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  • Sara James

Updated: Sep 22, 2022

Kelly & Dave live my dream life ... or should I say one of my dream lives ... I have a few!!

One is living on a farm with a horse, or maybe 2 horses, who's counting?

The other is being a full time traveler and living in an airstream, a camper van, whatever allows us to travel full time and still have a little home ... I could go on, but I won't bore you.

Let me know in the comments below what your dream life is, but for now, let's get back to Kelly & Dave and their love story.

Kelly & Dave are full time travelers who built their own van and travel all over the United States and Europe as well. We took these photos in Big Bear, a beautiful small city in Southern California sitting on the banks of Big Bear Lake, that I adore, as they were passing by it during their California adventure. Big Bear is famous for it's ski resort, but I love it during all the seasons, the views are beautiful, the little cabins are adorable and the hiking is great.

For this session, we didn't do much strenuous hiking, because I was 7 months pregnant and Dave and Kelly were extra sweet and wanted to make sure I didn't take any chances, but as you can see from the photos, you don't have to always hike 10 miles uphill to get pretty views.

And yes I aways recommend at least two looks for pictures if the session allows it. It doesn't have to be two completely different outfits, it can be as easy as adding an extra layer to outfit number one, a sweater, a different hat, and voila, you have two outfits, two looks, and basically two different sets of moods in one session. It adds variety to your final gallery and if you are using the photos for decorating different rooms, it gives you a bit more choice.

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  • Sara James

Updated: Sep 22, 2022

Getting engaged is really a special moment, a moment you want to remember. Yes getting married is when you officially say I do, but getting engaged is when you are on cloud nine, you aren't thinking about guests lists and logistics yet, you are just thinking "WE LOVE EACH OTHER SO MUCH and WANT TO BE TOGETHER FOREVER" and that's so EXCITING!!!! And should be celebrated and remembered as the special time it is. And what better than photos to remember?

Matt proposed on Christmas with Nicole's family in attendance, and we took their photos a few weeks later. Dallas weather cooperated, so we were able to be outdoors and hit two locations.

We started at the Dallas Arboretum, which I love shooting at. Not usually on the weekends though, because it gets very busy, and who wants to wait in line to take pictures? That's why I try to always give clients the best advice when it comes to when and where to go for photos and have a ton of location recommendations. These pictures were taken on a weekday, about 45 min before closing time, when the arboretum is least busy. Thanks for trusting me Nicole and Matt!

We then moved on to our next location, White Rock Lake, a quick 15 min drive. We got there right in time for the famous golden hour, that moment before sunset, where there is still enough light to have beautiful photos, but the sun isn't harsh either.

We had the whole place to ourselves, which is always nice, especially when I am asking couples to kiss and show PDA :) right? But don't worry, I will make sure I don't ask you to do anything that you aren't comfortable with, and if I mistakenly do, your safe word is "NEXT" and I will get the memo and move on to the next prompt or pose.

So how exactly do I pose and prompt?

Every session is different. Some couples come to me and ask to be posed and prompted a lot. They aren't comfortable with cameras, and need a little extra help to loosen up or know what to do with their hands etc ... Others want candid moments only. In my experience, most people are somewhere in the middle. I usually will pose you for some, and have some silly prompts to create some candid moments if they don't happen organically. Basically, don't worry about it, I will. That's what I am here for :) For you to have a good time and for me to capture it,

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  • Sara James

Updated: Nov 21, 2022

When Jenn & Erik reached out to me about being their photographer, I was so excited because I already knew their elopement would be full of adventure and probably include some rock climbing.

I am not saying you need to rock climb on your wedding day for me to photograph your elopement, but I get excited when couples incorporate activities that truly represent them and their passions, wether it be rock climbing, horseback riding, hiking, canoeing, jumping into a waterfall, paddle-boarding etc ... and I knew rock climbing was Erik & Jenn's thing.

Erik and Jenn are also runners and nature lovers and it was really fun helping them plan their elopement. They had already picked their location, a beautiful park in California with rock formations, awesome climbing boulders and Mount Whitney in the background. They had rock climbed and camped here multiple times before, so it had a special meaning for them.

Movie Road is where we planned for their first look and it was truly incredible and intimate. It was sunrise and Erik & Jenn had the whole place to themselves.

Then they joined their friends and some family members for some coffee, some mimosas and some breakfast bites and continued on their adventure by rock climbing Shark Fin. Some friends rock climbed as well and others cheered them on, so yes you can include a handful of friends and family as long as they are supportive of your adventurous elopement and don't try to convince you that you should change your plans to accommodate them.

Erik & Jenn ended the day by saying I do at sunset, sharing a beautifully choreographed dance and sitting around a campfire gazing at the stars. Sounds like a dream, right?

THE END :) or more like the beginning of Jenn & Erik as wife and husband

and forever adventure partners.

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