Most of the time, we're working. In one way or another, we're always telling our friends and family, "Sorry, can't I'm working." Last April was no different. Mark and Christine both live in Germany but came back to Mark's hometown to see family and do a Cherry Blossom engagement session in D.C. A mutual friend recommended us to Mark and Christine. (Turns out Mark's hometown isn't too far from Clarissa's.) We had a Google Hangout call with them. Then, without them knowing it, we got hired to do the shoot on Clarissa's birthday. Clarissa's main conversation with her family about birthday plans basically went like this: "Sorry, I'm working." "On your birthday?" "Yes." Clarissa couldn't resist doing a shoot with a couple who has such a lovely story with a Hasselblad she rented for a wedding and her birthday. (It also turns out that D.C. was too warm and the Cherry Blossoms peaked early, then froze and then almost bloomed.)
We asked Mark and Christine about their story because this is the true study abroad love story.
How did you two meet?
In 2010, we both went to France. Mark had just finished his studies and was looking for an opportunity to spend some time abroad and I had to spend a semester in France as part of my studies. We both worked at a school and shared an apartment together. After 6 months of just being roommates, we finally decided to give into our feelings for each other despite the fact that we had to go back home in just a month. But Mark decided to follow me to Germany and he hasn’t left ever since!
How did he propose?
While Christmas Eve with the family was just as every other year’s, December 27th would become a magical day us. We decided to celebrate Christmas at home in Munich just the two of us and do what we love most: cooking. And so we began a relaxed day together in the kitchen and cooked away. After the second course (a superb Beef Wellington), we made ourselves comfortable on the couch with a nice bottle of wine. Mark started reminiscing about old memories and listed all of the milestones we had accomplished together so far. While I interrupted him several times at the beginning, I suddenly noticed that Mark seemed nervous and that’s when I realized that we were about to reach another milestone in our relationship.
Where are you getting married?
We are getting married in Germany, so for all of our family from the U.S. it will be a destination wedding.
What did you each wear to your session?
First, we were thinking about our outfits for days in advance. But once the day of the session came around we just grabbed something that we feel comfortable in and that felt nice but not too overdone for a walk around the Mall.
What kind of look were you going for?
We didn’t really have a look we were going for, we really wanted to capture some pictures of Mark’s home and we wanted it to be relaxed and I think you can see in the pictures that we had a great time and just enjoyed ourselves being all smiley and giggly.
Do you have any tips or advice for other couples about to have engagement photos taken?
You will be nervous for about the first 10 minutes. But once you get over them just try to be yourselves and enjoy! It’s not about THE perfect shot, it’s about you as a couple. And trust us, Nicholas and Clarissa were more than perfect capturing those special moments that define you as a couple. You will love the pictures of uncontrollable laughter/emotions more than any of the posed ones.
How was your overall session experience?
Nicholas and Clarissa make it very easy to work with. In the end, it was more like a walk with some friends and in between we shot some amazing pictures. We completely trusted the duo and they know their job very well and make it easy for you to relax and just be yourselves.
They're ADORABLE. What are also adorable are their Hasselblad photos. (Thanks to Indie Film Lab for the developing and scanning!)
Here are a handful of more photos from their engagement session as well.