I absolutely adore shooting surprise proposals. I love hiding in the bushes or at a nearby table, pretending to take pictures of my assistant while I’m really photographing you and your girlfriend on the sly. Deep down, I think that photographing surprise engagements satisfies some childhood dream to become a spy.
Nevertheless, whether or not you hire me to take your photos I hope this blog post helps break down the steps to planning your surprise proposal in Costa Rica.
Step one: Call me
I will walk you through all of these steps and help you formulate the best plan possible based on the day’s tide, where you are staying, etc.
Step two: Pick a day
Preferably a day when sunset corresponds with mid or low tide. That way, we have more beach to play with.
Step three: Figure out the “how”
How are you going to do this? Walking along the beach? At a restaurant table? On a boat? Simple is best. The more simple the plan, the fewer opportunities for unexpected interferences.
Step four: Pick a restaurant
You’ll need to tell her you are going out to the fanciest restaurant in town, so she gets nice and dressed up. Let me know the details and I am happy to make the reservation for you so you don’t have to.
Step five: Choose a diversion
Buy her a surprise massage or spa day – just because you’re the best boyfriend ever – or surf lesson or something she can do by herself the morning of your surprise proposal. You just need to buy yourself 30-40 minutes to come meet with me and run through the plan. While she’s getting her treatment, we’ll go to the spot and go over the details (how long you want to wait once you arrive, more or less where you want to do it, etc). This step can be skipped if its too complicated for you to get away, but if we can make it work it is really nice to meet in person beforehand.
Now that you know what I look like and where I’m going to be when this all goes down, go back to the room and act like nothing out of the ordinary just happened.
Tips to keep in mind:
Remember, the point is for me to capture HER reaction. I can’t tell you how many people forget this and put their girlfriend's back to me! Her face needs to be toward me.
If you sweat a lot (especially when you're nervous), bring a hankercheif/towel and wear a cotton t-shirt underneath your shirt to absorb sweat.
Don't forget the ring. I once had a client that forgot the ring on the seat of his car.