This past weekend I had an incredible opportunity to attend the first annual Field Trip for photographers! What is Field Trip, you ask? According to the website...

"It's a field trip. Remember those? When you thought you were just having fun, but also got tricked into learning a heap of important things? A field trip is not just experiential nor solely educational. It is not even a combination of these two. Rather, it is a translation of one into the other - a pathway between the passion of your experience and the honing of your craft. A field trip is a fun day out of the classroom, yet still filled with engaging instruction. This field trip will be no different."

Photo Field Trip was held at El Capitan Canyon in Santa Barbara, CA. New York has had an insane amount of snow this year, so I was crazy excited to pack dresses and skirts and ballet flats! I refused to pack my boots on principal...even when I heard that Cali was going to get rain. Psh, what's a little rain compared to all this snow? As it turns out, a "little rain" was actually a monsoon - they got about a year's worth of rain in one weekend! YUCK!!


Weather aside, it was easily one of the best weekends I've had in a while! I was covered in mud, my hair frizzed to the sky, and our cabin was a mile away from was life-changing. I learned tips for shooting creatively, tips for editing, tips for posing, and more. Most importantly, I left rejuvenated. I left wishing that my first wedding of the season could be tomorrow so I could ROCK THE HECK OUT OF IT! I feel confident, energized, and smart.

The rain prevented me from taking a lot of photos, but the sun did come out for a few minutes and you bet your cute little butt that I photographed every second of that Cali sunshine! Oh, and this is only "part one" because part two will be coming after I get my film developed. That's right...MY FILM! EEEE! Although, it was my first time shooting film in years, so there's a chance that nothing will come out right and "part two" will never come. You've been warned! :)

I flew into LA and met up with my good friend Amy! We rented a ZipCar and drove up the Pacific Coast Highway on a little road-trip adventure to Santa Barbara. Thankfully the rain let up just enough for us to make a pit-stop for this beautiful portrait!


That's our super cute cabin on the left. Notice on the right that everyone is wearing boots and rain gear? Apparently I missed the memo!


Something I styled together during Anna Naphtali's Art of Styling class! Brides, your details are about to get a whole lot cuter! :)


Rain obviously can't keep photographers away from the beach!


There it is! The magical sunset! I couldn't believe my eyes! Thanks to Megan for sharing her adorable friends Ellie and Spencer with me. It would have been so sad to watch that sun set without a couple in front of my camera! 


And of course, the day we leave the sun comes out. It was GLORIOUS! That swoon-worthy California light everyone is always blabbering on about? I get it now. I really get it. 


We added the lovely Cameron to our car for the ride adventure home, and we found the perfect pit stop! Irresistible lighting + gorgeous friends = magic!


Those are all the pro-photos I took, but I feel like I would be leaving out so much if I don't include some of my instagrams! Yes yes yes, even pros use their phones (especially in crappy weather!). So here's a little melody of phone photos and Smilebooth photos!


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Cassi Claire is a New Jersey & Destination wedding photographer
that specializes in vineyard, estate, and waterfront weddings!