When I look at the Cleveland forecast for this first week of January and see temps reaching into the negatives, it makes me immediately want to hop on a plan to somewhere warm! One of those places being California. Every trip I’ve made out there has been packed full of pure “amazingness”! And while a last minute flight to Cali probably won’t be happening for me at this very moment, I will just have to virtually hop back in time to November with a little visual recap of when I went to visit my friends over in the Central Coast area. 😉
I’m so incredibly thankful that in the world of portrait & wedding photography, it’s more about camaraderie than it ever is about competition. Because of this, so many friendships have been formed over the last few years. A few of them being my friends Sarah (Sarah Kathleen Photography), Lindsey (Lindsey Gomes Photography), Ely (Ely Roberts Photography) and Jenna (Jenna Marie Photo) that all live out in the breathtakingly beautiful Central Coast region. Every time I’d see images up on their blogs, it got me dreaming of a trip that way. So after chatting with another local area fellow photog, Nick, the trip west was booked! Below is a combo of my iPhone and 5D Mark II images so you can get the full experience. 😉
My adventure started with a 3:15am wake up call (yeah…the excitement meant I never even really fell asleep!) and probably one of the best flights ever because I had the adorable 5 year old Elle sitting next to me. We made fruit loop bracelets and she drew all kinds of adorable photos. By the end of the flight, I was sad to part ways with this cutie-pie!
I met Nick up at the San Francisco airport and we rented a car and decided to take the scenic route down to SLO…down the famous Pacific Coast highway. Of course we were like giddy children as soon at we hit Highway 1, and had to stop every 5 seconds to take in the views…
We hit up Bean Hollow Beach
(I like to make silly faces…lol)
Then we hit up Davenport Cove Beach for lunch…by our silliness, I sure you can tell it was time for us to refuel after being on the road for a few hours! 😉
We took a quick stop in Carmel and a few other unnamed cool spots (cellular reception became near zilch for awhile there on the PCH, so no foursquare checkins to reference!)
And then we hit the Big Sur finally! Definitely spectacular views!
Our last stop before we made it into town to our friends was Elephant Seal Vista Point in San Simeon. The beach full of barking seals was so cool as the sun was setting and then the colors in the Pacific Coast sunset made the fact that I had been either in the air or on the open road for the last 12+ hours melt away in it’s beauty!
Once we had a night to rest up, it was time for a photo adventure with my friends! It was kind of fun to be able to get in front of the camera a little bit and to explore the gorgeous vineyards in Paso Robles! These are from our fun golden hour adventure at Hammersky Vineyeards (can I PLEASE GO BACK HERE RIGHT NOW?! 😉 )
Later on when we headed to Cyper Winery, we did some trickery with the iPhone to make their appear to be twice as many Lindsey’s! Haha. The Right is the normal shot. 😉
After some fun at the wineries, I was fortunate enough to meet up with a friend I met when I was in Siesta Key back in September to photograph a wedding. Keith coincidentally happened to also be headed to California the same week, so we spent some time visiting at Pismo Beach and Morro Bay. I think I may now be obsessed with the beach there at Morro Bay…it was one of the most beautiful sights and just so incredibly peaceful!
iPhone panorama shot of Morro Bay
See…old people walking the beach hand in hand…how cute is this place?!
It was a chilly surf that morning!
More cuteness…old man playing fetch with his dogs. <3 <3
Next adventure was exploring the hills and views of SLO with Ely & Nick…this view of the town from here was sick!
We did some more iPhone trickery too at Avila Beach. 😉
Then that night, the whole big group of us headed out to the big bash to celebrate The Central Coast Wedding Standard’s launch party for their e-zine issue #2 with Cameron Ingalls at Greengate Ranch. My lovely host, Sarah, was featured in it, so be sure to hover over the link and check it out!
They had a mini donut truck and ice cream truck! #bestpartyideasever
The last leg of the trip was back in San Francisco…Nick and I did a quick visit to the vista point in Sausalito, just north of the Golden Gate bridge, to get some fun golden hour images of the bridge and the bay. The light was breath-taking that evening!
And just as we were leaving, there was a guy photographing a dancer as the sun was setting, and I thought it’d be fun to get a silhouette of the action. Well just as I was about to click my shutter, they moved and I ended up with the most hilarious image of the two of them…I can’t stop laughing at it every time I see it. 🙂