Jockey's Ridge State Park is, in my opinion, one of the most magical places on the east coast. The grandeur of the dunes takes your breath away as you approach them. It is a place where you feel peace sweep over you as the ocean breeze blows through your hair.
Earlier this year, while I was goal setting, I decided that I wanted to create 3 passion projects this year. One of those passion projects would include a bucket list landscape of mine: sand dunes. It was a landscape that had tugged at my heart for years. Initially, I was set on shooting in White Sands National Park in New Mexico. Of course, after evaluating cost and my budget, I decided that Jockey's Ridge in Nags Head, NC would give a similar effect and be much more affordable.
My vision for the shoot was an elegant beach elopement with a neutral color palette. Looking back at the gallery, I really think that the vendors and I were able to pull this off!
Through about a month and a half of planning, I was able to secure a dress from Buttercup Bride, flowers from FlowerKind, and a videographer from Thin Spaces Productions. As everything was coming together and it seemed like there was nothing left to plan. Then, 3 days before the shoot, I got a call from Eric, the male elopement model. He and his girlfriend, Libby, had been together for around 4 years, and he decided that he was ready to propose. So, when he asked me if he could propose during the photoshoot, f course, my answer was an emphatic "Yes!!". He figured it would make a fun story to tell since they would already be wearing wedding clothes.
The night before the photoshoot, Eric passed the ring off to me and I held it in safe keeping during the photoshoot the next evening. At the very end of the shoot, I asked them if we could use a "prop" and handed Eric the ring box. As he got down on one knee, Libby, who was still in model mode was confused as to why he would be proposing since they were already supposed to be married for the photoshoot. But, as he opened the box and she saw her mother's engagement ring, it all became real.
Capturing a proposal has to be one of the best parts of my job. I get to photograph the marked beginning of a couple promising to spend the rest of their lives together. I live for capturing those gasps, tears of joy, and speechlessness of the moment.