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5 Reasons to Book More than 4 Hours of Photo Coverage

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5 Reasons to Book More Coverage on Your Elopement Day


I wish every elopement day could somehow last forever. Even though I’ve mastered capturing elopements, I’m still waiting on that whole “master of time and space” skill to kick in–so, I can’t freeze time and make your day last longer. (Just know that I wish I could). 

The closest thing you can do to stopping time? Picking the right amount of coverage for your elopement day. And before we even dive into what that might look like for you, I want to be clear–in most cases, I think that means more than four hours. 

Every moment of an elopement day is incredibly special–no matter what you do, where you go, or how you choose each moment to unfold. And to be totally transparent with you, I have captured a number of four-hour elopements that were 100% amazing. Each time, couples (and myself, too) are left with a sense of wonder and joy–but also with the sense that we wish we had just a little bit more time. 

I want to be super clear here–a four-hour elopement day isn’t any less amazing or special than a 12-hour elopement day. The difference between the two is that you simply have more time to soak everything in, relax, enjoy, and breathe in your wedding day. And to me, that’s a huge benefit! 

But that’s not the only reason I often encourage couples to think about adding more time into their elopement day coverage. I actually have a long, long list of them–but to start, here are my favorite five reasons couples should consider more coverage on their elopement day. 

Let’s Be Real–You’ll Want More Time to Explore 

While the amount of coverage you get will directly relate to the type of adventure you’re experiencing, I can pretty safely say that no matter what, you’re going to wish you had more time to explore and soak in the area. One of the beautiful things about adventure elopements is that almost every time, they’re happening in gorgeous places. (That’s one of the benefits of eloping, right?) 

And if you’re choosing an adventure elopement, part of you prioritizes the experience of exploring jaw-droppingly stunning areas. Even if you don’t want to do hardcore hikes or anything intense, just meandering around a beautiful area is an incredible experience–and trust me when I say you’re going to wish you had more time on your wedding day to do that. 

Harriet and Mathew explored the San Juan Mountains during their elopement day, but they wished they'd booked more than eight hours of elopement day coverage.

This increases tenfold if you and your partner really enjoy exploring and soaking in exciting places. I captured an elopement for a couple, Harri and Mat, in the San Juan Mountains–they were a pair who absolutely adored hiking. They booked eight hours with me because they wanted a challenging but fun hike for their elopement day. And guess what? At the end of eight hours, they wished they’d had even more time! 

If you know–or even just suspect– that you and your partner are going to want to soak in the moments in a beautiful place, plan for that! 


More Time Means More Opportunites for Mindfulness 

Mindfulness is meant to help us in all parts of life–especially the ones that tend to fly by. Do you know how they say your wedding day is over in the blink of an eye? It’s true–and for those of you who want to be able to really embrace, enjoy, and remember each moment, mindfulness is going to be key.

The more time you have on your wedding day, the more time you’re giving yourself to practice mindfulness on the most important day of your life. You don’t just have a few hours to breathe everything in; you have several. 

Instead of trying to rush through everything in four, you can pause through and embrace each moment over the course of eight or more. That gives you plenty of time to stop, breathe, and hold every second close to your heart. 


Traveling To and From Takes Time

Whether you realize it or not, getting to and from certain places on your elopement day takes time–and that time more than likely will eat into your elopement day coverage. Don’t get me wrong–I fully believe that your wedding day isn’t just about the photos. But unless your transportation is part of your chosen adventure (like a seaplane, helicopter, or 4×4 vehicle), that’s probably just a means to an end. 

The coverage of your day shouldn’t be focused on how you get somewhere (unless that’s important to you!)–it should be focused on the intentional and meaningful moments that happen where you want them to. Your ceremony, your adventurous hike, your picnic by the lake, your time spent relaxing in a hammock–all of those things deserve to be captured in time. 

If you’re going from Point A to Point B to Point C, realize that that transport is going to take away from your coverage time. Give yourselves the gift of more time in the places that mean the most to you! 


A Little Buffer Never Hurt Anybody 

In fact, it doesn’t just “never hurt;” it really only helps. As much as we sometimes wish we could plan every moment perfectly, the truth of the matter is that delays happen–and this is true on any day (including your elopement day). Maybe it only takes 15 minutes to get from your Airbnb to your ceremony spot, but what if we planned for an hour? That way, if your guests are delayed, your car doesn’t start, or you get lost–you still have plenty of time to do all the things you want to do. 

And you know what? Even if it really does take just 15 minutes to get to your ceremony spot, now you have even more time to enjoy and explore that area together. You can lengthen your ceremony, you can pause and appreciate each moment, or you can take a breath and really soak in the day.

Adding a little buffer time here and there throughout your day might add up to a few extra hours, but all of that is good. Even if you don’t need buffer time, even if things go according to plan exactly, and even if there are no delays whatsoever throughout the day, you still come out a winner because you get more coverage, more time, and more opportunities to relax and soak in your day. 

 Trust me when I say that more time–especially some built-in buffer time–is always appreciated. 


