About Sam Starns - Your Adventure Elopement Photographer


Based in the PNW, I help free spirited and fun couples craft enthusiastic elopement days in dramatic places.

Redwoods elopement, adventure elopement photographer

What's Up?

I consider myself a professional, but I'm far from formal. When you work with me, you're working with a friend. One who signs an email "xo", not "Regards", and one who considers you not just clients or a couple, but MY people. When we're out hiking, there are just as likely to be funny (or lame) jokes/puns as there are epic sunsets, wildlife, and kickass memories.

Yes, there might be poop jokes. Yes we'll be laughing at inappropriate things. Yes I will likely have a Diet Coke in my car fueling me on the big day (just let me know if you want one too, so I can grab you one!).

A little about me

I had a “traditional” wedding, even though I wanted something smaller and more adventurous (you can read more about that by scrolling down). I ended up caving to the pressures of society and friends/family. And to be honest, I regret it 100%.

And I don’t want anyone to feel like I felt on my wedding day when in their heart, they know something like an elopement is more their style.

I wish I had included activities and aspects of my wedding day that set my soul on fire; included things that I was passionate about.

I didn’t incorporate things like music, theatre, outdoors, laughter, and adventure – those things that I love – into my wedding, and I wish I had.

I was born and raised on a ranch in Southern Oregon, and spent a hell of a lot of my time outdoors. On an average day you could find me digging in the dirt attempting to have a green thumb (that only worked out half the time), or riding horses in the field.

My hubs and I are no strangers to backpacking or roughing it in the wilderness, but we love a good stroll on the beach followed by a bowl of clam chowder just as much. We also love traveling. I’ve lived abroad and have a couple languages under my belt. I’ve also competed in equestrian events for years, so I’m never one to turn down horseback riding.

I’m an LGBTQ ally and new member of the NAACP. I love learning about different cultures, religions, etc. I’m a theatre nerd and if I could communicate solely in GIFs, I wouldn’t be sad. My go-to movies/shows are things like Harry Potter, LOTR, Doctor Who, or anything in the Star Wars or MCU universe. I’m also a fan of laughing so hard that my abs hurt. To me, laughing means I’m making awesome memories.

Some Fun Facts

What is an Elopement?

Eloping is not about the photos.

 I know what you’re thinking. What? An adventure elopement photographer who thinks eloping isn’t about the photos?! Yes, you heard me right.

Eloping is about the transformation that you can have that is the catalyst for real change in the rest of your life. Think about all the defining moments in your life. Think about those moments that made you a better person. Think about those moments that were difficult, but life changing. Think about those moments where you had to be strong and fight. Think about those moments that you came out the other end of completely changed forever.

That is what eloping can be. It’s what I want to do for you. Oftentimes the most defining moments in our lives, those ones that change us, and shape us, and make us into the person we are meant to be, come from doing things and experiencing things outside of our comfort zones. 

Eloping is about so much more than a ceremony and great photos. It’s about doing the thing that speaks to you the most, regardless of whether it scares you, or looks hard, or mean you might face blow back. Eloping is about doing the thing that fulfills you and makes you a better person and who you were meant to be.

Why I Wish I Eloped

Brian and I are adventurous people by nature. We love to camp, check out national parks, and travel to new places. Our wedding was a 100 person affair because I felt like that’s what needed to happen – even if I made it known I would love to elope.

In addition, Brian partially convinced me we needed to have a “real wedding”, otherwise I’d never hear the end of it from his family. About a month before the wedding, after being steamrolled by family members, shafted by wedding party attendants, and stressed out beyond all belief, my husband asked me, “Is it too late to elope?”. I said yes, but looking back, I wish I had said no and thrown our nonrefundable retainers down the drain and got married on our pre-planned vacation to Maui at the top of Haleakala.

Brian and I love the theatre, but the idea of being in front of everyone wasn’t appealing in the slightest. I also dreamed of the whimsy and adventure an elopement brings.

A dress, a great view, a photographer, activities Brian and I could enjoy and connect with, and the love of my life – that was what should have happened.



0 Miles Driven
0 Miles Flown
0 Miles hiked with elopement couples
0 Awesome people in love (that's you).

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I am committed to equality and representation as well as proper environmental stewardship in the outdoors and beyond while crafting adventurous days that truly represent you as a couple. The outdoors are for everyone.