A Fayetteville Arkansas Engagement Session at Lake Fayetteville | Rachel & Duncan

He stood in the middle of her lawn, reading from a crinkled sheet of notebook paper filled from top to bottom with a handwritten expression of feelings he wanted to share for a long time. Three years, in fact. It has been three years since he first laid eyes on her in English class, and they had been the happiest three years of his life simply because she had been a part of them. So that day, as he read, he told her that he had loved her, he still loved her, and would always love her, and he meant it more than anything he had ever said in his 17 years of life.  

She said a lot of things that afternoon, but the most important thing she said was no. No, she had not been interested, was not interested, and would never be interested. That day, she thought she had closed the door on the potential of anything more than friendship with him… but Duncan wasn’t ready to give up. Because when he said that she would always have his heart, he meant it. 

So no matter how far their lives drifted apart over the years, Duncan kept in touch. No matter how many other people both Duncan and Rachel dated, they remained friends. When she moved away for college and distance separated them, he made it a point to regularly call. When she moved closer, he remembered to invite her to get-togethers with friends. And when life was difficult, he consistently showered her with loyalty, patience, and a giving spirit. He made it a point to simply show up in her life until one day, eight years after they met in high school, Rachel realized that somewhere along the way she had fallen in love. Theirs is a long, slow story, but one that is perfect simply because of the time it took them to find each other. The journey shaped the both people they are and the strong, beautiful love they share today.

I met Rachel and Duncan for the first time over the weekend, and it was such a wonderful afternoon! They drove up to northwest Arkansas from Texas, and the scenery around Lake Fayetteville and the cool weather was well worth the drive. I had a wonderful time getting to know both of them as we explored the nearby fields and shoreline around the lake, and I was struck by how incredibly obvious it is that these two are not only in love, but they’re truly best friends. Duncan looks at Rachel like she’s the only girl in the world, and Rachel seems most at home when she’s in his arms. These two were a pleasure to photograph, but even more - they were a pleasure to spend the evening with. 

I hope you enjoy a few of my favorites from our time together!