We’re so excited to finally share the images from our Anza Borrego bridal shoot in December! The desert is a place I’ve fallen in love with, and I think you’ll see why! The beauty of the desert seemed like a perfect fit for a bridal fashion shoot, especially with a dress as unique as this one designed by D’marie Bridal Couture! And the black dress that Danielle designed worked so well for the evening part of our shoot!
I knew the idea to shoot in the desert was a bit ambitious. It’s a two hour drive from San Diego, so it really was a full day commitment. I had to go out there to scout the location to tell the film commission and the park administration exactly where we planned to shoot. We had to take a primitive road to get to our spot (past a No Trespassing sign, but we had permission to be there). There were no restrooms and no place to change, so we rented an RV to use for the shoot. It rained the night before (winter rains are vital to the desert’s ecosystem) and there was a forecast for rain in the morning, so we thought the shoot might have to be cancelled. Fortunately, we had to rent the RV for 3 days so we stayed in the desert the night before. Contrary to what the weather forecast said, we knew that it was bright and sunny. We were also able to make sure that our location was accessible and safe for the shoot.
Another challenge was that we were up against time. Since our location was surrounded by mountains, the sun sets much more quickly than it does on the coast. If you can believe it, all of these images were shot within an hour! We shot for about 30 minutes with the sun beyond the mountain (but not yet below the horizon) and another 30 minutes after sunset. To give you an idea of what the shoot was like, here’s a shot without our flashes (left) and with them (right):
Matt was holding a flashlight on the models, which was our only source of light to see with! Danielle was holding a reflector for us to diffuse one of the flashes (we used 4 total). There was no moonlight and no city lights to provide any kind of ambient light. Not only was it completely dark, it was also freezing cold! In between shooting, each model took a break to put on a jacket and warm up. They were so phenomenal to work with on this shoot! We seriously could not have done this without such experienced and talented models!
There are a lot of things we were depending on for this shoot to go right, but we really had an amazing team collaborating on this project! We can’t thank each of you enough for your commitment to this shoot and for sharing your amazing talents!!
Gown Designer: D’marie Bridal Couture
Bridal Model: Stephanie
Bridesmaid Model: Chloe
Jewelry Designer: Flawed Perfection Jewelry
Makeup Artist: Kelsey Doonan