Why should I elope instead of having a big wedding? A photographers point of view

Weddings Ceremonies are a celebration between two families coming together. The Bride and Groom are at the center of it all, but when everything is said and done, it really seems more about the party than it does about the couple. The couple just becomes the “reason” for for celebration.

Let me explain in a little more detail.



When you start planning your wedding, you start looking for a venue to fit all the people attending. Deciding who to invite becomes a huge endeavor. Everyone has an opinion about who should come and before you know it, you’re inviting friends of your parents that watched you grow up all your life.

Now you have to decide what kind of food they will eat. Does one person out of the hundreds attending need a special meal to fit their lifestyle?

Ok, the food is done…. now, how are they going to get to the wedding? Where are they going to stay? You know you will have to provide hotel options and directions to the venue right?

Everything from here on out is one-on-one meetings with all the vendors, which you have to make time for. The first (after your venue) should be your photographer. Most couples go with the first photographer they interview with, because they are already too exhausted from the many choices available and how in the world do you really know if they are going to come through for you or not? You don’t and that’s honestly the worst thing about planning a wedding. You have to go off of reviews, reputation and hope all of those are legit.

Then you have to taste cakes, meet with florists, find a stylist that doesn’t make you look like a doll the day of your wedding, find tuxes for the men, because they probably aren’t going to do it… the list goes on and on and by the time you get half way through it all, the stress becomes unbearable. Everyone has an opinion, especially Mom because she never got the wedding she wanted in the first place, and now she trying to get it through yours.

Your groom-to-be is doing everything he can to stay out of the planning, because he can feel the stress from a mile away. Have you ever watched the first "Sex in the City movie”? That really is the perfect example of exactly what I’m talking about!

All a man wants, is the adventure your life together is going bring! He loves you just the way you are and weddings have a way of bringing out the worst in brides. That’s because it isn’t you! It’s you accommodating everyone else, planning it all, so they can be there as you exchange vows and then party with unlimited alcohol.

This is when couples start hearing more about the word “Eloping”.


Now let's talk about elopements and why I no longer shoot weddings as a professional photographer. My couples have the time of their life alone in the mountains! There’s no stressing over who to invite, because it’s just them. The drive or hike to the location of their ceremony is an adventure, because they haven’t seen it yet, but the views heading their are amazing!


The anticipation builds. They aren’t worried about any details, because the two most important details are holding hands and enjoying the ride!

We arrive at the ceremony location. Not a soul in sight, except me taking pictures (which you barely notice) and you two gazing at the amazing view in front of you!

This is where you are going to get married!!! We start your ceremony just as the sun is rising over the mountains. You exchange vows, almost at a whisper, because you are so close, you don’t have to raise your voice for anyone else to hear. You look in each others eyes, hands embraced and kiss.

There are no words that can describe the feeling of it all.

You turn to look at the landscape in attendance of your wedding. It’s emotional and you never see me taking pictures, but I’m capturing it all. You’re married and you did it all the way you wanted! We start taking pictures of the two of you with the amazing scenery in the background! You pop champagne, you laugh, kiss, and hold each other…. it doesn’t feel real, but it is.

It’s the most amazing moment of your life and no one or nothing is going to get in the way of the two of you right here on the top of this mountain.

From here, you can go on whatever adventure you choose! This is the start of your life together, so you should do something fun and exciting and there is a ton of things to do in Telluride Colorado!

If you were at a normal wedding, you’d be heading to the reception, meeting everyone at every table as they say congratulations, but instead you're in the mountains, so you just sit together enjoy the quiet power of it all. What you do from here on out is your choice. Your dinner is on us that night, but your adventure begins now and we can help you with planning that.

The biggest concern I see in most brides is that they don’t want to disappoint anyone, especially their parents. Parents have a pre conceived notion of what a wedding should be. They aren’t familiar with the NEW style of elopements and often times if you explain it to them, they get it and secretly wish they would have done the same thing, but it wasn’t ok to do that when they were younger… it is now!


We at Elope Telluride (A husband and wife Photography/Assistant team) make your wedding day the most memorable experience of your life. It’s something that you will never get tired of talking about! Often times, our couples come back to the mountains for their anniversary and relive this special moment in time, because it was so amazing!

Marriage is forever and we all need reminders of why we fell in love in the first place. Every year, you can come back to the same location and remember it all and how amazing it was! The adventure continues!

You won’t get that from a ceremony with hundreds of people.

You only get that out in nature, where adventure begins.

- Joe Hendricks

Joe HendricksComment