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JP Portrait Studio: John and Poppy

The Engagement Session Memory That (Almost) Never Happened

Hello! We're John and Poppy, a husband and wife team of photographers who live in the middle of Washington State.  The first date for the engagement session was rescheduled due to a forest fire in the Entiat Valley, the location Holly and Zane had selected for their session. Then, the rescheduled day at a barn on the edge of town was mutually cancelled due to pouring down rain. On the third try, the original spot they wanted was now reopened because the fire danger and smoke had cleared.  After rescheduling twice, the engagement session was finally going to happen!

We followed Holly and Zane's truck up the winding Entiat River Valley Road, Zane had selected our shooting location because he loved the view.  Suddenly, we were turning off the main road to climb a steep, dirt road that was cut into the mountainside. Very steep, very winding, and did I mention that Poppy is terrified of heights? So there we were, twisting and climbing the dirt road in our little minivan, as Poppy is trying to remain calm and stop crawling into my lap as I concentrate on the road. Up, up, up we go, until we come to a sudden stop in the middle of the road, clinging to the side of the mountain.

Poppy and I look questionably at each other, "Is this it?"

It wasn't exactly a "location," we literally stopped in the middle of the dirt road half-way up an enormous mountain, there was hardly enough space to adequately pull-off the road. It was tight. We hopped-out and we could see her face was saying the same thing we were thinking, "Um, is this the spot?"

Zane was smiling, "I love the view from here." Okay, this must be it.

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Holly was the first to speak up as we casually/desperately searched for something to work with, "This isn't really a location for portraits, it's a dirt road." Whew! It was quickly decided that she would rather go back down the mountain and shoot by the river. Yes!

Since we had already driven that far, Zane really liked the view, and I knew that Poppy would need a few minutes to recover from the ride up, I grabbed my camera and encouraged them to do a few shots before heading back down to the river.  I captured about a dozen images in 5 minutes time, and we headed back down the road and continued their session down by the river.

Everyone had a great time and they loved their session and photos. For Christmas, they gave their parents an enlargement from their engagement shoot. Which photo did they choose? Our very first shot of the session of course, taken on that dirt road way up on the mountainside, with the sun blazing in the sky.

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This fun engagement shoot that almost never happened was a great reminder of what we continuously strive for in life and work: There is always something to create, stay positive, and work with what you have in front of you. A dirt road, a gorgeous view, and a young couple in love were all the ingredients we ever needed to create a memory of a beautiful moment.

Love and hugs,

John and Poppy

2 Photographers, 1 Passion.

JP Portrait Studio's Website :)





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