Joey + Alex | Engaged
Bossier City Louisiana Proposal Photography
Can we just give a huge shout out to all the rockstar men out there who make sure a pro photographer is present during their engagement?
Honestly, I think Joey just lucked out on this one - you know, no big deal - just tooting my own horn... kidding.
I was asked by one of the command spouses on base to take holiday mini-session portraits in front of the B-52s on base on Saturday, November 21. As of Friday evening there were 25 couples or families signed up for 10 minute sessions.
Looking at the signup list on Friday afternoon after realizing at least 1/3rd of the families signed up were unmarried couples, I texted my husband, "man, I really wish one of these couples would get engaged, that would make my WEEK!"
Sarah, the spouse coordinating all of this for the squadron I was working with, text me and said "there is gong to be a proposal at 11:50 tomorrow and I'm so excited, the couple is the sweetest!"
*cue all the squeals and heart eyes from me at home in my jammies finalizing all this mini session stuff*
Joey texted me shortly after and here's how it went down... actually the exact plan in this text convo happened in perfection on the flight line at Barksdale Air Force Base.
To say I was excited was an understatement.
But also nervous. If I take a portrait shot and it sucks - cool, just flex, change positions, move the light, etc. But for the proposal you've got to be SET so you can capture every raw emotion in rapid fire as it happens.
I was actually assigned on the jet on the left (it was facing kinda south west) and honestly, not the best lighting situation. The whole *point* of these minis is to get these fun pics of the families sitting on the ground in front of these MASSIVE Air Force bombers. Whelp, had I done what was originally intended - every single person would have had harsh light, dark shadows, squinty eyes, and it just would have been really, really unflattering pictures.
I always like to capture images that make my subjects pop off of the background. That make couples feel like "wow, I paid $200 for a portrait session but she took such high end pics like we're Beyonce and Jay Z or something!" (are Beyonce and Jay Z even relevant anymore? If it's not the Hamilton soundtrack or kid's TV I really have no clue...)
So this dark, grey, beat to all get-out 60+ year old nuclear bomber - not the most *poppin'* background.
But then I noticed the very distant tree line on the other side of the runway, the jets sleeping all pretty lined up in the distance and thought "I'm going to use the flight line, distant jets, trees and clouds as our background and use the massive jet I'm supposed to be photographing as my shade."
I think the images are just *kisses hand like an Italian chef* BOMB (yes, pun intended).
Right before Joey & Alex's session I changed my battery and memory card bc I wasn't trying to run out of power or storage space!
I walked up and introduced myself like I hadn't talked to Joey on the phone just 3 hours earlier - "Your name is? Oh Joey! Nice to meet you, I'm Heather!"
Much to my pleasant, amazing surprise - for a couple I had never once seen or met before in person or pictures they were freakin' gorgeous. The business owner in me thinking, "OHHHH, these are gonna look awesome on my blog!!".
It all ended up working perfectly. I asked the other photographer there with another squadron if I could use the tail of her jet display as shade so I can get the distant flight line as the backdrop for their proposal.
We walked over (me with a chair to stand on because I'm so short!) and We started with some cute couple poses, warming them up (really just making sure my settings were perfect).
I instructed Alex to kinda "prom pose" Joey and the Squadron spouse walked around joey and handed him the ring box.
Next, I told Joey to put his hands in his pockets but almost immediately said "meh, thumb out? That looks awkward" (trying to be the queen of throwing Alex off.
About a minute later I said, "Joey, your left shoe is untied...". Alex immediately laughed and said "Oh, come on Joey!" and I replied, It's cool Alex, I'll just take pictures of this cool ring you have on!"
This is when Joey got down on one knee, ring box open.
"Alright Alex, let's have you turn around to face Joey now..."
And then cue all the tears from EVERYONE present. Cheers from the side of the flight line. And so so so many camera clicks from me.
This was the first actual proposal I got to be a part of (other than my own 10 years ago!). Capturing this raw emotion I'm just like "Joey... you did GOOD making sure a photographer was there".
I'm editing these pics and just shooting prayers up to the Big Guy to bless these two in the mountains and valleys that come with engagement, wedding prep but most importantly a life of unconditional love and sacrifice that only God can make phenomenally beautiful whether it's for better or for worse, in sickness and in health, for richer or poorer, in all the good and all the bad.
Congratulations on your engagement, Alex + Joey!