When Bekka and Dillon started planning their engagement session, they knew their parents property near the Hood Canal might be the perfect place. After taking a look at several options around the PNW, we decided that there’s no place like home. We got to explore forests and beaches, and even had to do a little Indiana-jonesing to get onto a sunken dock for the perfect morning light. One of the reasons I just love areas near the Olympic Peninsula like this is because of the awesome variety there is. No two beaches look the same, but they’re usually near mountains, forests, and sometimes even waterfalls! This little part of the earth featured the most enchanted looking trails. Can’t wait for these two to tie the knot at Mountain Spring Lodge this summer!
Ok buckle up ya’ll cause I could only narrow this session down to 30 blog images. These two are just too precious to my little heart and I can’t wait for their big day this summer in Wenatchee.
I have known Erica since we were five years old. She and her family are a part of mine. From dressing up and sleepovers to forts in the woods to taping her sister into two pillow-filled laundry baskets and throwing her down the stairs (normal children). Hundreds of hours of Girl Scouts followed by coug life at WSU, dads weekends with our wild fathers - a long way from "trying” Wild Turkey bourbon (our dads saying yeah stick your finger in there kids! Tasted like turpentine to us) and chatting on AIM. We even had a duo-control-system going for our favorite rocket ship computer game, complimented perfectly by chocolate milk, root beer, and 10,000 cookies. Probably a good 50% of my total memories involve this amazing woman.
When Claude stepped into the picture with his chest-length hair and easy going attitude, at first we were like ok..????? And within moments we were like OKAY!!! Together they are the perfect balance of fun and chill, adventurous and creative, free-wheeling and accomplished. Claude has since cut his hair, they’ve adopted the adorable Lily and Louie (German Shepherd and Cat, respectively), and started a life all their own. My dad is officiating their wedding this summer. Time to get ordained!!
We ventured up to the Mount Baker National Forest at sunset to get some golden shots of them doing what they do best, adventuring. These two have a lifetime of adventures ahead, and it truly feels like the beginning of a new era. Love you both.
I swear its the summer where like, the rest of my friends get married. All the singletons except me finally tying the knot, and these two are no exception. Their wedding in Suncadia at Swiftwater Cellars is going to be AMAZING. For their engagement session, they wanted to stay close to home, which I love. I think its so special to be able to document this little snapshot of a moment in time - no kids, just you, your honey, and the city in your own way. We started off at their apartment in Lower Queen Anne, then meandered toward Seattle center, playing tourists in our own city. We had to stop for coffee of course, took a moment with the fall leaves, and strolled all over their sweet little neighborhood. Perfection.
Caitlin and Ben couldn’t have picked a better day for their engagement session: the sun was out in Seattle, the tide was low (for once) and since it was pretty chilly, we had the whole place to ourselves! Of all the times I’ve shot on the beach in Seattle, I’ve never seen the tide out this far! Forget soft white sand though - this beach with the tide out will remind you more of the black sand beaches of Hawaii! Of course, this engagement session involved a little hiking (in heels no less!), and a whole lot of galavanting in the winter sunlight.
For Lauren and Josh’s engagement session, we knew we needed something spectacular. These two are a true modern romance: meeting online while Josh was visiting the PNW, then doing two years long distance while he lived in Yakima. Their love story involves many nights on the phone up till 3 am, and millions of text messages before they could move to the same city. Josh loves Lauren’s confidence and sense of self, and Lauren is in love with Josh’s hardworking spirit and of course, his dance moves! They both love slow mornings making breakfast together and just enjoying each other’s presence. Their wedding this fall at Salish Lodge is sure to be one of the most romantic.
Molli and Jordan’s engagement session was on just about the chilliest fall day we had in Seattle this year. It was perfect timing for the ultimate fall color in the Seattle Arboretum. Have you been to the Arboretum? Its a few square miles of gorgeous foliage not too far from the University of Washington. It features a botanical garden and a centuries-old aqueduct bridge that feels like you’re in ancient European ruins. Its one of the best hidden gems in Seattle and its right in the city!
Right now I’m sitting in a coffee shop writing this just steps from where we did this darling engagement shoot with Stephanie and Alex! They wanted something that reflected the city they love, Seattle. We met at Specialty’s Bakery downtown, and from there walked through downtown to Pioneer Square! I actually just parked my car near these rooftop shots only moments ago, before I head to shoot a courthouse elopement on this sunny Tuesday afternoon. I can’t believe its January, and it was late fall when we did these engagement shoots as well! Seattle, especially downtown, has been so sunny lately!
