Engagements, Weddings

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Surprise Marriage Proposal at a Horse Ranch | Robert + Alistaire

Robert and Alistaire are both from the Northeast, but made their way down to North Carolina so Alistaire could get her doctorate. In their free time, they love spending time with their sweet rescue pitbull, Gracie. They also love to all go down to the horse ranch to ride and take care of their beautiful horse. When Robert contacted me about doing a surprise marriage proposal at a horse ranch near Winston Salem, I couldn’t think of a better or more meaningful place!

Planning the Proposal

We arranged everything ahead of time. He told Alistaire that as a gift for their third anniversary, they were getting their photos taken. But only Robert and I knew that the real reason for the session was that he was going to pop the question. Weeks ahead of time, Robert and I hopped on the phone and planned the logistics. Where are you going to hide the ring? When and where on the ranch is the proposal going to take place? We even planned the “signal” I was going to give to let him know I was ready for the actual proposal to happen.

The Day of the Surprise Marriage Proposal

On the Sunday afternoon of the session, we started taking photos by the stables with just them and Gracie. After lots of dog cuddles (and human cuddles), we went into the stables to get their horse. I took all four of them out into one of the nearby fields. It was already cleared of riders thanks to Robert and his planning with the ranch owners. I took a few close portraits of them before telling saying, “I’m going to back up to get a landscape shot”. In actuality, as I began backing up, I switched out my 50mm lens for my telephoto lens. This was so that I could still get photos of the action while also giving them some privacy. That phrase was mine and Robert’s signal! Now was the moment to pull out the ring and propose! Alistaire was completely surprised and of course totally thrilled!!

I loved capturing her reaction! I also love that while they were kissing and hugging afterwards, both horse and dog kept circling them both and tangling their leashes HAHA! Super cute :) So happy for them to begin the planning of their wedding!

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Want to plan a surprise proposal of your own?? Click HERE for tips!

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