Natural Bridges State Beach is set on the California coast on the northern end of Santa Cruz, CA – http://www.cityofsantacruz.com
Leanne and Brian had requested this magical location for their engagement shoot as so much of their relationship, including their engagement and soon to be wedding, had taken place in this fun and unique coastal town. I was particularly excited for this shoot because of the unparalleled beauty of this location. Seriously, it is named Natural Bridge for a reason folks!
I recommend an engagement shoot with my couples prior to their wedding for several reason which is why I always include it in all my wedding packages. It is a valuable time to build rapport with each other, the couple learns how I shoot, and I get a glimpse at the couples personality and their interaction with each other before the main event. Plus, they discover how much fun it is (this is especially important for the grooms)!
We met in the parking lot about an hour before sunset and from their walked down to our first shooting location while getting to know each other. Because the sun was still high in the sky I had decided to start the shoot away from beach and so we instead began back in these gorgeous grasses that had a ridge behind them partially sheltering us from the sun.
As the sun set lower into the sky we were able to move out towards this beautiful little creek that slowly meanders its way down towards the ocean.
Shortly after we made our way to the cliffs over looking the ocean which are absolutely stunning. It is a bit of a trek up onto them, but fortunately Leanne and Brian were totally down for the adventure! As a side note, when the tides are at their height this would be nearly impossible to access without getting really wet.
Just as the sun was setting we went down to the beach and how the place almost entirely to ourselves. The backdrop to this beach is so breathtaking. The giant natural bridge formation lends itself to so many photographic possibilities. We were lucky as the tide was low the day we adventured here and we were able to get rather close to the famous Natural Bridge.
I always like to make sure that I shoot into the blue hour after the sun has set, if you scroll through my portfolio you will see it is my favorite time to shoot. There is such a soft intimate nature to the light at this hour that is perfect for capturing the connection between two people.
And with that the session was a wrap until we would meet again a few months later for their wedding.
On a side note, for those that don’t live in the Santa Cruz area I can’t recommend enough staying at the Santa Cruz Dream Inn https://www.dreaminnsantacruz.com when you are in town. You will not be disappointed by this charming hotel set right on the beach.
If you are interested in a couples or an engagement shoot please reach out! I look forward to connecting! https://www.andrablythe.com/contact/