Category Archives: Engagement Sessions

Don’t worry, we won’t tell about when you tripped and fell into the fountain! ;-)

Play time at Brenna and Nate’s engagement session

As soon as I found out that my friend, Leeann had been the one who told Brenna and Nate about Radiant, I was ready to shoot their wedding!  Anyone who’s friends with Leeann has to be cool!

Then when Brenna and Nate told us they wanted to ride around on their beach cruisers for the engagement session, our suspicions about their coolness were confirmed!

So we went over to Tempe Town Lake for a nice cloudy morning bike ride/photo session.

It seriously was the perfect day for that kind of session.  It felt more like San Diego rather that Phoenix, so we all just relaxed and pretended that we were on vacation (or at least I did… maybe everyone else likes to live in reality more than I do)!

(I call this the “yay, we’re on a pretend vacation!!” pose).


It didn’t take us very long to figure out that these 2 were very much at ease in front of the camera.

Nate’s had enough band pictures taken to know how to do the tough guy stance (not quite angry, and just enough cool) and Brenna has done her fill of acting/modeling to know how to do things like stare off into the distance without looking like she’s gone into a trance.

All I had to say to Brenna were things like “do that one thing where you look like a super tall runway model who just threw her back out” or “look like you’re day dreaming in a world where dogs can talk” and BAM she’d pop into position!

OK, maybe I didn’t say those things exactly, but I did feel like they were that random and she still knew what I meant right away!

(By the way, check out Nate’s band, Seconds to Breathe… they’re good enough to share a stage with Incubus so they’re good enough for me!).

Once they got on a roll, we pretty much stopped even attempting to pose them!

(This pose is a Brenna and Nate original)!

It was around that time that we realized that we were just beginning to see the REAL Nate and Brenna coming out!

We loved it so much, that we decided to keep on shooting even once we had plenty of pictures because we didn’t want to miss a minute of their craziness!

Seriously, I felt like I couldn’t even take my finger off the trigger for an instant or I’d miss something like this!

Brenna and Nate, thank you SO much for planning a fun engagement session and for being willing to be yourselves and have fun throughout it!  We really did feel like we were on vacation instead of working!  We can’t wait to come enjoy ourselves (with our cameras ready at all times of course) at your wedding!

Click here to see the rest of Brenna and Nate’s super fun engagement session!

Meg and Mark: engaged and in LA

“You want to take us to LA for the weekend, all expenses paid?! Sure we’ll shoot your road trip engagement session!”, was my first response when Meg and Mark asked for what they called a “favor” (we called it “awesome”).

So we packed up the car and headed off to our great adventure!

We planned out a few different locations to shoot at and stops along the way (working around Meg’s job interview and they wedding they were attending that weekend) but other than a few vague plans, we were up for anything!

That “anything” included… staying in a new place that we were all a little iffy about (it ended up being awesome), almost getting thrown out of the Farmers Market…

…making our way through crack town, nearly breaking Meg’s ankle (I don’t think she signed up for that part)….

(2 seconds before the ankle injury… that curb that looks non-existent is actually huge and it’s there just to trick you!)

…. and of course making a pee stop at the homeless men’s bathroom that we waited for over 30 min. to use (when you gotta go, you gotta go…whether you’re in the middle of downtown LA or not!).

Throughout all our minor mishaps, we had such a fantabulous time!

We not only got the chance to capture Meg and Mark in what we now know is their future home since Meg got the job (no, they’re not moving to crack town), but we also had the opportunity to explore LA with our cameras in hand along with people who were up to do pretty much anything for a good shot!

Thank you Meg and Mark for taking our instructions seriously when we told you to be creative with your engagement session!

You guys definitely think outside the box and we love it!

We had a blast hanging out with you both (as usual) and we are so glad you chose us to be your photographers so we get to be the lucky ones to go through these amazing experiences with you.  We can’t wait to see you on your big day!:-)

Click to see the rest of Mark & Meg’s LA engagement session!

