Tracie Howe Photography – Seattle Wedding Photographer | Seattle elopement photographer | Destination wedding and elopement photographer | Pacific Northwest wedding and elopement photographer | Family and lifestyle photographer | Travel photographer based in Seattle. » Seattle destination wedding and travel photographer. Specializing in documentary and candid photography for adventurous souls wanting a destination wedding or elopement. I love working with mountain-climbing, sea-loving, travel-wanderlusting free-spirits, and I hope you will contact me for your next adventure!

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Technically this Deception Pass elopement shoot was only part 1 of David and Alana’s epic elopement. I say epic because they hired me for their photos in Washington, followed by their elopement ceremony and more couple photos down in Cabo San Lucas! It was amazing working with them!

The Washington shoot was the first to happen, even though I jumped the gun on posting their Cabo elopement here. Can you blame me? I was excited!

Anyway, Deception Pass, or more specifically Rosario Head, is one of my absolute favorite places to photograph couples… in Washington state! It requires only a few minutes of easy hiking and there are never many people around. And, of course, it’s absolutely stunning as you will see in the photos!

David and Alana were the perfect subjects to highlight this gorgeous landscape. They looked amazing, especially when in each other’s arms. That’s when they both lit up. They are sweet and fun and sexy! I loved every minute of our shoot!

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Los Cabos destination elopement


Marquis Los Cabos Resort & Spa | David & Alana

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David and Alana originally came to me looking for what I imagine every elopement photographer wants – just the couple photos in a beautiful location. I just didn’t realize that’s all they wanted from me until we met, so I asked them when and where they were actually getting married. It turns out that they were having a Los Cabos destination elopement in Mexico at the Marquis Los Cabos resort.

In response to this, of course I had to inquire about shooting their Los Cabos destination elopement ceremony! I don’t think it had occurred to them to hire a photographer from Seattle that would fly all the way to Los Cabos for an elopement. Silly David and Alana! Honestly, I don’t think most people realize how much we photographers DO want to travel for a shoot. Especially photographers like me who live for travel!

So, we worked out a deal to do their originally planned shoot in Washington state AND their ceremony shoot in Cabo! Seriously, if I want to go somewhere, I will work out a good deal for you!


Anyway, a week before their Los Cabos ceremony, I broke my foot. Great timing, right?! My doctor provided me with a sturdy boot, but I was still worried that I wouldn’t be able to fully shoot this amazing beach elopement behind the gorgeous Marquis Los Cabos! Fortunately, I found an awesome second shooter to assist me down there and everything turned out beautifully!

Alana and David had arrived a few days prior to me and I could tell that they were already in full relax mode. We started out with a few pre-ceremony photos around the Marquis Los Cabos before heading over to their ceremony site.

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Ceremony and post-ceremony photos

I loved that they made this special trip just for themselves. Besides us photographers and the officiant, it was just the two of them to enjoy this exotic, intimate ceremony. It was a beautiful thing to witness, and I was honored to photograph it.

Afterwards, they sat down for a private meal offered by the resort. We snapped a few shots of them celebrating with a drink, then took a break to let them eat while we waited for the lovely light at the end of the day.

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I have to thank David and Alana for sending me to Cabo, and for trusting me to do a good job despite having just broken my foot! I had to warn them about it, just in case! But they were laid back about it, as most of my couples are. I also have to thank my second shooter for the day, Hassen, who did an excellent job backing me up and whose photos are an excellent compliment to my style. I have some of his photos here as well!

Venue and CateringMarquis Los Cabos Resort & Spa

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Seattle mini sessionpinimage

Oct. 21st: 10am | 11:30am | 1:30pm | 3pm

Oct. 22nd: 10am | 11:30am | 1:30pm | 3pm

*Check back here or on Facebook for updates on what times are still available!*

Seattle mini sessions are back again this fall, and more special than ever!

We’ll be using the Woodland Park Zoo as our backdrop!

I’ll document you and your kids admiring your favorite animals if time and conditions permit (good lighting, no rain, etc.) and we’ll be sure to get some of those customary posed smiling shots as well. 😉

$130 includes the following:

  • Documentary + smiley posed shots of your family and/or kids at Woodland Park Zoo in Seattle. *No newborns  or maternity please! Limited to groups of 5, but an extra person/time upgrade is available for $20/person (with an extra 15 min.). Please inquire about larger family shoots if you have more than 8!*
  • 45 minute shoot! Yep, I’ve added more time!
  • 6 high-resolution digital files.
  • In-home viewing and ordering session – you can pick your favorite 6, and purchase more if you want to! Prints and products are also available for purchase, but there is no obligation to order anything! Mini session discounts on select products.
  • Temporary online image gallery of your selected photos.
  • Full session upgrade available to extend your time, change the location, and get a $50 print credit! Please inquire if you would like this option. *This upgrade only applies until October 20th and must be booked by then.*

If you Do NOT have a zoo pass, take note…

***I’m also throwing in free admission for one adult for the first session of each day, so grab that spot soon to get this special offer!***

Here’s how to sign up for your Seattle mini session.