A few months ago, I got an email from a fellow photog named Becca. She was sending her friends my way to the Olympic National Rainforest and wanted to gift them with a photo shoot. I was so excited to hear they were interested in visiting Marymere Falls for their session! They had spent the whole weekend exploring everything the Pacific Northwest had to offer, from the Seattle ferries to the coast. Full disclosure, Taylor and CJ are actually married and have a little baby girl named Winter at home! Can you believe they’ve been married nine years? Their connection was truly undeniable, you can just tell how much trust and appreciation they have for each other. Trekking through the rainforest with them and their friends was a fabulous adventure.
If you’ve been to the Oregon or Washington Coast, you know all about the beautiful rock formations that line the shore. From Cannon Beach in Oregon all the way up to Port Angeles, the dark jaggy rocks stick out like ruins of old castles. When I visited Portugal in 2017, it was like seeing the golden older brother of these formations in Lagos: giant blonde fortresses dot the shores on the southern coast of the country.
Sheila and Nick but went to WSU with me back in the day, and its been amazing to see the journey they've been on ever since. They live down the street from me now right north of Seattle, and their wedding is sure to be a full blown coug party.
Sheila’s family has a beach house on the coast in Kalaloch, not that far from Ruby Beach, and we explored some other hidden gem beaches on our way to Ruby. I was lucky enough to get to stay the night with them on the coast, and Sheila’s mom made us minestrone soup! Sheila and Nick are not only a blast to shoot with, but it doesn't get more fun than draining a bunch of truly’s and reliving our college glory days while the ocean roars outside.
Jordyn and Austin… one of my most fun and sweet couples this year. Lately I’ve been obsessed with their puppies on Jordyn’s Insta story. They are the cutest little puffs! Jordyn and Austin chose Deception Pass for their engagement session, which features some of the most stunning views the Pacific Northwest has to offer. Deception Pass is a little strait that connects the Skagit Sea with the Strait of Juan De Fuca. The bridge connects Whidbey Island to Fidalgo Island. Its a gorgeous state park, not too far from Rosario Beach and all Whidbey Island has to offer.
After a little hike under the bridge, we crossed it to look out toward the Salish sea. We then hiked down toward the beach, explored a little, and they even got in the water! These two are tying the knot in Central Washington and its sure to be a blast!
Remember when we had all that crazy smoke in the air this summer? Seattle’s air quality was actually rated worst in the country! The smoke from British Columbia rolled in from the north and fires in the Cascades blew in smoke from the east, so Seattle was a post-apocalyptic looking nightmare zone. As nasty as the smoke was, WOW did it make some glorious sunsets. The light all day was just peachy, soft, and gorgeous. I’d trade the smoke for our typical fresh clean air any day, but it was definitely easy to make the most of the hazy light.
Tori and Colin found their engagement session planned for just such a smoky day, and we headed down to Golden Gardens just as the sun dipped lower over the water. They danced in the waves and of course, made a beach bonfire. I can’t wait for these two to get married in June!
Claire and Theo have an amazing wedding planned for The Orchard at Sunshine Hill for next August, and I can’t wait to repeat the golden magic that we made at Discovery Park in Seattle last summer. One of my favorite things about being a Seattle photographer is having the opportunity to shoot in Discovery park. Discovery park is right on the coast of the Puget sound, and offers some of the most gorgeous views imaginable. It also has acres of forest, golden open fields, and romantic pathways around every corner. Its almost hard to believe that such a green oasis could be just a few minutes from downtown Seattle, but we’re pretty spoiled in Western Washington - you can have a forest adventure right in the middle of the city.
Ok the apple cup is in two days and I have cougar fever. For those of you who don’t know, I graduated from Washington State with a couple o’ degrees in 2013. My parents met in Pullman, my sister and about 80% of my friends went there as well. Which brings me to these two cuties! They’re both WSU grads as well, and Chelsey was a cheerleader at WSU! They knew they wanted to incorporate some cougar pride into their session, so along with champagne, a reader board, and their darling lab Cole, they decided to show of the cougar flag as well.
What ideas do you have to make your engagement session your own? Drop a comment below to provide some inspiration!
When Allison and Stephen were brainstorming where to do their engagement session, only one place would do. Allison’s aunt has stunning property out near Moses Lake, in Warden Washington. Miles of gorgeous fields stretched in every direction, and we arrived just in time for golden hour. Their darling dogs joined us, and I can’t get over the little guy looking right at the camera in picture three.
