1. Introduction: What's your story?
Hello! I'm Ara, and I have owned Aralani Photography since 2008. In 2015, I started Elope Adventurously, focused on adventurous elopements and tiny weddings.
Clad sometimes in muddy boots, sometimes in a pair of heels, my career as a wedding photographer often requires both sets of footwear as I follow my clients on their romantic adventures all over the world. Catamarans, towering ballrooms, glacial lakes, rooftops, mountains, bed and breakfasts, mossy forests and craggy coastlines all enchant me. My spirit is undaunted, and I am forever inspired by relationships, nature, wind and light.
As an award-winner in both wedding and landscape photography, I use a combination of photojournalism, artistic portraiture, and landscape techniques to tell stories heavy on emotion and atmosphere. My goal is to create a vibrant time machine so you can revisit some the best adventures of your life time and time again.
Wallflower as your event is unfolding, loud enough when people need wrangling for portraits, knowledgeable when a gown needs bustling or a boutonniere needs pinning, helpful when toes need pointing and knees need bending and smiles need refreshing, I'm fiercely invested in your memories and experience. I choose my clients as carefully as they choose me.
Photographing weddings constantly reminds me that love is alive, strong, deep, unexpected, and worth fighting for. My couples are very dear to me, and I often follow them on more adventures through their lives. 2020 marks twelve years for me as a wedding photographer, and my husband and I still have sushi dates with my very first wedding couple from 2008.
I live in Portland with my husband, Nathan, who makes me really happy every day. I love hiking, rock climbing, reading, dinner parties, drinking citrusy IPAs, puttering around the garden, playing at the arcade, planning our next big trip, and our dog, Ukee. I'm a shameless waterfallaholic. I like Star Wars a little too much.
I would love to meet you and hear about your love story!
2. How long have you been shooting weddings? How many weddings have you photographed?
I photographed my first wedding in 2008 and my first adventurous elopement in 2012, and have since documented over 300 events.
3. How would you describe your photography style?
I use a combination of wedding and landscape techniques to create vibrant photographs focused on emotion and atmosphere.
4. How well in advance should couples book their wedding photographer?
If you have a specific date, I always recommend booking a year to a year-and-a-half out. For elopements with flexible dates, I believe it's most beneficial to focus on choosing the right day of the week for lack of crowds, and perfect season for the landscape of your choice.
5. What are the different packages that you offer and which one is your most popular package?
My weddings start at $3,350 and my elopements start at $1,750. Creating a photography collection perfectly suited to my couple is really important to me, so during our consultation, we'll talk about schedules and priorities to make sure we have the right number of hours, photographers, albums, etc.
My most popular wedding offering is 8 hours, two photographers, an engagement session, and an Italian leather heirloom album. Many couples choose to add parent/friend album copies, or waiting for a first anniversary to order albums.
For elopements, my signature collection is a 5-hour adventure, timeline and location planning, and an Italian leather heirloom album. Locations play a huge role in my recommendations for hours on elopement days. One stop at a waterfall can easily be wrapped into two hours; waterfall, forest, cliff and coast could be all day. Designing the adventure is part of the magic!
All of my collections include high-resolution photos in an online gallery, and on a thumb drive.
6. Are you the wedding photographer who will be shooting on the wedding day? Who else is there in your team?
For events with 50 or fewer people, I usually document them by myself. Beyond that count, I bring an assistant to capture the candid magic while I'm otherwise occupied with portraits, etc.
7. Do you charge a travel fee? For what distance? What does that cover?
Many of my weddings and elopements involve travel, and I've been as far as Spain and Australia. Travel fees vary a lot depending on the location, but I always keep them as reasonable as possible. Throughout the Pacific Northwest, many of my elopement packages include travel fees. During a consultation, we can run any numbers we need to for plane, hotel, car, etc.
8. Are albums or prints included in your packages?
It depends on the package, but often, yes!
9. How long after the wedding will the couple receive the images? How will they be delivered?
I deliver a robust preview within 2 weeks, and the final artistically-mastered gallery within 10-12 weeks. If you're having a party or need an announcement photo sooner, I will work it into my editing schedule.
10. What is your cancellation and/or refund policy?
A signed contract and 50% non-refundable retainer is required to hold a date. Rescheduling is permitted within one year (longer if discussed). For cancellation, the original retainer can be used for a photography session within one year. With all that being said, I do my very best to accommodate my couples and any emergencies or changes of plan that may occur.