Moab, Utah

the hearnes » adventure elopement photographers

family session in the desert near moab, utah with Keith and Brianna Madia and the dogs, Bucket and Dagwood

Making friends when you live on the road is weird. You’re constantly moving, so you don’t have any neighbors but in a way, you have new neighbors every night. You might make some great new friends in a place, bond for a few hours, days, or weeks, and then pick up and move and not see them again for months or years. If you both live on the road full time, good luck. You’ll likely see each other even less unless you get lucky and your circuits match up. It’s very strange, but thankfully social media is a great way to stay connected and maintain (or even grow!) those friendships from afar. Brianna and Keith are fellow van dwellers. My text thread with Bri is a lot of “will you be in XX on these dates?” “No, but will you be around this month?” “How do you feel about driving to XX this weekend to hang out?” and then the wonderful “We decided to come down to XX for a few days to hang while you’re there, let’s play!!” (and also a lot of gifs, screenshots of the silly messages we get, and photos of our dogs doing dumb things). The point being…when our schedules DO align and we DO get to hang out, it’s the best thing ever. 

This particular day was perfect timing. I was feeling a little bummed out from some dumb social media stuff, and Bri had just fled a favorite desert area because it was too crowded that weekend, and the boys were itching for some silly desert climbing adventures. So we parked the vans on the side of a canyon road the boys ran up a tower while the dogs ran circles and Bri + I ran our mouths with the help of some cheap wine. We sat in the little creek in the sun talking about everything from deep life choices to shallow social media frustrations. It felt therapeutic in a way I haven’t experienced in a while, mostly because Bri has a way of bringing the best out of you, and not judging you when the worst comes out along side it ;) 

We ended the evening at one of our favorite overlooks and took a few photos of their sweet family and their metal matriarch, Bertha. If you’ve been following Bri (side note, if not, go do that right now) you know Bertha has a new engine, so we dubbed these photos “new year, new bertha” even though this orange hunk is older than I am. The day was full of belly laughs and deep-heart conversations, and an adventurous tower top-out for our guys, and as we waved the orange van off back to their desert home, I was a little sad, but mostly filled up and thankful for the 24 hours that our lives lined up and allowed us to share the road for a bit.

The Hearnes Adventure Photography is run by Abbi and Callen Hearne, a husband & wife wedding photography team with an emphasis on adventure. They live on the road as full-time nomads in their big white van, allowing them to serve a large portion of the western US including California, Utah, Oregon, Washington, Arizona, Colorado, and Wyoming. They believe love is the greatest adventure and strive to create photos that are epic, romantic, true, and timeless.