Find wedding inspiration, location ideas and tips & tricks for planning your wedding
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I'm Stacie and I'm so happy you're here. This blog is a space where I get to share my work with you and offer advice, tips, and inspiration for your wedding and beyond.
Choosing to have an adventure engagement session or an elopement doesn’t mean you have to be an avid or experienced hiker or lover of long strenuous hikes! There are a lot of stunning locations all around the PNW that are actually quite iconic and require little to light amounts of hiking. Win win!
That being said, there are also other epic locations that do require some hard work, and if you want to know about those, get in touch! I do a lot of hikes, but haven’t done many sessions in these locations
We made our way down to a spot I had scouted out before they arrived. I was looking for a spot that would be well lit with no harsh sunlight, and somewhere where I had a lot of room to run around and move quickly as the proposal went down. Jason and I had messaged earlier making a plan about how we would do it. Basically I told him I would put Kaila is a very specific pose where he’s standing behind her and she will face me and I would encourage her to just do a few modely things for “an artsy shot”. Then we would go down on one knee and I would ask her to turn around.
It totally worked.
Janaye and Mike knew they wanted to have an adventure together, and then they decided to make a whole weekend out of it! We stayed at an amazingly cozy Airbnb in Bend, and made a whole weekend out of exploring and taking photos. What a dream!
We started out at the Oregon Badlands. I’ve always been a sucker for that desert vibe with the neutral colors, the dust and the general desolate nature of it all. Paired with their badass jackets, this made the perfect backdrop. We ended the session dancing to Get Low and making fools out of ourselves. All around, a great way to get started!
So you’ve booked your engagement session—the date is set, the location has been picked and you’re so excited—but how do you pick what to wear?
I like to give all my couples a Style Guide that gives them an idea of what types of clothing and accessories are going to look best on the camera. Generally I recommend looking for items of clothing that offer a lot of movement or flow, textures, neutral or deep tones, and styles that flatter your features. I’m also a big fan of pattern mixing, if you’re feeling bold.
As a lover of fashion myself, I understand the urge to instantly start online shopping for the right dress, jacket, blouse, etc. BUT as a lover of our planet and the gorgeous natural areas we get to shoot in regularly, I’m constantly looking for ways to reduce my footprint, so I always make an effort to shop second hand first.
There’s something about the Oregon Coast that keeps so many of us coming back. Is it the salty air, the powerful waves, or simply the sand that we always seem to take back with us in our shoes? I think it’s a combination of all those things (plus the coffee shops that seem so warm and cozy and the surf shops with coconut scented everything!) but it’s also the memories that we make there with the people we love. From campfires on the beach, to making friends with strangers in small coastal bars, to hiking out to the edge of the peninsula and seeing a whale while your friend tells a pretty hilarious joke about whales in the background. This is why I love taking couples to the coast. So they can make their own memories there or add to their own coastal scrapbook they’ve already started.
Carli and Justin wanted to do their engagement session in Astoria, Oregon because it was one of their first getaways together and still a place where they love to go with each other. I love when couples pick locations that are meaningful to them—it makes the photos and the whole experience that much more special. These two even stayed in a cute AirBnb and made a whole little mini vacation out of our weekend photo shoot! I want your engagement session to be so much more than just a few hours of snapping photos—I want you to have an amazing experience of getting to work with, act with, play with and laugh with your partner.
I always encourage my couples to choose a location for their engagement photos that is meaningful for them. Rachel and Zack took that recommendation to heart and asked if we could do the session at a waterfall close to where they went to college and where they first started to fall for each other (pun definitely intended). I really loved that idea and immediately said yes. When Rachel mentioned that to two of them wanted to jump off the cliff at the end of the session (a popular and safe activity at this particular spot)—of course I was stoked. I wouldn’t be making any plunges myself—due to my aversion to quick body temperature changes—but that didn’t change how excited I was for THEM to do it.
There’s nothing that gets me more excited than when a couple contacts me and says something along the lines of “We love your work because (insert compliment that makes me blush here) and we would love to take an adventure with you to (insert epic/gorgeous location here)!”
One of my favorite places to do engagement sessions (or any session, really) is the Oregon Coast in the summer. We have some unreal looking natural beauty out here, and I also love the way the windy coastline plays with long hair and dresses.
Now, prepare for some serious stokeage! This engagement session included the Oregon Coast, uncharacteristically nice coastal weather, a beautiful and fun couple, pre-session surf and tacos, some off-roading, and did I mention the iconic VW Bus?!
Sure, I shot this at least a year ago and these two are already married and expecting their first baby! BUT I never really got around to showcasing this session the way it deserved. Pacific City always serves as a GORGEOUS backdrop and it brings something different to the table every time. This time, we got the worlds most perfectly placed ray of sun as it fell perfectly between the hills. I remember frantically telling Melinda and Nick that I needed them to run to a very specific place. You lose that kind of light fast, and I’m so glad we got there in time!
LGBTQ+, BIPOC and body inclusive
Stacie shoots - Wedding and elopement Photographer and engagement photographer
San Diego California, Oregon, and Worldwide
© Stacie Shoots 2022