A Surprise Proposal for the books
Honestly, this was my very first surprise proposal to cover! And you may be thinking... well, aren't most proposals surprises?
Ok, yeah but I'm talking "photographer disguised in a ghillie suit ready for action". Ok, again... I am exaggerating. However, I was technically 'undercover' the whole time until of course, I wasn't.
Let me paint the picture for you and set the scene.
We headed to Big Bend National Park - I had my husband and two kids in tow. We're naturally a hot mess so I thought that would be perfect - my client's gal wouldn't think anything was odd about a mama and her wild circus. I was also dressed the part. I felt that the attire was essential to blend in.
So, yes... operation bring crazy family and nail the shot was a go!
Next, I arrived probably way to early but I really wanted to scope out the location and find the right spots, adjust my lighting and of course... find the best location to blend in. I cannot express the level of seriousness that went behind "blending in". I was not going to be that photographer that ruined the surprise. Oh no, no!
We came up with a game plan that revolved around my husband pushing our 'Jeep Stroller/Wagon thing' down the trail and when he headed back my direction I would know that my client was coming. I was so afraid my husband would be loud and be like... "THEY'RE COMING" so we resorted to this non-verbal cue.
Little did I know, I'd be the one acting all nervous inside but I will get to that part later. So let's back up just a tad and review some needed details for the rest of the mission.
The date that the retainer was paid, I had a phone call with the client and we discussed many details. For example, I needed to know what the couple looked like. As silly as it sounds, I asked my client for a few selfies of the couple. I also asked if he would prefer I not text him the day of and we both agreed it would be best not to. So instead I checked early the week of and everything was a go.
This guy had his stuff together which helped so much.
We agreed on time and luckily, there is a video of the trail so I knew the exact spot (and back-up spot) of where everything would happen down to the minute/second of the video.
The only thing I possibly would have asked more of was what he would be wearing but fortunately my husband has a good eye and spotted them right away.
Fast forward to my husband cueing their arrival - I started to get a rush of adrenaline and nervous. As my husband approached they shortly followed behind him. I just acted like I was telling my family I was ready to leave the trail but that needed to make sure we had everything. This gave me time to make sure my client was ready to go and once I saw him make the move, I went in and started taking all the shots that I could. I had done my research and I knew these things go fast!
It was a hit and I even gave them a bottle of champagne to cheers the happy and newly engaged couple! This was such a fun experience and one I feel blessed to have been asked to be a part of!