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Pivoting During Covid: 3 tips to make it special!


Mel + Tommy LOVE the beach and have made traveling a big priority in their relationship! They have taken countless trips to Mexico and California, so when they told me they were planning a destination wedding in Mexico, it seemed like the perfect fit!

In fact the original plan for their engagement session, was to fly down to meet me in Mexico this past May for an adventure engagement session!! Then…COVID hit.

So we unfortunately cancelled Mexico and we pivoted! We decided on San Diego + Joshua Tree and got really excited about our shoot!  But once again… Covid. So Melanie and I jumped on the phone to talk about our new plan!  We pivoted once again and decided on the Oregon Coast!

I was so excited to brainstorm with them all the ways we could bring the tropics to their session! So they made homemade margaritas on the beach, sat in the Tommy Bahama chairs with their pup Lulu, explored the dunes and the night was truly magical and everything we dreamed it would be and more! So I wanted to share 3 tips on pivoting during covid!

1) Take a deep breath and stay positive

 Your mindset through all these changes really impact your ability to dream big and get excited about the next fun idea!  Try and focus on what matters most – your love! 

2.) Opt Outside!

With regulations with Covid continuing to change – opt for an outdoor session in a location that is easy to social distance! I love helping my couples find unique locations off the beaten path!


Consider investing in a weekend away! With quarantine – a safe weekend away can be so rejuvenating and really makes your engagement or elopement feel like a weekend celebration!  Melanie + Tommy originally were planning on Mexico for their engagement session and our Plan B was San Diego, SO they were READY  for an adventure! I loved that they were always dreaming big so when we were pivoting during Covid once again, they quickly were on board for my ideas  for their Oregon Coast session and together we turned into something really magical! We made it personal by creating an environment that felt really natural for them and included some of the beachy tropical vibes we were originally planning for and brought it to the PNW! 

Manzanita Oregon Photoshoot

Tell me three things about your fiance

Grooms Response: Melanie’s love for me and her expression of love for me is more than I could imagine. She really makes me a better man when it comes to how I voice my emotions for her and in general (still working on this ;)). Melanie has a special work ethic and determination to make things

Not only for her job but for our house and keeping things fun and interesting in our lives together (traveling as much as possible). Melanie is spicy, very decisive, and lives life with a no BS mentality. She stays true to her best friends and is extremely close with her family (talks to them everyday). She really makes an effort for the ones she loves and cares about.

Covid Engagement Shoot

Bride’s Response: He is really close with his mom & his sister! He is the most gentle giant there ever was! He is the best person you’ll ever meet!

pivoting during covid engagement shoot
pivoting during covid beach engagement shoot
pivoting during covid engagement shoot
covid engagement shoot

How did he propose?

pivoting during covid engagement shoot

Bride’s Response: In Santa Barbara, the day before my birthday! I was SO caught off guard, I knew it was coming but didn’t know it would be that weekend. Tommy told me he was putting together a picnic for us and we were going to watch the sunset. So when I was getting ready he comes back with a bottle of Rosé and starts drinking it, doesn’t offer me any of it! it’s safe to say he was really nervous!

The Uber driver arrived and was in a full on suit! He then drove us to Butterfly Beach in Montecito. We visited earlier in the day as it was our favorite beach from the day! We set up the blanket, he THEN poured me some Rose. “Melanie can you play our song”(as my phone was hooked up to our speaker) and I was like “okay which one?”

“You know the one that we want for our first dance when we get married” and I then played it! Tommy got up and asked me if I wanted to dance (and let me tell you that is VERY out of the ordinary for Tommy) I immediately got up but then saw a big bulge in his white shorts pocket that looked the size of a ring box. I then got nervous and just held onto him because I felt it was coming!

We danced for a bit. He said the sweetest things about his feelings towards me. He then got down on one knee and asked me to marry him!

I immediately started crying, and we hugged and kissed a bunch! I was so in the moment I didn’t even see the ring! Then eventually I was like “omg I didn’t even say yes!!” It was the perfect engagement because we were so in the moment, and had no distractions! Butterfly beach will forever be my favorite beach! It was the most perfect weekend!

Kelly Lemon Photography Photoshoot
pivoting during covid engagement shoot
covid engagement shoot beach
pivoting during covid engagement shoot

What do you think makes you unique as a couple?

Groom’s Response: I think Melanie and I are truly a great team. When it comes to house projects, career goals and most importantly our love for each other and little LuLu.

When we decide we’re gonna do something we make it happen. Whether that’s putting in a new front door last minute or a random last minute trip to Mexico. Keep it fun and interesting! Lastly, I think Melanie‘s spicy mentality and my chill demeanor blend nicely. We are both driven and are looking for the same things in life!

covid engagement shoot

When you can do anything you want to do, like a typical Friday night, what would you do?

Oregon Engagement Shoot

Bride’s Response: If we are in Seattle, be on our deck eating dinner & drinking margs! Before Covid , we would tend to host a lot, that has slowed down a bit, but we LOVE hosting! We also love watching an outdoor movie in our backyard! If we are traveling, grabbing cocktails on a beach somewhere!

Are there are any last thoughts that you’d like to share?

Bride’s Response: I cannot wait to marry my best friend and start my forever with him. He is the sweetest person I know. I am lucky I found him!

manzanita oregon engagement shoot

Groom’s Response: I love you Melanie :) always and forever

Elopement ready?

I would love to be your elopement photographer and guide!

My superpower is putting people at ease; whether that's behind the camera or on their elopement day solving problems calmly under pressure. I am passionate about building relationships with the people I work with. 


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  1. […] were originally supposed to get married at a lush garden venue showcasing the greenery of the PNW. Then Covid hit. We pivoted and they downsized to a small intimate wedding at Devin’s family home on the coast […]

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