Behind the scenes: What actually happens behind that Instagram photo

Have you ever wondered what goes on behind the scenes in the life of a blogger/Instagrammer? Well look no further. I’m sharing all about the crazy things we do for the perfect photo here- featuring our weekend countryside getaway to Palestine, Texas!

Venturing to the countryside

One fun fact about me: I have wanted to be a country girl ever since my senior year of high school. That was when I fell in love with country music and starting dreaming of Texas.

When I moved to Dallas, I realized it was not what I had expected.

I very quickly understood that Dallas was devoid of horses, wide pastures, and cowboy boots. But Harrison, being the amazing husband he is, has done a great job taking me to the countryside and taking me horseback riding to compensate.

It has only grown my love for the Texas countryside!

So you can imagine my delight when my wonderful blogger best friend, Mary (you can find her website here and Instagram here), invited Harrison and me to her grandparent’s place in Palestine, TX.

It absolutely blew my mind.

I highly recommend a weekend countryside getaway to everyone!

The great thing about escaping to the countryside with my blogger bestie and our Instagram Husbands is that it was PERFECT for a photoshoot! And being a bunch of bloggers, we planned in advance. We knew exactly what photos we wanted to take and we had each other’s expertise and thoughts to bounce off of.

If you haven’t ever done a lifestyle/travel-style photoshoot, let me tell you: there’s a LOT that goes on behind the scenes.

Here are some highlights from the weekend with some behind the scenes stories. I hope you find them as entertaining as they were in person!

Picnics, picnics, and more (not-so-glam) picnics

If you follow me on Instagram, you might notice my love for picnics. I think they are so much fun and a beautiful way to enjoy nature. Behind the scenes, they can be tricky, but sometimes it just makes them all the more memorable.

For each of these three photos, something was always a bit wrong- but you *hopefully* can’t tell!

Photo 1: Grapefruit gone wrong

The grapefruit cheers- we accidentally cut our grapefruits the “wrong” way. Instead of the perfect grapefruit star you see in photos, we cut it the way you’d cut an orange. To make up for it, we cut them in half the right way, and smushed our two halves together for the photo. So we’re legit cracking up because there’s grapefruit juice running down our arms and we have to be super careful to not split the halves by accident.

Photo 2: Running out of daylight

Sunset is sacred time for photographers and bloggers. We got distracted from setting up our sangria and blanket because we ran into some of Mary’s family! As we talked to them, the sun sank lower and lower. We ended up making a mad dash for the photo! Fortunately, we made it just as the sun sank behind the trees!

Photo 3: Not-so-glam picnic

Setting up a whole picnic under the scorching hot Texas sun with bugs flying around is not as glamorous as you’d expect. While we poured our sweat and tears into this picnic set up, our husbands waited in the shade for us to meticulously place each item. After the shoot, we dragged our whole blanket into the shade and had an epic feast.

Running across haybales (and trying to get on them)

In order to get these shots, we had to climb onto EXTREMELY tall haybales.

With that, we needed to figure out how to get on said haybales.

Fortunately, we had a big truck we could back up near the bales. After a few leaps of faith, we were able to get from the truck bed onto the bales. But there definitely was a good half a minute where I had one leg on the truck and one leg on the bale split-style.

Once we were on the bales, the photoshoot portion was pretty smooth, except when our husbands shadows kept getting in the pictures. We found the right angles at the end.

I also learned that there is no way to get a cute running picture on haybales. None at all.

Picture perfect sunsets (and photos that go to waste)

I already told my sunset story, but one thing that I’ve learned from my photos is sometimes, even as pretty as a photo is, it simply won’t fit into my Instagram feed. I love being able to share photos on here with you all, but that’s the only place some of these pictures will go.

Take the reflecting trees photo: it’s simply too dark to fit onto my feed. But it’s stunning nonetheless!

There are so many photos that bloggers take that they simply don’t share because they don’t match aesthetically. Fun fact!

Collecting wildflowers (and snakes??)

We went to an old oil rig on Mary’s grandparent’s land to take a look. We saw a deer darting across the field when we arrived, and hoped for more deer. (Spoiler alert: we never saw any other deer).

But what we did find was a bunch of gorgeous wildflowers!

The only thing about wildflowers and tall grass is they are accompanied by a fear of snakes. Behind the scenes, we jumped around the field hoping that if we were quick enough no snakes would have time to bite.

Realistically, speed probably would not match up against a quick snake bite, but it comforted us anyways.

Good news though- we didn’t get bitten, so maybe it did work after all!

Boating & fishing (& the things we do to get on the water)

Behind the scenes- let me explain what it took to get each of the following shots:

Photo 1: Sunglasses that just don’t fit me

I love collaborating with companies and I only promote products I actually love. But sometimes collabs don’t work out the way you plan.

During our weekend in Palestine, I wanted to take a photo with my new sunglasses from Diff. I absolutely love Diff sunglasses (I have three pairs that I wear all the time), but unfortunately this pair just didn’t fit me well!!

All weekend I was taking random shots with the sunglasses- I probably took over 20 different shots before finding ONE that I liked. (That’s this photo by the way).

Photo 2: How many people can fit on a boat?

I love boats. I love water. I love boats on water.

But sometimes, we take things a little far in order to be on a boat on water.

The four of us climbed onto a fishing boat to get a little relaxation time out on the lake. We didn’t realize how hard it was to push off of shore. We didn’t realize the boat was meant for 2. And we definitely didn’t realize that we’d have to put so much effort into rowing.

Four city slickers on one two-person fishing boat in the middle of a lake with no fishing gear. I’m pretty sure we made some locals question our intelligence.

Also, if you look closely at the second photo, you’ll see that Harrison’s face is a strange streak-y white. This is because of his all-natural sunscreen which works wonders, but does not rub in. But anything to get him on the boat without getting sunburned so he can take my photos- right??

Photo 3: Fish have a mind of their own

Don’t the fish know that I just want to catch one for a picture?? I’ll throw it back ASAP, I promise!!

They apparently did not get the memo.

I got this super cute photo of Mary with a fish she caught because she’s awesome at fishing. I am not so awesome at fishing, and as a result, I have no picture with a fish.

Harrison had caught four fish by the time I realized I was never going to get my line far out enough. I wanted him to catch a fish for me, so that I could then take a picture with it. Of course, once I decided that, all the fish in the lake made a pact to not get caught.

Ergo, there is no picture of me with a fish.

Doing country things (sometimes scary country things)

Sometimes we take chances for photos.

Whether it’s sticking your head out of a truck while some not-so-happy longhorns chase you, or plowing through tall grass not knowing what slithers inside just to capture a pic of horses, bloggers do it all.

But honestly, it almost always adds to the fun. Since becoming a blogger, I’ve been motivated to explore new places, step outside of my shell, and capture moments of my life that I otherwise wouldn’t!

Our honeymoon to Hawaii three years ago- we hardly took ANY photos. Our trip to Paris? Hundreds and hundreds!

Capturing memories is something that I love doing.

I hope you enjoy the snapshots of these memories as much as I do!




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