Kelly & David’s beach elopement is full of the feels, amazing light and an awesome couple. After spending 11 years together, and many ‘life things’ happening they realized there really isn’t a ‘best’ time to get married. Clearwater seemed like the perfect place for them to have a beach elopement so with the help of a family friend, they were able to secure a private and secluded spot on the beach.

I arrived in Clearwater on July 4th, and hung out with David & Kelly. They travelled from Indianapolis sans friends and family to forgo all the typical wedding stuff to make their ceremony about the two of them. We watched fireworks together, drank beers and I even sang a little karaoke. On their wedding day, we started out at the  local county clerk’s office so they could get their marriage license, then the ‘getting ready’ began.

The original plan was the have a sunset beach ceremony followed by an intimate first dance in the sand then photos. Only 1 of those things happened because as you’ll see in the photos, a massive storm blew in. It was actually quite intense. As their priest started the blessing, the thunder began to strike and lighting lit up the sky, which turned a post-apocalyptic shade of orange and pink. The winds picked up but the ceremony pushed on and as they were pronounced husband and wife, the sky unleashed whatever moisture it was carrying and drenched all of us.

Honestly, it was awesome and I’ve never experienced anything like it before.

After heading for cover and drying off at a friend’s house, we headed to the restaurant to cut some cake and have a private first dance.

I really had an amazing time with David & Kelly and can honestly say I made two life-long friends over the holiday. Kelly & David, THANK YOU for inviting me into your lives and letting me bear witness to such an amazing event.

Beach Elopement Location: Private Residence // Clearwater Beach, FL
Floral: Petal & Vine
Cake: Astoria Pastry Shop
Hair & Makeup: The Spa @ Salon West

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  • KateJuly 29, 2017 - 12:20 am

    Oh, my dear friend. You are the most beautiful bride I have ever seen!!!! I am so incredibly happy for you and David – and he is such a lucky man to have you for Always. This was the perfect wedding, and I am so glad you were able to do it your way. ReplyCancel

If you’re thinking of having a destination elopement in lieu of a traditional wedding, go Nike and just do it.

Seriously.

Catherine & Brent wanted to do something a little different and felt I was the perfect photographer for their destination elopement in Austin. We have a lot in common too. Catherine is originally from Edmonton, one of my favorite places on Earth. She also used to live right around the corner from a bar I used to perform at in LA. And Brent…he lives in Lubbock, birthplace of Buddy Holly, my favorite musician EVER.

After having an immediate connection on our initial phone call, I got pretty damn excited to shoot their elopement and after seeing the photos, you’ll see why. They invited only a few family and friends to meet them in Austin, an east destination for everyone to get to. The ceremony location had the most amazing sun and the reception venue, The Roosevelt Room, crafted some killer cocktails.

Bride’s Dress: BHLDN
Groom’s Suit/Tux: 
Billy Reid custom
Wedding Planner: Vintage & Lace // Heather Girotti
Hair & Makeup: Dionne Liddiard
Floral & Decor: Petal Pushers
Ceremony Venue: Chapel Dulcinea
Reception Venue: The Roosevelt Room Austin

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I love how authentic these engagement photos are.

When I first met Nicholas & Christina at a local coffee shop (OK…fine. It was Starbucks) we ended up sitting there and chatting for over 90 minutes about life and eating food and how much they didn’t want the same engagement photos as everyone else. Both Christina & Nicholas wanted really natural pictures of them, just being themselves. We started out at Smither Park and finished up in EaDo just after a killer sunset and just before a storm rolled in.

My favorite photo was taken while we were in EaDo and Nicholas & Christina were in the middle of a kiss. A car passed by and the driver honked their horn and started shouting “Congratulations.” Christina & Nicholas at the same time made gestures towards the car.

I hope you enjoy these engagement photos as much as I do.Authentic Engagement PhotosAuthentic Engagement PhotosAuthentic Engagement PhotosAuthentic Engagement PhotosAuthentic Engagement PhotosAuthentic Engagement PhotosAuthentic Engagement PhotosAuthentic Engagement PhotosAuthentic Engagement PhotosAuthentic Engagement PhotosAuthentic Engagement PhotosAuthentic Engagement PhotosAuthentic Engagement PhotosAuthentic Engagement PhotosAuthentic Engagement PhotosAuthentic Engagement PhotosAuthentic Engagement PhotosAuthentic Engagement PhotosAuthentic Engagement PhotosAuthentic Engagement PhotosAuthentic Engagement PhotosAuthentic Engagement PhotosAuthentic Engagement PhotosAuthentic Engagement Photos

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Every month, I’m contacted by same-sex couples here in Houston who are planning gay weddings. I’m thankful that Amber & Ginger were one such couple.Having been together for well over a decade and after raising their two children they figured that a wedding was a great reason to throw a hell of a party for their friends and family. Not wanting to make their wedding a stuffy affair, these two kept it laid-back. With the ceremony and reception at Houston’s Avant Garden, they catered the reception with a food truck.