From the tire swing to the soft, central Washington light, everything about this session was perfect. This is why its so important to choose a location that is not only meaningful, but will truly show off your connection. By choosing a location that was so special, and bringing along their furry companions, Allison and Stephen were able to pull of a session that I know they’ll cherish for years to come.
Sowkya and Harish are here to let you guys know how to be my dream client:
Find me all the way from India and tell me you picked me because you wanted someone who represented the Pacific Northwest style
Wear a gorgeous floral dress
Take me to Indian food with your friends afterward - I had never had Indian food before!! OMGGG I have wasted so many years…
Sowkya and Harish met up with me on the Seattle leg of their American vacation. Harish himself is actually a wedding photographer too! (check out his work here). After a fun afternoon of touring Pioneer Square, we met up with their friends at an Indian Restaurant in Redmond. Oh my god you guys my life was changed. Turns out naan is completely different when you didn’t get it in a nasty pack from Safeway, who knew.
Perks/Pitfalls of having a photographer for a best friend: You’re going to end up with multiple engagement sessions. Ever since California stole Savannah from me in 2013, it has been her home. She and Dustin are currently residing in the CUTEST town of Alameda (seriously google it. every house looks like it was designed by a victorian birdhouse maker). When I was down there in May for the Taylor Swift concert (should I blog the 15,000 photos we made Dustin take of us pre-concert??) we knew we had to spend at least one morning running around documenting their love in their own little corner of the world. What you see here is the Alameda waterfront and the naval base on Alameda. It was searingly bright, and Savannah rocked the silk white dress of my photographer dreams.
We’re starting off this photo stack with some solos of Savannah because like come on. My best friend is an absolute goddess. And if you think I’m waxing poetic in this post, you should have heard my maid of honor speech. I’m a fangirl. Dustin’s pretty much the only guy on earth good enough for her. And trust me, he's the shit.
Another note on the dress: wearing a white dress to your engagement shoot is a genius move. It gives you the opportunity to wear something a little less formal, and fully pour your personality into it. For Savannah, that meant long wavy tresses and a leather jacket. You’re a bride after all! Bride out as much as possible.
To see Savannah and Dustin’s Seattle engagement session, click here.
When helping Nick and Elise plan their engagement session, they knew they wanted something that perfectly captured the Pacific Northwest that they both call home. In the shadow of Mount Si, we met in one of my secret spots, along with our hair and makeup artist pal Hunter and the sweetest dog in the world, Tucker. Tucker himself is extremely photogenic, and when you meet his human parents, you can tell it runs in the family. It was impossible to narrow down their gallery to this blog post batch, between Elise serving looks and the light being out of this world in the little town of Snoqualmie. Be sure to check out the ones where Tucker is just dying to be in the shot!
I met Alex and Steve down in Nashville for a little in-home session before their summer wedding! Plot twist, this is actually an Airbnb. That’s the best thing about engagements: flexibility. Want your engagement session surrounded by all your favorite things and pets, in the comfort of your own home? Done. We’ll go for a walk around your neighborhood and document this special moment in your life. Want super cozy vibes like these, without having to worry about your dog knocking over a lamp or the ten years of laundry piled on your bed (guilty over here)? An Airbnb is the perfect way to get close, make some coffee (or even pancakes!) and not have to worry about clutter or hiding the weird wall hanging your niece got you for your birthday.
Back in April I found myself in the cute little town of Franklin, Tennessee to meet these two lovebirds. Kate is an amazing singer and Zach plays the drums for her band! I met up with them at the place they actually met, many years ago, a super cute little ice cream parlor called Sweet Cece’s. Franklin is an adorable city and I had a blast as they showed me around town. Can’t wait to get back to Tennessee soon, so if you know someone planning a wedding there, send em my way!
Good morning blog readers! Its 6:30 a.m. on a Tuesday and I’ve got coffee and a fire going - doesn’t get any more fall than this! Especially that its pitch black outside. Part of me misses the golden sunshine like we had on Serena and Romeo’s engagement session below - but the other part of me is ready to double down and put on 10,000 coats and not come out for months.
Serena and Romeo met in high school, so it was only fitting that we go back to Renton High for a few reasons: 1. Romeo works there now and 2. UHH have you seen this school?? The light, the brick, the euro-vibes - its gorgeous as hell! My high school was 90% concrete with some blue and yellow paint on it. Needless to say I’m a little jealous. We also hit up one of my secret spots in Renton for some golden hour shots near Cedar River. This was actually the park where yours truly learned to ride a bike, believe it or not!
Serena and Romeo got married at Green River CC in September, and it was truly a party worth beholding. I can’t wait to share that with you guys down the road, but for now, enjoy this golden magic!