I’m a wedding & elopement photographer for laid back couples that value the idea of being married more than just having a party. They want photos that show their true selves and represent their love of nature, and prefer to be more natural than overly posed.
I met Melina & Michael at Backporch Coffee Roasters on a warm spring day. They had just driven down to Bend from their home in Tacoma, WA to meet with potential wedding vendors for their August wedding here in Bend. They had originally planned on marrying in Olympic National Park, but plans fell through when they couldn’t find any lodging for their intimate wedding. Even though these two had never been to Bend before, they decided to change course and picked Bend to marry based on photos and descriptions they found on the net. As we were chatting, I couldn’t help but adore these two. Melina used to work for a dog rescue organization and they both love dogs. They also love beer! It’s a win-win in my book!
When it came time to plan their engagement session, I told them of my plans to visit the Olympic Peninsula of Washington, specifically Port Angeles, over Memorial Day weekend. Since these two had originally wanted to marry here, it was the perfect opportunity for their WA coast adventure photo session!
Melina & Michael met me at the Salt Creek Recreation Area, just outside of Port Angeles, WA at the crack of dawn, literally 4:45 am, on the Sunday of the holiday weekend. Between our two schedules, this was the best time that worked for both of us. It also afforded us the opportunity to photograph on a busy holiday weekend without another soul in sight. I will admit, I had no clue that the morning sunrise session I had planned would be a foggy, drizzly start. The weather forecast said clear and sunny, ha! But, it was definitely a typical Washington coast morning and it couldn’t have been more perfect! As a photographer who calls the high desert of Oregon home, I was giddy to work in the gorgeous fog. We had to walk into the campground, as the gates were closed for another few hours, but it was truly an amazing adventure photo session.
These two have actually known each other since grade school, but didn’t actually start dating until Melina was finishing up college. Michael had moved away to Florida for school, but he moved back home to Illinois after he finished college. He decided to reach out to Melina and ask her on a date and the rest in history!
Michael had planned to propose to Melina on their vacation in Hawaii, but he says the ring was burning a hole in his pocket and he couldn’t keep the secret any longer, so he decided to just pop the question on a typical Sunday evening as they were prepping dinner. He actually tucked the ring into one of their dog’s collars and called her into the kitchen, at which point he got choked up and blurted out the question. Of course Melina said yes!
I have been shooting film at some of my sessions and I have to say, I’ve been loving it. Can you tell which image is film?
Rounding the corner, I couldn’t help but let out a little squeal of delight when I saw this gorgeous sea stack! It had been about 15 years since I was up on the Olympic Peninsula and I’d forgotten how breathtaking the coastline was. Plus, I mean, this photo really says everything! These two are so adorable!
We headed around to the west side of the coast by following a path through the rainforest. It was misting and raining on us in the trees, but these two didn’t mind one bit!
This WA Coast engagement photo session was seriously one of my favorite sessions to date! I love it when I get to photograph in new locations and I especially loved getting to know Melina and Michael a bit more. They are so sweet, genuine and kind and I cannot wait for their wedding this August at a gorgeous waterfall here in Central Oregon!