I first met Artur and his family when I photographed his sister Joanna’s wedding in Naples, Florida almost two years ago. I have photographed Joanna and Mike three times now, and it’s always so fun to catch up with them when I’m in Florida. When Joanna contacted me a few weeks ago to ask when I’d be in Florida again, I was excited to hear that her brother was looking for a photographer for his proposal to Courtney! Within a couple of days, I had talked through the details with Artur and booked my travel to Orlando for the big day.
As the day got closer, Artur and I talked through exactly how he wanted to propose. He mentioned that his sisters would be setting up a romantic scene with flowers and candles for their pictures and that I was supposed to play it off like that was just something I did for them. Apparently, it’s common for Artur and Courtney to get yearly pictures together, so she wasn’t suspecting when he set up the session and told her they were getting photos taken that day. She mentioned later that she did find it a bit odd that he was insistent on doing it that week, because she’d just had surgery. But, she went along with it because it seems very important to him. Artur is currently working on an engineering degree and kept telling Courtney that a proposal would come next year, after he’d finished school.
I met up with Artur’s sisters at the cutest park in Celebration, Florida on the day of the proposal. They were setting up the flowers and candles. We talked about how nervous Artur was, and how they were going to hid behind some bushes with both sets of parents until the proposal happened. One of my daughter’s had come to Florida with me and they welcomed her right in to help with the decorating and hiding. She was so excited to be a small part of the big moment.
Once the decorating done and family was hidden, Artur and Courtney arrived. I met up with them a little way away from the amphitheater, getting to know them a bit and stopping a few times for some photos. As they started walking toward the amphitheater, Courtney noticed the set up of flowers and candles. Artur cleverly asked, “Karen, did you do all this for us?” I took full credit, and later Courtney said I seemed so sweet that she didn’t really think twice about it. 🙂
Artur led her up to the amphitheater where I instructed them to stand inside the flower petals. I posed them a few different ways, waiting for Artur to get down on one knee and pop the question. At one point, I saw him glance to my left where his family was hiding, which you can see captured in one of the photos below. I could tell he was nervous, but finally he did it!
Courtney’s reaction was PRICELESS! She was so expressive and excited. Once she said yes and Artur stood up, their families came out of hiding with loud celebration and champagne. Courtney was so surprised to see everyone and that they had all been in on the moment. I loved one point where Courtney just kept staring at the ring with her dad. What a joyous occasion!
After some celebrating and family photos, we continued with some photos of the newly engaged couple. I could have photographed them all day! The way these two look at each other is just beautiful. As we walked around Amphitheater Park, Courtney just kept looking at the ring, then at Artur and exclaiming, “I can’t believe it! You said a year so I had no idea!” Artur did such a great job planning the whole thing, and I’m so honored that I got to be a small part of it. I hope to continue photographing this family and the big and small moments in their lives throughout the years.
Congrats Artur and Courtney!
Want to see more beautiful engagement photos like this Celebration Florida engagement and proposal? Head over here!