In the midst of consistently learning, growing and evolving in this competitive and creative industry, I sincerely feel SO blessed to have clients continue to return for more. These two beautiful beings were basically at the beginning of my career…at least when I started photographing weddings.
About 5 years ago, one random day, I joined some weird “Models and Photographers” group on Facebook, I posted an ad looking for a model and Marissa replied! She and her recent hubby were down be my models for a nature bridal session out at Calico Basin in Red Rock Canyon.
I remember feeling SO nervous but so excited for this new venture into becoming a wedding photographer and I knew I had to create some killer content for my site, and the beloved Instagram (best free advertisement…in my opinion.)
At the location, prepped and ready for our photoshoot, they both were so immediately comforting (Clients comforting me? I know. How the tables have turned) and so excited to shoot, just about as much as I was. They were 2 years freshly married, and after learning about their love story, the fact they had been dating since about age 14 and were the biggest loves in each others lives.
Only 10 minutes in and I’m already hooked to them and their story. Their love for one another was (and continues to be) so obvious and apparent, it showed in so many ways.
How fucking lucky I am, to be sharing this experience with a bond and love so strong that I get to document it?! Like, really super lucky. This is something I do not take lightly. For those of you who’ve worked with me already, you know…
While I’m here: On a more personal note, this shoot (for me) was another stepping stone, not just in my business life, but personal as well. I was recently engaged to be married, this recent April actually, but after an incredibly trying and reflective year in 2018, some things got a little too hard and well, the wedding never happened. Growing pains, ammirite?
I decided a while ago I wanted to use MY wedding dress in lieu of my healing journey, a safe and healthy alternative to what most angry brides would do, I guess. I’m so grateful I was able to find a healthy outlet for me to use it creatively with love and compassion versus animosity and resentment. Marissa looked like an angel in it and well, the wind was our best friend this day, too.
Thanks to Kinsley James Bridal in Los Angeles for helping me pick such a gorgeous, photogenic dress!
Marissa and Adam had planned on cliff jumping at the end of the session. This was something we were all looking forward too. I mean, come on… a bride cliff jumping in a wedding dress? Um, yes please!
After about an hour of standing on that edge, contemplating, many countdowns from 3, and shouts of, “Okay–we’re ready!” Marissa decided she didn’t feel safe to jump in with the dress– in fear that the dress would engulf her. Totally understandable.
She decided to leave the dress behind and Adam put his shirt on her. (Yeah, I know. Someone give me a tissue.)
What was so beautiful about that hour was I felt all of it, even though I wasn’t even close to them. I felt her uncertainty, the fear and contemplation, the moments of hesitation. It was quite inspiring and allowed me to reflect on the moments I was so driven by fear, when in Hein site, I really wished I would have “jumped,” but this wasn’t my hurdle to get over, it was hers.
Her courage would peek through every few minutes, she’d stand firmly and fearlessly and on that count of three, she’d then hold back again.
Adam was right there next to her, holding her dress, holding her hand, giving words of encouragement and comfort. He wouldn’t push her unless she wanted to be pushed (not physically, obviously.) It was a perfect example of what marriage consists of. Life can often times throw an obstacle our way that maybe is a bit more challenging to get through, especially when you feel you’re the only one being effected. Adam could have very well been forceful to Marissa or maybe could’ve even tried to convince her she was too paranoid, or dramatic, but that wasn’t at all the case.
He allowed her time, as did I, for I knew this went much beyond just jumping a cliff. It was about getting through this fear and working through it together. They found a solution to put her mind at ease and how quickly the excitement rose once more as they tip-toed to the edge. This time, without any hesitation, they jumped.
Truly one of the most beautiful brides ever.