Gina and Jake’s “Southwestern Experience” Engagement Session!

We’ve been to enough weddings with Gina there that it’s about time we got to take some pictures of HER!

Gina works at one of the venues we shoot at regularly so she’s had the opportunity to see Scottie and Breanna (that would be us!) in action plenty of times through sun, rain, wind, snow… well OK not snow… but if it did snow in AZ, she’d see us working hard in it!

Going through a wedding with someone is a bonding experience, no matter what your role in it is!  And now that we’ve been through so many with Gina, we feel like we’re old friends!

So we were very privileged when we got to meet her fiance Jake and when they asked us to be their wedding photographers!

So now Gina is not only one of our biggest cheerleaders and our friend, but she’s now an official Radiant Bride!

Of course that’s a double benefit for us since part of her job is sharing a list of preferred vendors with the brides getting married at the venue she works at.  So when she tells brides that she likes Radiant Photography enough to use us for her OWN wedding, people listen! Thanks Gina!

It was great watching Gina and Jake interact together.

He definitely knows how to make her laugh…

… and laugh….

… and laugh!

Judging by how many little phrases and sayings there are about how great laughter is… and by how many times I hear marriage advice in speeches at weddings that talk about the importance of laughing together, I’d say that this a great start to their life together!

She looks so happy when she’s with him!

I guess I should re-word that to say that they BOTH look so happy together!

Gina and Jake love water in pictures and since you can’t go wrong when you combine a peaceful lake with beautiful scenic views, we decided to head up to Canyon Lake for their engagement session.

We stopped at a little old west town (Tortilla Flats) along the way (because how could we not?!).

(Why wouldn’t there be a giant wooden Indian statue behind them?!).

When you’re an Arizona native like myself (Breanna), you tend to make a lot of jokes about Kokopellis (for all you Northerners out there, those are symbols of a Native American fertility deity… that are sold in every gift shop in town), saguaros (mostly regarding how to pronounce it), and turquoise jewelry.

(the Cardinals poster definitely detracts from the old west feel… as does the modern money on the walls and the Sharpies that were used to mark them up!)

But despite our jokes, we understand that these are the things that make our state unique and that produce stunning photos (and Clint Eastwood movies) for the rest of the world to enjoy.

(There, that one looks a little more like it was taken in an old saloon!)

So taking pride in our state, it’s nice for us to get a chance to be a part of producing some of these stunning photos to showcase our natural beauty for all to see.  So here are some of our “we love Arizona” photos:

(We tried to get some photos of that beautiful Arizona sunset but the mountains were blocking it a little too much, so this is the best we could do.  Wide open skies definitely say Arizona all by themselves anyways!)

Thanks Gina and Jake for putting some creativity into selecting your photo location and for trusting that we were up to the challenge of shooting something totally different than we’re used to!

You guys did a great job exploring with us and being flexible and we hope you’re MORE than ecstatic about the results!!

Gina, we can’t wait to see you at a wedding wearing a wedding dress, rather than your work clothes for once!;-)

Click to see the rest of Gina and Jake’s Southwestern experience engagement session!

Kristine & Aaron’s chill engagement session

Kristine and Aaron are one of those couples that after meeting with them the first time, we were like “we SO hope they book with us”!  They just seemed like really cool people that would be really fun and easy to work with.

Then the engagement session came… and we realized how totally wrong we were!

Oh my gosh, I’m SOOOO kidding!  Ha!  I freaked you all out for a second there, didn’t I!?  No, really they were even more wonderful than we expected!

They were so very kind, and really relaxed in front of the camera.

Overall, I’d say I really appreciate their chill attitude.  Being chill is a personal goal of mine since I get wound up way too easily.  I’m now going for the, “get passionate over important things and stay chill about everything else” feel in my life!  So I’ve loved watching Kristine handle all her wedding dealings with such smoothness.

She seems to be the perfect balance of getting things done and being relaxed about it.  Way to go, Kristine… I’m learning from you!

