elcome to the journal for April O’Hare Photography! Here you’ll find all of my latest photographic outings with the couples, families, seniors and small businesses that I get to work with and make beautiful photographs for. You may also see a personal post here and there discussing my life or my travels with my teeny family of one husband and three cats! Sometimes I even write advice articles with tips to help make your photo experience better which you can check out under the “Educational” category.  

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Colorado Hot Air Balloon Engagement Photography

May 5, 2012

I have one of the most interesting engagement sessions I’ve ever had the pleasure of photographing featured on the journal today.  Today’s balloon engagement session is featuring one of the neatest activities I’ve ever had the chance to do and I have to thank Theresa & Paul for being willing to let me photograph it for them.  Not too long ago they asked if I might be willing to go up in a hot air balloon with them for their engagement photos.  It took me about two seconds to decide that I would absolutely be down for such a unique experience:)  I actually met Theresa at Rocky Mountain Rollergirls’ roller derby so it wasn’t surprising to me that she would be adventurous enough to want to capture this for her engagement photos.  I grew up near the launch site and I remember seeing a lot of hot air balloons when I was at school but I never thought I would be up there in the sky myself.  It was definitely an unforgettable experience!  There are a few things about hot air ballooning that I had no idea about.

1.) You have to get up at an un-godly hour (for me that is!) to go.

2.) When you are up in the air, it is so still.  I didn’t feel any wind even though we were definitely moving.  It’s such a surreal experience to just be floating in mid-air.  It is actually more calm and peaceful than I was expecting.

3.) You can’t really steer hot air balloons.  They sort of just go where the wind wants to take them.  Which means you basically just have to land wherever you can manage it.  And since the basket doesn’t have wheels you bounce when you land.

4.) It is tradition to have a champagne toast upon landing.  I’m not sure if this is the exact one our pilot used, but it is very similar:

“The winds have welcomed us with softness.

The sun has blessed us with its warm hands.

We have flown so high and so well

that God has set us gently back into

the loving hands of mother earth.”

Huge thanks to Life Cycle Hot Air Balloons for keeping us safe and for the interesting landing on a sidewalk somewhere in Lafayette.  I felt like some sort of old-fashioned celebrity as dogs barked at our strange aircraft and residents came out from their houses to stare and take photos of us as we landed right in their neighborhood.  A few of them even came over to help pack up the balloon upon landing.

Theresa & Paul,

Thank you SO MUCH for letting me tag along on that unforgettable and beautiful ride!  I hope that you can always relive that morning when you look at your adventurous hot air balloon engagement photos!

I will be in touch very soon so that you can see the rest!

April

Very first photo of the morning:)
Colorado Hot Air Balloon Engagement Session

All the magic gets packed away in this van!
Colorado Hot Air Balloon Engagement Session

Colorado Hot Air Balloon Engagement Session

I wanted to take advantage of that pretty sunrise light!
Colorado Hot Air Balloon Engagement Session

Had to get a shot of the happy couple in front of that tree!
Colorado Hot Air Balloon Engagement Session

Colorado Hot Air Balloon Engagement Session

This was the hot air balloon next to us that was also being prepared for a flight.
Colorado Hot Air Balloon Engagement Session

Colorado Hot Air Balloon Engagement Session

Cute:)
Colorado Hot Air Balloon Engagement Session

Colorado Hot Air Balloon Engagement Session

Haha, Theresa you are so cute!
Colorado Hot Air Balloon Engagement Session

Watching the balloon inflate
Colorado Hot Air Balloon Engagement Session

I LOVE this one!
Colorado Hot Air Balloon Engagement Session

In the basket before take-off
Colorado Hot Air Balloon Engagement Session

The balloon is almost ready for take off.
Colorado Hot Air Balloon Engagement Session

Getting ready to go!
Colorado Hot Air Balloon Engagement Session

Colorado Hot Air Balloon Engagement Session

This was taken before we got very high up
Colorado Hot Air Balloon Engagement Session

There’s Niwot, where I went to High School.
Colorado Hot Air Balloon Engagement Session

