Kayleigh & Dan
We were immediately charmed by Kayleigh and Dan. Their sense of adventure, light-hearted personalities, and glowing smiles made our jobs easy. The love between them radiated so warmly that I could swear it made the clouds part way for the sun to shine through on what was supposed to be a rainy afternoon.
When Kayleigh initially contacted us for a couples shoot she told me that coastal Maine was special to them. Coastal Maine is also special to me. I grew up going there, and even lived there for a summer during college. After sending her some pictures of a new destination along the coast, she agreed that Deer Isle would be perfect.
Our journey began at Holbrook Island Sanctuary, where after choking down a few bugs, we agreed on a more coastal location in the nature preserve. Kayleigh and Dan were so natural together from the very start.
From there we moved to Caterpillar Hill and Walker Pond. The couple grabbed their adventure mugs and cracked open a beer. I couldn’t have planned that move better myself. The rain at Caterpillar opened up to sunshine and pleasant views of the Gulf of Maine.
Finally we moved onto Deer Isle. Kayleigh brought up how she believed that Dan was her soulmate. I agreed, knowing the couple for as short of a time as I did, but not only for that reason. Dan contacted us the week before for help planning a proposal to Kayleigh during the shoot. We spent an afternoon going back and forth until we came up with a solid plan to surprise her. I know it sounds impossible, but I was as excited as Dan was for this. I’ve never witnessed, planned, photographed, or have been a part of a proposal. Also sounds ridiculous, but Anton and I asked to marry each other almost simultaneously. Anton first, then me right after. As perfect and wonderful as that was, I was excited to be a part of this romantic and beautiful gesture of true love for another couple. Kayleigh also brought up how badly she wished Dan would ask her, ‘Just you wait Kayleigh, one more hour, ‘ I said to myself with a smile.
At Scott’s Landing we captured the couple frolicking around in the freezing cold north Atlantic as if it was a tropical island. Their personalities blossomed on the beach.
In Stonington we walked on the docks and had a little fun. At this point I was stalling. I wanted nothing more than to wait till the lighting was ideal before driving the last few minutes over to Sand Beach.
Then it happened. Kayleigh and Dan did their last outfit change, Kayleigh looked stunning in her flowing white dress, like a bohemian bride. It took every muscle in my body not to say that to her. I couldn’t risk ruining the moment with that sort of language. On the beach I subtly nodded to Dan, he nodded back. I started to pose Kayleigh facing the ocean with instruction to stay that way while we did a couple of test shots to adjust the lighting. My direction stayed consistent while Dan got down on one knee. I told Kayleigh to turn around while tears of joy welled up in my eyes. Her reaction was pure and genuine. Behind my lens I was fighting to choke back my emotion and keep capturing their moment. Eventually all I could do was smile for them as I heard Kayleigh say yes.