M + P: Wind and Sea Wedding
When it came to grand gestures, P was both subtle and brilliant at the same time. Back when it was near impossible to get Hamilton tickets, P went out of his way to get tickets for M...and her friend. He hadn't even planned on accompanying her after going through all the effort, but that ended up becoming the start of their incredible love story. When they started planning their wedding, they knew they wanted a low-key, stress-free day. One thing that was important to them was starting the day privately - just the two of them, taking in the incredible scenery together and all the little moments in between. And it was those little moments that made their day so special, like the way that M twirled P, or how P would grin from ear to ear in a private moment between the two of them. As the day winded down, they got to sit down for dinner and watch the sunset together with their family and friends. No schedule of activities, just quality time with the people they loved the most. Check out the rest of their Big Sur wedding below!
F + A: Big Sur Intimate Wedding
I’m only a little sad that F + A didn’t bring their sweet doodle Theo to their elopement, but it was definitely made up for by all the adventuring we got to do. We started their day in the redwoods, where F + A shared an intimate first look and said their vows to each other privately. They had a short and quick ceremony to make it all legal with their family as their witnesses, and then spent the rest of the day hiking along the Big Sur coast! We were running on the beach until we were out of breath, climbing up and down hills like it was nothing, and scaling the rocks right up against the waves. Check out the rest of their Big Sur wedding below!
How do I even begin to describe this incredible day? S + C absolutely loved spending time at the beach, so they chose to end their elopement day at sunset with their hair in the wind, feet in the sand, toes numb from the water but with the most joyous laughter and smiles. They celebrated their wedding day in a way that was so authentic to who they were - and yes, that meant jeans that C rocked as his wedding attire! Burritos on the beach (from El Charrito, my favorite local burrito spot!), popping champagne, and sunset colors gracing the sky…it doesn’t get more perfect than that. Check out the rest of S + C's Big Sur elopement!
A Local Big Sur Elopement Photographer's Guide to Eloping in Big Sur
When it comes to elopement locations in the US, Big Sur is one of the top places people come to get married. With its vast coastal views and redwood forests, it's a place full of wonder and natural beauty. As a local Big Sur elopement photographer who spends countless roadtrips exploring the endless trails in the area, I'm here to help you craft an epic day that feels genuine to your love story. Check out this guide for location recommendations, best months to elope, day-of timelines, and planning tips!
When I found out that N and his two brothers had played elven and Gondorian warriors in Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit and were from Wellington, New Zealand (where Weta Workshop was born - the special effects company that innovated much of what made LOTR so incredible), I definitely nerded out quite a bit! N + A had an incredible love story that crossed countries - N was from New Zealand, and A was from Korea. They met in college 11 years ago, but parted ways when life took them to different countries. When they met back up in Hawaii, the time and place was finally right for these two to fall in love. They brought together their families from across the world for an intimate wedding in Big Sur, California. Though it wasn't the fjords and mountains of New Zealand, I definitely felt like we were walking through Rivendell as the sun streamed through the forest, creating the most beautiful light that made the day feel like it was straight out of a fairytale. And even when the clouds covered much of the sky during our last hour before sunset, we patiently waited and got to see a few quick minutes of sunset that peeked in and out of the clouds before the day ended. Check out the rest of A + N's Big Sur intimate wedding below!
R + G: Glen Oaks Big Sur Elopement
There are some days when you just can't believe that what you're seeing is real - and watching the sunset with R + G was one of them. Just moments before, it was completely cloudy. We had just finished up their picnic and ran up the coastal trail for the last 30 minutes. I noticed a faint orange glow coming up from behind the clouds, and went to capture the waves behind them. The glow grew more and more vibrant until it painted the film of water left by the waves orange. It was an unforgettable moment- we were all left in marvel by the few minutes of sunset! Check out the rest of their magical Big Sur redwoods and coast elopement below.
Carmel was C + A’s happy place. They took many weekend trips here, spending time just slowing down and exploring the coast. They gathered their closest family and friends to celebrate with them in their favorite place, which luckily turned out to be a beautiful sunny day despite it raining the day before! C also always loved bridges, so Bixby Bridge was a perfect place to stop before we adventured to the coast. I ran back up the trail to get her veil just when I saw the orange colors of sunset peeking out of the clouds, and it was just absolutely breathtaking. They ended the night in the best kind of way - grabbing dinner with their loved ones at In-N-Out! Check out the rest of C + A's La Playa Carmel wedding below.
L + J met in junior college, where J had been playing minor league baseball. Though she was a little nervous to talk to him at first, he won her over and they started doing long distance while he went off to play ball. Every season, he would bring back a baseball and write a sweet note to her on it. When they got engaged, they originally thought they would have a traditional wedding. But drama ensued and they quickly were overwhelmed by the process, which was only made more difficult by a wedding vendor that took off after booking. L then stumbled upon an old classmates' wedding photos - another couple who I had photographed for their elopement here in Big Sur! She immediately fell in love and knew that this was how she wanted to get married. On a beautiful fall day, they flew with their family and a few close friends from Kansas City to California, where they all got to share in the awe of seeing the giant redwoods for the first time. It was a day so full of emotion, as L started tearing up from the moment she had her first look with her dad and brother, to the moments that seemed to stop in time when they said their vows, and even her nieces couldn't help but tear up in happiness. "This is everything I ever imagined," she said, "It couldn't have been more perfect." J signed another baseball for her - this time with their wedding date - and we headed off to the coast where she donned his baseball journey and they both got to watch a beautiful sunset together over the Pacific Ocean. Check out the rest of their Big Sur redwoods and coast wedding below!
K + J: Glen Oaks Big Sur Elopement
Early in their dating years, K + J took a spontaneous trip to Big Sur and fell in love with the place. They knew they wanted to elope, so returning back to a place where they fell in love was the perfect way to celebrate their wedding day. For their elopement, the weather was just warming up, bringing out all the pampas grass sprouting up all along Highway Excited to take K + J exploring, I took them hiking through hidden trails and we got to overlook the most incredible cliffside views. Check out the rest of K + J's Big Sur elopement below!
If you've never cooked dim sum on a camp stove on the beach, you're missing out! A + J told me that one important thing that they wanted to include on their day was cooking a meal together. They both had fond memories camping, so it was the perfect way to not only do something they loved, but also make sure that they didn't get hangry on their 8-hour elopement. We started the day in a redwoods cabin, where they made pancakes together, a tradition that they kept for their wedding day. After getting ready separately and having their first look right outside of the cabin, they had an intimate ceremony where many tears were shed between these two high school sweethearts. From there, we hiked through the redwood forests, marveled at Bixby Bridge, and ended the day on the beach where J skillfully balanced dumplings on the rocks and made the most awesome picnic for the two of them (and also for Keith and I!) Check out the rest of A + J's Big Sur elopement below!