The Painted Hills is one of my favorite engagement session locations. The hills for which the landscape is named are gorgeous and otherworldly with their colorful striations. A part of me wishes that The Painted Hills was closer to Portland, so I could shoot engagement sessions there more often. But the benefit to it being a several hour drive away in middle-of-nowhere eastern Oregon is that it’s hardly ever busy. It feels like an event every time I go.
The closest town of Mitchell has a population of about 130 people. For that reason, you never see a bazillion photographers there with other couples like you often do at many of the popular shooting locations in Portland, at the coast or in the gorge. For that reason, the Painted Hills has a sense of serenity and adventure about it. Hopefully it will continue to be that way. But for the first time ever, I got phone reception in nearby Mitchell, which could signal slow change to come. But for the time being it is a wonderful place to get away from the crowds.
Any time I can convince a couple to go there with me I get super excited. It can be a significant time investment but it’s worth it. Amanda and Miles were super into the idea. They decided to turn it into a weekend road trip so they could visit the other sites in the area. When we met up for their engagement session at The Painted Hills they were telling me about a massive multi-day hike they did around Mt Hood. This made me all the more appreciative as they struck me as the outdoorsy kind of couple who I love working with that would truly appreciate the natural wonder of The Painted Hills. The shoot turned out absolutely amazing, and I can’t wait for the next time I get to work with Amanda and Miles again during their wedding in Cabo next Memorial Day weekend! 🙂 — KC