It’s been my dream to shoot here in the magic of the central Washington desert scrublands amidst these towering wild horse statues for a long, long time. They’ve enchanted me driving by on the freeway for years, and I can’t believe I finally got to capture them. The Wild Horse Monument is a magical spot to sit and watch the sunset surrounded by the iron silhouettes of the horse statues, and would make an amazing location for an elopement. Sadly, there are no more real wild horses roaming the plains of Washington (or really anywhere else in the US), but the monument, which was installed as an art project in 1990, is a lovely way to envision what it must have looked like when they did.
This area has always struck me as under-appreciated. It’s never really been a popular place; mostly the heat, remoteness, and possibility of rattlesnakes keep everyone away other than concert-goers at the Gorge Ampitheatre in the summer time, but its lonesome expanses are just so stunning to me. Cave B is one of our favorite places to stay, and I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t dying to shoot a wedding there sometime.
Because I loved this spot so much, we worked up a small, editorial shoot in the middle of the busy season with the lovely & talented makeup artist Bethany Yackel Beauty, and my mom, who runs the organic flower farm & fruit orchard Prairie Sky Farms, was kind enough to whip up some gorgeous dusty, desert toned florals for me. Caitlin & Tarnell are a super sweet, married-in-real-life couple, and before they moved across the country to the actual bonafide desert in Phoenix, Arizona, I asked them to model for me in the central Washington desert. Luckily they’re wonderful people and were super patient with me, even when I was massively dizzy & dehydrated from a crazy week of non-stop shoots. Eventually I chugged some water, sheepishly admitted I probably needed to drink more water & take better care of myself during wedding season, and felt good enough to continue shooting. This Wild Horse monument elopement shoot turned out just amazing and it’s one of my favorite styled shoots we’ve ever done.