I have been waiting to tell this proposal story for nearly two months, but anyone who knows me knows I’m terrible at blogging. When I shot this proposal back in September, I didn’t imagine that I would finally be sharing it in the wake of the terrible fires happening in the Malibu region where this proposal took place. Needless to say, the news of the devastating fires in California–Malibu included–are incredibly heartbreaking.
Alex proposed to Joy on their favorite beach, El Matador State Beach in Malibu. El Matador has been a hidden gem for years and happens to be my favorite beach too! Alex and Joy spent many days and evenings on this beach as well as other areas in Malibu. They met at Pepperdine University where they attended college, not far from El Matador, where Alex brought Joy for their first date. Needless to say, Alex and Joy have a lot of memories here so it made perfect sense that their proposal and engagement session had to take place on this particular coast.
Alex was definitely excited about making every aspect of this occasion special. When he needed a photographer, his mom actually helped him with the search, because Alex didn’t want Joy to get suspicious. I spoke with both of them and we made a plan for me to capture Alex’s proposal on Saturday, September 22, 2018.
Alex was so sweet as he set up a spot on the beach and anxiously waited for Joy to come and meet him. When she did finally make her way to the sand, all I could see was a calm, cool smile on Joy’s face as she walked towards him. Both of their expressions told me they had been waiting for this day and they were SO READY for the next step.
I captured the big moment from behind a rock before Alex pointed in my direction to let Joy know I was there. She gave the cutest surprised face and later told me she had always hoped he would have a photographer nearby when he proposed. We spent the next hour taking photos on the beach and I did my best to ease Joy into it, knowing she had to be experiencing so many thoughts and feelings while still trying to keep herself ‘camera ready.’ I think it put Joy more at ease when I showed her some quick peeks on the back of my camera in between a few shots.
By the end of their session, we realized that Alex’s mom had accidentally left the beach with his car keys so I offered to drive them to the Airbnb they had rented not far from where we were since it was on my way home. It was a bonus for me too, because I got to spend some extra time getting to know them both and I got to meet their families! It was definitely one of the more special engagement sessions I’ve had to-date and I just know they are going to make #marriedlife extra special for one another.
(Note: Alex and Joy are both Pepperdine alumni and while their friends and family thankfully have not been affected by the shooting at Borderline Bar and Grill or the fires that have plagued the community, many others have been. If you would like to help and provide support in any way at all, Pepperdine University has set up a fund to help those who have been impacted and you can access it here: #PepperdineStrong.)