joshua Tree National Park.
Arizona Based Adventure Elopement Photographer
Wild Hearts On Fire
Recently, I had the chance to do a mentorship with Ruthanne, a fellow elopement photographer, which brought me to the stunning views of Lake Tahoe! We took some time out of our grind on business talk to photograph this beautiful couple, Claire and Wilson! These two souls are madly in love with each other and prepping for their venture into Van Life. I could not get enough of their sweet giggles, admiration and that red hat!! I love their excitement to take photos together. I am always for couple’s pictures especially before any life change; who says you need to be engaged to enjoy each other and have beautiful images to show it!
This duo even opted in pose as a bride and groom. Claire slipped into one of my wedding dresses for rent for a some styled elopement images! Claire is wearing the ‘Death Valley’ dress designed by Monique Lhuillier. These beautiful flowers were provided by Love & Lupines Floral Design who are also based in Lake Tahoe. I’m head over heels for this bridal look with the red hat and feather, the sexy jeweled dress, romantic floral arrangement and let’s not forget all of those pines! If you’re thinking of eloping I can ensure you that it will be an experience you will never forget and stunning images to last a lifetime!
Let’s get your elopement or couple’s session on the calendar!
Yosemite National Park as an Elopement Location - Adventure Elopement Photographer based in Arizona
Yosemite is pure magic.
Yosemite National Park is an absolute dreamy place to elope. We often see the same photos of this park, couples on the edge over looking the sunning El Capitan or Half Dome. Even though these images are amazing there is so much more to this place! Every little nook is a piece of solitude and amazing views. The couple of days I was there the park was mostly submerged in the clouds. I can only imagine Yosemite as the perfect place for private vows and adventure as fantastic no matter what weather condition. There is even the sweetest little church for those couples that want an in between of an intimate ceremony and the private photos after. If you are a couple moved by water falls, look no further than Yosemite! I am telling you each hike I took and drive through the park I almost ran off the road or simply just stood motionless just gawking at the parks beauty.
Let’s take a second and talk about bears…
Please remember when you are visiting the beautiful National Parks you are also visiting the homes of many wildlife. Please remember that any second one of these beautiful animals may cross the road; keep your eyes on the look out and your speed down. Also, I know you may really want that photo of a bear close up, but do not chase the bears to get that photo, observe from afar. Respect the animals and their space. Remember to practice No Trace Behind while visiting the park for the well being of the ecosystem and the animals that live there.
Hey, hey it is me! I hope you enjoyed this blog post on Yosemite National Park. If you have any questions please reach out. If you are thinking of eloping in this stunning National Park please contact me. I would love to help you in your planning and be there to capture your adventure!
If you are interested in any landscape prints click here :)
Jennifer & Ben’s Flagstaff Engagement Session - Adventure Elopement Photographer - Arizona Based Photographer
An Adventure Fall Engagement Session <3
Jen & Ben met me in Flagstaff for a beautiful fall engagement session! We had the most gorgeous sunset to end our adventurous session. I knew I had met my match couple when Jen said she thought about bringing her cat to the session so they could have a photo with their fur babies! I was also so stoked to find that my partner and I are not the only couple where the lady gives the piggy back rides! This sweet couple, who do a lot of great work in the community of Phoenix, is due to get married in Phoenix next year in February. They had a dreamy scavenger hunt proposal leading them to a special place in Sedona where Ben surprised Jen by asking her to be his wife after many years of being together. I can not wait to see these two tie the knot at their intimate wedding next year!