Grand Canyon El Tovar Wedding – Family photos in the aspens

Grand Canyon El Tovar Wedding – South Rim Family Photos

I never thought that I would live at Grand Canyon as long as I have, 9 years! People come and go from this small, strange community but Sarah has been here as long as I have. Sarah even spent several years working below the rim at Phantom Ranch, deep in the heart of Grand Canyon and she stayed long enough for her heart to be captured not only by the canyon but by Patrick and Isabelle too.

Patrick and Sarah got married very recently and he’s soon to ship out overseas, he is a marine ( I believe). Just like the canyon, Sarah will be there waiting for him to return, but for now we have some nice images to commemorate their marriage and little wedding at El Tovar in the Grand Canyon Village.

Shannon and Kyle – Grand Canyon Sunset Elopement


Shannon and Kyle – Grand Canyon Sunset Elopement

Most weddings and elopements that I photograph at Grand Canyon are very special for me and for the couple getting married. Most times, I don’t see or meet the couple until the day of the wedding at Grand Canyon. We communicate via email about the elopement leading up until the day that we meet. Nevertheless, through email, we become pen-pals and I am incredibly invested in the event. A lot of times I am even teary eyed watching the ceremony take place right there on the rim of the canyon.

Shannon and Kyle were amazing people, both together as a couple and as individuals. They were full of love and energy and genuine happiness. I was asked to keep this Grand Canyon elopement very secret and although this happened in April, I am just getting around to posting these images that I love. Congratulations again to Shannon and Kyle!

*Jen Paul is my favorite officiant

Maternity Photography at Grand Canyon

Maternity Photography at Grand Canyon National Park

I had a really amazing time taking these maternity shots. We talked over many emails trying to decide on a location for these photos. We originally looked into Antelope slot canyon and locations that had a lot of red rock but in the end Erica decided on taking these maternity family shots at Grand Canyon.

They had a young son already and we got him in a couple of the shots but being about 2 years old, he had different plans for the evening. We took photos at two locations and for both sunrise and sunset, I think it was really nice to be able to offer two very different looks at Grand Canyon. I love shooting at sunrise and I think I will create a photography package that includes both a sunrise and sunset portrait session at two different location at Grand Canyon’s South Rim.

We got very lucky with both of the locations we chose and the sunset and sunrise that we were able to enjoy together. They had a variety of clothing options and that allowed even more distinct images in this set.


Family photos at the South Rim

Family photos at the South Rim – Photography by Terri 520-355-1008

I loved taking these family photos at Grand Canyon. This family is a Grand Canyon local family looking to have some portraits taken. Of course, I said yes. I love working with small families like this. Children can be challenging and different combinations of ages and temperaments make working with families a challenge but a fun one. I love kids and worked in a very child-focused portrait studio for 7 years. There I was able to learn all of the different developmental stages and what (usually) makes kids laugh in each of the different age groups. It was fun to work with Brandy’s silly family and to make memories at Grand Canyon.


Beautiful Ashanté

Beautiful Ashanté – modeling and portfolio development photography at Grand Canyon

When Ashanté contacted me, I was excited to take photos other than my usual engagement photos at Grand Canyon. Instead we would take some solo shots to help her establish her portfolio and document the traveling that she was doing around the country.

We set up to shoot at one location for sunset and meandered about the point looking for textures and lighting. Half-way though our shoot, we went back to the car to do an outfit change, realizing that Ashanté had locked the keys in the car. I have been this person, in this place, so so many times. Being a grand canyon local, I called up Xanterra’s switchboard from memory. They connected me to their garage (I believe the only place equipped to handle lockouts on the South Rim) and the garage assured us that they would have someone en route just as soon as they could. We continued to shoot until the cold wind became unbearable and then sat warmly in the car watching the sun go down and waiting for assistance.

