Jessica and Tate: Engagement Session at Cades Cove

Love in the Great Smoky Mountains

The wonderful thing about the Great Smoky Mountains National Park (GSMNP) is the diversity it offers for photographs.  And even if you go to a popular site such as Cades Cove, the 11-mile loop road that affords you mountain vistas, historic structures, and plenty of wildlife, you can always find a spot different from the last time.  I just cannot run out of places.

Goose doing his Snoop Dogg impersonation

Pets During an Engagement Session

Jessica and Tate wanted to do their engagement pictures with two special guests - their two dogs, Maverick and Goose.  Jessica is a student at the University of Tennessee's veterinary school so these two guys had to be part of their owners' life events - and yes, they will be at the wedding next year.

They're good boys - of course they are - but the shoot was a bit of a challenge because for a dog there are just too many distracting smells in the park.  And then there are those other "dogs," the big brown ones who won't hang around to make friends.  EWasy now - I am talking about the deer we encountered, not any bears.  Thankfully.

Laugh it off - it still makes for memories!

A little patience with the four-legged members of the family can go a long way and bring extra warmth to your pictures.

The Pros and Cons of Outdoor Sessions

Let's face it, though - if you're looking for a clean and controlled environment, then an engagement session outdoors during a Southern summer is probably not going to be enjoyable.  There is  the heat.  There are the gnats - lots and lots of gnats.  Weather can be unpredictable - during Jessica and Tate's session rain "threatened."

But there is another way of looking at that: it made for beautiful skies.  There are fields of gorgeous tall grass and structures with beautifully weathered wood.  This is not a city park - this is the great outdoors and if you are willing to make the drive (as I am), the GSMNP gives you a breathtaking setting for your engagement pictures.  And with its size, even crowds can't get in the way.

The clouds and shifting light created stunning beackdrops.

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