traveling photographer

Hey, it's me...!

Sedona Elopement Photographer & Wedding Dress Rental

Hi there, I am Traci! While I have been blogging my work for over a year now I have not properly introduced myself, so lets do that! :)

Arizona Destination Wedding Photographer

Me the Photographer...

My passion is adventure elopements and in home sessions. I love photographing elopements! There is something so amazing that happens when you get to be outside in the wilderness, in places that take your breath away, for that special moment of intimacy. I love to connect with couples and see their strong rooted love in front of my lens, everything feels so raw and real. This gives me the freedom to be really creative and produce imagery for them to have as fine art prints on their walls that they will cherish forever.

I try not to ever limit myself! I also photograph golf, portraits, senior portraits, maternity, boudoir, and intimate weddings. I officially opened my business this past Feb. after moving from FL to AZ, but I have been doing photography for over nine years. I have a BFA from UNCG and got my 'masters' from working with Montana Pritchard Photography. You may be asking why go from being on a commercial photo team and photographing huge golf tournaments to shooting adventure elopements and lifestyle shoots? Well that is simple, a lot of my work stems from my beliefs. I strongly believe that couples should have the wedding day they want, no matter what that means to them. Couples can have their dream wedding without all the wedding drama and without spending a down payment on a house.I find it truly inspiring to watch couples hike together on their wedding day and share the most intimate day of their lives together, just the two of them. This is no different than me believing in women doing boudoir sessions, which I have found leave them feeling sexy, peaceful, and empowered. I am also a huge advocate for having art on your walls, especially art that means something to you. I find that elopements and adventure sessions are a fantastic way to do this. Nothing warms my heart more than a client ordering a huge print for their walls. I like to explain my style as earthy, dramatic and artistic. Outside of photography I offer complimentary planning sessions for my couple's elopement, designer wedding dress rentals to my brides and I am an ordained officiant!

 

 

Arizona Based Adventure Elopement Photographer

..but who is Traci Edwards??

I was raised in a very small town in North Carolina, but I have now lived in five states and traveled all over! Texas is my second favorite state I have lived in so far and probably because of its amazing horse culture. I have a passion for travel and exploring new places. I also really enjoy a good cocktail and a chef's choice meal where ever I go. I have you covered on any Mezcal recommendations or a good plate of duck. Outside of camping, hiking, and eating, I am a cat mom to Indy & Sophie, who also hike! I spend my spare time not on the trail volunteering with animals, riding horses, reading a mystery or business book and planning my next trip. Besides photography my background in the arts goes from dance, printmaking, and theater. I am extremely passionate about doing things to your own beat, mental health, understanding other cultures and strong relationships!

Three random facts:

- I have always wanted to hug a cow

- My speciality is dark chocolate fudge brownies with peanut butter chips

- My dream dog is a German Shepherd

 

 

Iceland Elopement Photographer

The Places...

My first adventure elopement was in Iceland back in December of 2017. It is now my career goal to photograph an elopement in Iceland each year <3

 Besides Iceland some of my favorite places I have been to are Australia, Washington, Oregon, London, California and of course Arizona (hello, I moved here I loved it so much!). Photographing elopements is a passion that is just as strong as my passion to travel and hike. I can never plan a trip without wanting to also photograph a couple, it's not work it's my natural desire. 

Here are some of the places I am currently dying to go explore:

- Banff

- Grand Tetons

- Yosmite

- Greenland

- Scotland

- Mt. Rainer (I am not sure how it is possibly that I've been to Washington four times and not hiked here)

- Valley of Fire

- Moab

Places I have already been and highly recommend visiting or eloping at: Joshua Tree National Park, Olympic National Forest, Big Sur, Top Secret Private Family owned farm in NC, Vik, Smith Rock, Anacortes, Micanopy, San Fran, Sparks Lake and a few less traveled places in Arizona!

Tell me where you want to go in the comments!!

