Beautiful photos are what we love to capture and look back on, but this year more than ever, it is the stories behind the photos that are a reminder of how truly transformative 2021 was.

While this past year was certainly an unpredictable one, it taught us that the best things in life are worth being (very) patient for. Whether it’s a long-awaited reunion, a postponed dream trip, a milestone or more … when those big moments finally happen? Oh, the celebration feels that much sweeter.

Before we step boldly into 2022, we’re celebrating the resilience of love and the reminder that striving for adventure in our everyday lives is always worth it. Keep scrolling for our most heartwarming memories of 2021.

Photo: Liz in San Diego for Flytographer (Photo taken in Salt Lake City). Gabby and their partner celebrate their trip to Salt Lake City with a couple photoshoot in the snow.

“My husband, Eric, and I love to travel. However, I’ve always felt that when we travel, I don’t appreciate or love our iPhone pictures taken by strangers. I knew I wanted to get a good set of pictures with a snowy background since we would never get that here in Miami. Liz was absolutely amazing! She made us feel so comfortable and took pictures that will hang on our walls for years to come.” – Gabby

Photo: Elisenda in Washington DC for Flytographer. Keisha captures memories in Washington DC with a Modern Headshot photoshoot.

“My first ever trip to Washington D.C. will forever stay with me as a time to remember thanks to Flytographer. Thanks to [Elisenda’s] great insider knowledge and love for the town I was able to immerse myself into some of the most iconic timepieces of our nation’s history such as the Lincoln Memorial and MLK memorial; both equally striking as they were empowering. Not to mention the coolest photo op from Black Lives Matter Plaza free from crowds and a great shot of the White House in the back. From the Washington Monument to quaint side streets that displayed unique home architecture and street art, I truly fell in love with our nation’s capital!

I’ve been telling everyone about Elisenda and Flytographer hours after the session ended! By far the best experience I’ve had for a fun photoshoot. She was warm, personable, uber creative and made me feel like I was on my own private tour guide of Washington D.C. It truly helps when you have top talent and a city buff present with you in a new place.” – Keisha

Photo: Natalia in Mexico City for Flytographer. Shameem and their family celebrate their trip to Mexico City with a family photoshoot.

Photo: Ihsan in Budapest for Flytographer. Chase and Ilan celebrate their engagement in Budapest with a surprise proposal photoshoot.

“I told Ilan that we were taking Sunday to do touristy things in Budapest. Little did he know that I’d spent the day before alone hiking all of the tourist spots in town to find the perfect proposal spot. In order to get him to the location of the proposal without arousing suspicions, I told him we were touring an old church and then going to a fancy dinner. When we finally got to the proposal spot, we met our photographer (Flytographer Ihsan) who had the best story. The photographer said he had about 10 minutes before his clients showed up and wanted to get some sample shots if we were interested. After fumbling around trying to get the ring out of my jacket pocket, I finally was ready to propose. When I was finally on one knee, Ilan turned around and to his great surprise, I asked him to marry me!” – Chase

Photo: Marie in Maui for Flytographer. Michelle and their partner celebrate their trip to Maui with a couple photoshoot.

Photo: Claudia in Cancun for Flytographer. Hannah & Alia capture their engagement in Cancun with a surprise proposal photoshoot.

“In May of 2021, Alia and I went on our first real vacation in nearly two years to Cancún, Mexico. We’re in the middle of a Flytographer shoot down on the shore of Playa Delfines when I give our photographer, Claudia, ‘the look,’ and she tells Alia to turn around for the next shot so I can “hug her from behind.” Claudia and I had actually been chatting months before the shoot even happened to help me nail down the details on how to make this proposal happen seamlessly.

No sooner does Claudia excitedly shout, “now turn around!” does Alia see me down on one knee, that her jaw drops to the ground and my mind goes completely blank. We both just stared at each other in disbelief for about 10 seconds before I even muttered something out! Neither one of us could believe this was actually happening.

After Claudia left, we just sat there on the beach in the warm crashing waves, sipping champagne under a full moon. It was total bliss. Now after 6+ years together, we’re engaged, and have the most beautiful photos to look back on our favorite day.” – Hannah

Photo: Joe in Chicago for Flytographer. Christopher and his partner celebrate their engagement in Chicago with a proposal photoshoot.

“We met in college and after being friends for a couple of years, we both ended up single at the right time! The rest is history. She’s my best friend, and I knew she was the one when I couldn’t envision an exciting future without her around. The first gift I ever gave her was a vinyl copy of Wilco’s ‘Yankee Hotel Foxtrot’ which features the Marina Towers on the cover. When we planned a Memorial Day getaway to Chicago, I knew I wanted to make it memorable! We spent the day on an architectural boat tour and had reservations for dinner on the RiverWalk. I casually mentioned that we should get some good photos together before dinner with the city in the background; all the while I knew I’d be popping the question with the help of my photographer.” – Christopher

Photo: Meghan in Cape Cod for Flytographer. Jacqueline and their partner celebrate their babymoon in Cape Cod with a maternity photoshoot.

