When Stevie Beard and Brady Hogevoll hired Oregon photographer Joshua Rainey to shoot their engagement photos, no one imagined the humorous shot would go viral in a matter of days.
Set amidst Hogevoll’s family property along the Siletz River, the now viral photo utilized a simple sign, a tractor, and a shotgun.
Unusual props for an engagement shoot, but for the soon-to-be-married couple the setup yielded an undeniably adorable outcome.
“I shot the photo on a property owned by Brady’s parents,” Rainey told BuzzFeed News. “The whole family is very into elk hunting and even hosts Make-A-Wish elk hunts on occasion.”
“Stevie and Brady came up with the idea and surprised me with it during engagement photos,” Rainey said. “We worked together to figure out how the image should look and set it up quickly before sunset.”
The Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation, a wildlife conservation organization protecting natural habitats and traditional hunting, posted the photo to its Facebook page. Since then, the unique engagement shot has been shared over 30,000 times.
Rainey was thrilled with both the “incredible opportunity to photograph Stevie and Brady’s engagement photos” and the explosive popularity of the shot.
“It was rather tough to get the shot though, since Brady could only be upside down for a few minutes,” Rainey said. “Brady tied his own knots and got himself hooked up to the tractor and then his dad lifted him up slowly.”
Based in the greater Eugene area, Rainey and his family shoot everything from weddings and engagements to graduations and freelance work. When not traveling around Oregon for work, Rainey and his wife, Rachel, enjoy exploring the great outdoors with their 18-month-old son.
“We have always thought that photography is about more than just creating images, especially when it comes to photographing people,” Rainey’s website reads. “We want to get to know the people we are taking photos of just as much as we want to photograph them. The more we have a great time interacting, the better the photos will turn out. That’s just the way it is.”