We had an incredible experience planning these Amicalola Falls Engagement Photos for Aryo & Ileana!!!
Aryo & Ileana were planning a short little weekend getaway to North Georgia over the Thanksgiving weekend! Little did Ileana know that Aryo reached out to us several weeks in advance to plan the perfect proposal session! Aryo’s initial plan was to propose to Ileana in front of the waterfall at Amicalola Falls.
On the day of, we arrived 15-20 minutes ahead of the couple. We parked at the Reflection Pool and then walked up the Appalachian Approach Trail to the Lower Observation deck to find & camp out in the perfect spot! The hike up the Appalachian Approach Trail was a rigorous 20 minute walk with a decent amount of elevation. Of course the perfect spot was SUPER crowded. It was ESSENTIAL that we secured the spot ahead of their arrival to ensure we could capture the proposal at THE spot!
Because Amicalola State Park is in Dawsonville (North Georgia), & the higher elevation levels, there was limited cell service. Once we were up near the falls on the Observation Decks, there was no cell service. You might be lucky if you had Verizon. Because of the lack of cell service, we were careful to pre-plan out all the details with Aryo well in advance. This included coming up with a rain backup plan in the event of inclement weather.
On the day of, we lucked out and had perfect weather! It couldn’t have been more beautiful or more better suited for a small hike up the Appalachian Approach Trail.
When Aryo & Ileana approached us on the Lower Observation Deck, we handed them our cell phone and asked if they could take a picture of us (myself – Jaimie Dee – and my husband Kyle). Once they snapped a quick photo of us, Aryo handed us his cell phone (in video mode!) and asked us to take a quick pic of the two of them in front of the falls. Plenty of tourist were doing this as well, so it didn’t seem out of the ordinary – it was a beautiful view!
Little did Ileana know that we had professional camera gear stashed in my purse, hiding out of site! While Kyle pretended to fiddle around with Aryo’s phone, Aryo asked if we could get a quick photo of the two facing the waterfall. When they had their back turned to us, we whipped out our camera gear, Aryo got down on one knee ready to propose. Ileana eventually turned around to see what was going on & was overcome with emotion to see Aryo down on one knee!
She said yes!!!!
After the proposal, we started heading back down the Lower Observation Deck and began taking portraits along the way.
Aryo & Ileana, we were SO excited to share in this story with you!
And the rest of the session was history!
The sun was relatively high in the sky at this point of the day. It was actually very close to solar noon. What you don’t see in these images is Kyle standing off to the side and blinding the couple with a huge 5 foot reflector to fill in the shadows from the sun! The end result are very crisp images with lots of color! We absolutely LOVED the way these turned out!
And of course our subjects were absolutely GORGEOUS! It’s hard to take a bad photo when your couples are THIS happy!
This series of engagement photos were taken further down the path of the Lower Observation Deck.
Look at that GORGEOUS ROCK!!! Aryo, kudos to you!
After the Observation Deck, we started to head down the Appalachian Approach Trail. There we stopped a couple times, every time we saw a beautiful view! With the gorgeous lighting coming in between the trees the way it was, it felt like we were stopping every couple of minutes!
Ileana & Aryo absolutely SLAYED these photos!!!!
At this point in the session, we were curious to change up our lighting technique for some variety’s sake. In this next few set of images, Kyle laid off the reflector. Without adding an additional light back into the frame, the couple were only back lit by the sun coming in between the trees. The end result is a much more dreamy light and airy quality to the images. The colors are also less saturated.
Definitely a different look from our signature style, but we absolutely love the variety!
To see more Amicalola Falls Engagement Photos from this surprise proposal session, check out the slideshow below!