Adventure Elopement Photographer - Grand Canyon

I am here to answer your questions! Any thing from work to personal, just drop them in the comments!

Special thanks for the behind the scenes photos to: Jennifer Lynn, Drone Dreamers and Brooke Magee.

Southern California Elopement Photographer

Vetur

vetur


winter

black beach iceland
iceland photography book

There is something beautiful about discovery.

Standing in the cold windy night waiting for the northern lights for hours thinking 'Am I going to see them tonight?' It is such a rush of a feeling. Even though I did not see them sitting there freezing and watching the light of the lighthouse and listening to the waves break in the night is such a raw experience. Wondering if I am going to make it off of the closed road alive only to come over the hill and see the largest lake in Iceland at day break took my breath away and gave me that extra push to just go. Stopping in the rain to see a horse that's full of curiosity of my camera making me laugh out loud while completely alone. The worst of a weather day adventuring to the secret lagoon and never wanting to get out because the warmth engulfed me. These are all things that will truly stick with me from this trip. It is so hard to explain all the experiences and how they make you take a step back and just say 'wow.'

So, I went to Iceland, kind of on a whim! I personally do not feel that there are words that can describe this magical winter wonderland. It was truly an experience I will never forget from the scariest moment of my life accidentally driving on a closed mountain road to a romantic dinner for one followed by wine and listening to poetry in Icelandic at the hostel. For a couple of years now I have taken an "end of year self-trip" where just me in my lonesome go somewhere new and experience life while reflecting on life back home, and never in a fancy hotel or on a tour guide express, but always (pretty much) phone-less. I must say that this trip was a little overwhelming being my first trip alone to a different country and I am so glad I did it! I think this was one of the most humbling experiences of my life for a huge list of reasons. I encourage anyone and everyone to visit this gem. If you're not a strong-hearted soul maybe do not visit in the winter the icy roads, sidewalks, short daylight hours and intense wind gusts can be intimidating :)

I have to give a huge shout out to Jon, who runs the Norður-Hvammur farm in Vik. The Southern part of Iceland was for sure my favorite and I wish I could have spent more time there. Part of the reason I enjoyed it so much was the amazing breakfast provided, fantastic suggestions on what to do during my time and of course all of the farm animals that I got to spend time with and photograph. If you ever get the chance to visit please book here.

Please enjoy the imagery. You can click on the images to make them larger and scroll through. If you scroll down you can also see how to purchase my book or prints!

You can purchase a book of the Icelandic winter landscapes through the links below. Each book is a little different. One book is a small square with many images for the shopper on a budget and one book is large with beautiful lay flat pages. 

vetur - small book                            vetur - larger book

Don't want a book, but still would like to have one of the images? I will be offering for a very limited time the option to purchase a print of some of the selected images. You can visit the link below to order your prints which will be shipped directly to your door. 

prints

If you ever want to sit with coffee and chat about my trip or get advice for planning your own Iceland trip let me know, I would be more than happy to do so!

horses in iceland

A day on the Reykjanes Peninsula...

Iceland Model/Photographer

Iceland landscapes are stunning and even though I visited in the winter I was not going to pass up photographing with a model. I found Iceland's best, Miss Johannsdottir to photograph for a day around Reykjanes. I have to give her mad props for knowing great locations but also for bearing the freezing temperatures and strong winds. We shot on the rocky coast, alongside active geothermal areas and on the outskirts of the Blue Lagoon. 

To see more please visit my Natural Coexistence page. 


traveling female photographer

Icelandic Vows

Wedding Rings on a Glacier

Pink Iceland put me in paths with this beautiful couple to photograph their snowy I do's in the stunning countryside of Iceland. There are many things I truly love about intimate weddings and this wedding imbodied about all of them. The excitement for the day that you get to share closely with a few people that are dear to you, the freedom to do what you want when you want, the amazing locations you can choose to have photographs made and of course the meaningfulness. The Youngs decided to get married in Iceland because that was the first trip they went on as a couple. I find this to add even more to such a special day and I was so glad to be apart of it!

