Sandstone Elopement Inspiration

Beautiful Landscape? Check. Beautiful Couple? Check. Beautiful Dress and Styling? Check. This Sandstone Elopement Inspiration has it all. I love the way they used the landscape in the photos without adding anything other than these two lovebirds.


Location: Snow Canyon State Park | Dress: Hannah's Closet | Photographer: Wild Is Our Love


What was your inspiration behind the shoot and the use of light?

I love simple and intimate elopements, contrasted by wild and dramatic scenery and backdrops. For this shoot, I was hoping to incorporate the moody and stormy skies that had begun to part as the storm cleared. The sun snuck out during this shoot creating a stark contrast between the dark clouds and the sun flares that highlighted my clients. I love the elegance of my clients attire and I love how it stands out in the landscape. I especially love the area we shot in, since the sandstone seems to go on forever. It has beautiful leading lines that draw your attention straight to the couple. I like to highlight how simple, yet elegant elopements can be given the right location.  You can forgo the decor and complicated productions of more traditional weddings, by using a stunning landscape as your backdrop. As more couples find common ground in their love for the outdoors, adventure elopements can allow them to express their love in a meaningful location, while still saving money for an exciting and adventurous honeymoon,

How do  you prepare your clients for this type of session?

For all of my adventure elopement photoshoots I make sure my clients know to bring comfortable shoes that they can hike in.  We opted for some casual, but fancy birkenstock sandals for the bride in this photoshoot. This provided an elegant, but comfortable solution for hiking around the sandstone. In this photoshoot we were literally rock climbing in some cases and walking on steep slopes next to long drops. I always make sure my clients aren't afraid of heights and have the appropriate fitness level, or the appropriate amount of grit : ) I also recommend they get their hair and makeup professionally done. You can work up quite sweat during these sessions and long lasting makeup is key! Luckily this gorgeous model was a hair and makeup artist and was able to do her own. It is also a great idea for them to bring layers to dress in. A pair of nude fleece tights under a dress is the perfect way to secretly warm up a cold client. Jackets are great for an early morning chilly start at the trailhead and a stylish hat can make a cute accessory, but help keep the sun out of your face and your hair tame in the wind.

What Techniques Did You Use That Were Out of the Norm?

I am all about getting those intimate, but wild shots and angles can be everything when it comes to getting the perfect shot. This usually involves me scrambling up and down rock faces and getting uncomfortably close to cliff edges to get those perfect cliff side shots. I also practice Leave No Trace when shooting in these locations. This involves staying on an established trail, walking on rock or bare ground (but not cryptobiotic soil), avoiding vegetation, and cleaning up anything I bring in and any other trash I find on the trails.

Any advice to other clients or photographers who want to do this type of shoot?

If you are looking to do an adventure photoshoot or elopement I'd make sure you bring a backpack with some water, snacks, change of clothes and shoes (if it's a long hike), clothing layers for changing temperatures, emergency supplies and a little bit of courage. As a photographer I would make sure you know what you are getting yourself into and are capable of getting yourself out of a bad situation. I have taken several wilderness first aid classes, and I am VERY experienced in the backcountry. While I am not a professional guide nor do I market myself as one, I want to make sure I know what I am doing out in the wilderness. Plan on a hike that suits your client's fitness level. There are many stunning areas right off the road, and there are many wild and remote areas to suit even the most adventurous of souls.