Kelsey & Jeff // Yosemite National Park Elopement

Sometimes you dream of doing something amazing that you think may never actually happen but you secretly hope that you’re wrong. For me, photographing an elopement in Yosemite was a dream for me. I had been there 2 years earlier just to see it and I was smitten. I just wanted to shoot there so badly in those amazing mountains. With the view of El Capitan looming over you. Two years later I finally got my chance. I started to actually advertise for it as a destination photographer for those adventurous couples wanting to go outside the norm of what a conventional wedding would be like.

Sure enough, within a WEEK of that advertising beginning Kelsey found me! I mean, I was on cloud nine when I got her email. I couldn’t wait to be back there but this time photographing an elopement! I am beyond grateful that I have already two more already lined up for 2018, but for this October 2017 wedding, I was pumped! Here is a little more about Kelsey and Jeff’s big day and how they got from hello to I do!..

The following is from the bride, Kelsey.

“Jeff and I met through a mutual coworker, Penny. She was nurse at the jail where he worked and she also worked at the clinic I work at. Penny was persistent that us two meet. But, it took us a long time to actually make it happen. I’d say I ditched him about 3 times before we went on a date..! (cmon though, blind dates are scary as hell!) Jeff was so close to throwing in the towel, one of his friends was telling him to just stop trying with me, so glad he sucks at taking advice.. We ended up meeting for Chinese food..and the rest was history!

For the big day Jeff wore a navy blue tux with brown shoes because we thought black was too “fancy” for our outdoor ceremony. I wore a lace dress that was completely opposite of what I pictured myself in. Everything you think you like changes once you start trying on wedding dresses. It was delicate but was feminine and it has some serious flow to it!

We were in the middle of planning our typical barn wedding for over a year away..and the stress of all the tedious details became too much. I proposed the idea of a small intimate getaway wedding and Jeff was on board! We knew we wanted our parents there, so once our parents said they would be there no matter what, we got the ball rolling for our elopement/intimate wedding! Deciding to use Kim was a no-brainer and her work really spoke to me as well as her goofy adventurous spirit. We connected instantly over our love of the 90’s music and cheesy humor.

Honestly, we chose Yosemite for the wedding because neither of us has been there and it looked amazingly beautiful. We wanted a place that was a new adventure for both of us, a place we can go back to throughout our lives and bring our kids to some day! The ceremony went perfectly. Our closest loved ones there, far enough away from the tourists that we could all focus on the moment. I wouldn’t change anything about it, even the fact that was dress was filthy by the end from all our walking and hiking. But it was 100% worth it when you see how amazing the photos came out!

Kim did absolutely wonderful as our photographer. The entire experience was new for us, and she was able to direct us and had great ideas for pictures. They all turned out so beautiful. The only negative is that I can’t decide which ones to hang on my walls!!!

My advice for couples getting married would be to really try to focus on what you and your significant other want. It is way too easy to get wrapped up in what your families will want or think. In the end, it is YOUR day, and you need to do whatever makes you happy. Remember, your wedding day is a celebration of your love, not a celebration for everyone else.”

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