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Eighty percent of people that read my blog are women. So if you’re one of the men that have stumbled upon this post, welcome! If not and you know someone that has been dating a while or is getting ready to propose then you may want to share this with them.

I’ve been waiting a while to share these complete images because they are extra special. I was honored with the task of photographing this proposal session of a fellow photographer and she was completely surprised.

If you love a good engagement story then feel free to keep reading, if you’re not one for details but you just want to jump ahead and know how to plan then go ahead and jump below.

I’ll be honest with you, I don’t know this couple very well but the bride-to-be’s family is near and dear to me. Last year I spent time working with them and got to know the Eckart family pretty well. When Lauren’s boyfriend Matt decided to plan this proposal in Michigan the bride’s sister contacted me asking if I’d be willing to beautifully document it for her. She knew that Lauren’s desire was that when she got engaged she wanted to be completely surprised and have beautiful photographs of it. I mean, isn’t this every girl’s dream? (Side note: Lauren and Matt both attend school in Marion, Indiana. ) Fast forward to the day of the proposal. Lauren is from Michigan and had spent the afternoon with some friends that drove up from Indiana with her to do some photography in the area. Little did she know that when she came to Frederick Meijer Gardens that Matt would be waiting for her on the bridge in the Japanese Gardens. (She thought he was still in Indiana). With hundreds of people standing in the distance Matt proceeded to get down on one knee and ask her to be his wife. With a quick yes and a giant hug you could hear the rush of clapping and cheers for them both.

Planning the Proposal:

If you’re wanting to plan your proposal to be beautifully documented the best thing to do is scope out a location at the exact time you want it taken. This way your photographer can let you know where to stand for the best light. It’ll also be perfect for doing a test shot. Why not take the stress out of planning and let the photographer help you with all of that.

For this particular shot, we had tested it on a week day in harsh light. Little did we know that the Saturday this happened it would be so beautiful that everybody went to this location. However, as the photographer I was able to inform others around us of what was about to happen so that we could make this as private as possible and in the best direction. Letting the groom-to-be worry about the words he was going to say.

Some things to prepare for:

-make sure the ring is clean, the photographer is going to want to get a couple shots of it. This could happen ahead of time when you scope out the location. Especially if she is with you leading up to the moment.

-If you can, try and coordinate her outfit without her knowing why. Neutrals are best, especially if you don’t know what she’s going to wear.

-If she is with you leading up to the proposal, either let your photographer track you on GPS or find a way to text him or her when you’re 5 minutes away.

If you’re planning a proposal and would love to document it lets chat about making it a beautiful experience for you both. Email

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Planning a Proposal

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