Meghan was simply amazing. She was extremely professional and made us feel confident and comfortable during our shoot. She was very easy to get along with and we really had a blast during our shoot. Not to mention her work is incredible! We would highly recommend Meghan!” – Jacqueline

Photo: Flytographer in Boulder. Kristin and their family capture memories in Boulder on a family photoshoot.

“Our photographer was incredible!  She gave us a lot of helpful direction, while also making it an overall great experience. Both of my kids had a blast, and they said they wished we could have stayed twice as long! [Flytographer] has a true talent for capturing light and what family feels like. Our evening with her was magical, and I couldn’t have asked for anything more.” – Kristin

Photo: Steve in Moorea for Flytographer. Sidrah and their partner capture memories in Moorea with a couple photoshoot.

Steve was absolutely wonderful to work with, easy to shoot with, and made us feel very comfortable! We are in love with our photos and would book him again in a heartbeat!” – Sidrah

Photo: Ernir in Reykjavik for Flytographer. Brad and Garrett capture memories on their trip to Iceland on a couple photoshoot.

“Iceland is a place that has such an unexplainable magnetism that seems to beckon for a return visit. It may not be a warm beach or have the excitement of a big city, but the country’s awesome landscapes and isolated nature is like nothing else on earth. We usually opt to explore new places over repeating destinations, but Iceland will always have something new to see, sometimes literally. In this particular case, we headed out this past summer to catch one of the most recent volcanoes – can’t get any newer than that!” – Brad

Photo: Claudia in Cancun for Flytographer. Melanie and their friends celebrate their girls’ trip to Mexico with a friend’s photoshoot.

Claudia was amazing from the idyllic spots for a pic to helping with poses and tips to bring out the best in each of us. We truly loved our experience and the amazing pictures.” – Melanie

Photo: Madison in Jackson Hole for Flytographer. Lucinda and their family capture memories on a family reunion trip to Jackson Hole with a multigenerational photoshoot.

“Our group of 7 had a fantastic experience with Madison! I am absolutely thrilled with our photos! Madison was so good with each age group. She was extremely knowledgeable about the area and made the most of every minute of our session. Madison was very accommodating, kind, and easy to work with. She made sure the location was exactly what we wanted (in fact it far exceeded my expectations). She was able to capture exactly what I tried to describe. I am so pleased with the number of photographs we received, the quality of the images, and the entire experience. I’m not sure how these pictures could ever be topped — they are amazing and a true treasure to remember our wonderful vacation!” – Lucinda

Photo: Marie in Maui for Flytographer. Michelle and their family celebrate their trip to Maui with a family photoshoot on the beach.

Photo: Fernanda in Cabo San Lucas for Flytographer. Nicholas and their partner celebrate their engagement in Cabo with a surprise proposal photoshoot on the beach.

Fernanda was amazing! She made the whole experience really fun and did a great job with the secret proposal! I love how she chose the best time to shoot the photos when the sunlight isn’t too harsh. I also enjoyed that we could plan together how we wanted to do the surprise proposal. The pictures also turned out perfect!” – Nicholas

Photo: Florentina in Vienna for Flytographer. Tatiana and their partner celebrate their trip to Vienna with a couple photoshoot.

Photo: Fernanda in Cabo San Lucas for Flytographer. Kritika captures memories in Cabo with a Modern Headshot photoshoot.

“[Fernanda] was so sweet and the best hypewoman. She knew what poses would look best & the edited pictures came in really fast. I appreciated the shoot and her energy! We made it through the heat with laughter and smiles!” – Kritika

Photo: Madison in Jackson Hole for Flytographer. Christy and their family celebrate their trip to Jackson Hole with a family photoshoot.

Photo: Spyros in Santorini for Flytographer. Heather and their partner capture memories of their trip to Santorini with a couple photoshoot.

“We loved having Spyros as our photographer while we were visiting Santorini for our vacation. It was our first time there, and we loved how he took us to all of the best spots, and even some lesser known areas. He was very personable and made us feel comfortable right away and since we do not hire photographers often, we appreciated his direction and loved every single one of our photos. We would highly recommend Spyros and we are so happy with how everything turned out.” – Heather

Photo: Claudia in Cancun for Flytographer. Shannon captures memories of her daughter in Isla Mujeres with a graduation photoshoot.

