sarah + patrick
dead horse point elopement
oh my goodness, where do i even start with how much i love these two?! sarah and patrick travelled all the way from washington d.c. to elope in the utah desert. they are both so incredibly genuine and thoughtful, they knew exactly how they wanted their wedding weekend to go because they had put a lot of thought into their “why”.
“Patrick and I have been together for about seven years and thus have been to a LOT of weddings. We love all the big, fun traditions: walking down the aisle with family, sharing your vows in front of a room of friends and family, first dances, speeches, etc. We love being able to see old friends and family we typically never get to outside of things like weddings and funerals and have been so blessed to have friends/family who have invited us to these important events. When it was time to start planning our own wedding we thought of what was most important to us: a beautiful setting, a fun trip, a meaningful place we want to return to, pictures we’d hang in our home, and sharing this moment with our parents and siblings. Something we didn’t want: all the stress of planning a big wedding, choosing who gets to be invited, and making sure they all had a good time. Patrick and I are big people pleasers and we realized not only would the details of a big wedding kill us, we wouldn’t be able to really appreciate the day because we’d be thinking about what everyone else wants and what would make everyone else happy. By keeping our wedding small, we were able to focus on the things that we love and make us most happy. We were able to have a day that not only reflected who we were as a couple, but was something exactly like what we wanted.”
the day before they eloped, just the three of us went off into the desert for some photos. i love when couples decide and make time to do this! when i asked patrick what his favorite part of their elopement weekend was, here’s what he said:
“Probably the engagement shoot. With everything going on, there was not a lot of time for me to be alone with Sarah. We were almost always with either her parents or with my parents or with both. Even on most of the car rides we were in separate cars. And then at night we were so exhausted there wasn’t a lot of time together before we would pass out. So being able to go off on our own for the engagement shoot was the first time that we were able to be just with each other and enjoy the area and the fact that we were getting married without having to worry about anyone else was such a refreshing relief. And Emily made the photo shoot very easy and fun; it’s a memory that i will cherish forever.”
Sarah loved taking pics after the ceremony:
“I have the best memories shooting with Patrick and Emily after our ceremony. So many silly things happened – a tourist wanted to take photos with me and took forever to get her camera phone working, I lost my bouquet and Patrick magically rescued it far from where we had been walking, and my entire train got trapped between two big bushes as the wind picked up. But, outside of the engagement shoot, it was truly our only time alone as a couple with the person who helped us discover this gorgeous new place, Dead Horse Point State Park. We’d been talking and thinking about every detail of this wedding, the dress, the suit, the flowers, the weather, the site, my hair and more for nearly a year and I think this was the first time we really got to put all of that stress and planning aside and really be in the moment. We got to see how the gorgeous park transforms as the sun sets and drink in every crazy view that park has to offer. We also got to connect in a totally new way – without technology or thinking about “how can we capture this in a photo”? We’ve been telling our friends that we would have been happy just walking around the park with Emily, hearing about her life and sharing our stories – the breathtaking photos are just icing on the cake. But in all honesty, it was this time after all the planning and scheduling where we just got to relax and laugh that made this such a special day.”
Thank you, SO much, Sarah and Patrick, for asking me to be there for this crazy special occasion. For all you couples out there considering eloping, here’s some advice from a couple that’s gone through the whole process:
“Make a list of what’s important to you and what isn’t. That list really helped us shape how we planned our elopement and gave us confidence that everything we chose what what we wanted – not what others thought or felt.
Plan some time for you two to do something you aren’t organizing. Both our favorite moments were our photo sessions with Emily because we didn’t have to plan where to take shots or what we should be doing – we left it to a pro. Similarly we took a fun jeep tour in Moab where we didn’t have to drive, we just got to live in the moment and appreciate the lovely day.
Don’t be afraid to ask questions! We knew Dead Horse Point was the spot for us after tracking her down, but we weren’t sure what time of year, what day of the week, and what time of the day was best. No question was too small – Emily gave us excellent recommendations (all of which we used) and getting her perspective and her local insight really took a lot of pressure off us. After having gone through everything, I literally wouldn’t have changed a thing.
Do an engagement session. We weren’t planning on doing it at first because we didn’t think it would be necessary but honestly how often are you in a gorgeous place with a talented local photographer? Emily took us to places we never would have stopped by had we just been driving around on our own. Also we got to get comfortable having our photo taken, which made it so much easier and more natural the day of the wedding.
Do not freak out about the weather – crazier weather only makes for more beautiful photos and great stories. When we thinking about the time of year to get married, Emily told us “The weather can be all over the place – it can be windy (which I love for photos!) and the temperature is quite unpredictable, but I photographed about a dozen elopements and engagement sessions here this spring and they were all amazing truly unique and amazing!” I had never thought about how a non-sunny, 70 degree day could make photos unique and amazing but hearing that really put me at ease and made me not worry about the weather at all.
Do it! When have you ever regretting spending intimate time with the person you love?”