their engagement session & story
A couple weeks ago, I planned my layover from Iceland to Boise in Seattle for a few extra days to adjust to the time change and also work with a few of my Seattle couples! I don’t think I’ve ever been so happy to see sun in my entire life after camping in Iceland for five days and arriving smack dab in the middle of Seattle summer. As a Boise wedding photographer, I get so excited to think outside the box to plan engagement sessions out of town. It’s so fun to work somewhere new every now and then! While planning Sam and Stu’s engagement session from Europe, I had the vision of a Bainbridge Island ferry engagement session- but when it comes to engagement sessions, I always want them to feel as real and authentic to a couple’s relationship as possible. On your wedding day, you bet your booty I’ll boss you around and tell you exactly where the best light is and what I want. But engagements are a different story. It gives us a chance to be a little more relaxed, hang out in your real clothes, and find the thing that makes your relationship special and show it off. However, I just had this looming vision in my head for a ferry engagement session on the Bainbridge Island Ferry, so after prodding Sam for a few days about any of her ideas, I decided to pitch her my idea… and it just so happened that she had the EXACT same idea already. Boom. Done.
If you’ve ever worked with me, you know my idea of a great engagement session is to meet up over drinks before shooting. Sam and Stu directed me to a brewery on the Seattle Pier and we had a couple beers. They told me their love story while we munched on giant pretzels and it honestly was one of the sweetest stories I have ever heard. They both grew up together in Seattle and were best friends throughout high school and college… but nothing more. As Stu said, “She always dated cooler guys than me.” HA! I died. They both played soccer and ended up going to different small liberal arts colleges in Washington and Oregon. They stayed close friends all through college, dated other people, but the timing didn’t work out until their last “college summer” when, as Sam says, they hung out every single day. It was the first time in YEARS that they were both truly single and on the last day of summer before they both had to leave to go back to school Sam worked up the guts to ask him if he had ever thought about being more than friends. Obviously the answer was a resounding YES because here they are a few years later engaged and ready to get married next summer in Walla Walla!!
We drove onto the Bainbridge ferry after getting a couple beers and walked around, soaking in that perfect Puget Sound air while laughing at how crazy the wind was. I just kept yelling, “EMBRACE IT! EMBRACE IT!” We watched the sun start to set behind Bainbridge and after hopping off the ferry, we drove to a little abandoned mill on the beach where I used to go when I lived on Bainbridge to take photos and hike. We took a few blue hour photos on the water. It was absolutely perfect in just about every way and I couldn’t have asked for a better day where everything pretty much goes exactly perfect.Something a lot of people don’t know about me is that I studied Biology in college and spent a summer in college living on Bainbridge Island. It’s so hilarious looking back on the summer I lived in Seattle because I fully expected I would move there after college and work downtown somewhere in the Health Sciences/Environment/Biology realm of careers. The last thing I EVER expected was that I would end up in my home state of Idaho working with amazing couples for a living. It felt full circle to come back to the place where I lived when I was 21 in a career field that didn’t make me happy, to return now as a full time photographer. I was pinching myself the entire day that THIS is where my life ended up, eating McDonald’s with two hilarious people on the ferry. Although running my own business is sometimes challenging in so many unexpected ways, it’s those little moments like running around on a ferry or taking in the Washington coast that I realize this it it, this is what I was born to do. I’ve found the thing my heart loves.
I can’t WAIT for your wedding, Sam & Stu!!! I loved ending your engagement session at McDonalds, y’all are really my kind of people.