My cousin, DJ, had asked me to do some couples pics for him and his sweetheart, Breeana. We wanted the pictures to be taken somewhere outdoors, somewhere with meaning, somewhere that was fun and pretty to the kiddos... A couple phone calls later and some careful deliberation from David & Breeana led us to the Garden Of The Gods in Colorado Springs.
Entrance to the park is free according to the wish of Charles Elliott Perkins, whose children donated the land to the city of Colorado Springs in 1909. Many people drive by the park traveling I-25 but never get to stop and enjoy the pure beauty of the park. Spectacular geological formations await you along with multiple recreational opportunities for the whole family or avid rock climber.
We had decent lighting for the photo shoot, although the wind was whipping pretty hard and I was not able to use any of my umbrella's to shoot through. At times the wind was so bad that I couldn't even use my off-camera flash for fear that the stand and flash might blow over and break.
This shot by the tree is easily one of my favorites from the day. I was standing about 12 yards away and shooting with my 55-300vr lens. This allowed me to be further back from my subjects and get more of a candid pose from the both of them. In this shot I've got my SB-600 flash off-camera and just to the right of DJ, about 6-7 feet away. This was towards the end of our 1.5 hour session and I was happy to see that both of them still seemed to be enjoying themselves.
Garden Of The Gods is a very large park, one that you could hike all day long and still not see all that it has to offer. We started our day parked at the main parking lot and came across this sandstone rock area about 5 minutes into our walk. It was a tricky place to shoot taking into account what DJ and Breeana were wearing, but this shot came out nice. I really could have used an assistant today to help with holding my reflectors and directing some light into the eyes of my subjects, but all in all I'm happy with the results.
Here are a couple more pictures that I took from the parking lot of the visitors center.