This redwood forest engagement was so special! It was a real blast getting to know this couple, Rosa Isela and Josh. The stunning redwood forest of the East Bay was the setting for this engagement shoot and it did not disappoint.

The Redwood Regional Reserve in Oakland was the canvas for the art of love. Let’s dive in!

About this couple & how they met

They’re a quirky couple that usually does things a little differently. Rosa Isela says about their story leading up to the proposal,

‘He was a well-dressed DJ at a goth club. I was a gypsy working for an environmental non-profit.

My heart jumped to my throat the day I handed him my resume to work at the café he supervised in Union Square, San Francisco.

Our lives had irrevocably intertwined at this mutual new job.

We were friends for two years and after some sickening heartache (and more traveling for me), we go out for drinks to catch up, both single at this point.

Three years later, he’s holding my hand on a Santa Cruz beach, watching a lighting storm together when he asks me if I’ll marry him.

I chuckled an “of course” because we’d decided forever ago that we would.

But this time, he says it again, and he gets down on one knee and pulls out a ring from his coat pocket. I’m living a dream.’

Don’t know about you but that gave me goosebumps!

The unique style & vibe of this redwood forest engagement shoot

The fashion sense of this couple is superb!

The outfits couldn’t be better chosen, and coordinate so beautifully with one another. That simple red-and-black color scheme pops fabulously against the redwood forest setting.

Rosa isn’t girly at all, by her own admission, and picked up the long red dress from Kohl’s for under $20.

She splurged on getting hair and make-up done at La Princesse Salon and Spa in Alameda. It was her first time wearing false lashes, and look how gorgeous and full they look!

Rosa felt it was “like wearing tarantulas” but oh boy, the camera loves the drama of this look! They are the perfect complement to the glamorous red gown.

She also made her own earrings for this shoot using 2 crystal geode pendants from Michael’s. Talk about crafty and budget-conscious!

She found a glittery chain and attached clamps to turn it into a bracelet.

The reason behind making her own jewelry is the same reason their wedding will be DIY: Josh and Rosa are both so eccentric (in their own words), they know there won’t be another set up like it.

On shoot day, the weather was overcast with a significant chance of rain, but Rosa and Josh wanted to go ahead regardless. In fact, they preferred it! She said,

“We are not afraid of any beautiful gloomy weather, we both love rain and grey skies, and anyone who knows us might even think we chose the weather on purpose”

So this was the perfect weather for the gray-sky-loving couple. A few drops of rain and lots of drama in the clouds. It also meant we were totally alone for the shoot with not another soul on our patch of Oakland’s Redwood Regional Reserve.

From Rosa Isela’s review:

“As an introvert, it was important for me to really feel like myself, not only in front of the camera, but with the photographer as well.

It is hard to find calm and sincere people in the wedding industry who aren’t hounding you or adding more stress to your big day.

But with Zoe, I could tell she just genuinely cared about the overall well-being of me and my fiancé. I was nervous about being in front of the camera, as I am very camera shy, and we talked about this well before the shoot.

She immediately understood me and had valuable insight to share to reassure me that I didn’t have to fake anything during the shoot.

I felt reassured that it was going to be everything I wanted it to be. She intuitively makes you feel comfortable.

Zoe’s style is free-flowing, enchanting, and enlightening. She’s a magical person and her photographs reflect her charm.

It was a pleasure seeing her mind at work as she came up some on-the-spot locations to photograph us.

We are so grateful to find a photographer who really has fun doing what she loves.

So, we chose an environment that had bright and dark locations for our shoot (to reflect our eccentric personalities) and the techniques she used to bring out the vibrancy of colors in each surrounding came out jaw-droppingly gorgeous! 

Her love for natural light is expertly used to capture creative moments with skill and elegance.

Zoe’s photographs whisper songs of romance.”

Congrats, Rosa and Josh!

Pin this to your engagement photography inspiration board!

This goth-meets-glam engagement shoot was such a joy! In the Redwood Regional Reserve of Oakland in the East Bay, Rosa and Josh had their rainy day engagement shoot. This forest setting worked well with their red and black outfits, a nod to their goth roots and offbeat, eccentric style. The couple coordinated with each other, creating a cohesive set of final engagement images. #engagementphotography #redwoodforest #bayareaweddingphotographer #bayareaphotography | Zoe Larkin Photography

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More of my engagement shoots!

collage of dancing couple in redwood forest engaged couple in love at redwood forest engagement shoot couple in red and black outfits dancing in the forest stylish couple posing in glam forest setting engaged oakland couple looking lovingly into one another's eyes close up of hands around necks of engaged couple in love engaged couple sits on bench in forest in bold red and black outfits redwood themed engagement shoot details of couple in love loved up engagement couple in oakland redwood forest collage of engaged oakland couple kissing among redwoods couple in coordinating outfits pose during redwood engagement session handmade jewelry details at redwood engagement session expansive wide angle of redwood forest with engaged couple

For more details about our engagement photography services in the San Francisco Bay Area, please check out the introductory guide and fun welcome video at the link below! I can’t wait to meet you!

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couple canoodling with close up of eyelashes

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Glam redwood forest engagement photos Redwood Regional Reserve, Oakland

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