A few days ago, Virgil asked Katlyn's parents for her hand in marriage. It's an old fashion, traditional approach that few young men rarely do any more. It's a sweet, caring gesture that makes a large impact on the event of proposing. Shortly getting their blessing, he called me to photograph the event. I was over the moon thrilled to do it! He asked for help planning it as well; if you know me at all, I LOVE planning special events!
I started brain storming with him on locations and ideas. I know Katlyn has a love for sunflowers and this is peak season for full bloom. I checked around and found Copper Creek Farm's Sunflower Festival. It was in full swing! Acres of wildflowers and sunflowers filled their fields, along side a tranquil creek, and beautiful rustic barns in the background. I called and made arrangements for the proposal.
To get Katlyn involved without being suspicious, I texted her an idea of doing a print competition shoot (she's done MANY with me), but I had an idea of a image with a young couple. I didn't want her showing up not fancied up for such a big event, I knew she would dress the part for this type of shoot... muhahahhaha!! I asked if she would want to do it, and if we could get Virgil on board. She jumped at the opportunity...things were in motion! We set a date.
The night before, I texted her again about another idea I had. At this point, Virgil and I couldn't talk because I didn't want my number in his phone for her to find. BUT, we hadn't figured out the logistics of how this whole plan of ours would work - when to do it, what the cues would be, etc. I had to do something. SOOO... I sent her the idea of doing a "print competition album" with 20 questions next to 20 photos. I told her I'd come up with 18 fun questions and asked her and him to come up with a couple to fill in. I figured, Virgil would catch on to my communication of the flow of things... the 20th question being the BIG one!
When we got to the farm, we accidently parked in the staff parking. An employee came over and asked us to move... this was perfect timing. Everyone got back in the car to move, I caught the employee and told him what was about to happen. He made some quick arrangements for us as we moved parking lots. When we got to the new lot we unloaded and headed to the ticket counter. Another employee greeted us and let us go in to the farm early! She was so sneaky in not putting the neon pink wrist bands on the two, that we didn't even notice the detail. Virgil bought Katlyn a bucket to pick sunflowers and we moved on. As we walked into the farm, we stopped at the creek's waterfall for a few warm up portraits. It was quite, no music yet. We walked across the bridge and music came on - an up beat love song "Everything I Need is Right in Front of Me" from The Muppets! It was an adorable detail lightly in the background! Other love songs followed as we wandered through the farm.
The two of them stopped and picked a few sunflowers as we made our way through the Sunflower Patch. We started the little game of 20 questions, though it ended up not really being that many. We talked about their first date, what vacation spots they would love to visit, etc.. just fun little questions to keep us moving towards the backside of the Patch. We came along a pretty, curvy road lined with bright yellow sunflowers and secluded from the employees and guests who were starting to come. I knew this would be a picturesque spot for the big question! I motioned to Virgil to get The Ring out of my camera bag, he had tucked it away with their keys upon arrival. He put it in his back pocket and caught up with Kat, she was already walking towards the spot. I posed them for a couple of portraits - standing, walking away, standing again - all while trying to get the cues across to make the move. We finally got it! I had Katlyn turn towards me, with Virgil a little behind her. He pulled out the ring box and opened it behind her back. I took a couple of shots - one of her in focus, one of him in focus - then told her to turn around to face him. The look on her face was priceless. Virgil said a few words to her and got down on one knee. She was completely surprised and crying happy tears! SHE SAID YES!!! It was completely magical and wonderful!