Princeton grad, Jenna, and her fiance Justin enjoyed a beautiful snowy engagement session at Blue Mountain Resort. Originally meeting in high school, this couple bonded over gaming (wait until you see the old school Pokemon!) and even attended prom together (we have pictures!). You don’t want to miss this custom-tailored, authentic winter engagement session:
Why Rhinehart Photography?
They shared, “We chose you as our photographer because you creatively highlight people’s stories, interests, and personalities, and that’s exactly what we wanted!”
Their backstory includes a lot of gaming, so I had them bring their system along– so fun!
They added, “We also felt more comfortable with you than with any other photographer we spoke to; we felt it would be easy to be ourselves in front of you.”
I love authentic smiles and beautiful backgrounds. Yes, these are definitely in my wheelhouse 🙂
Why Blue Mountain Resort?
There are several things I love about the Blue Moutain Resort setting. One is the view, another is all of the fun elements, like having the open bar and cool space heats to play with. I tried to capture both in this shot:
Justin & Jenna explained, “The setting was inspired because we are both “outdoorsy” so it was a perfect place for us to feel at home.”
They continued, “Snow is just so fun to play with in general! Additionally, we grew up in California, so having photos in the snow is so exciting for us! ”
The Pocono Mountains provided the perfect setting!
Jenna shared, “We met in high school, in French class during our Freshman year. I thought Justin was the cutest guy I had ever seen! The following year I really started to “chase” after him. It took him FOREVER to realize that I liked him! But, he eventually figured it out and asked me to a movie date.”
She continued, “We went to winter ball together that year, junior prom together the following year, and senior ball together our senior year. It is amazing having so many pictures of us together in our prom photos, and those photos have been with us through our long-distance relationship in undergrad, and are now displayed in our home!”
It’s not often that I have a prom portrait to work with, but when I learned about their story and inquired with Jenna, she was like, ‘”Yes, it’s framed, I’ll bring it!”
Eclectic Variety of Photos
I’m very flexible and can easily adapt to different styles depending on what couples want. In this case, Jenna & Justin were all about me capturing their story, interests, wintery setting, and having a good mix of photos.
Here you can see a solid, traditional shot, we squeezed those in between the more creative shots throughout to give them several different options:
A Pink Engagement Ring
Jenna explained, “My ring took me SO LONG to find! I have been looking at engagement rings since high school, and as you can imagine, my taste has drastically changed over time. Justin gave me a promise ring in high school (2013!!) and as we got older I could not wait to pick out my ‘new ring.'”
She continued, “I looked at so many settings and diamond shapes, but I could not stick to liking one for more than a month. That’s when Justin suggested that I should look at colored stones– he thought that a diamond didn’t fit with my tastes. So, we went to a jewelry store for a loose stone/setting event, and this is when I saw these beautiful, hot pink sapphires. Now, I LOVE pink– I love being as “feminine” as possible, because I work as a chemical engineer every day.”
She concluded, “This pink sapphire was “me” 100%, and the beautiful, sparkly setting made it even better! Leave it to Justin to know exactly what I would like!”
I like how the pink popped against this “snow white” background:
Their Pokemon Backstory
Justin shared, “So we both played a lot of Pokemon and video games growing up, and that was one of the things we did for fun together since the beginning. We play games together (and against each other!) as one of the ways to hang out and have fun. I think it is special for both of us because we both grew up playing the same games with our siblings, and now we can share it together. We are so excited for our future family and all of the gaming we will do together!”
Even though my main focus was capturing the fun they have while playing Pokemon, I also carefully selected my angle and lens to play up elements of the Blue Mountain Resort— ahem blue, mountains, in the distance simultaneously.
Gotta catch ’em all!!
Justin smiled, “There was never a specific moment where I fell in love with Jenna. From when we started dating I just knew that I could marry her. That’s why I wanted to give her a promise ring in high school.”
He went on, “She was always so easy to be around and I could be my true self. Whenever we do anything, whether it be going grocery shopping or just hanging around the house, we are always laughing, cracking jokes, and making each other smile.”
He added, “She is truly my best friend. Even when we do have something serious to do or talk about we try to keep it lighthearted as well as we are always looking to help each other in any way possible.”
Haaa, yes they are definitely up for anything fun! They brought this Poke ball along to the shoot and I was like, “Guys, I have this crazy idea…” and they were like, “Haaaa of course, we are up for anything!”
Authentic, Comfortable Engagement Photos
While I always do my best to make my couples feel super comfortable throughout their session, I’m not gonna lie, there was snow on the ground and it was mighty chilly that day! I gave Justin a tip, why don’t you whisper something sweet in her ear? He was like sure!
Jenna smiled, “Justin kept whispering jokes in my ear throughout the whole session! Even though we were both cold, he was coming up with such funny things to make me laugh, and now we have pictures with my genuine smile because of it.”
Note again, the Blue Mountains in the background…
Such a Gentleman!
Justin shared, “In 2019 Jenna and I went to Fall Ball, which is a social event hosted by Princeton University for Graduate students. It is a dance where everyone gets to have a good time and “party” with their friends. We had taken the bus from our old apartment to Jenna’s friends’ apartment to have some drinks and socialize before we went to the dance. All of us were having a good time and chatting when we all went over to the dance. We had a great time dancing all night with some of the other students but it came time to leave and Jenna’s feet were hurting…”
He continued, “…She had bought a new pair of heels for the dance and after a few hours of dancing, she couldn’t wear them anymore. To make matters worse the buses had stopped running as it was two in the morning! So I did the only thing we could think of and I let her wear my shoes and walked in my socks. We walked the mile and a half back to our apartment, the whole way home making jokes and trying to avoid the rough parts of the sidewalk and rocks.”
Creative, Vibrant, Authentic Engagement Photography
They explained, “We are hoping our photos capture us as a couple and our personalities; we don’t want to have typical “stock” wedding photos. Someday, when we have kids, we want them to look back on our wedding photos and feel our love and personalities!”
I love the unique, romantic look of this shot (there are more elegant photos in this velvet dress in the full set, but this is my favorite with the two of them silhouetted against the snow of Blue Mountain Resort).
Hungry For More?
- Winter Engagements: To see more winter engagement sessions, check out a few other entries on my blog, here.
- Palace Weddings: Jenna & Justin will be married next year at The Palace at Somerset Park. To get a sneak peek of their wedding venue and to check out some of my work there, check out this link.