“We were going to be visiting the Cancun/Isla Mujeres area during the summer of 2021. We wanted to have our daughter’s senior pictures made on the beautiful beaches. Of course, we didn’t know a photographer in the area, so we booked Claudia through Flytographer. It was such a wonderful experience. We will definitely use them again in Cancun and other locations! ” – Shannon

Photo: Bree in San Diego for Flytographer. Milina and their partner capture memories on their babymoon to San Diego with a maternity photoshoot.

Bree was amazing. She made me and my husband feel very comfortable in front of the camera. I love that she is a local because she told us the best place for pictures. 10/10 recommend her talent!” – Milina

Photo: Martina in Barcelona for Flytographer. Melinh and their friends capture memories in Barcelona with a friends’ photoshoot.

Photo: Vanessa in Dublin for Flytographer. Nikol and their family celebrate their trip to Dublin with a family photoshoot.

“We had a lovely photo session with Vanessa in Dublin.  She was responsive, professional, on time, and friendly.  Plus she was great with our kids!  Vanessa knew all the best spots for photos and always gave us great directions to follow as far as how or where we should stand or look, but most importantly, she wanted to make sure we were having fun! It was so easy to work with Vanessa and we are just thrilled with the results. The pictures came out amazing and we are so glad we booked our session with her. She was able to capture many special memories of our time in Dublin and we will cherish these photos forever.” – Nikol

Photo: Nadine in Cape Town for Flytographer. Jacoba and their partner celebrate their anniversary in Cape Town with a couple photoshoot.

I was a young nurse from Groote Schuur Hospital in Cape Town in the 70s. I was earning little money so I decided to do some waitressing, where I met Peter only by name. I then left for the US in February 1978 to work at a hospital at Memphis, TN. 

After 14 months there, I was doing some travelling with an American nurse friend. We had visited a few places before we were to go from Luxemburg to Johannesburg. In Luxemburg when I went to get our boarding passes, I was told one seat was given to a standby passenger. I thought that was a fiasco, as we were to travel together. My friend went to talk to the airlines, and in those days they were kind enough to put her in the cockpit and I got to sit with the passengers. That is where I recognised Peter and tapped him on the shoulder to say hello; his response was ‘I don’t know you.’ When I said, ‘Yes you do, I worked with you at the Barbecue Steakhouse,’ he changed seats and we sat next to each other for the trip. I met him again while in Cape Town, and when I went back to the US for another 18 months, we wrote letters weekly to each other.

I returned to South Africa again for a visit and met up with Peter in Cape Town, where I invited him to come home to Rustenburg for a visit to my parents for Christmas. When he agreed, I could hardly believe that it was so easy, but later he called to let me know that he would not go after all as it was a family affair. I got a brainwave and called the airlines to reserve a seat for him. Tuesday night was my last night in Cape Town before travelling to spend Christmas with my family. Peter took me out for dinner at the Mount Nelson Hotel, where I asked him again, with the same response, so then I told him that I had reserved a seat for him on the plane. He said in that case he would go. 

He came with me for ten days, and during that time we decided that I would return to the US for 5 months before coming back to South Africa. Three months after my return, we decided to get married on September 6, 1981 — me, a little Free State girl and Peter, born in the Orkney Islands off the coast of Scotland.

We both love nature, dancing and the theatre. We have been married for 40 years.” – Jacoba

Photo: Emily in Whistler for Flytographer. Christie and their family capture memories in Whistler on a family photoshoot.

“Thank you so much, we love all the photos and had a ton of fun! Emily was amazing, we had so much fun and the photos were absolutely amazing. She also chose an epic custom spot for us.” – Christie

Photo: Stathis and Christina in Santorini for Flytographer. Rachel and their partner celebrate their trip to Santorini with a couple photoshoot.

Photo: Liz in San Diego for Flytographer. Lydia and their family capture memories in San Diego with a family photoshoot.

Photo: Olga in Paris for Flytographer. Kirstie and Christine capture memories on their trip to Paris with a couple photoshoot at the Eiffel Tower.

Olga is the best! She listened to what we were looking for, researched the references, and captured the perfect aesthetic we were aiming for. She not only was very professional, diligent, and quick, but also so friendly and kind. We want to be lifelong friends with Olga!” – Kirstie

Photo: Kari in Paris for Flytographer. Febe and their partner capture memories on their trip to Paris with a couple photoshoot.

Photo: Juan Felipe in Salento for Flytographer. Donald captures memories in Colombia on a Modern Headshot Photoshoot.

“It was great to work again with Juan in Salento. Juan always proposes great ideas for the shoot and suggests new ways to make the shot much more interesting and I appreciate that. Looking forward to shooting with Juan again in an upcoming return to beautiful Colombia.” – Donald (Fun fact: Donald has had three Flytographer shoots in Colombia!)

Thank you for inviting us along in your most special moments. Celebrating your stories and capturing your joy through the magic of photography is the best part of our year, every single year. We’ll see you in 2022!

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