How is it already September?! Fall is right around the corner, but I’m not ready for it yet (especially since last Winter seemed to last until May!) It’s been such a dreamy Summer season… lots of traveling, spending time with my family and friends, and of course photographing beautiful weddings, events, families & more. I plan on blogging my 2019 weddings with you this week, but first, I wanted to share some of my personal life & travel adventures.
My family and I love to travel, so we made a point to do lots of that over the Summer. We flew to Cabo San Lucas in July and stayed for an entire week, but I decided to leave my camera behind so I could really relax. I also opted to go “cameraless” for our end-of-Summer road trip down to San Clemente, where we camped at the State Beach for 4 days, and spent an entire day at Disneyland & California Adventures. Sometimes it’s just nice to put the camera down & be fully present.
I did, however, bring my camera along for a few unforgettable road trips. I was hired to photograph a proposal in Yosemite this past June, and since my family had never been before, we decided to plan a vacation around the date. We stayed at a quaint AirBNB right outside the South Gate for two nights & three days (I highly recommend Tony & Nan’s Guest House, they were excellent hosts!)
My client proposed to his girlfriend under the Faithful Couple tree in Mariposa Grove; it took a great deal of planning between the two of us… but everything went smoothly (she said yes!!) and it was pretty much the cutest thing ever. Then, we celebrated their engagement by taking some portraits around the grove.
When we parted ways, I met up with my husband and kids, and we explored beautiful Yosemite Valley. The beauty of the park completely blew us away. Pictures truly don’t do it justice… but of course, I attempted to capture some of it’s magnificence & try out some of my new presets to draw out some of the dramatic tones & features. What do you think?
Highlights from Yosemite: Driving into Yosemite Valley and seeing Tunnel View for the first time (literally took my breath away), “climbing” El Capitan, going to the Ansel Adams museum & then photographing Mirror Lake from the exact spot he did (dork status). Yosemite exceeded everything I had imagined it would be, and I cannot wait to go back again.
Another epic trip we planned (last minute) was to Travertine Hot Springs, in Bridgeport, CA. We arrived in the late afternoon at the end of August, so it was still super hot outside, and we decided to wait until it cooled off to take dip in the pools. It was amazing watching the sun go down over the high desert from the “view pool” …the only downside were the constant swarming mosquitos. We ended up cutting our evening dip short, and going back to camp. The next morning, we went back before the crowds came, and it was absolutely perfect. The colors, the view, the vibes… unreal.
Once we were finished soaking in the good energy, we packed up our camp and made the short drive to Bodie State Park, which is only about 30 minutes away. I had heard great things about this ghost town, so I was excited to finally get the chance to go. It was fun to imagine the town thriving and alive at one time. Some houses still had items inside: dolls & carriages left behind by little children, and kitchen utensils sitting on the shelves. It was eerie cool. Reminders of the past and how time moves on, with or without us.
My kids are now back in school; my daughter, Faith, is in 4th grade, while my son, Jared, started middle school (6th). I’m reminded how quickly time goes by, and how important it is to create these memories together. Before I know it, they’ll be all grown up and have lives of their own… so I feel incredibly grateful to be doing what I love as an artist, which gives me the time & freedom to explore new places with the people I cherish the most.
These are the days.
Until next time, friends.