it's more than an investment—it's a legacy
When you choose to elope, you’re choosing to make your wedding day an experience where you can express yourselves freely in a stress-free, judgement-free environment.
Elopements are truly about the love story that you and your partner have created. You want your wedding celebration to be unique and completely catered to you so you can focus on each other.
Or maybe you're on the fence about it and haven't quite decided. Let me help you!
What is an elopement? An elopement is an intentionally small, authentic wedding celebration with a greater focus on the couple. I photograph elopements with up to 10-15 people, but often times it's just me and the couple! The one thing my couples have in common is that they each want their own super intimate, super meaningful day designed their way.
Whether you're getting married on a mountain top in the ADK, standing on the shore of the Finger Lakes, or you're headed off to watch the sunset from the rooftops in the city—I'm living for it! So let's get to it and create the ultimate wedding experience together!
Ah, you've decided to elope
get married exactly how you want
With elopements on the rise, traveling west to elope appears to be the popular thing to do. Make your elopement yours. Choosing New York as your place to elope offers something different from all the elopements you see plastered all over social media.
New York offers some amazing locations all within a day’s drive, and some hella talented vendors who can help bring your elopement dreams to life! With New York as my home state for the last 20 years, I’ve established a list of some bombass vendors, locations, to meet every want and need.
You don’t have to travel outside of New York to get stunning mountains, lakeside sunsets, or after dark cityscapes—there’s something for everyone. If you want to make your wedding experience a weekend escape, let’s head off to the Finger Lakes, the Adirondacks, or NYC.
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let's adventure together
Videography: Chelsea M. Walts Photography
You wake up.
It's your wedding day.
But instead of feeling stressed,
You feel relaxed.
You and your forever adventure partner are eloping.
You enjoy a quiet morning together.
You get dressed in your wedding attire together.
And then you set off on an adventure.
One where you pledge yourselves to one another.
In an incredibly scenic location of your choosing.
Obvi, I'll be with you throughout your wedding day to document all the moments as they happen. But better yet, I'll be hella unobtrusive about it because you shouldn't be worrying about being photographed throughout the day. I want you to be able to experience your elopement fully open, receptive to all the emotions, to be present in the moment with your partner.
From ceremony locations, to finding the perfect vendors to help bring your elopement dreams to life, including some traditional and non-traditional wedding day activities for you to enjoy with your partner creating a completely different wedding day experience—I'm here to help you dream, scheme, and make it all real.
I've picked up a few things (or 12,257) over the years that I've spent as a wedding photographer and I'm more than happy to share them all with you! You'll get unbridled access to the Couples' Lounge—a space exclusively for my couples—jam packed with guides, checklists, and more. I'm also available to all my couples anytime for a more hands-on help!
No need to stress about finding an officiant for your elopement, ya girl has got you covered. I'm ordained and can either lead a small ceremony for you, or just sign your marriage license for you—whichever you prefer! I'll also help you learn how to get any needed permits, or even your marriage license.
If you're wanting to take the non-traditional route, you open up endless possibilities. I'm here to help you fully prepare for your adventure elopement with tips, tricks, and guides on:
- how to tell family + friends
- what to pack
- timeline crafting
- how to obtain permit(s)
I don't even know where to begin. We had planned 3 different weddings thanks to the world of 2020 and Donna was flexible enough to join us on our third try! She worked with us to create a bespoke package that was exactly what we were looking for and was within our budget. She was early, and extremely professional. The "getting ready" shots were non-intrusive for such a crucial time and she was so efficient with getting what she needed together. The same can be said for the ceremony. I don't remember seeing her flitting around getting every possible angle but I see the proof in our photos. Donna gave great directions, and was firm when needed to guide us all into the right poses for our family portraits. When it was time for my new husband and I to step away for our photos, she was easy going and gave us direction but let us have fun with the photos. Oh and did I mention our photos were done by the next day?!?! Our comfort and ease is shown in ever single photo she took. Donna will be the only photographer we use in the future. Thank you Donna!!
Donna will be the only photographer we use!
What my couples have to say:
For the couples who want to really focus on themselves, the love they have found, and the adventure they will have together. Can be a "Just Us" day, or one that includes 15 or fewer guests.
Think of me as your personal documentary papparazzi. Someone who is low-key there capturing you both being yourselves as you go about your day. I'll never ask you to "look at the camera and smile" because that's just as awkward for me as it is for you.
If having all day coverage of your elopement hasn't crossed your mind, this is your sign to consider it. Don't you deserve to be able to look back on the entire day as it unfolded?
Eloping is no longer the clandestine kind of affair that would have people gasping in shock—These days, eloping means choosing you, your love, and your experience over everything else. Exchange your vows privately, intimately, and freely in a place of your choosing.
It also doesn't mean you can't include some of your closest friends + family—you can absolutely opt to have a private "Just Us" day or have 15 or fewer guests along with you. There are no hard, fast rules when it comes to eloping. You make the rules, friend.
First things first: Adventure ≠ hiking. You don’t have to hike if that’s not your thing. Some couples live for it, others not so much. And that’s perfectly okay! Not hiking doesn’t mean you can’t have an elopement experience. There are many options for couples who may not be avid hikers, such as spending a day on the boat, going fishing, camping, popping down to City Hall, or anything else that your heart desires. Hiking or not, I’ve gotchu.
02. DO WE HAVE TO HIKE FOR AN ELOPEMENT?
Get in touch and this is one of the first things that we work on figuring out together. During your initial call with me, I will help you see what is possible for your day and begin developing custom collection options with you. I will always tell you to opt for full-day photography coverage because you deserve to have the entirety of your day documented, not just a portion of it. Trust me, you’ll thank me decades down the road when you flip back through the portraits that you had me with you for the whole day versus 4 hours.
03. How much coverage do we need?
You tell me what kind of vibe, season, terrain—and I will get to work. Or maybe you’re thinking about eloping in the same spot where you had your first date. I will absolutely help you find your dream location, even if you’re not sure where that may be. Once you’ve booked, I’ll research some locations that fit the vibe you’re interested in and all the logistics involved to have your ceremony there.
04. WHAT IF WE DON'T KNOW WHERE TO GET MARRIED? WILL YOU HELP US?
Truthfully? It will make for bomb-ass, dramatic photos. It will also make for a story. Think of the adventure. As long as the weather isn’t treacherous to travel in, your elopement is still on. I’m particularly skilled at adjusting plans last minute. Together through the planning process, we will establish a set of backup plans that are just as good, if not better than the original.
05. WHAT IF IT RAINS, SNOWS, OR WEATHER TURNS BAD?
If you’re ready to start the booking process, drop me a line via my CONTACT FORM!! Next, I’ll send over my pricing guide based on what kind of experience you’re looking for. We also set up a time to chat as I want to get to know you, your partner. Once we make sure we’re a good fit, and decide on which package you’d like, I will send over a contract for you to sign. After you’ve signed on the dotted line and paid the non-refundable retainer, you will be officially booked!! (The remaining balance is due 15 days prior to your wedding day. This can be broken up into smaller payments, or paid all at once—whichever is easiest for you!)
06. HOW DOES BOOKING WORK?