It's October and wedding season is slowing down, which means I have a chance to blog some of the fabulous things I've been up to these last few months! First up is this totally gorgeous engagement session from early August. Hailey and Jeremy planned a small courthouse wedding, and wanted to have some portraits done at Jenkins Estate first!
When we first started planning their engagement session, Shellie and Kevin wanted to be sure we'd be someplace where we could show their love of the outdoors--especially somewhere near the water. We chose Champoeg State Park for their barn, garden, and river access--and what a fun time we had there!
Over the Independence Day weekend, I was lucky enough to spend some time with Ryan and Miya for their engagement session at Dawson Creek Park in Hillsboro! It was a whirlwind weekend for them as they worked family celebrations and wedding to-dos in between travel schedules, but I'm so glad we were able to make time for an engagement session! Miya also used the day of the session for her wedding hair and makeup trial, which, as you can see, was a BEAUTIFUL idea! I loved walking Dawson Creek Park with these two and chatting with Ryan, who grew up in Hillsboro, about how much that area has changed--that area was all FIELDS when my family moved up here in 1996. I'm glad some of that natural beauty has remained as they've built the area up--we walked around the pond, checked out a field, and then ended in the forest!
I'm back from a nice long holiday weekend with the family and I'm excited to share Kailey and Andrew's Champoeg State Park engagement session on the blog today! We shot this on a suuuuper hot day but we were able to hit all of the must-have locations on Kailey's list--the barn, the giant oak trees, and the field!
Around TWO YEARS AGO, I decided to start a new series on the blog about some of my favorite locations and why I love them! And then...I did ONE post. One. About the Jenkins Estate, so at least it was one of my very favorite locations, but still. The location series faded away. If you've cruised the blog looking at different portrait session locations, chances are that you've used the sidebar categories and just clicked each location, which is a great way to do it! But, I'm hoping to get a chance to showcase some of my very favorite spots and talk about why each one is a great option! So: the location series is REVAMPED! Hooray!
First up is my newest favorite place since moving to Newberg: Champoeg State Park! It's just a six minute drive south from Newberg, right along the river. It's also super easy to access from I-5 via the Canby/Hubbard exit, and about 10 minutes off I-5. It's the perfect location if you're looking for a session that has a country/rustic feel to it, or if you're looking for a field with tall, natural grass, old oak trees, a barn, or a river.
It's a HUGE state park! If you're coming for just a day trip or spending time after your session here, there are so many great hiking trails, a natural playground area, camping, cabins and yurts, river access, frisbee golf through old oak trees, and a giant dose of history! My husband is a history buff, so you know we spent our first trip out here reading allllll of the signs.
Fabulous things about this location that I love for photo sessions: #1 (of course) is the BARN! A photo session with an old, weathered, rustic barn is ALWAYS one of my favorite things, and this one gets such pretty light! It's surrounded by my next favorite thing at this park: old oak trees! There are so many opportunities to play with sunlight glowing through these oak trees, and they always remind me a little bit of California!
There's also the sweetest little orchard right near the barn, plus a pioneer-style garden!
What??? SO MANY OPTIONS!!! And this is just at the entrance to the park!! We haven't even gone down into the park yet!! This is all right near the parking lot and visitor's center! Some of the fabulousness that happens when you get down farther into the park: big open fields, more giant oak trees...
...and beautiful old steps down to the river and dock!! I love finding new spots near the water, since Oregon City is usually my go-to river spot and that's a little far for me. The dock is definitely not kid-friendly since there's no railing down there, but for Camille and Michael's engagement session, it was a perfect option for waterfront photos!
I know I'm going to keep finding new favorite spots to photograph my clients at Champoeg. There are so many parts of it left to explore!! Ready to check it out with me? Contact me to chat about scheduling a photo session!
If you've been following the blog for a while, you know that Cooper Mountain Nature Park in Aloha is one of my very favorite places to shoot at: there's tall grass, views of the valley, and it gets the very BEST sunset light! I was so thrilled Angela and Steven chose that location for their engagement session last weekend!
Remember that day that it was spring? After our looooong rainy winter, that one Saturday where it was dry and warm before it got BLAZING HOT on Monday? Well, on that one perfect day, I met up with Lindsey and Adam in Oregon City for an engagement session on the bluffs overlooking the river. We could hear parties on the riverboats below and that was the day that I knew summer was just about here! They're getting married in August, so capturing this last little bit of their last spring before they become husband and wife was PERFECT for our spring day!
This view!! I could probably have stayed here all day.
Enjoy your photos, Lindsey and Adam! Your wedding is going to be such a fun celebration!!
This engagement session has been in the works for a while, and I'm so happy to finally share it today! I've been chatting with Lauren and Corey since the fall about their engagement session, and we went from Christmas tree farm to dog park to a forest session and my goodness I am SO GLAD we ended up where we did!! We had a bright, sunny spring day to hike some trails through the forest above Portland and it was amazing! They brought their two puppies and we all hiked around and found beautiful parts of the forest to explore and it felt totally them. I couldn't imagine this session any other way.
Engagement sessions are one of my very favorite types of sessions to do! I include an engagement session in each of my wedding packages as my gift to the couple because I LOVE shooting them, but also, I 100% believe that they are one of the most important things you can do to prep for your wedding photography! It gives us a chance to get to know each other: I learn the way that the two of you interact and what poses are most flattering and comfortable for you, and you get to get comfortable in front of my camera before your wedding day so that it's one less thing to worry about! That way, when I arrive at your wedding, we can pick up right where we left off because you're already comfortable being photographed! Every single couple I've shot an engagement session for has left the session happy that they did it, even if they didn't think they "needed" engagement photos, because they leave feeling completely comfortable and prepared for their wedding photos!
So. I love engagement sessions. Enjoy my favorites from 2016's engagements!