My journey into photography was unexpected, abrupt and the best decision I ever made! Growing up my family went camping in Yosemite, the Sequoias or somewhere in the mountains every summer and I always enjoyed taking pictures of the beautiful scenery surrounding us, but I had never considered or even wanted to be a professional photographer.
I have always been an extremely creative person and my personality shown through at a young age. My mom would ask me “What do you want to make today?” instead of “What do you want to do today?”. My aunt would always buy me the coolest craft kits from bracelet making to watercolors to how-to books. The crafts were endless and I never tired of it! I am the type of person that can’t sit down for hours at a time. It drives me crazy! (I think my mom appreciated me being distracted, tbh. Buuut, she probably didn’t love the messes I always made…)
Keep scrolling to read how I became a Destination Elopement Photographer!
When I was a freshman in high-school and we would have our winter formals, spring fling, homecoming, etc., I would always go to one of my best friend’s grandma’s house so she could do our hair since she was a hairdresser. I loved the creativity in doing updo’s and makeup, so I began to practice on friends and I absolutely loved it! I actually started doing hair and make up for weddings when I was in high school, but didn’t think about doing it for a career till I was in my senior year. I realized that I could have a job that I actually enjoyed doing! So, I decided to go to cosmetology school right after I graduated. I got my license in a speedy 9 months, started working at a salon, and I loved it so much. Being behind the chair was truly a passion and looking back it helped me in my photography so much because it taught me how to have a meaningful conversation with strangers, and how to get them to open up. I had worked at the same salon for 3 years when the owner of the salon decided to sell it. Uh-oh! Some of the other stylists and I weren’t very happy about this because we weren’t too fond of the soon-to-be new owner. I worked under the new owner for a year when…I started to question if doing hair was the right thing for me. I disliked going into the salon and it just wasn’t an enjoyable experience anymore.
During my last year working at the salon, my husband and I found out that we were going to be moving to Italy! This is when my aspirations really started to change. When I found out that we were going to moving I started thinking that I should learn to take good pictures because I am going to be in an incredible place, and I wanted to be able to capture our memories there. So, I started to read blog after blog and watch YouTube video after YouTube video to teach myself the ins and outs of photography. I honestly had NO IDEA how much work and knowledge you need in order to be a truly good photographer. All this information fascinated me and I couldn’t stop reading and learning. I spent about 2 months absorbing all the knowledge before I got my very first camera. Because I spent so much time learning before I got my camera I picked it up pretty quickly and fell in love immediately! I took pictures of my hubby a few days after I got all my gear and it was like my eyes had been opened to something that had been missing in my life. It sounds cheesy, I know, but it’s true! I loved photography so much that doing hair and working at a salon that I no longer loved became such a chore and a grim experience that I decided to quit and take on photography full swing. It was the best decision I ever made.
Once I started doing sessions I quickly realized that I loved working with couples and that family sessions were not my thing. I also started to learn about Adventure Elopements and they really intrigued me because I have always loved hiking and exploring new terrain. So, if I got to combine working with couples and enjoying the stunning landscape, what more could I ask for?! I also love elopements so much because they are such an intimate experience since it is typically you, the couple, and maybe just a few other people. I get to know each couple so well and by the end of it I have made some dear new friends. I never expected this to happen to me, but I feel so blessed and am so grateful for each wedding that I get to be a part of!