Those flatirons sure are amazing!
Colorado Hot Air Balloon Engagement Session

View of Highway 287 over Lafayette, CO
Colorado Hot Air Balloon Engagement Session

What a spectacular view of Boulder from way up high!
Colorado Hot Air Balloon Engagement Session

The pilot let Paul and Theresa fire up the balloon
Colorado Hot Air Balloon Engagement Session

Longs Peak and a hot air balloon
Colorado Hot Air Balloon Engagement Session

So sweet!
Colorado Hot Air Balloon Engagement Session

Colorado Hot Air Balloon Engagement Session

That dial on the right is showing how fast we were going
Colorado Hot Air Balloon Engagement Session

Colorado Hot Air Balloon Engagement Session

Our fearless pilot:)
Colorado Hot Air Balloon Engagement Session

That’s Denver in the middle way off in the distance
Colorado Hot Air Balloon Engagement Session

Wide shot of the balloon from the basket from the air:)
Colorado Hot Air Balloon Engagement Session

And a more zoomed in version…
Colorado Hot Air Balloon Engagement Session

Colorado Hot Air Balloon Engagement Session

I like that you can see our shadow in the reservoir!
Colorado Hot Air Balloon Engagement Session

We landed on the sidewalk, but moved the basket and balloon over to the street upon landing to have more room for deflation
Colorado Hot Air Balloon Engagement Session

Paul & Theresa looking good after the flight:) Here they are stabilizing the basket.
Colorado Hot Air Balloon Engagement Session

Colorado Hot Air Balloon Engagement Session

It was quite a project to get it all packed away!
Colorado Hot Air Balloon Engagement Session

Theresa releases the balloon which helps the pilot determine the wind conditions
Colorado Hot Air Balloon Engagement Session

After the flight, we munched on some food which was on this cute quilt:)
Colorado Hot Air Balloon Engagement Session

End of flight champagne toast!
Colorado Hot Air Balloon Engagement Session

I persuaded Paul & Theresa to follow me out to a trail for a few more traditional photos after the flight.
Colorado Hot Air Balloon Engagement Session

Colorado Hot Air Balloon Engagement Session

Theresa, you are one gorgeous gal!
Colorado Hot Air Balloon Engagement Session

One cute couple!
Colorado Hot Air Balloon Engagement Session

Colorado Hot Air Balloon Engagement Session

Interested in getting your own hot air balloon engagement photos done? Check out the WEDDINGS area of my site!

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  1. tina stinson says:

    LOVE THEM!!! WOW!!!!!1! Now I want a hot air balloon!!!!! So amazing, you captured it beautifully!

  2. yvonne says:

    Amazing!!!! Looks like a ton of fun! What a great idea!!! Now I want to go on a hot air balloon ride 😉

  3. batty says:

    Oh man, these are just amazing!!! You guys are so cute, congrats! April, stunning job as usual.

  4. Jackie says:

    How cool are these?!?! So much fun and you captured them perfectly!!

  5. Alexis says:

    What an amazing idea! I love it!!! And they look so happy and in love:)

  6. Awesome! This is one of the coolest engagement sessions I’ve ever seen!

  7. Katherine says:

    What an amazing session! That looks like so much fun! They look like such a fun couple very much in love. Beautiful pictures!

  8. OH BOY – these are fabulous. You’re a braver woman than I am 😉 Beautiful captures and what a gorgeous fun loving couple. Great work.

  9. Salina says:

    These are so unique, colorful and fun. What a great idea for a session, how fun you got to experience it with the couple.

  10. LOVE IT! How romantic. So awesome for them to have you take photos so they’ll always remember.

  11. Kori says:

    These are awesome. Looks like an amazing session!

  12. rose says:

    Wow, these are just amazing! How fun that must have been! Gorgeous couple!!! They must be so thrilled with the pictures!

  13. Julia says:

    Wow, that looks like so much fun! Congrats Theresa!!

  14. theresa says:

    I still can’t get over these colors–they’re so rich! and these comments sure make a girl blush. very sweet words! I had to read them to Paul…I was like, “Paul, people say that we look like we’re in love!” –haha…

    I had a perfect time up there with you, Paul, and our pilot! Can’t thank you enough for braving this adventure with us!