Casual Outdoor Engagement Session: Alex & Chris

Rather than something urban and downtown, these two city dwellers opted for a casual, outdoor engagement session.  And I'm so glad they did!  I mean just look at these images – carefree, comfortable, and yet they still manage to be totally swoon-worthy.  Alex and Chris (and their dog, Toby!) traipsed around Moraine State Park with Oakwood Photo + Video.  The results are natural, uninhibited, and gorgeously sun-soaked.  Whether they're climbing on giant rocks or running uphill along a tree line, Alex and Chris look like they're having the times of the lives and are perfectly in love.  What more could you want out of an e-session?!

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From the bride…

When and how did you two meet?

We met six years ago here in Pittsburgh after college.  We met through my best friend, Nina.  She married Chris's cousin, Matt.  (They are also our matron of honor and best man.)

Juicy details on the proposal, please!  When, where, how?

It was 100% a surprise.  I am pretty nosy when it comes to surprises and was definitely anxious to get engaged!  We drove to Erie (Chris's hometown) for a weekend of bottling our homemade wine.  Chris's mom was out of town, which was a dead giveaway that he WOULDN'T be proposing. We also bought tickets to a wine festival and invited our best friends, Matt and Nina, and Chris's sister, Julieann, to join us.  Chris's mom came home Saturday morning and we spent the morning bottling our wine (and tasting it as we went, of course).  We were just about done and wanted to start getting ready for dinner and the festival, when Nina & Juls asked if we wanted to sit outside for a little to enjoy the sunshine.  In Erie, when the sun is out, it is a miracle – so you have to take some time and enjoy it!

We sat outside with some wine and Chris came out (visibly shaking) with a bottle of our homemade wine.  The wine bottle had a custom printed label that asked me if I would marry him.  It was really special.  We spent the next hours celebrating with family, drinking champagne, eating Georgetown cupcakes (Julieann is from Bethesda and brought them) and topped the night off at a wine festival.  It was actually perfect.

Describe the engagement session.

We knew we wanted our engagement pictures outdoors.  We love being outside and wanted them to feel like “us”.  We live in the city and love it.  But we didn't want to take our photos there because we had seen certain areas (that we love) already done by many couples.  We selected Moraine State Park (the mill and surrounding areas).  We got extremely lucky.  It was early June and the day before and after our shoot were both 90 degree days.  Our day was a high of 67 (aka, perfect) so we brought our dog, Toby, to ensure he was in some (most) of our photos.  We spent the day laughing and enjoying the photo shoot, which we initially thought would be awkward and uncomfortable.  Our location allowed for us to create our own photos.  We would randomly just climb up on huge glacier rocks and decide it would be a good spot for a photo.  It made it more natural and less uncomfortable than trying to get “the perfect photo”. At the very end of the day, the sun was going down and we decided to walk up to the top of this hill on a farm.  We found this awesome tree sitting alone in the field and that landscape ended up being our favorite from the day.  Oakwood killed it with all of the photos and it was really difficult selecting our favorites.

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