Engagement portraits

Stephen & Ariel | Star Wars Engagement Portraits | Waco, Texas

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We met Stephen & Ariel way back in January 2018 when they were starting to plan their May 2019 wedding. Why were they waiting 17 months for their wedding? Well, when you have such a passion for Star Wars, Saturday, May 4th, 2019 is the perfect day to get married!

Star Wars has always been a part of Stephen & Ariel’s story. Both of them are fans of the Star Wars story, and we mean the whole story! In fact, their favorite characters are actually characters outside of the movies that we had never heard of. Their true devotion to the Star Was universe, though, began when Ariel was gifted a Storm trooper outfit from a co-worker. Stephen got his own Sith outfit, and the two of them began to volunteer with the 501st  Legion. The 501st is an international organization that specializes in accurate costumes of the dark side force in the Star Wars universe, as well as charity work throughout the world. They call themselves “the bad guys doing good.” Volunteering for charity work around central Texas with the 501st is one of Stephen & Ariel’s favorite things to do together.

With Star Wars being such an important element to who they are as a couple, of course Star Wars continues to be a part of their wedding journey. Stephen actually proposed to Ariel using a R2D2 and gave her an R2D2 inspired ring for his proposal. And when we began planning their engagement photo session with them, we knew it wasn’t going to be a typical session. Our goal is to always tell the story of our #JandMSweethearts, especially in the engagement session. We’re way more interested in recreating a favorite date night activity or visiting the place of the proposal. So when Ariel said they’d like to bring the light sabers they were having custom-made for their wedding day, we knew engagement photos with light sabers was going to be a new thing for us.

We’re so glad Ariel & Stephen wanted their session to include the light sabers, and that we even postponed the session to make sure the light sabers would be there in time! We had so much fun setting up light saber duels, and the other people at Lover’s Leap in Cameron Park were definitely interested in what we were doing. But we think our favorite moments were placing Stephen & Ariel on a tucked-away trail Ariel’s sister, Elyse, wanted to try. We got to really see their love for Star Wars, but more importantly, their love for one another.

After having such a fun Star Wars themed engagement session, we can’t wait to share how epic their Star Wars wedding is going to be. We won’t share any details here now since some of the cool stuff they’re having is a surprise, but we can’t wait for May the 4th to get here!

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Dear Stephen & Ariel,

We had so much fun hanging out with you again and seeing all your cool moves during your engagement session! We hope the playful and fun spirit you have as a couple continues to grow with you as you grow together. Can’t wait to see you on May the 4th!

Love, J&M

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Michael & Gabrielle | Puppy Engagement Portraits | Cameron Park, Waco, Texas

A couple kisses in the woods while walking their 4 dogs during their engagement portraits in Waco, Texas - Jason & Melaina Photography - www.jasonandmelaina.com

It’s our first blog post in 2019, and this fun engagement session is the perfect way to kick the year off!

I (Melaina) met Michael & Gabrielle at the With This Ring Bridal show in January. When they told me their wedding plans- full of pinatas, bubble girls instead of flower girls, and a unicorn cake- I knew their wedding would be so much fun. So when they told us they wanted us to be their photographers, we were so pumped!

A few weeks later at our traditional coffee double-date with new #J&MSweethearts, they told us about their love story - how they had met online and had found their perfect match in one another. And how they each had 2 dogs so when they moved in together, they had a full house right away!

We decided Brazos Park East was the perfect location for their engagement portrait session, since it was the park where Michael tried to teach Gabrielle disc golf early in their relationship. And when they mentioned they’d like to include their dogs in some photos, we knew it would be a fun and meaningful photo shoot!

During the session, I noticed Michael’s red crayon cuff links, and asked him about them. It turns out they were a gift from Gabrielle. You see, Gabrielle had once described to her friends how dating in adulthood was like coloring with someone else’s crayons. And she had ended things with a guy recently because he was like a white crayon, had hardly been used and wasn’t her favorite. She told her friends she wanted to find her red crayon, the one that was her favorite and would be perfect for her. Not too long after, Michael came into the picture and Gabrielle had found her red crayon.

It was such a sweet story that showed not only their personalities, but the beauty in finding the perfect person for you. We are so happy for them, and excited to see what their wedding and marriage has in store!

A couple laughs and hugs in the sunlight by the Brazos River in Waco, Texas - Jason & Melaina Photography - www.jasonandmelaina.com
A couple nuzzles their faces together beside the Brazos River as the sun sets in Waco, Texas | Jason & Melaina Photography - www.jasonandmelaina.com
A boy and girl kiss alongside the river and cliffs in Brazos Park East in Waco, Texas during their engagement photo session - Jason & Melaina Photography - www.jasonandmelaina.com

Dear Michael & Gabrielle,

Every time we are around y’all, you are always having fun and seem perfect for each other! (I didn’t blog the funny faces you were making at one another but make sure and look for them in the gallery!) We’re so happy you found your red crayon in Michael, Gabrielle. And we pray you have many more years of fun together!

Love, J&M

A couple smiles at the camera during their engagement photos in Cameron Park, Waco, Texas - Jason & Melaina Photography - www.jasonandmelaina.com

Remington & Marley | Sunrise Engagement Portraits | Cameron Park

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We normally take engagement portraits with our Sweethearts in that magic golden hour right before the sun goes down. But sometimes sunset isn’t possible schedule-wise, so we set alarms and head out to locations and wait for the sun to join us.

Marley and Remington live in Tennessee, but chose to have their wedding in Texas near Remington’s parents since that was the most central location for all their family throughout the US. So when Marley and her mother made a trip to Texas one weekend to get all their vendors booked, they squeezed us in for a quick coffee meet up between cake tastings and a trip to the Magnolia Silos. We loved Marley, her mom, and Remington’s mom right away, and loved how Marley talked about her relationship with Remington. So we were so excited to get to work with them in 2019!

Since they live in Tennessee, we only had one shot for an engagement session with them when they were in Texas visiting Remington’s family for Christmas. And with work schedules and family Christmas celebrations, the only opportunity we had to connect with them for their session was Saturday morning before Christmas. So Remington and Marley drove down from DFW to make it to Waco by sunrise. Talk about dedicated!

It couldn’t have been easy to leave DFW in the 5 am hour, but we are forever grateful to them because sunrise sunlight just might become our favorite light! The way the warm sun filled the space at Cameron Park highlighted these Sweethearts and their love. Remington & Marley were naturals at posing, switching from sweet romantic moments to laughter and dancing with ease. And they seemed wide awake and warm the whole time, which is not easy to do on an early morning in December!

When we asked Remington to whisper in Marley’s ear, Marley busted out laughing at whatever he had said. The “whisper test” is always a great moment at an engagement session, because we learn the true nature of our Sweethearts and their relationship based off whether they whisper sweet words, funny jokes, or random nonsense words. And we knew Remington & Marley were a fun couple who brought out the joy in each other when Marley immediately started laughing.

Their session was so beautiful and so fun, and we can’t wait to be with them again in June!

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Dear Remington & Marley,

Thank you, thank you, thank you for meeting us bright and early in Waco! We loved seeing you in person again, Marley, and meeting you, Remington. You two were flawless, and your love for one another shows so much through these images. We hope you enjoy the remaining days of wedding planning and being engaged. And we can’t wait to see what married life has in store for y’all!

Love, J&M

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