It’s fall of 2005 and I am a senior in high school and captain of the baseball team. As a senior, you’re supposed to pick a freshman baseball player to keep under your wing… and haze, unfortunately. Teenagers are the friggin worst and I was no different. My freshman was Charlie Scheuber. I must of not been that big of a jerk to him in high school because he called me once he got engaged for me to potentially be his wedding photographer. So, I set up a meeting over drinks to see Charlie again and to meet his fiance, Jacki.
After we go through most of the wedding talk during that meeting, I stopped and asked… “after me being your senior… why the hell did you call? If I were you, I probably would have hated me!” He responded “it’s not like you were Ben Affleck in Dazed and Confused… that was someone else on the team.” He’s right… I didn’t paddle anyone my senior year so I at least have that going for me.
After that meeting, we started talking about locations for their engagement session. I am HUGE on doing more of an “adventure engagement session.” All that means is we go somewhere rad that isn’t convenient at all but really kick ass. After dialing in the different locations we had all thought about, we came upon a decision in Piney River Ranch up near Vail. I’ve actually shot there before and just knew it’d be a spot that would be PERFECT for the two of them. We decided to camp overnight and break their session into two parts. Evening and morning.
The main reason for the evening and morning session is of course an excuse to go camping in a beautiful place but also because this location has canoe rentals! Those canoe rentals close at 6pm so morning it was for that portion of the session. We hit sunset for the evening part and then headed back to our campsite and shared story after story in front of the campfire which is arguably one of my favorite things to do. Plus we had some really good whiskey which clearly makes everything better. I got to catch up with Charlie from the last 10+ years and got to know Jacki as well, who I might just like more than Charlie! More importantly, I got to see them together as a couple. I love their energy and love they share together. I can already tell one of the best things about them as a couple is how they make each other laugh. I swear, between the engagement session and all of the funny stories told, their faces must have hurt.
I’ve always wanted to shoot a session up at Piney River Ranch where my couple got out on the lake with the canoes. We headed out that morning after a quick cup of coffee and they were out on the lake in no time… well actually, we all were. As I was trying to avoid getting soaked, my foot slipped into the lake trying to walk over some drift wood. It actually was one of the best things because after my foot was already wet, I just said screw it and waded out into the lake to get the shots I wanted and it provided some cool angles and perspective.
This has to be right up there on my list of favorite sessions. An old friend, a new friend, gorgeous location, great light, campfire stories, whiskey and a friggin’ canoe that said “Luv Boat” on it… doesn’t get much better than that.