Big Top Photo Op: Area couple gets a rare opportunity to have their engagement photos taken at Ringling Brothers and Barnum & Bailey Circus
Shorter grad assistant Blair Hooper and her fiance Adam Elrod share a smooch while onlookers do some clowning around during their engagement photo shoot at the Ringling Brothers and Barnum & Bailey Circus.
by Severo Avila, Features Editor
April 1, 2012
When Blair Hooper and her fiancé Adam Elrod took their engagement photos, they went a bit outside the ordinary pastoral setting or the traditional scenic background. They went big, as in Big Top.
Elrod proposed to Hooper, a Shorter University grad assistant, in December. Hooper wanted unique engagement photos and Elrod gave her complete creative control. The result was a photo shoot in the whimsical, colorful world of Ringling Brothers and Barnum & Bailey Circus.
“I just wanted her to have whatever she wanted. Whatever makes her happy, she deserves it,” Elrod said of his fiancé.
Hooper immediately began combing the Internet for ideas, and it wasn’t long before she found her inspiration — the Ringling Brothers Circus. Working in the sports and entertainment industry (she’s a sports information grad assistant at Shorter University) Hooper was able to get in touch with a Ringling Brothers manager who was willing to help her plan the engagement shoot.
The circus visited Atlanta in February but it wasn’t as simple as showing up ready to take some photos. The couple, Rockmart residents, went through a grueling interview process in order to insure the validity of their relationship, and was offered a morning spot to shoot their photos. Hooper immediately knew who she wanted to capture these moments.
“I knew right away Pam Jones of Paris Mountain Photography was the one who could really make this everything I dreamed of,” Hooper said.
Jones jumped at the opportunity and on February 16 Elrod, Hooper and their parents stepped inside Philips Arena and into the magical world of Ringling Brothers.
They were greeted by the show’s producer along with the circus’ famous clowns and the couple was whisked away into the fanciful arena. Elrod and Hooper said they received “star treatment” from circus performers.
While Hooper was ushered backstage to change into a trapeze outfit, Elrod was painted up by the world renowned clowns.
“Getting painted was my favorite part,” Elrod admitted.
After the two were transformed into circus stars, each took turns being lifted above the empty arena for photos. When the shoot was over Ringling Brothers and Barnum & Bailey provided the couple and their parents with a small reception to celebrate their engagement, as well as provided free tickets to that night’s performance.
“Everyone at Ringling was so welcoming, and kind,” Hooper said. “They absolutely saw the same vision I did, and helped bring it to life,” Hooper said.
The couple is currently planning their fall wedding and says that their wedding will be much more traditional, but still showcase their personality.
The engagement photos turned out to be colorful, whimsical and captured a day Blair and Adam will never forget.
Read more: RN-T.com - Big Top Photo Op Area couple gets a rare opportunity to have their engagement photos taken at Ringling Brothers and Barnum Bailey Circus