Ashley & Amber’s Intimate LGBTQ Wedding Day
In 2016, on a drizzly day in May, Ashley and Amber got married with the company of their immediate family at a local park in Lorton, Virginia.
They exchanged their vows under the gazebo and celebrated their union with a private dinner at a nearby seafood restaurant on the water.
While they had a few photos taken of them and their family that day, Ashley always longed for a real portrait session to remind them of the day they committed their lives to each other. She felt like the photos she had didn’t do justice to how her and Amber felt about each other.
That’s why when their 5 year anniversary came around, Ashley decided it was time to put her wedding dress back on and recreate their wedding portraits.
Ashley and Amber would finally have a collection of photos to look back on for the rest of their lives that reflected how they truly felt on the inside. She was so excited!
Except now, Ashley and Amber live in Colorado, the state they met in. So when it came time to choose a location for their LGBTQ wedding anniversary session, we began searching for a nearby site with great views of the beautiful landscape. My first suggestion was Garden of the Gods and Ashley immediately said yes!
Garden of the Gods Anniversary Session
If you’ve never heard of it, Garden of the Gods is a natural landmark of towering red sandstone rock formations, with the snow-capped peaks of the nearby mountains and brilliant blue skies as a backdrop.
AKA it’s gorgeous.
It attracts thousands of visitors every year and it’s easy to see why!
The color palette of rich terracotta reds and oranges mixed with lush hunter and neon greens, and deep denim blues creates for a warm and colorful environment. The scale of the rocks is humbling and awe-inspiring. From the tops of these formations, you can overlook miles of Colorado Springs.
It is the perfect location for adventurous couples who love the outdoors, mountains, and admiring nature. In fact, Colorado as a whole is an incredibly wonderful state. It boasts endless views, low humidity, perfect summer temps, and a multitude of recreational activities from hiking to snowboarding.
Of course though, shooting at one of the most popular tourist destinations in Colorado does come with it’s own set of challenges. It was a summer Saturday night, the last week before Labor Day which meant everyone was squeezing in their last bit of travel. Luckily for us, it’s a big enough park that there is plenty of space to spread out and wander.
At first we had to carefully choose where to park in to avoid the most crowds. After driving all the way to the back of the park, we strolled around for a bit, scoping the scenery, before finding a overlook that was completely empty with views for days.
With dark gray storm clouds lingering in the distance, we were unsure what sunset would look like. Despite the weather, I always encourage my clients that we will have the best outcome and great photos no matter what. But by the end of the session, the sun came peaking gloriously out through the dissolving clouds and from behind the distant mountains.
The dramatic display led to some of the most epic shots of Ashley and Amber! We all left feeling like we had just finished filming a Disney movie!
I am so excited that we got to recreate real portraits of Ashley and Amber to celebrate their 5 year anniversary. Even though they had a small, intimate elopement, they still deserve to have professional photos that remind them of how much they love each other and their story.