Karen and Aaron, Puako Beach, Big Island of Hawaii

Admittedly, a wedding photographer should not be promoting eloping … but it is so fun! I know I live in a beautiful, special place and I’m always intrigued when people from out of the area come to the Big Island to elope. Karen and Aaron came all the way from Vancouver, Canada, and eloped at Puako Beach yesterday, and they had a blast.  Photographing elopements is a beautiful thing because it is simply about the love between two people. Karen and Aaron are fantastic people and their wedding, standing out on the lava rocks was simply breathtaking.  Karen and I had e-mailed back and forth a few times in the past few months, deciding on locations and details, they chose Rev. Patrick Thompson to perform the ceremony, and we decided to time their 15 min ceremony so that the sun would be setting by the end of our one hour photo session….gorgeous!

The Banache Family, Mauna Lani Resort, Big Island of Hawaii

If you had to ask me what I love most about photography, it would be the ability to photograph everything and everyone. I don’t limit myself to one type of session. One of my favorite sessions has to be photographing families. The Banache family was no exception. Emma and Coulton were willing to be silly at any time, and were also great with their sweet twin baby sisters who were 6 months old! …… aren’t they just the cutest little things you have ever seen? I had a blast capturing the Banaches on their family vacation at the Mauna Lani Resort. Here are a few of my favorite shots!

Steve and Mai’s wedding, Kikaua Point, Big Island of Hawaii

Steve and Mai traveled to the Big Island of Hawaii to make Kikaua Point the location for their special day!  It was a picture perfect morning for their small, intimate ceremony including just Steve and Mai’s little girl, Kohana, and two of their closest friends.  The ceremony was officiated by Lona Lyons of Romantic Beach Weddings.  I have to make special mention of Kohana…..she was a complete angel during the ceremony and such fun to photograph!  Some of my favorite pics of the day are of this beautiful trio just hanging out, laughing and having fun together.  Thanks again for allowing me to part of your stunning Kikaua point wedding!

Shawn and Dani, engagement, old Kona Airport, Big Island of Hawaii

Shawn and Dani were a fun couple to photograph, I had a great time at the beach with them. Instantly I felt like I were hanging out with two good friends. To those who already know Shawn, you likely already know he’s a pretty fun-loving guy. He definitely has a humorous side to his personality and additionally he’s absolutely in love with his stunning fiancé Dani. Dani’s incredibly sweet, and as you can see a gorgeous blonde beauty. As a couple together, there’s a lot of chemistry and they are a perfect match for each other.

For Shawn and Dani’s engagement session, we decided on Old Kona Airport State Park. While out on the couple’s session, we were all laughing nearly the entire time. Especially because of Shawn’s welcoming and inviting sense of humor. Thanks Shawn for keeping the photographer laughing, and for keeping Dani smiling. Shawn and Dani were down for just about anything like walking through the long grass and mesquite trees behind the beach area and hiking and climbing all over the lava rock that Big Island is known for. As always, we had a great time and captured a variety of photo styles and unique engagement pictures.

Shawn actually proposed to Dani the day before our session, at Kulaniapia Falls, a private waterfall located on the grounds of the Inn at Kulaniapia Falls, which includes 22 lush, tropical acres with waterfalls, Bamboo Garden, Hiking Trails and vistas of unrivaled pristine beauty. Kulaniapia Falls is just north of Hilo, Hawaii, on the Hamakua Coast.  Dani though Shawn was just setting his camera up for a picture, but as she approached, he got down on one knee, held out his hand which was holding a ring box and popped the question! Dani said yes before even looking a the ring…..and the ring is amazing, the diamond has been in Shawn’s family since the 1920’s, it belonged to his great great aunt!



Dragonfly Diva jewelry

I met Cara Hollenbeck in 2005, my first year on the Big Island. We were introduced at a friends wedding, she was a bridesmaid and I was the DJ.  We became fast friends. She’s a livewire, energetic, funny, thoughtful, and creative. Yesterday,  I had the absolute pleasure of collaborating with Cara, for a photo shoot to debut her new line of jewelry for Dragonfly Diva, her custom artisan jewelry business.

This was our second photo session showcasing her amazing handmade jewelry, when I saw Cara’s combinations of precious stones with feathers and shells I was blown away. You can view her pieces on her website, Dragonfly Diva and read more about Cara on her blog, Dragonfly Diva Artisan Jewelry. This girl has style!

We spent a delightful afternoon with some wonderful ladies, photographing at Mahai’ula Beach…and we stayed a little too late after a gorgeous sunset. After the bumpy drive over  lava up to the highway from the beach we discovered that the gate was locked….luckily the caretakers came and let us out……eventually (and before we could figure out how to pick it with a bobby pin!).

Many thanks to those who made the shoot possible…

Design Director: Naomi Stefaney
Styling: Cara Hollenbeck

Makeup: Sara Taylor
Models: Angie Metriyakool, Cara Hollenbeck, Jen Liming, Karen Ippoliti, Morgan Taylor and Sara Taylor