You Can Fit More (and Less) In 

If you have more than four hours of coverage, you won’t be scrambling to get to and from one spot to another, thinking about the clock ticking out of time, or feeling worried about not fully enjoying the moments with the little time you do have.

A bride and groom take their time exploring in a beautiful area where they chose to elope–they had the extra time because they booked extra photo coverage on their elopement day.

When you book more coverage than you think you need, something amazing happens–you can fit more adventure in while experiencing way less stress. Am I really saying that when you book more coverage you can get more adventure and less stress at the same time?  I sure as heck am. That alone is probably reason enough to consider more elopement day coverage. 


More Coverage Means More Documentation of Your Amazing Day 

This one is pretty straightforward–if you book more coverage, you get more photos of your amazing day. Why does this matter? In my opinion, no matter how comfortable anyone is in front of a camera, it takes a little time (sometimes an hour!) to really forget the lens is there. And when I capture elopements, that’s exactly my goal. 

You’re not here to pose or feel uncomfortable at an all-day photoshoot; you’re here to feel everything authentically and get lost in the best day of your life. If you spend a full hour of your day getting comfortable with a camera there, that means you’ve only got three left to feel totally at ease and effortless. 

A bride and groom, who booked more than four hours of elopement coverage, soak in the mountains and the magic of their Colorado elopement day.

Now don’t get me wrong, three hours is plenty of opportunity to capture stunning and meaningful moments–but why settle for three when you could have four? Five? Seven? More coverage means you get the chance to have more time to settle in, get used to the camera, and allow me to melt into the background as you experience the best day of your life as authentically as possible. 


Capturing–and Planning–Your Perfect Elopement Day is My Speciality 

As an elopement photographer, it’s my absolute honor to capture and document authentic days filled with love, emotion, and joy. But I also adore helping couples plan their elopement days, especially when it comes to maximizing the pure happiness they experience. I’m always a fan of more time than less because I believe that your day should be captured from start to finish–but I’m here to help you create an elopement timeline that makes the most sense for you. Reach out to me ASAP, and let’s start chatting about what your perfect-fit elopement coverage looks like!

Join the Facebook Community, Mindful Elopements, filled with free resources, free videos, engaging conversations and questions, and other couples that are exactly like you, in the same place, trying to book an adventure elopement and intimate wedding photographer.



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Alex, Coastal Elopement

"We loved our experience having Marcela as our elopement day photographer.

What was even more special about our experience was her ability to set us at ease months before our day. Through constant communication leading up to, and during, the day we got eloped. Her personality is that, in just four days time, we felt as if we've known her for years. 

Ah, but you're wondering about her photos. We loved every thing about them especially the raw emotion captured in many of the shots."

Caitlin, Alpine Lake Elopement

"My husband and I have been trying to put into words how simply amazing working with Marcela was.

From the start we could tell she truly cared about us, our relationship, and our story. She asked us so many questions, valued what we wanted, and kept up with the ever changing plans that came along with planning a wedding.

She made us feel so comfortable, made us laugh till we cried, and captured our true wholesome love for each other."

"We loved every moment of the day she helped create. Marcela was the perfect photographer for our adventure elopement! She worked tirelessly to make our adventure into marriage happen after our first options were snowed in! Great Sand Dunes felt like the perfect unique place for two Floridians who met in the mountains.

She made us comfortable to be ourselves throughout the whole day while making her job look effortless and fun. Our cheeks hurt from smiling, laughing and a few tears.

Marcela captured every precious moment! Her photography is absolutely stunning every way! I highly recommend Marcela for your elopement or wedding!"

Lauren, Sand Dunes Elopement

Amy, Forest Elopement

"Instead of telling us how to pose or interact with each other, Marcela gave us prompts that seemed simple but made a huge difference.

She asked us to talk about our first date. We discussed the weirdest things we loved about each other (which made us laugh) and how we could fulfill each other’s love languages. Amy and I played games with each other and Marcela captured the energy that happened naturally between us.

I love this shoot because it perfectly captures the love we share. It’s incredible to see that love and admiration encapsulated in a photo! Thank you for this!"

Chris, Anniversary Session

"The photos we just got back from Marcela are giving me CHILLS!! They are absolutely stunning!!!

She did SO MUCH more than just photograph us — she created special moments that I’ll cherish forever. She encouraged Con & I to genuinely interact & share intimate moments together. She prompted us to tell each other things that we love about one other, ways that the other person inspires us, & how being together has positively changed us.

It was more than just a beach shoot. We ended up giving each other precious, heart melting encouragement & that makes these photos all the more treasured to me."

Andrea, Red Rocks Elopement

"We had a pre-meet with her before the big day which definitely helped me feel more relaxed going into the wedding day. She gave us great suggestions and things to think about to be ready with on the wedding. On the day of she showed up early to help scope out the venue. She was creative to try and pull extra joy into our photographs.

When I look at these photos I see more than just beautiful images. I feel the moments that Marcela helped us experience and the connection we had.

I can't thank Marcela enough! We will treasure these moments forever!"

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