I gotta be honest. The tacos were great.

Wedding Planner: Avant Garden // Mariana Leiva
Hair Stylist: Marbella Salon
Makeup: Marbella Salon
Floral & Decor:Avant Garden // Mariana Leiva
Cake: Cakes by Gina

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House on the Hill hosted Jean & Nick’s wedding and the circus that followed. And trust me, I mean circus in the most positive way possible.

You may recognize Nick and Jean from their aerial silk engagement session in Austin. One of their photos was also given the honor of being one of the World’s Best Engagement Photos for 2017 by Junebug Weddings.

The day started like all other wedding celebrations, exchanging vows in front of family and friends at Austin’s House on the Hill wedding venue. The ring bearer, Mr. President was also present to deliver the rings custom made by Christopher Taylor Timberlake. After the ceremony, the courtyard was transformed into a aerial performance stage with the help of friends and the other members of the Ascent Aerial Productions team. After a quick practice run, guests returned to the newly transformed space and drank and watched in amazement. For the next hour, they were wow’d by the troop performing in the aerial silks and the lyra.

After Nick and Jean completed their solo performances, they started their “first dance” in the air. In the middle of the routine, Nick jumped down, grabbed a guitar and laid down a guitar solo over the backing track.

Needless to say, jaws had to be picked up off the ground.

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  • StephanieMay 17, 2017 - 7:22 pm

    DAMN! This is a badass wedding!!ReplyCancel

A hipster indie album cover engagement session is what we’re calling this, and for good reason. When Jordanna initially wrote me an email she said, “Ron…your photos are beautiful, natural, and dare I say slightly hipster.”

After some back and forth email exchanges we finally got to talk on the phone. Keith & Jordanna said they wanted to go for a hipster indie album cover vibe for their engagement session. I was 100,000% on board with what they wanted and we set a date. The weather this weekend was beyond perfect. It was warm and not humid. The skies were partly cloudy and a little hazy and that played right into what I wanted to capture.

While Keith & Jordanna totally killed this session, it was the lighting that took it to the next level.  You just can’t Photoshop in the quality of light we got to experience.

Now…I really need to warn you as to just how cute these two are together. It was a constant stream of laughter and smiles and Jordanna & Keith even had to take a brief break because their cheeks hurt so much.

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I’m really excited, honored and humbled to find a photo of mine among Junebug’s top 50 engagement photos in the world for 2017.

I’m still in shock to see my work sandwiched between people I look up to and chosen by photographers who inspire me.

Many thanks to Jean & Nick for allowing me to do something different, special and personal when it came to their engagement session.

best engagement photography in the world

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The word elopement was once used to describe weddings held in haste and in secret. Years ago when you heard of a couple eloping, it usually meant they quickly packed a bag, hopped a plane to Vegas and exchanged vows at the Little White Chapel without anyone knowing. However, times have changed and the word elopement has also evolved.

Weddings are awesome. But…sometimes they come with headaches, hassle and a huge price tag. I see more and more couples decide to elope, via a small ceremony of family and friends and have a massive party at a later time. These days, an elopement doesn’t mean that a couple is trying to hide a marriage. Couples now just want to make their budget stretch as far as they can.

Molly & Cody call Jackson, Mississippi home but have family roots here in Houston. In lieu of the logistical headache of a destination wedding and flying family all over the place, they opted to elope at the Historic 1910 Harris County Courthouse. They’re planning on throwing a massive party for family and friends in Jackson later this summer. After the ceremony, we found a mailbox where Molly & Cody could mail out their reception invitations, allowing their envelopes to be postmarked with their wedding date.

Molly told me in an email that they were all about going off the beaten path. She told me they loved industrial and urban locations that were unique. After a stop at the mailbox we hit some abandoned warehouses in Houston for photos. The humidity was almost 100%, so we took a break and headed to the Honeymoon Cafe (so fitting!) for lates, Topo Chicos and French Fries.

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  • Stephanie R.May 5, 2017 - 7:10 pm

    Always beautiful work. Loved going through these, so gorgeous!ReplyCancel