I met Alex several years ago in local Portland pub while he was on a mountain biking/craft beer trip in the Pacific Northwest. After a couple brews and good conversation, I had a new friend! Fast forward to last fall when I received an email from Alex informing me, with photo evidence of course, that he had proposed to his girlfriend at the McKenzie River's Blue Pool. Miranda had accepted. They wanted to know if I was interested in photographing their wedding in Yosemite Valley.
At the time I met Alex I was actively seeking out and shooting weddings. At the time of their engagement, however, I was working full time and had removed all wedding work from my website. (I have since created a new gallery of these images.) Yet, how could I say no to this most awesome opportunity?
So I said yes. Improv lifestyle, if you will.
Alex and Miranda were married the day after Earth Day at the Majestic Yosemite Hotel. The park was so busy with visitors on Earth Day that it took hours to drive a few miles. Fortunately for us and our plan for a three hour bride and groom portrait session around the valley, the park cleared out by Sunday afternoon.
After the epic winter the entire west coast had, the snow melt meant the waterfalls were going off. The weather was fantastic. The dogwoods were in bloom (and had not been the day before!).
A perfect day for a wedding, indeed.
The one major disadvantage I had in shooting this wedding was that I had never been to Yosemite. I also didn't have the time or resources to go scout the park before the wedding which was six months away.
Alex, in the way that I now know he is notorious for, had it covered.
He created two itineraries for the bride and groom session -- one ideal, the other accounting for heavy traffic. Lighting conditions of locations at specific times were taken into consideration, as were potential road closures. Detailed maps were involved.
This thoughtful planning made the photo session, quite literally, a walk (and drive) in the park.
Thank you, Alex and Miranda, for inviting me and Kyle (my boyfriend who graciously agreed to be my assistant for the day) to be a part of your wedding. It was so lovely meeting your friends and family and, to state the obvious, to visit Yosemite National Park for the first time. Next time we see you guys, let it be on skis!
The wedding took place at the Majestic Yosemite Hotel (formerly known at the Ahwahnee Hotel). What a GORGEOUS venue!! The ceremony was set up to face Yosemite Falls and the lunch following was in the Solarium. The Mural Room is also picture below, where the official wedding documents were signed and cocktail hour was held. "Majestic" is indeed the proper word.