When we got the call from Rachael’s mom about capturing this incredible moment in Paris, we were totally speechless. A few weeks later, plans and deposits were made and we were buying tickets to France! We had several phone and Skype meetings with Topher to plan all of this. They were on their way from Spain to Amsterdam and stopping in Paris for a week, so he wanted to surprise Rachael and propose in the most romantic place on earth.
He told us she loves art, so we made plans for this all to go down at the Louvre. To get her to dress up, Topher told her they were going to a fancy museum and they should pretend to be pretentious art people that day. She didn’t even think anything of it, which just shows how cute and fun their relationship is! They also had to arrive early because Paris tends to get more and more crowded the later it gets. So a sunset proposal was out of the question.
Michael and I flew into Paris a few days before and had time to scope out the pre-arranged spot and also enjoy hot chocolate at my favorite place near the Louvre, Angelina’s. The morning of the proposal was gorgeous. The sun was shining, the temperature was in the 50’s and the streets were peaceful and quiet after sunrise. We arrived at the Louvre around 7:30 am and they were planning on arriving at 8:00 am. At about 7:55, to our dismay, a street cleaner truck was very loudly making it’s way towards our spot. We quickly text Topher and asked him to stall a bit to give the truck time to clean and be on it’s way. Then a few moments later, another truck arrives on scene with a giant water tank in the back. Two men get out and start POWER WASHING the wall right where we planned the proposal. We text him again to stall while we waited almost 15 minutes for this power washing nightmare to be over.
It’s so funny when we look back on it, because we planned everything extremely thoroughly. I mean, these people were flying us out to Paris to capture this moment that would be over in about 15 seconds. We had to make it right! But we could never have planned for a street cleaner and a power washing truck to arrive at the same exact moment we had planned the proposal.
Finally, our spot was clear and ready for them to arrive. Michael and I were hiding behind our coat hoods and sunglasses. I was at a bus stop and Michael was across the street. Rachael and Topher walked down by the Seine River and around to the perfect (and freshly washed) spot. Then, in front of a gorgeous, historic art building with towering archways and columns, Topher got down on his knee and asked Rachael to marry him. It was the sweetest moment with huge grins from both sides!
Then the most fun part for me… we got to run up and surprise Rachael! She has been following our work for awhile and knows who we are. She told Topher after the proposal, “those people over there are taking our picture.” to which he replied, “yea, I think you know who they are!”
The rest of the morning was spent blissfully wandering around the Louvre and it’s gardens with the newly engaged couple. They were completely happy and it was such a joy to capture in the most beautiful setting. I felt like I had to pinch myself several times. We were shooting with clients at the Louvre! What a dream!
I can’t thank Rachael, Topher and Wendy enough for trusting us to capture this for them. I can’t believe how incredible it was, and it makes me teary eyed to think that we had the absolute privilege of photographing something like this. I am sure this is one of the most romantic weeks of Rachael’s life and something she will remember forever. Paris is beautiful, but Paris in the fall is something else entirely. It was magic!