We talked through the sunset and it was clear that Ashanté was a very special person, she spoke her first poem to me and I felt bonded. I loved her energy and attitude. Feeling terrible that we did not get to include the other outfits (locked in the car), I offered to meet her just before sunrise the next morning, and we met taking just a few additional shots.

Nick and Kayla, Grand Canyon Engagement


South Rim Surprise Engagement Proposal – 520.355.1008

Nick reached out to me to see about capturing his surprise proposal at Grand Canyon. Of course, I said yes (so did she :)). We set up a location at the South Rim for a sunset engagement proposal. I helped determine the best time frame to propose in order to have sufficient time thereafter to take some regular portraits.

Nick and Kayla arrived and I jumped into action, pretending to be just another tourist with a camera around my neck. It can be difficult to appear incognito when I am unsure about when exactly the proposal will take place. I try not to draw too much attention to myself as I wander around within sight but trying not to look directly at the couple for any longer than necessary.

As soon as Nick dropped to one knee, the amazing Grand Canyon scenery behind him, I turned my focus to them and shot like crazy. I couldn’t see Kayla’s face as well as I would have liked so as I shot I moved closer to them and more left of where I stood initially and I got some really nice photos of the two of them elated and still glowing with surprise, caught in the moment of their Grand Canyon engagement.


5.17.18 Engagement Proposal in action

Engagement Proposal Photographer in Action

I absolutely love doing these. If I could shoot surprise engagement proposal photos in epic national parks like Grand Canyon for the rest of my life, I would be a pretty happy lady. I take almost all of my sessions at golden hour, and it really makes all the difference though nothing can compare to the real emotions that I can capture during life moments like these.

James wrote me about the engagement proposal and his visit to Grand Canyon in advance and I helped him choose a location that was more private than some of the others. We took photos afterwords at Desert View Point. It’s getting harder and harder to find intimate locations like this at Grand Canyon. With a spike in visitation, its hard to protect this special experience.

I arrive in my car and sit and wait until I see the make and model of the car that they have driven, after the couple parks I exit my car and purposely walk out to the rim to a location that I think would work well for the proposal, walk back to my car and hope the proposer takes the lead. I think the moment should be organic, real and true to the couple and who they are. So no matter how it happens and where in relationship to the canyon it happens, I help capture these amazing life moments and all of the expression, joy, excitement and surprise that comes with it.

If you are interested in taking photos at Grand Canyon, come out and meet a local, I’ll help you with all of your travel related questions, help photography your family vacation or your epic proposal and come away with a unique Grand Canyon souvenir. 520-355-1008 – – Hope to see you out there!

Ashwin and Charlotte – Wedding Anniversary Photos

I often schedule my portrait sessions for sunset at Grand Canyon. Though sunrise is always an available time for a photo session, it seems less people are morning people and many more prefer a sunset shoot. Because its important to me to shoot with natural light, this meant asking the couple to arrive ten minutes before sunrise. Sunrise photo sessions work well only if the light is light and mellow. Once the sun breaks over the horizon line at Grand Canyon the light can be quite harsh rather quickly and in the high desert, there really isn’t anyway to diffuse the light with limited vegetation.

Because sunrise is earlier and earlier in the summer months, I decided to choose a location closer to the village area, where as I usually take my photos on the east side of the canyon for sunsets. I chose Yavapai Point in particular because its a prominent viewpoint on the South Rim that has many beautiful trees and also bare rock. Grandeur Point is just a short walk from the Geology Museum and is also a permitted spot for weddings at Grand Canyon. We walked around Yavapai Point for all of these early morning shots. We were very lucky as there were some clouds that softened the sun and created a pink glow. We even had some clouds after the sun popped over the rim that allowed us to shoot a bit longer in the nice diffused light that they created.

I usually need to think quick and be creative in working with natural light. I pick locations and viewpoints that stick further into the canyon so that I have more opportunities to work with the lighting that is available. Its really fun to have to be resourceful and creative in taking these natural light photo sessions. Everyday is different at the Grand Canyon and the canyon never looks the same twice.