July 2, 2023
Talk about a dream beach proposal in Orange Beach, Alabama! When Kevin texted me out of the blue on a week day in early summer, I was hoping for it to tell me he was going to propose to his long time girlfriend, Courtney. That’s exactly what it said, but he also asked me to photograph it which is such an honor. I was looking forward to the day so much but was also so afraid of letting the secret slip. A few weeks before the proposal, Courtney and Kevin were in town and invited my family to brunch. I didn’t attend because I was afraid of acting weird! Flash forward- it all worked out. Keep reading to see what bumps happened along the way which makes the story even better!
The first hiccup was the same hiccup I typically deal with when it comes to summer on the beach. You guessed it- the weather. It had been raining and heavy thunderstorms barreled through the Gulf Coast all week long. On proposal day, it finally cleared up for a perfect beach day! But, heavy storms were predicted at 6 PM, which is well before sunset time. I messaged Kevin and told him if he wanted to keep the same day, we would need to move it earlier to avoid storms. No biggie.
Well, the plan was to do “family photos” on the beach before Kevin and Courtney had their moment. Courtney took full advantage of the beach day (as she should) and enjoyed her cocktails in the sun. As her mom, and soon to be fiancé, pushed her to drink water and probably spend some time indoors. I can imagine she was frustrated at them trying to kill her vibe! After having the energy taken out of her by the sun, she adamantly decided against doing her hair and makeup for the photos. LOL
If you’ve been in this situation where you’re trying to keep it a secret, it’s really hard to not try to convince someone to dress up because… you know they have something going on. However, you also want to play it cool. Kevin played reverse psychology and told her “Cool! You shouldn’t!” To be honest, Courtney would have looked beautiful regardless of what she did, but as you’ll see by the photos. She decided to pull it together and looked stunning.
As I pulled up, I knew Courtney’s family was anxious. Kevin said they were in a hurry to get downstairs. Courtney actually saw her best friend from the closing elevator doors and Kevin convinced her she must still be feeling the effects of her tiredness and alcohol from the day. We took some beautiful family photos and made our way down to the water.
The plan was for me to use the word “piggy back ride” and that would be the moment Kevin got down on one knee. First, I asked if they wanted to just take a few photos alone casually in addition to the family photos. They did what most couples do and acted awkward and laughed out loud as I told them to walk down the beach hand in hand. Who does that in real life, right?
As the full sun shined on all of the beach, I had Courtney stand in place while the sun shined directly into her eyes and the wind was blowing in her face. She must have thought I was insane for positioning her this way. But I knew she’d be turning around to Kevin on one knee. As I pretended to fiddle with Courtney’s hair I gave Kevin the signal word and got set up. I told Courtney to turn around and she realized exactly what was happening.
As for the rest, I’ll let the photos do the talking.
Kev + Court, truly it’s an honor. Thank you so much for allowing me to partake in your day.
Want to see more proposal stories on the Gulf Coast? Check out Hollie and Leslie’s Picnic Beach Proposal.
Need help planning the perfect proposal on the beach? Reach out to Jordan here.
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A lifestyle photographer in the Florida panhandle.