Beyond Conventional Boundaries: Crafting Your Dream Outdoor Elopement Among the Tides, Trails & Tall Trees.


Autumn Anniversary in the Redwoods

Nestled in Northern California lies the most stunning scenes you’ve ever seen. With its towering redwoods and coastal vibes, it’s a dream destination for couples seeking a romantic backdrop for their special moments. For almost 15 years, I’ve had the privilege of calling this epic place “home” and raising my family here. While the seasons here are pretty mellow comparatively, they still vary somewhat. And autumn happens to be one of the most magical times of the year. This past fall, I had the pleasure of capturing the love story of a delightful couple during their one-year anniversary photo shoot amidst the vibrant hues of autumn foliage.

As soon as I met them in the parking lot near the forest, I knew we were going to have a great time. It was a typical autumn day in Humboldt, some of my FAVORITE weather, as mentioned above. (Fun fact: My husband and I got married in the fall!) The sun was hiding behind a thick layer of Humboldt fog, the mushrooms were happily sprouting up and down the forest floor, and the banana slugs were out doin’ their thing.

My couple was dressed to the nines and ready to roll. As we made our way up the hill, I began to instantly see the love they had for each other. Every little glance, every light touch, every giggle, every outstretched hand, spoke volumes about their deep connection with one another. You could just tell they were each other’s person and that they cared deeply for each other. It was so sweet to see.

Being an elopement photographer, my passion and focus lies in capturing the raw emotions and authentic moments shared between two people in love. I understand that everyone has a different comfort level in front of the camera, which is why I make it my mission—and my pleasure—to cultivate an atmosphere where both individuals feel relaxed and at ease, as if they’re just enjoying a gorgeous day out together rather than being subjected to a robotic, passionless photoshoot.

Trust is paramount in my line of work, and I know firsthand the discomfort that can arise when a photography session lacks direction or fails to allow a genuine narrative to unfold. Having had experienced the frustration of being relentlessly photographed for hours on end in the past, I empathize with my clients’ desire for a more organic and enjoyable experience. It’s about creating experiences and not just artwork (although of course that’s a huge part of it), capturing the moments that matter, without forcing stiff poses or stifling genuine emotions.

It was clear to me this couple would need very little direction as they naturally just had such great chemistry with each other and began exploring the forest as if I wasn’t there. It’s funny, I notice when documenting couples that have been together for awhile, they definitely feel more comfortable being affectionate or just themselves. Which makes total sense, they’ve had more time together.

Side note, if you’re reading this and you’re thinking “good for them, but I’m awkward af”, have no fear. You’d be surprised how quickly couples can get into the flow of a session, even without any prior experience. I think having someone to vibe off of makes it a lot easier than a solo session for many people. Also, this is something I discuss with my clients before hand, and I’ve got plenty of tips and tricks to help pull you out of your shell and make you feel comfortable.

Shooting with this couple was like hanging with old friends on a hike in the woods. They were so easy to get along with and photograph, it was just a blast. Being there to document and celebrate their one year anniversary with each other was so special. It’s a fantastic way to celebrate your love, and I’d be absolutely honored to document your love milestones as well!



A couple walking into the redwood forest together in the middle of autumn, snuggled closely.

May 6, 2024