Iceland Elopement Photographer
Love is not about staring at each other, but staring off in the same direction
— Antoine de Saint Exupéry

To view more weddings click here.

To see more from my trip to Iceland please stay tuned for the next couple of blog posts!

wedding details in iceland

Sedona, Arizona Engagement Session

Engagement Session in Sedona, AZ

Where there is love, there is happiness.

During my road trip in Arizona, I stopped in Sedona to photograph a past client, this time with her lovely fiance! You could hardly say we settled for the Red Rocks as our backdrop on this desert engagement session. We had gorgeous morning light on a chilly day which was nice for our short hike to make some beautiful images. We even ended the shoot on a jolly note taking some fun holiday portraits, you know my favorite!!


Camera in hand, feet on trail and heart full

PGA Jr League Championship

I found myself, yet again, in the amazing state of Arizona

to photograph the PGA Jr League Championship for Montana Pritchard Photography. Of course I decided to stay a few extra days!

 
The wonders of the Grand Canyon cannot be adequately represented in symbols of speech, nor by speech itself. The resources of the graphic art are taxed beyond their powers in attempting to portray its features. Language and illustration combined must fail.
— John Powell
Mules in the Grand Canyon

... and yes, I found myself at the Grand Canyon again!

Exactly one year after I found myself at this breath-taking place I went there again, this time with my partner. Typically I only use my camera for photo shoots while traveling. This time I brought it along everywhere for some awesome shots of our adventures. Don't worry, I will share more from shoots in future blog posts. This was the most wild life I have seen on one trip! We saw cow elk, coyotes, very friendly fat squirrels, bighorn ewe and many mule dear. I finally got a chance to hike Bright Angel Trail! Sadly, I underestimated the beast. This trail is for sure on my bucket list to complete. Who knew there are cabins in the bottom of the canyon!?? Next trip, for sure!

After the Grand Canyon we drove North to Page, Arizona. I highly recommend this drive because you get the chance to see so many different scenic views. Not to mention at the end of the drive you are led to the amazing Horseshoe Bend. After spending the night in Page and seeing Lake Powell we drove back down to Sedona to spend the day in Slide Rock and drive around. The fall leaves in Sedona are spectacular to say the least.

Below are some of the images from our hikes, camping and photo stops along the way. Some images were taken with a Nikon D3 and some with my Iphone. Please feel free to share or ask questions!

I am extremely thankful to be able to spend my second thanksgiving exploring the great outdoors in the beautiful state of Arizona. I can not wait to explore more trails and spots in the future.

Pssst...you should click on the images to scroll through them larger :)

Traci Edwards Photography

SHOUTOUTS!

 

Huge shout out to REI for providing us with free passes to Arizona State Parks in lieu of their #optoutside campaign. Also, for being our one stop shop for everything we need to hike and camp.

Our Hyundai Santa Fe car rented from National Car Rental for its great gas mileage. Let’s be honest, it makes a difference when you drive right at 2,000 miles in less than a week.

Mather Campground for a great experience in the openness of the Grand Canyon and getting up close and personal with its inhabitants.

The Mules that carry supplies down Bright Angel Trail three days every week for forcing us to give our legs a break coming back up the trail.

Lake Powell Campground for providing us with a toasty bathroom and a nice warm shower while camping in 34 degree weather.

Montana Pritchard for the opportunity to go to Arizona to photograph such a fun PGA event and vacation time to stay and see the great places we get to go work in.

All of the great eats we had a long the way: Roka Akor, Local Bistro, North, Lumberyard Brewing Co, Fiesta Mexicana, Yippee-Ei-O! Steakhouse and Sonic because we finally gave in to those tot cravings after two and half days of trails and driving.