Please read carefully:

  1. Choose your date and time. The dates available are October 20th, 21st, and 22nd. Only 4 times available each day: 10am, 11:30am, 1:30pm, and 3pm. Check back here or on Facebook to see what times are still available. *Rain or shine! No rescheduling.*
  2. Email me at with your preferred date and time, AND the number of people in your party and their ages.  Please also let me know how you found out about the minis! I will send you a PayPal invoice and a mini session agreement to sign. First come, first serve, so please be prompt with your payment –  this is required up front to reserve your time, so if someone beats you to it, you’ll have to select another time. Don’t miss the discount opportunity mentioned below!
  3. Once your payment is received, your time slot will be reserved! I will follow up with more information about meeting time (please plan to arrive 15 minutes early) and place, what to wear, etc. I will also ask you for your preferred viewing/ordering session date and time. *The viewing/ordering session is not optional.*

Bonus! Follow the steps below to get $10 off your mini session!

  1. Like Tracie Howe Photography on Facebook.
  2. Tag a friend and explain why you think they should take part too!
  3. Let me know that you did that when you inquire with your preferred date and time! 🙂 *Please note: this only applies BEFORE you book your session, not after the fact.*

Seattle family mini sessions at the zoopinimage

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Paris wedding sunsetpinimage

Imagine my delight when I found out I would be shooting Paris wedding photos!

That’s why I always suggest asking about my destination wedding packages, because I might already be heading to the place you have in mind! The benefit is that the travel fees won’t be an issue for you.

Anyway, it wasn’t the full on wedding that I would have been happy to shoot, but more like an elopement than anything. Xavier and Randa wanted wedding photos before their official wedding happened, so it really was much like my elopement photography, but without the ceremony.

In fact, we did a two parter on the same day. The first part being the engagement photos. Always good to have those! You don’t need every nice photo to be in your wedding clothes, right? The photos from their Paris engagement can be found here.

We saved the wedding photos for later, as the sun dropped lower in the sky and the Eiffel Tower became less obscured by haze. We chose the Pont Alexandre III Bridge for its gorgeous architectural features and to show off the Eiffel Tower in the background. I think it was an excellent choice that gave us a lot of variety without having to deal with huge crowds. It was fall and the trees were showing off their colors (mostly featured in the engagement shoot), but I have to say that Paris sure does look fantastique in black and white!

Now that Xavier and Randa are officially married, I can share their Paris wedding photos with you, along with their French/American love story. Be sure to read more about that from them in their own words at the bottom of the post.

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  • Tell the one thing you love most about each other.

R: His calm

X: Her energy


  • If you feel comfortable, share something silly or quirky that the other person does.

R: He often responds in non verbal ways, with a hmm, mhmm, uh-huh. It took me awhile to figure out what the sounds meant!

X: She makes a face when she looks in the mirror that isn’t her natural smile… I can tell when she can see her reflection in the subway doors or my sunglasses because of the face!


  • Besides getting married, what’s the one thing you most looked forward to on your wedding day?

R: Seeing all of our closest friends and family in one room.

X: Sharing special moments with our people.


  • Besides the honeymoon, what’s the one thing you’re looking forward to when the wedding is over?

R: Not having to spend evenings and weekends going through checklists!

X: We don’t have to go back and forth with our wedding venue anymore.


  • What’s your favorite wedding trend right now?

R: I can’t keep up with the trends…but I loved advice on incorporating friends and personal touches into the ceremony. A friend led the ceremony, another played guitar. We also passed our rings for a warming/blessing around the entire group. Everyone said they felt they were really a part of the wedding, rather than just watching.


  • Where was your wedding? Was the location important? If so, why?

We wanted everything to be outside and for it to be intimate, which meant we couldn’t have the wedding in Paris – the weather is too iffy. So we decided on an intimate wedding celebration in Provence among lavender fields and olive groves. The problem is that in France, the rules require you to officially get married in the city hall where you live – that meant a separate civil wedding in Paris for the bureaucratic side of things. So we signed our documents, said “oui” with our parents as witnesses, and went out for a celebratory lunch 7 months before we actually said “I do” in front of all our family and friends!


  • What’s one thing you wish you would have known earlier in regards to planning?

A day-of coordinator is the best investment you can make… and the sooner you get them on board, the better.


  • Please share anything else of your wedding story that you would like to.

