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Palm Springs Engagement: Alex + Tara

I had an amazing time planning and preparing this engagement session. Alex and Tara were very easy going in the planning process and were thrilled to narrow down Palm Springs, CA as their destination location for their engagement session.

Here are the ideas we planned, overall style we aimed for and the things that actually happened!

  1. Moorten Botanical Garden : I had been really desiring to photograph at this location for a while and Tara and Alex associated themselves as people who love outdoors. It feel natural and comfortable to be in the earthly and desert elements that the botanical garden brought. It was cacti heaven and apparently the first cacti aquarium. What they wore- this was all guided by my clients desire to wear a dress she’s had in her closet! It was beautiful and worked perfectly with this space. It had a little bit of a boho vibrant touch. What you should be aware of before shooting at Moorten Botanical-obviously it’s VERY HOT, especially in the summer time. The main spot I used where the cacti are is very humid so prepare for sweating. There are people weaving in and out of that location since it is the attraction of the botanical garden so make sure to carve out enough time to weave in and out of the session. Bring a lot of water with you. Be patient and you’ll certainly get what you’ve come for. There is a $25 photography fee to take photographs on location, so be prepared for that as well.

2. The Doors of Palm Springs: This one was a fun one. It was meant to purposely bring out what makes Palm Springs….well….Palm Springs. One of the key elements of PS that they’re known for is the little mid-century modern neighborhood just oozing of COOL character! I mean, I dream of owning a home like this someday. Things to consider before shooting here: navigation to the locations is really hard but can best be found by following the address on the instagram link provided to you above. Simply be respectful when you’re on the property, of course being aware that people actually live in these homes and they’re probably sick of people taking photographs in their neighborhood. We went relatively early on purpose so that we didn’t feel weird in the evening once everyone was home from work. It was quiet and seemed to work out perfectly. We were mindful and respectful and aimed for the homes that were for sale [ 😉 ]. I loved the outcome and I loved all of the Palm Springs views [mountains and Palms]!

3. Plan B because Indian Canyons failed us! I of course wanted to end the day in an outdoor desert rocky location. Indian Canyons was going to be everything I was looking for except…we didn’t get in! Everywhere on their information states that they close at 5pm, so we showed up at 4pm, and apparently they close the gate at 4pm to ensure the people inside have the rest of that hour to navigate and then leave [hmmm…I don’t understand]. So anyways. Needless to say. Things you should know before shooting here, go earlier than 4pm if you want to get in. I was left to think quick on my feet. There were several options I could have taken being that we were in the city that is eye candy to photographers…but there was a feeling, a specific moment I wanted to capture. Here are the factors I was up against: I’d already been with my clients since about 11am and we hadn’t had anything to eat except for grabbing a coffee at Cartel Coffee Lab [which I HIGHLY HIGHLY RECOMMEND YOU DO-and have a Dirty Iced Chai Latte…you’re welcome]. I couldn’t ask them to drive out too far and then still find the energy to push through the final portion of our day. So here’s where plan B took place: As we were headed to Indian Canyons I noticed an open field with a bunch of palm trees near a neighborhood. At first glance it caught my eye but I didn’t think it was anything special. It literally wasn’t until we just felt that we had to do it there and then stepped onto the area that I felt it was “perfect.” Literally perfect. Approaches I would’ve taken differently are: I would’ve carved out some time for dinner between 2nd and 3rd look to ensure my clients had food in their system and fresh energy. Other than that everything was beautiful. It felt intimate, the sun was shining and Tara looked like a princess in her “princess dress” and Alex just enjoyed the entire process!

Final thoughts and behind the scenes: Alex and Tara were amazing to work with and it only makes me that much more excited for their wedding day! And their wedding day is jammed packed with adventure let me tell ya! I love it. We had an amazing time and I’m so happy it isn’t over yet. Palm Springs is an overload of instagramable locations. Which only means-eye candy for photographers. I think it would require an entire week of shooting to cover all the main gems there. I am really happy with the direction we took with Alex and Tara as it was very fitting to them and I certainly can’t wait to go back to do more! I’m already working up some ideas and can’t wait to execute!

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