Engagement, Chancing Mother Nature and Laughing Throughout


Dariuss and Nadine Portrait in Black and White
A black and white portrait shot of Nadine and Dariuss. See more photos here.


Sometimes you don’t realize how the little things can turn out to be such a blessing. This was the case with my engagement photo session with Nadine and Dariuss. They had always been complimentary of my photography at family functions then one day they asked me to photograph the two of them before their upcoming wedding. I couldn’t believe it. At this point I had not performed a couple’s session before. They were giving me an opportunity to help capture the love they feel for each other. Once I picked up my jaw off the floor I said yes and we worked out a location and time. I was beyond excited. They took a chance on me and it turned into a lifetime of memories.

An age old saying states, “Always expect the unexpected”.   We had the location and the time confirmed. Dariuss and Nadine were all smiles as they picked me up from my home.  The weather forecast was mostly clear, emphasis on mostly.  Off we went and fun times were ahead for all of us. Now let me give you a bit of background on the couple. These two can be a riot in a great way. Dariuss can get you laughing and Nadine can that energy flowing as well. This made the session effortless. Their enthusiasm made everything flow. Once we got to the location at Lake Lanier, Georgia we found some great spots and just started shooting.

What I tried to capture the most was their love and happiness with each other. With them it was easy. There was no prompting. There were some must have poses they wanted but outside of that I directed very little posing for them. I let their personalities shine through during the session and where they led me is what my lens captured. This method produced some great photos. All the while they poked jabs at me taking my ‘practice shots’ and I laughed at them being silly with each other.



The pictures from our first few locations flew by and we moved on to another found location. Things were going smoothly. So what happens when you have an outdoor engagement photo session where the weather begins to change and now includes rolling fog and impending rain? Well I’m glad you asked. I remember looking at the changing sky as we approached the new location. I was thinking to myself rain is surely moving in. I turned to them and said “I’m not sure if we are going to get great photos”.  This is where their upbeat natures shined through. Their attitudes were “we’ll make it work”.  Imagine my astonishment.  Where they were enthusiastic admittedly I was nervous. This decision ended up producing some of the best photos of the day.

Once we got out of the car and walked around we found we were presented with several opportunities for great photos. There was a large shade providing tree with green grass underneath. Another area had a dock leading to the Chattahoochee River. The third area turned out to be the gem. It was an opening nestled between greenery along with riverbank. Fog was moving along the river and it made for a great backdrop. I unpacked my gear and got to work.

As a couple they had such great ideas for the first spot. The two reenacted the proposal under this tree along with a “Say Yes” moment. It was truly beautiful and it showed in the photos. The lighting ended up working perfectly with the tree as the backdrop. The next part centered on the river and the fog. This is where their personalities shined through. As a suggestion, I spoke of the fog on the river and before I could finish Nadine said “Like mystery, like a jungle”. I nodded in agreement and proceeded taking pictures. Two of the coolest moments came from this spot. One involved them walking away from me then turning suddenly with the horror movie look of shock due to the fog and trees in the background. The second was a couple’s portrait. The pose was straight on but over their shoulders you could see the fog and the scenery in the background. It truly looked like they were in a completely different location outside of Georgia.


Afterwards the dark angry clouds moved in so we had to wrap up. On the way home we were all talking about what a great time we had. They just couldn’t wait to see the pictures. I told them how glad I was they let me capture their moments. The rain let up a bit where it was just a sprinkle.  Is they pulled up in my driveway to drop me off I blurted, “I have an idea but we have to be quick. You have to get out the car now, hurry!”

I said earlier to always expect for the unexpected. In this case it was an opportunity for great shot.  My excitement was due to my blooming hydrangea plant next to my driveway. The blossom was a brilliant shade of blue. In my mind I saw their hands intertwined with her engagement ring prominent showing their connection, their love. Without hesitation they got out of the car and we made the shot happen.

5310 black and white blue flower
Final photo with a Blue Hydrangea as the focal point. See more photos here.

My time in photography has truly been a journey. It has evolved from something I love doing just for me to something I continue to love and also share with others. The position I am in now I owe in a large part to Dariuss and Nadine. The photos from this day were used as part of their wedding and are also displayed in their home. I am eternally grateful. They took a chance on me and in doing so created a lifetime of memories while placing me on this great journey.

If you’ve enjoyed this post and want to see more of my photography please click here.

Since you’re stopping by check out my previous blog post Photography, Exploring and Politics?

Feel free to leave a comment!




2 thoughts on “Engagement, Chancing Mother Nature and Laughing Throughout

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