It’s been said that “we wander for distraction but we travel for fulfillment.” I discovered the true meaning of this statement on the adventure of a lifetime! The Seniorologie Road Trip was amazing! Seeing the opposite coast, spending quality time with amazing women, talking photography, business and more was extremely fulfilling to me. What started out as a dream and an idea turned into something that gave me new excitement for my business, inspiration and friendship.
We began our journey in San Francisco. Spanki Mills and I met up with our two brave road trippers, Carole and Amy, and started the trip with an awesome photo shoot. Sutro Baths was the spot of our shoot. While it was cold and a bit misty, we were still able to capture some amazing images. We were joined by some other awesome photographers for the shoot and had a great time shooting and learning from each other.
Our models for San Francisco were two girls from South Carolina. One of my very first reps happens to go to school in San Francisco and a friend of hers from home was visiting so they made the perfect models for our shoot out. It was so great to catch up with them and I loved being able to share this experience with them.
After our shoot, we enjoyed some Q&A time with out attendees. I think it is such a great experience just chatting with others that share a passion for what we do. Hearing how someone else does something or gaining insight into ideas that will help in business is invaluable.
The next day we were off on our adventure!! Loading up four women’s luggage was a bit of a challenge but we managed to get it all in the car and head out on our way. Highway 1 down the coast is every bit as amazing as it sounds! The views, the scenery and the conversation in the car was amazing.
Our first stop was Big Sur. This rugged stretch of California’s Central Coast was everything I thought it would be. Quaint, gorgeous and a perfect stop on our road trip. We stayed at Glen Oaks Big Sur which is a small motor lodge that is decorated with a modern mountain vibe. The locals were so nice and we were able to relax, grab lunch at The Big Sur Roadhouse before our photo shoot.
The hair and makeup team for the Big Sur photo shoot was unique. Glamology is a mobile trailer that can go anywhere to get models ready for an event. So with the beautiful coastline as the backdrop and a field of cows, the hair and makeup team pulled over on the side of Highway 1 and got our models ready for the shoot! We all just couldn’t believe how amazing it was to be able to just park anywhere and get two girls ready for a fun photo shoot.
Because of the forest fires, we were unable to shoot at our original destination. But being able to change and go with the flow is part of a road trip. So luckily Spanki had visited Big Sur a few days before and was able to fine a location that was perfect.
Pfieffer Beach is this small secluded beach down a skinny winding road. At the end of the road is white sand and huge rocks that are the perfect backdrop for a photo shoot. It was a bit chilly but the sun was shining and we were able to meet up with another attendee who joined us for the shoot.
Our two models were sisters so it was awesome to be able to capture them together. The relationship between two sisters is very special and capturing that relationship on camera was a pleasure.
After the shoot, we went to a yummy restaurant that was in what seemed like a treehouse. The views were breathtaking and the food was delicious. Breaking bread and having a meal after such a fun filled day was a great chance to connect with our road trippers and talk about things they struggle with in their businesses.
The next morning we were back on Highway 1 heading for San Luis Obispo. The central coast of California is full of cute towns with that ultimate California vibe. We wanted to stop in each one of them to explore and take photos but we had to stay on schedule.
When we arrived in the super cute, hip town of San Luis Obispo we met up with photographer Kiwi Ashby! Kiwi allowed us to use her studio and her models for the photo shoot and I can’t thank her enough for all she did to help. Her studio was right in the middle of downtown SLO and we were able to walk around and explore the town while the models got ready. After a yummy lunch, we were off to Pismo Dunes.
I have never seen anything quite like Pismo Dunes. There were sand dunes as far as the eye could see. I felt as if I were in another country, some exotic desert. I was definitely getting a bit jealous of the amazing locations that Californians have to choose from at this point in the trip. The diverse landscapes available to photographers must be a dream come true.
We had some awesome photographers meet up with us at the dunes for our shoot and the models were perfect for this location. With flowy dresses and bare feet, this location gave us something completely different to photograph than what we had experienced thus far. While we were shooting, we could hear the sounds of the four wheelers and dune buggies in the background which gave us a unique atmosphere to shoot in. The sand was a perfect reflector and the sun set over the dunes was magical.
That night we drove to LA. We had to be in LA for hair and makeup for the models the next morning so we wanted to get there and be able to rest. We bunked for the night in a cool hotel called The Custom Hotel and the next morning met our next two models before the shoot.
The LA shoot location was at a beautiful mission. The old buildings provided lots of texture for our photo shoot. Our models were styled in clothing from Free People that completely matched our location. The mission provided a backdrop filled with gardens, arches, buildings, doorways and more. The attendees were able to capture some unique photos and many said they may use this location in the future for photo shoots.
After the shoot was over, we wanted a bit of time to reflect. We tried really hard to find a nice spot on a beach to watch the sunset but the fog had other plans. So we discussed the trip, what we loved, what we might do differently and really dug deep with our two attendees into what they wanted for their businesses.
Even though it was hard to say goodbye, the road trip had to end sometime. We all had to get back to our families and businesses. I feel like that old movie where they say, “We will always have Paris.” But in our case, “We will always have California!” This trip truly was amazing. I have always wanted to do something like this and I am so glad that I finally got the chance to do it. I couldn’t have asked for better road trip companions. These ladies made the trip the best it could be. I only wish we could do it all over again!!
Travel is now part of my soul. I know that the more I travel the more I will learn and the more my eyes will be open. I hope to get the opportunity to continue traveling, meeting other photographers that share a passion for senior photography and seeing amazing things on future journeys! A big thank you to Spanki, Carole and Amy for being a part of this journey!! Love you all!