Only thing I can think of is the bilingual, multinational aspect to our story. Planning a wedding (a destination one at that – even from Paris), in another language, different culture, it’s not always easy. Sometimes I can’t believe we managed to pull it off! But through it all, we came together as partners to tackle the long to-do lists, endless French administration paperwork, countless cultural and linguistic translating, cultural missteps, parental expectations, and financial challenges to ultimately arrive at a day that was full of such joy and happiness, and we were that much stronger for it.

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Paris Eiffel Tower in black and whitepinimage

Last fall I began a trip to Europe in one of the most romantic cities in the world – Paris!

So, what is a solo photographer to do in such a romantic city? A Paris engagement shoot, of course!

I had the opportunity to work with Xavier and Randa, a laid-back local and a sweet American expat. Their Parisian shoot was actually a two-parter. Part one was the engagement shoot, followed by an unexpected clothing change behind some bushes due to restricted restroom access. Part two was the pre-wedding shoot (wedding attire before the actual wedding), which I will share in a later post.

Having explored much of Paris, I knew that there were only a few spots that met our requirements for these photo shoots. The place had to be beautiful, unmistakably Paris, and not overcrowded with tourists! Of course, I also HAD to have some Eiffel Tower shots, because what says “Paris” more than the Eiffel Tower? While there were many Paris sites that met the first two qualifications, most of those were very crowded. We considered Trocadero for that quintessential Eiffel Tower view, but that was best photographed in the early morning to avoid crowds, which didn’t work for us. There was also Pont de Bir-Hakeim (formerly Pont de Passy), but I discovered on the first night that this offered only a few perspectives and was already overrun with photographers at the time when we could schedule the shoot.

We agreed on the gorgeous and iconic Pont Alexandre III bridge as the destination for both the engagement photos and pre-wedding shoot. This elaborately designed bridge stretching over the River Seine offers a lot of variety for an engagement shoot – on the bridge, under the bridge, Eiffel Tower views, and even some beautiful fall foliage nearby!

I couldn’t have asked for more from this Pont Alexandre III engagement or from my adorable, multi-national couple! They only recently just had their official wedding, so now I’m allowed to share all of these photos. Read more about Randa and Xavier in their own words, at the bottom of this post.

Enjoy the photos and check back soon for the pre-wedding photos!

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  • How did you first meet? Who, what, when, where, and why?

R: Met online – we both had only been on a few dates until we met. He messaged something insightful and witty, about our mutual love of travel, wine and kayaking… and suggested we might have more in common despite OK cupid matching us at only 28%!

  • If you feel comfortable, please tell a funny story that happened while you were dating.

R: After a lovely and ‘typical’ first date, a few days later he sends a message: ‘do you like tattoos? ‘ I was so confused…there wasn’t any other context provided, it was so random! Was it a fetish? An awkward intro to a second date? Was he asking for my advice? Was it a lost in translation issue? Turns out it was the second one: there was a World Tattoo Festival, with concerts, etc. and he was suggesting we check out the music. But without any other context…? I was lost!

X: Also at the tattoo festival, we saw people getting tattoos of genitalia, and she said, I wonder what kind of animal that is..? And I had to explain she was looking at it backwards… and it was something else. Awkward.

  • When did you know he/she was the one? Was there something that he/she did or said?

X: When she asked if we were exclusive. It was so cute! For me, it was obvious.

R: Ha! We met online, of course I had to ask! For me, it was a weekend away. Relaxing and fun and then I went and suggested a stop at Ikea on the way home. He hates it and will do anything to get out of it, but we went. The crowds, traffic, getting lost… it was a mess. And through it all, he remained and is always calm and patient.

  • Tell the story of the proposal: Did you see it coming? How long was the planning? How did you feel? Were you nervous? Etc.

R: We had talked about it, but he still surprised me. We went away for a couple days, to Monet’s gardens in Giverny, the flowers were in bloom and it was stunning weather! I started to wonder… is this it? But nothing happened! It wasn’t until the end of our trip, he was waiting for the perfect moment, to propose under cherry trees (I love flowers and cherry blossoms especially). We arrived in this beautiful park, headed straight to the cherry blossoms and then… they weren’t in bloom, we were a week too early. Poor guy! But we found a sunny bench and that’s where he popped the question! Flowers, cherry blossoms, none of it mattered, we were just so happy!

X: I was nervous about finding the right moment and place. I was worried about the flowers not being in bloom, and then that was the case. But it was still a nice environment, so I went with it.

  • What do you love about your engagement shoot location?

R: The architecture and the light! It was the perfect spot to show off Paris. As a tour guide in Paris, I spend a lot of time in the Eiffel Tower and other monuments, so I was really happy that Tracie chose a spot that is a little less cliché Paris, but still perfectly represents the city where Xavier met and fell in love. The Alexandre III bridge and that area were perfect because we could see the Eiffel Tower in the background, but it wasn’t the primary focus.  With this location, we also see the details of the bridge, the arches and sculptures. And I love the way she took advantage of the beautiful symmetry of the trees.

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