Surprise Proposal at Struble Lake | Nikki + Ben

Nikki and Ben are both former students of mine, and last week I had the incredible pleasure and honor of meeting up with them for a photoshoot.  It wasn't just any photoshoot, though... Ben had reached out to me the week before and asked me if I would photograph their proposal!!  He had picked out Nikki's engagement ring and was ready to ask her to be his wife!  She had no idea this was in the works, and he wanted me to be the one to capture this moment for them.  Of course, I said yes!

We made arrangements to meet up at Struble Lake, in Honeybrook.  Ben chose that spot because it is one of their favorite locations to visit as a couple.  I needed to come up with a plan so Nikki wouldn't realize what was going on as soon as they arrived.  It wasn't going to be easy for me to hide anywhere and get a good angle, so I asked my youngest daughter to come along and pretend we just happened to be at the lake having our own photoshoot.  (I am not above bribing her with the promise of a Slurpee on the way home!  Hey, it worked!)  We got in place, and just as Nikki and Ben were supposed to arrive, a kid came by with his fishing gear and was about to cast out right at the location where the proposal was supposed to go down!  I chased him away (as politely as I could) just before Nikki and Ben showed up!  And then... well, I'll let the pictures speak for themselves.

Congratulations, Nikki and Ben!  It was an honor having you in math class a few years ago, and it was even more special that you asked me to capture these memories for you!  I wish you both a lifetime of happiness together.

And... thank you for helping me check "Photograph a Surprise Proposal" off of my photography bucket list!!

Red Rocks, Colorado | Thievery Corporation + Emancipator Ensemble + Late Night Radio

May 13, 2016 is a date that will forever remain dear to my heart!  Thanks to the planets aligning in my favor, and the efforts and kindness of a longtime friend, I was able to cross off an item on my Bucket List - photographing my favorite band at my favorite concert venue!  I was able to secure a photo pass to photograph Thievery Corporation at Red Rocks Ampitheatre - and to make it even more meaningful, it happened to occur during Thievery's 20th Anniversary Tour and Red Rocks 75th Anniversary!

The weather was fantastic, and the crowd's energy was contagious!  I rented a fisheye lens for the occasion, but it arrived broken - I didn't let that dampen my spirits, though, and captured some amazing photographs with the rest of the equipment I brought!

Late Night Radio opened first, followed by Emancipator Ensemble.  (This was my first time hearing both, and I thought they were great!)  Thievery Corporation played third, and did not disappoint.  As much as part of me wanted to stay in the pit and shoot the entire show, I also wanted to step back and enjoy my favorite band with the rest of the stoked fans.  So, I found a balance - and I love how everything turned out!

I am so grateful to my friend Annabel and to Thievery Corporation!!!  I'm looking forward to my next Thievery show, as always!!  I've listened to their music while making countless memories over the past 20 years of my life!  Here are a few of my favorite frames from the evening.