Meanwhile you have Aaron over there being a wonderful groom!  You can tell he’s working hard to appreciate all the work his awesome fiance is putting into this wedding, but he is also chill and just enjoying the process as much as he can.

Not to mention, he treated us wonderfully even while he was doing something he probably wasn’t that excited to do (most guys aren’t super excited about picture day… until they realize how much we “force them” to make out during it!!).

So thank you to you both for being so easy going, kind, and yes… cool looking.  Taking pics of such good looking people definitely makes our job easy!;-)

We can’t wait to see your “ridiculously good looking” selves blow us away at your wedding! (that’s a Zoolander description for all you readers out there who are older than 35 or younger than 20).

We truly are looking forward to working with both of you more!:-)

Click to see the rest of this beautiful couple’s Tempe, AZ engagement photo session!

Michael and Bethany are engaged and ready for Mexico!

Bethany and I met right before I got married, so she was able to go to my “destination” wedding (if you count a little mountain town 4 hours North of Phoenix as a”destination”), and now I get to go to her destination wedding… as her photographer!  Considering that Bethany’s wedding is international, I think it definitely counts as destination!

With as much trouble as Bethany and Mike had with their wedding planning, we couldn’t be happier for them with how it all has worked out!  Radiant was the first vendor they chose but they couldn’t find a location in Phoenix they liked.  Once they did find a place, it went bankrupt and they were starting at square 1 again!  Finally they just said, “Screw it, we’re outta here!” and they decided to do their wedding in Playa Del Carmen, Mexico (near Cancun).

So we’d been talking about their engagement session for awhile before they even officially booked us since they were still waiting on finalizing a location and a date.  By the time the day came to actually do their session, we were very excited and I think it’s safe to say that Bethany was very relieved that she was finally making headway in her wedding planning to do list!

We couldn’t have asked for better people to work with!  Though Bethany and I were friends, we’ve been out of touch for the last couple of years (and then re-united thanks to the magic of Facebook), so when she contacted me about doing their wedding photography, I was thrilled!  It’s been so fun getting to spend time with her again, especially during such an important time in her life!  Mike is super friendly and the kind of guy who makes you feel comfortable the very first time you meet him, so of course we liked him right away and we could not be more happy that Bethany found such a great guy!:-)

You only have to see one photo of Bethany and Mike to know that they are a photographer’s dream!  I don’t think we could take a bad photo of 2 people who are so good looking even if we wanted to!

The actual session was a blast too!  Mike has 2 boxers that he loves… we knew that because he showed us a picture of them on his phone the first time we met him!;-)

These dogs are definitely a part of the family so we thought it would be fun if he brought them along…I’m not sure if Mike agreed in the end because these guys were full to the brim with excitement and Mike was stressing out trying to get them to be better models for us!

We loved it though, they were hilarious and we couldn’t think of a better way to ease some of the awkwardness that couples inevitably feel in the first 15 min. of their sessions!  Plus, Scottie LOVES boxers, so he was very happy to get a chance to spend some time with these 2 loving animals. Although, as much as he loves our new little chihuahua (how we ended up with a chihuahua is a whole other story in itself), I’m sure being around these awesome dogs did make him a little jealous that he doesn’t have another boxer yet.

We only kept the dogs for the first part of the session and Bethany’s parents were kind enough to come get them and take them home so we’d have a chance to get some shots where Bethany and Mike’s arms aren’t being yanked off!

And I’m happy to report that we did in fact get some “normal” shots (if you can call any photo of these 2 anything other than amazing) of them hanging out together at DC Ranch once the dogs were safely at home.

Thank you guys so much for choosing us for your photography and for being such good sports about bringing the dogs to your session!  We absolutely can’t wait for your Playa Del Carmen wedding!  Seriously, Scottie talks about it and reads about the location online every single day!! Click to see the rest of Bethany and Mike’s Phoenix engagement photo session!