Elopement in the Desert

I grew up in New Mexico. Which means humidity was a concept I didn’t understand growing up. We would joke that the ever popular Pinion “Tree” was really a really large shrub trying to overextend itself and there were more brush and dirt as far as the eye can see. Now as I live in Texas, all of those ideas seem like a distant past.

But I honestly can say that I miss those desert days. We would sit on our back porch growing up and you could watch the lightning storms dance across the mesa. The sunsets were vibrant, clouds were sparse but colors rich. It is a beauty unlike any other.  I miss it, especially in July and August when Texas is at it peak humidity. (Yikes!)

So while I was in Las Vegas for WPPI, a few photographer friends and I got together to photograph Maria and Wes in the desert of Nevada! Maria and Wes eloped just a month ago and then threw a large reception party for close friends to celebrate shortly after their ceremony. As fun as that is, they are the tale that many brides have been warned about. They had a family friend offer to shoot their day for free and felt like the couldn’t say no. When the pictures came back, Maria couldn’t find a single one that she wanted to frame, hang in her home or show off.

I get that feeling completely because my family has gone through this same thing!!! My older sister and my older brother used the free/almost free options for their wedding photography and there are very few very few images that they have to remember their day by.

When I was engaged, I remember my Dad and I were talking on the phone and he told me, “Where ever you decide to put the money we have allocated for your wedding, make sure a good photographer is on the list”.
My father was a notorious budget conscious engineering. So that advice speaks VOLUMES. This is the man who found the smallest of ways to save money (like having all of us order water at restaurants instead of fountain drinks. Haha.- I still think of getting fountain drinks as a small luxury when eating out!) The value of photography is unlike buying a car, clothes or almost any other tangible good. It only increases in value as the days go on!

So when Maria and Wes were asked if they could model for us for a small shoot, they were eager and asked if they could get pictures they could use as their wedding images! I am more than happy to say that when 7 photographers photograph you, you end up with MORE than enough. 🙂

This desert shoot time was also time for me to shoot some more Medium Format Film. I have been dabbling in it more and more. Shooting film has made to stop and understand light better, be more methodical and I think that translate well into my digital work! All the images below are digital as the film is off getting developed as we speak, but I will be posting some of those as well to compare!

wppi 2017


Florals: Layers of Lovely 
Hair and Makeup: Your Beauty Call 
Dess Designer: Elizabeth Cooper Design



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