David & Sadie’s Wedding | Buena Vista, Colorado | Rocky Mountain Weddings | Destination Photographer | Apollo Fields
It was 6:00am last Saturday and I was driving on the long empty roads through the Colorado countryside. After spending the last few weeks in the cramped and crowded boroughs of New York and New Jersey, I felt the stark contrast of the open plains even more than usual. It was unseasonably cold that morning: a chilling 21 degrees when I first set out, and I watched the dashboard temperature rise with the sun as I cruised along the foothills.
I got to Buena Vista ahead of schedule and was able to pop into a local coffee shop before the wedding kicked off. The sleepy little town was enjoying it’s off-season, but the cafe was busier than ever with locals. I pulled up a seat next to a stranger because there were no empty tables, and got to enjoy a little old-fashioned small talk with a bundled-up hiker who was about to hit the mountains for the day.
Our day began at 9:30am at Spring Canyon, a quiet venue tucked away past the hot springs. Everybody was happily abuzz with last minute wedding prep, and I settled right into shooting details and scouting our first look location. The property boasts epic mountain views, but the sun was already high and with no clouds whatsoever, I had to be a little more creative with our locations.
I consider myself a bit of a light-junkie and I really felt the different between the East Coast light (which had been ultra-diffused from days of nonstop rain and heavy grey clouds) versus the big Colorado skies (at altitude with no atmosphere or humidity to break up the strong rays).
Sometimes you have to work with what you got, so we took advantage of the aspens that were still boasting their gold leaves and leaned into the full sun. I’m so happy we did, because we got those truly epic autumn mountain shots! I hadn’t seen any aspens with their leaves still on the whole trip, so it was the best surprise to find these groves still going strong! Colorado had a big snow storm later that night, and I have a feeling that we captured their last hoorah which makes the shots that much better to me.
David and Sadie had a sweet and tender way about their relationship. Amidst the bustle of the wedding morning, they still found time to have these long quiet hugs as if nobody else was around. I spend a lot of time watching my couple’s body language during their first looks to see how they naturally interact with one another and try to capture that throughout the day. David and Sadie were so fun because they would share these sentimental moments with each other, but then be able to goof around and be silly at the same time. They balanced these lighthearted fun times with the seriousness of a wedding perfectly.
Their families were also gracious and loving. I felt as much like a photographer and vender as I did a guest, and those are the days that make me love my job as much as I do. I was especially excited to photograph this wedding because there were going to be a few familiar faces in the crowd — one of my favorite couples from last year was family and the whole reason that I crossed paths with David and Sadie! In this business, referrals and word-of-mouth are everything, and I am so grateful for my clients who carry the Apollo Fields name from season to season. I’d like to give a big shoutout to the Danielson family for the connection, and also throw in a little vendor love to their awesome companies, Tentrix and Poc-a-Poc Catering who kept me happily in a cheese-coma for the reception.