Delta for taking the time on Thanksgiving Eve to change my upgraded first class ticket back to a regular ole seat in the back so I can sit with my partner on our flight back to West Palm Beach.

Most importantly, the Arizona State Parks and National Parks for “opening your doors” to us and teaching people about the amazing places in our country. For the long hours in all working conditions, for maintaining the trails and all of the other unimaginable things you do!

To Shane for putting up with my "Let's stop here and take a picture!" and for being the assistant road captain, its not easy folks. <3

…..and to my girl, Sally, for watching my two fluff muffins while we were away :)

Cactus on the Greyhawk Golf Course in Sedona, AZ

Girl, Get Outdoors!

cathedral rock at sunset

Yes, I am a female and I camp/hike alone..

and yes, it is scary sometimes! As females in our society we are stamped with ideas of limitations that we can't or shouldn't do some things. We are filled with fears of being in society alone. As a person I should not have to worry about any horrifying things happening to me, but I do have to think about these things and so does every other woman. I will not let these worries and expectations worry me and stop me from living my life. When I tell people that I am going to Sedona to hike the first question I get is "oh, who is going with you?" The answer is no one. Why is this a surprise to everyone? From my experience challenging yourself and accomplishing something on your own, in fresh air surrounded by beautiful places and solitude is an amazing experience.

There are a few tips that I have for the female hiker that goes alone, or with a group of her girl friends, or just for any average Joe hiker in Sedona or anywhere:

1. Pick your camp site and set up camp for the night in daylight before you set out if possible. When picking your campsite read reviews and consider if you feel you will feel comfortable there and read their rules and regulations before booking. While in Sedona I camped at Avalon because of the amazing views and reviews. I highly recommend the spot above the old root house.

2. Look up your trails before you go and determine how long it will take YOU to do the trail. I hiked Cathedral in double the time it should take just to take my time and be safe (remember I am alone) and I hiked Devil's Bridge Trail in fast-forward time because it was a lot easier for me. I recommend hiking Cathedral in the morning hours because in the afternoon in the fall the light is in your eyes on the way up from about noon to 5pm. Cathedral was not an easy trail and I thought about turning around at the first part you had to really scramble. Most trails I find to be the most rewarding once I see the amazing view from the top or finish the trail. I found this one to be most rewarding when I was able to encourage other climbers to proceed at the point I thought about turning around. I imagine the view from Devil's Bridge amazing at sunset and I imagine the hike beautiful in early AM hours. I did the hike around 11am on a beautiful day.

3. Do not be afraid to meet new people and hear new stories! I learn and hear the most incredible things while on the road, but be smart about it. Never tell someone where you are camping if you are camping alone.

4. Speaking of safety, I always leave a family member with a schedule of my tripand check in often with dropped pins of my location. I leave trail head information before setting out and once completed I send a quick photo. I try to stay off of my phone and all social media while hiking and camping outside of that to get the most out of my trip and soak it in purely alone without seeking 'likes' on what I am doing.

5. Hesitant? Get out there and do it!

To read more on my story of getting outdoors and spending time with yourself click here! To view photography work from this trip click here and stayed tuned!

 

Please click an image and scroll through!

Photographing at Desert Mountain Golf Club for Montana Pritchard Photography.

Please Note...

these images were taken with an iphone :)

London

CUP.09.12.17.T.403.jpg

Across the ocean..

I found myself soaking in the beautiful city and countryside views around London. Below are some images I had the chance to take while on a work trip. These images are from Windsor Castle and the streets in the heart of London. I love all things rich of the past, so of course I fell in love with the architecture of London. Some of the buildings around the castles are still standing from the late 1500s.

PGA Cup

is a special event that PGA of America holds where American PGA Golf Professionals play against Great Britain and Ireland Professionals every other year. It is the Ryder Cup for PGA Professionals. This year it was held at the gorgeous FoxHills Club. I am so thankful that I was able to attend this event working under Montana Pritchard Photography.