Izzy and Garret’s hiking adventure session on South Mountain. Don’t you think every engagement session should be this way???
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.
Peoria Backyard Wedding - Arizona DIY Backyard Wedding Inspiration - Arizona Intimate Wedding Photographer - Arizona Elopement Photographer
If you follow my blog you know that I am an avid cheer-leader for skipping the big wedding and having an elopement or adventure elopement instead, but when a fellow photog friend asked if I would shoot this beautiful backyard wedding for her I hopped on board! From elopements with just the couple to intimate weddings with 25-65 guests I LOVE helping couples document their day and creating beautiful images for them to look back on, share with their kids and hang on their walls forever. Nikki & Keith had many loving family moments, perfect DIY details and a wedding day that was truly them.
Check out all the DIY details that Nikki sprinkled throughout her ceremony! Everything was so well thought out and really gave the space a romantic feel. As a guest to the family I could definitely feel the love that this family has bonding them together through all the personal touches.
Their ceremony wasn’t just the joining of two people, but truly about blending a family. I love the special moments that they had with their kids and special touches from other people in the family that have helped support them throughout their relationship already. During the ceremony you could just feel all the support they have from everyone there and how much having their guests there to be apart of this day meant to them. I also think it is so kind of a family member to open up their home for you to be able to have your wedding there! You will also have a memory of that and go back to be able to visit the place that you tied the knot.
It is always important to me when working with a client to create images that show emotion and the bond that the two have. It’s also always a priority for me to have creative images for the clients that will be awesome ‘wall pieces’ that are artistic and a celebration from the day. I love that with backyard weddings I still get that freedom to create for my clients just like my adventure elopement clients.
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!
Kia & Jonathan - Engagement Session - Mesa, Arizona
Meet Jonathan & Kia!
This lovely couple from Wisconsin now calls Phoenix, AZ their home. Recently engaged they have planned a romantic wedding on a family farm back in Wisconsin, but wanted to do their engagement session here in Arizona. Their love story of meeting through mutual friends and a timeless proposal reminds me of the good ‘ole days where love is fun, but classy. We set out to Phon D Sutton park for their engagement session to capture a variety of images by having desert backgrounds to lovely shade trees and much more. We had a beautiful evening and even ended the night with a stunning full moon! Trust me you will want to see the resulting photo below!!!
Nothing Fancy just Love.
Elopements are just that, love.
Meet Tori & Sam a lovely pair that got married in Louisiana last year, but moved here several months ago. We set out a just a couple of days before their one year wedding anniversary and four year 'being together' anniversary to Watson Lake and Sedona, Arizona. It was all of ours first time to Watson Lake and I must say, it is the perfect spot for an elopement. It is fantastic for that Phoenix couple that doesn’t want to go too far or the destination couple from afar. It is accommodating if you want a few guests or no guest and just all love. Visually Watson Lake offers fantastic options for photography during your elopement. Here Tori and Sam renewed their vows to each other and explored some of the upper areas of the lake.
Then we headed to the ever breath taking, Sedona. Just as Sedona has endless trail options, it offers just the same options to the adventurous elopement couples. After a few images on Airport Loop Trail and near Cathedral Rock we sat for a picnic before heading home to Phoenix. What better way to end your day than good food, company and watching the sunset against Cathedral Rock after renewing your vows??
These are just two of the stunning locations that Arizona offers to the adventurous elopement couples! Arizona if filled with photo dream worthy elopement locations. I feel so blessed that I get to photograph elopements and be apart of something the day couples start their forever.
Reach out to learn more about my elopement photography packages and how I can help you in the planning process!