I met up with Kristin and Jason in beautiful Mystic, Connecticut, for a romantic winter shoot along the coast. They stayed overnight at an airbnb to make the most of their weekend, and I went there first there so I could do Kristin’s hair and makeup before our session.
I felt at home with these two right away. Both were super laid-back, incredibly kind, and had no pretenses. Kristin had an open, refreshingly vulnerability about her that instantly endeared me to her, and I loved the way Jason treated her; how he made her a drink (and then forgot, at first, to bring it to her–ha!) while she was having her hair curled. The way they teased each other and seemed wholly at home together made me feel at home, too.
We headed out for this island they had in mind, and as we crossed the tiny land bridge that connected it to the mainland, I noticed with unease several ‘No Trespassing’ signs. It seemed like this was private property of some kind, maybe owned by a church? I couldn’t really tell what the situation was. A consummate good girl at heart, I’m not a huge fan of breaking the rules. But these two, in their laughing, low-key way, convinced me nobody would care (and nobody did), and because of their slightly subversive bravery, we got amazing photos there.
After that, we drove around a bit and stopped at a small lakefront stretch in a fancy neighborhood. The light was glowing through the leafless trees in the prettiest, softest way, and we were having such a lovely time with each other…I feel like locations and situations present themselves like this when the collaboration is going so well. It feels like the environment is pulling for us, for the photos. Yes, it says: I’ll give you the perfect light and the perfect angles and the perfect background. Now just enjoy each other.
Our second-to-last stop was by far the riskiest. Jason, a bit of the devil in him, found the ‘perfect’ spot, high on a hill overlooking the water. Golden rays of sun slanted through giant fir trees, and the ocean gleamed below. The only problem? The ‘perfect’ location was a build site, the skeleton of a new mansion hunkered over half of it. At my skepticism and (once again) good-girl nervousness, he just grinned and said, “It’s fine. I work on these sites all the time. No one’s here, and no one cares. We’re not taking anything other than the view.”
I had to laugh.
We did indeed take in the view for a few minutes, grabbing some photos in the barren yard and, indeed, leaving the place just as we found it. We called it a day, and they followed me down the winding road and back out along the shore.
At the last minute, I pulled into a parking lot along a row of docks gleaming in the setting sun and gestured wildly out my window for them to pull in behind me. They did.
As I often find myself doing, I just had to get a few more shots in after we had called it a day. There, with the sun setting behind them, I grabbed those last few iconic photos of them by the water–photos I hope will represent this stage in their relationship for the rest of their days.
I’m so excited I get to be with these two on their wedding day, and so incredibly grateful to have found them. These are my kind of people. Generous, humorous, deeply good but refusing to take life too seriously. And truly happy with each other. You two rock.