Nicole Caldwell

How to Plan a Surprise Proposal


how they askedlogoMatt’s proposal to Rachel Featured in How They Asked by The Knot. Matt informed Rachel that his “Crazy Aunt”  was coming into town and he wanted them to meet.  Under the guise of dinner at a fancy place, Rachel dressed up ( her Mom was in on the surprise too and took her shopping for a conservative/ cute outfit to meet the crazy aunt).  This spot is very special to them ( one of their first dates).  He brought a bottle of wine and said he wanted to visit the spot before dinner to take the edge off before meeting family.


I hid in plain sight.  I met with Matt before the event to go over the whereabouts and what his plan was.  There were two benches next to each other, So I sat and had my back to them when they sat down.  His plan was to see an animal in the grassy area and to have Rachel come and see it, where he got down on one knee. She said “yes”.

Turns out there is no crazy Aunt, but he had arranged family and friends to be at the restaurant to surprise her.surprise_proposal_photographer_nicole_caldwell_newport_beach_04

I Told Matt if they were wearing sunglasses, to make sure she took them off before he proposed, in order for me to catch her expression and her eyes.


I have known Rachel for a long time, and it was so exciting to be able to witness and photograph the event.


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Double Exposure


They are so happy, congrats you two!


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