Brooke and Dean’s day-after shoot is gorgeous, obviously. Stunning, really. The wide-open field crossed by a galloping horse? The LIGHTNING? Almost too good to be true. But what really got me in Brooke’s story, below, is her feeling of something “rising up inside her” when she thought about the shoot. I knew exactly what she was talking about: that giddy, bubbling feeling you get when you’re truly excited about something, and can’t believe it’s really happening. I think everyone should experience that sometime in their wedding planning process, and I’m so happy we’re all able to share in Brooke’s moment.
From the bride:
“Dean and I love the ranch; in fact, it’s my favorite place on earth. The ranch is the place where Dean first fell in love with me (I was already in love with him!), and the ranch is where he proposed. Everything about the ranch is so meaningful to the both of us, so when my best friend suggested we take our day-after photos there, I wouldn’t take no for an answer.
I wanted the photos to capture the beauty and adventure of the ranch, as well as the love that my husband and I share. To be perfectly honest, I still can’t believe I rode bareback on a horse in my wedding dress! But I remember being in junior high when the movie Runaway Bride came out. When Julia Roberts finally says “I do,” she rides off into the sunset on a horse, in her dress, with her groom. The first time I saw that, something rose up in me, and I wanted to do the very same thing. But life happened. It became silly, and I stuffed that dream, that desire, away… until suddenly I was nervously sitting bareback, on a horse, holding tight to my husband, and he was asking, “Are you ready?”
If I had any advice to give a bride for her wedding, I would say don’t worry about the dress. That was my biggest fear throughout my entire wedding process, but I did more damage to my dress dancing at my reception and walking down the aisle than I did riding a horse across the field. If there is a dream that you have, but you are worried about getting your dress dirty in the process, remind yourself that for the rest of your life, your dress is going to be in a box, never to be touched or worn again. And, if something does happen, you can have the dress cleaned and repaired. I will be forever grateful to my sister, who said to me, “You will regret it if you don’t do it” (referring, of course, to the whole riding-bareback-on-a-horse-in-my-beloved-wedding-dress thing). So I did it.
Be bold. Go after your dreams. Do something that you love, that’s totally you! Take the pictures that you want, and don’t worry about the dress. Do you want safe pictures that kept your dress intact? Or do you want pictures that take people’s breath away, and remind them of what life is supposed to be like? The choice is yours. I, for one, am glad that I chose to go after my dreams.”
Thank you so much for sharing, Brooke + Dean! Your photos and your story are inspiring!