"So, have fun with that..." I could almost hear her head shake over the phone when Colleen warned me that the lighting at Sahalie Falls might not be ideal in the middle of the day when she planned to hold their ceremony. I knew exactly what she meant. As a landscape photographer, I'm all-too-familiar with how tough the middle of the day can be for waterfalls--dappled light, heavy shadows and blown-out white water are almost inevitable. Eeeeek. I also know that there's magic to be had at any time of day, and I couldn't wait for this tiny, very personal wedding at one of Oregon's most beautiful roadside waterfalls. (#optimist)
I do admit that I, very quietly, crossed my fingers for a wee bit of overcast. Just a wee, tiny bit. (#pessimist)
The day arrived without a single cloud in the sky. It was one of those exquisite, bright, blue-sky-you-can-almost-dive-into, central Oregon days in September. The kind where almost anything feels possible, and you drive with your windows down and your moonroof open, smelling the pine and the fresh air.
I pulled into the Sahalie Falls parking lot, just before the van of Colleen, Ryan, and their family and friends arrived. Colleen walked down the steps of the van in her glorious cloud of tulle and lace, and we all headed down to the waterfall overlook for their ceremony. It was perfect, full of humor and tears and stories.
Afterwards, friends and family climbed back in the bus, and Colleen and Ryan headed to the base of Sahalie Falls. Colleen managed her skirts over the slippery rocks and moss like a pro, climbing up the last boulder with Ryan to stand in front of the electric, magical spray.
At this moment, I was beyond happy that I'd been completely ignored by the weather gods and given this crazy, gorgeous, vibrant light. And so blew by one of the fastest half hours of my life. There is so much of their combined adventurous spirit in these photographs.
These are the moments that make my heart soar. A huge thank you to Colleen and Ryan for including me in their day so we could make this magic together, and all my love and congratulations as they embark on a lifetime of adventures. This was quite the start!
Colleen's dad (a fantastic photographer in his own right), sent over some behind-the-scenes photographs. Thank you, Paul!