A Proposal Story – a surprise in Central Park

Where to begin.

It all started last Monday.  I was contacted by one of my favorite clients, Jeannie.  She said a friend of her niece was getting engaged in Central Park on Friday.  They needed a photographer and I immediately came to her mind.  I was THRILLED.  This was on my photography ‘bucket list’, and I moved 3 things around to be able to meet them.  I was so excited, and I’m pretty sure I was close to being as nervous as the groom-to-be.

Speaking of…  meet Tyler.

So this romantic guy was out to propose to his girl friend Brooke.  They are both from down South, he is from Georgia, and she is from Alabama.  They met in college and are as cute as could be.  The plan – Brooke was visiting New York with three girlfriends.  She had NO IDEA that Tyler had flown up to surprise her with a proposal in Central Park on Gapstow Bridge.  Both of their families were there too, and I have to tell you, I felt like I was part of the family by the time we were done.  They are just some of the most warm and loving people – couldn’t get enough of them.

There are so many images of this proposal, I’m going to show you a lot.  I decided to keep this post just about Brooke and Tyler – there are a ton of family shots too – but thought to keep it focused on them because it was their special day.

After a LOOONG wait (lol, Tyler!) we finally got the call that she was getting out of the cab.  All the parents hid up on a big rock so they could see, but not be seen by Brooke.  Tyler and I waited by ourselves for a moment and got ready for her arrival.  He is smiling at his family up on the rock…

Finally, Brooke arrived.  This is her reaction shot.  When he turned around, she dropped her purse she was so shocked to see him there.

She started to walk to him…  closer… and closer… gotcha!


a few words before…


he got down on one knee… (they had an audience by this point)


and, of course, she said yes!


This is sort of is an outtake, but I love how he is so excited and giving the families a clue as to how it went!


After all the congratulations from their families we took about 15 minutes to do a quick engagement session.


I think Gapstow Bridge will always be special to them!


Oh, and guys?  In case you ever wanted to know – this is how to kiss a girl.  I like that moment of anticipation before the kiss…  it’s my favorite shot.



Something special between Brooke and Tyler – they put their initials EVERYWHERE.  So her brother did this for them while we were taking some pictures.

NYC – TSW and the future MBW were here!

Tyler and Brooke – it was an amazing day.  I can’t thank you enough for having me be a part of it.  You are both such kind and wonderful people – I can only imagine the great life you will have together!!  Congratulations.  With all my heart.

xo, Cristina



  • http://bijou-bride.com Jen @ Bijou Bride

    This is so sweet! Totally got me all teary eyed. What an awesome way to propose!

  • http://www.studiolifephotos.com Natalie Clayshulte

    This made my heart do a little flip-flop! Such sweet images. You captured them beautifully. Congrats to the happy couple!

  • http://www.surprisephotography.com Melissa

    What a romantic story, I have tears in my eyes right now. What a gift this photos are, something they will share with the kids. Just awesome!!

  • Jeannie Cunnion

    Cristina, you never, ever disappoint. These pictures are incredible!! Thank you for doing such an awesome job for these incredible folks. They adored you!

  • http://www.andreahallettphotography.net andrea hallett

    AH-MAY-ZING! How perfect! They will treasure these forever. Wonderful work!

  • http://www.bellinipics.com/blog stephanie

    what a TREASURE! I literally have chills. what an incredible experience to be a part of and you did it brilliantly!

  • Gene and Janet Wahl

    Cristina, you are truly gifted! We fell in love with you, too. You have totally captured this amazing moment for all of us. This will be a treasured keepsake for generations. Can’t wait to see the rest of the pictures.

  • lane

    Oh my word. To die for darlin! Seriously what a treasured memory! Brooke…I adore your cape! Too cute and beautiful work coco!

  • Michele

    *tears*, i don’t know this couple, but I LOVE them. so beautifully captured. wishing them a life of pure bliss. looks like they are off to a great start! btw, my fav is her reaction. sends chills up my spine. just lovely!!

  • Lauren

    just melting.

  • http://Www.erincarlylephotography.com Erin

    Wow! I’m crying, smiling, have chills. Just wow!!!

  • http://www.endlesselegance.wordpress.com Gina

    Loved this story/shoot! Awesome work!!!

  • Donna W. Vidrine

    Wow, watching dreams come true!
    Awesome! ;)

  • http://www.mattnicolosi.com Matt

    Such a great story with equally great images. Can’t help but feel more “alive” after reading this post. Thanks for sharing, Cristina, and best wishes to the happy couple.

  • Heather Jones

    You did such an amazing job capturing this beautiful, sweet, heartfelt moment. Brooke is the daughter of my good friend, who sent the link to your photos and to the video of the proposal. They are indeed a loving, warm family. You were able to catch the essence of who they are and I’m so glad they found you to forever capture this special moment in photos.

  • Donna Wolosin

    These pictures are so wonderful! Had a long talk with Tyler on Sunday and yesterday on his birthday. I am so happy for them and can’t wait to meet Brooke!

    I am one proud Aunt!

  • http://courtneyortiz.com courtney

    AWESOME!!!!! Now they better fly you down to shoot the wedding! xxoo

  • http://www.christinedesavino.com Christine

    Are you kidding me? These are ridiculously beautiful! Congratulations to the beautiful couple & kudos to you on an absolutely gorgeous job!

  • Kelly

    Incredible and so romantic. U captured the moment perfectly. There were no need for nerves because u have the eye and talent to document these moments to last a lifetime. Congrats to u and the newlyweds.

  • http://www.mulberryheightsantiques.com Carolyn Bradford

    This was unbelievable! Thanks for sharing!

  • doreen

    Cristina, these are just amazing…as usual. You really outdid yourself. they are a beautiful couple and very lucky to have these moments captured by you!