Two weeks ago, I embarked on what I called "a secret mission." I got up early on Thursday the 2nd of February, wrapped up warm, grabbed my camera bag, and got into my car. I slowly made my way down to Kynance Cove (which happens to be one of my favourite places in the entire world) and got ready for one of my most exciting photo jobs to date: I was about photograph a man proposing to his girlfriend of 7 years! David got in touch with me via Cartel Photo Agency, the photography agency of Falmouth University, and wondered if I would be interested in photographing his proposal. Of course, I said yes, without a moment's hesitation. He had the entire thing planned out: we mapped out where I would be (pretending to be a landscape photographer) and where he would get down on one knee, and even sent me a huge album of photos of both him and Jess, just so I would know what they looked like (you never know, maybe there's another couple getting engaged on the same day in the same place)!
When the big day arrived, I woke up to hear the wind howling outside. I knew it was going to make the day a bit more interesting...but I had no idea just how windy it ACTUALLY was until I got out of my car at Kynance. I'm not even joking when I say that I thought the wind would rip the door off my car! I arrived almost an hour before David had planned to propose, so I had plenty of time to get to my location... and thank goodness I did give myself that time! As I made my way down to the beach, and saw the sheer size of the waves, I knew there was absolutely no way I would be able to get across the cove in the usual way. Thankfully, there is a high tide route, so I slowly made my way up and around the hill, trying very hard not to fall over.
Now, to put it into perspective, David wanted to propose on higher ground, on the other side of the cove. On a normal day, it's easy to get there...you just walk onto the beach, walk across it and walk up some steps. On this day, the beach was non existent, and the waves were coming up extremely high. And you know what that meant? The staircase to get to said high ground was inaccessible. Panic washed over me for a few seconds as I feared I wouldn't be able to get to where I was meant to be. To top it off, Kynance had no signal, and I had no idea where Jess and David were. My worst nightmare scenario was bumping into them both, and Jess figuring the whole thing out before David had even had a chance to propose. I did not want to be that photographer who ruined his proposal!
After the initial panic had worn off, I got my thinking cap on and began to look around. I noticed a small house behind me with a light on, and suddenly it clicked: They must be staying in there! The waves were incredible, and I made my way in front of the house, on the higher ground, and began to photograph the waves - partly because I really wanted to photograph them, but also in a hope that David might notice me, and show himself. The plan worked, David came up to the window, and gave me a wave.
Still unsure of what would happen next, I decided that rather than stay in sight, I would hide around the corner and wait till they came out, and see where David took Jess. When they eventually did pop out of the house, David began to make his way towards the steps....and I think at that point I almost threw up. I had no idea how he was planning on getting to them! How would I get up there? Would I have come all this way only to miss him propose!? Those thoughts all came and went in a matter of seconds, and before I knew it, I was in full on stealth mode, following them up, trying VERY hard not to be spotted by Jess. They scaled the side of the cliff, and made their way onto the steps. Adventurous couple? Definitely! David noticed me behind them, and slowed right down, glancing back every few seconds to see where I was. I made it to the top of the hill, camera in hand, and watched David guide Jess to the edge of the cliff. Before I could even take a moment to think, he was down on one knee and proposing! I'm not going to lie, all that went through my head at this point was "JUST GET IT IN FOCUS, JUST GET IT IN FOCUS, JUST GET IT IN FOCUS." As you can see, I did!
When it was all over, David pointed up towards me and Jess realised that her proposal had been photographed, the nerves inside me vanished. I made my way over, gave them both a hug, and congratulated them on their engagement. We spent the following hour walking around the cove, chatting, admiring the waves, battling the wind, and taking photos of one of the most memorable moments of their lives.
I can't begin to tell you how flattered I am to have been asked to be a part of such a huge moment in these two's lives. It was such a wonderful morning, and these photos will certainly remain some of my favourites for years to come.