Are you ready to see one of my favorite Hawaii elopement shoots of all time?
How this shoot came to be
2020 was a wild ride, putting it lightly. I know for me, the craziness and unpredictability of the year really took a hit to my creativity. And I also know that I’m not alone in that, because basically every creative I know felt the same way!
One of the things I reflected on at the end of the year was that, in 2020, I started giving myself permission to really play and be bold with my work. And one example of that was the idea I had for this styled elopement that I’m sharing with you today.
I just started feeling a big growth-spurt-pivot-creative surge coming after months of a really slow pandemic season. In the slowness of the season, I was able to pour more time into reflection with my photography approach, photography education, and fully restructure my photography packages. I decided to do this shoot with Kelli and Ryan to experiment and showcase the changes that I’ve been working on. It felt so good to get to get out and play, after months of travel bans and beach and park lockdowns in Hawai’i!
What is a styled elopement?
If you’re not a photographer, you may not be familiar with styled shoots. All it is is a way for photographers to bring a vision to life and get to really play and be create. There is no pressure to deliver or perform, because we aren’t using paying clients. It’s a way for us to be creative and try new things, and we have a lot more freedom to experiment. I wanted to create an adventurous styled elopement using a gorgeous gown + veil so that I could play around with a totally new approach to photography that I’ve been fostering. I’m so happy with the results.
The Hawaii elopement shoot
And Kelli and Ryan were the perfect models – they are a super sweet real married couple who are just so in love with each other. They both have big hearts for Jesus and brought so much emotion to our shoot. Oh, and I love that Kelli wore her Tevas – because this area can be a bit dicey, especially with footwear not made for it!
I loved getting to play around with a more cinematic, storytelling, editorial look. We spent time just exploring the area, climbing up and over things, and taking in the gorgeous scenery.
All this to say, I’m super thankful to be able to put together small shoots like this when I need a creative boost. I also just want these photos to encourage couples to do something a little different: if your favorite place is the beach, elope on a beach. If waterfalls call out to you, let’s go explore and maybe even hop in at the end of some beautiful dramatic shots. Wear whatever kind of wedding outfits you’d like to, wear your Teva sandals, your hiking boots, your favorite hat, a beautiful veil. This day is about YOU and your partner, and I hope Kelli & Ryan’s love on this beautiful Oahu cliffside inspires you to remember that!
The Team of Oahu Elopement Vendors
Dress: Shikoba Bride
Florist: Puaka’ie Floristry
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