I can’t even tell you how obsessed I am with these two— if you didn’t already know that. haha.
I still remember reading the first email that Kayla + Nick sent me when they were inquiring about my wedding packages + interested in booking me. Their email was a photographers dream email to receive from a potential client— it had everything in it, all information, an itch for adventure and a need for someone to be as excited as they were. I remember reading it and thinking I HAVE to be part of these guys’ day and moments. I have to! They were everything I was about. So I emailed back, with way too many exclamation points and way too many repeated sentences probably because I was just way too excited to even be a consideration. I was standing in line at a local church voting for a president at the time that I received Kayla’s email that they wanted to book me haha and I had to get home IMMEDIATELY and respond and say YES. Like I remember exactly where I was at, that’s how excited I was about this.
These two have souls made for adventure, they had a desire to elope in one of God’s most beautiful places but also had a desire to have their friends and family there to celebrate with them. So, we compromised. We sent WAY too many photos back and forth regarding locations to do all of their photos in— decided on Rocky Mountain National Park for their engagements (their now home, which I blogged about a few months ago!), and then the place of bridals was a little bit harder. This was the shoot they were most excited for and the thing that meant so much to them. We exchanged ideas back and forth for a good while before we decided on a place of pure magic— Zion National Park.
So, we started planning for it! Kayla and Nick met my husband and I in Salt Lake, where we then rented a car and drove the remainder of the way down to St. George. I was born and raised in St.George so it was so fun being able to go back and spend a little bit of time there. I have a cousin whose like a sister that lives down there, so they were kind enough to let the 4 of us crash at their place for a night and spend some time with them. We got to St.George early evening, and planned to scout out locations + check out Zion for the next morning since none of us had ever been there. We wanted to be as prepared as possible since we were doing sunrise bridals. We spent the evening hiking and hanging out— Kayla + Nick, my cousin and her husband, my husband and I— taking way too many photos and videos, and just soaking up all that Zion has to offer in all of it’s red rock glory. It was truly the best time. We ended the night stuffing our faces Pizza Factory and watching shows and it was the perfect evening.
Kayla got up literally in the middle of the night to get her hair and makeup done (true dedication), since we had to be to the trailhead in Zion by 6am in order to hike up and start before the sun came all the way up. We hiked up in the dark to the overlook, they threw on their dress and suit behind different rocks, and they shared their first look in their wedding attire as bride and groom on cliff edges before the sun peaked over the mountains. It was the perfect morning. We spent the next two or so hours freezing our butts off running around red rock ledges before the sun came up and then soaked up all the warmth the sun had to offer in this magical place.
We hiked back down, headed on home, grabbed in-n-out, and made so many new memories that I will forever be grateful for. Words can’t express how lucky I feel and how blessed I am to know people like Nick + Kayla, who trusted me with not only their pictures, but with their memories. This job is so much more to me than just being able to work a camera and take pretty pictures. It’s so much more to me than trying to make money and get a crazy amount of bookings. It’s about building friendships and making life long adventure buddies who I can leave with memories and good times. It’s about being able to leave an impression on those I work with, that they leave with MORE than just some pictures. The experience is worth more to me than anything. These two reminded me of that and constantly remind me why I do what I do. I am so grateful for those kind of people, for the memories I get to make with all of my couples, and that they can not only walk away with new inside jokes and new friends, but that I can too.