We had the good fortune of connecting with Mariah Wynkoop and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Mariah, do you have a favorite quote or affirmation?
“Not All Those Who Wander Are Lost.” and “Then Something Tookish Woke Up Inside Him, And He Wished To Go And See The Great Mountains, And Hear The Pine-Trees And The Waterfalls, And Explore The Caves, And Wear A Sword Instead Of A Walking-Stick.” Both are J.R.R. Tolkien

Adventure and fantasy books have always had a special place in my heart, and now that I’m a little older they ring so true for my own life. Life itself is its own adventure, and the journey is the best part, not where you are going. My husband and I are both avid travelers. Every new place we go may feel a bit like wandering, but it’s the most at home I’ve ever felt. I love traveling to new places and capturing love stories through my photography for what greater adventure than love itself.

Let’s talk shop? Tell us more about your career, what can you share with our community?
I am a photographer specializing in weddings, elopements and engagements. I have a bold, true to color, candid style. No awkward family photo style posing here!

I’ve had kind of a roundabout way getting to where I am. In high school, I had a full ride for photography or I could pay for school and get an engineering degree as I was good with math & science. During my senior year, my parents went through a bankruptcy and our home was foreclosed. I decided then that engineering would pay for life a little bit better than photography and chose to get the Chemical Engineering Degree. Now after working for 10 years as an engineer, I’m realizing that my passion for photography never left and that if anything it has only grown stronger over the years.

I truly love capturing couples in love and their unique personalities and their unique relationship. I love seeing women and couples faces upon seeing their photos as I see their true beauty and not what they think they see in the mirror. It’s amazing to show someone the beauty that others see. They can see the way their partner looks at them too. I want to work with couples that I can truly become friends with and am good friends with most of my couples. I want to be there to support my clients as a friend and hype girl when they need it in the middle of some of the most stressful and wonderful days of their lives.

It’s not easy working in the photography world as there seems to be so many out there. I pride myself in my experience for my couples. I want them to feel supported all the way through the process. I’m currently working as an engineer still during the day but am working on going full time. I’m focusing now on my client experience because the couple may forget what you did but they will always remember how I made them feel. Everyone should feel special and uniquely them especially on the happiest day of their life.

Love is life’s greatest adventure. The wedding is an adventure in and of itself. If you want to go rock climbing, snowboarding, hiking, fishing, scuba diving for your elopement or if you want the huge church wedding in downtown, I’m so down for any of those adventures as long as those adventures make you happy.

Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
If my best friend was visiting, there would be a lot packed into a week! She’s from central Georgia, so a lot different scenery than here in Colorado.

I’d take her up into the mountains to hike and camp for a couple of nights. We would hit the Coors Tour, Golden City Brewery, Woody’s Pizza and D’deli in Golden on the way back down the mountain. We’d probably hit Beau Jo’s and Tommy Knocker brewery in Idaho Springs as well at some point during the week.

If it were the winter time, we’d hit the slopes in Breck for a day or two. If it’s the summer, we’d get a whitewater rafting trip in Idaho Springs.

I’d take her to Garden of the Gods in Colorado Springs for a day because nothing beats the beauty of that area any time of the year.

I’d take her through Rocky Mountain Arsenal to see the bison because where else in the country can you truly see bison up close.

I’d take her up to Rocky Mountain National Park and do a couple of my favorite hikes and would see Viestenz-Smith Mountain Park and Devil’s Backbone on the way down the canyon. I’d take her to Sweetheart Winery in Loveland for a wine flight in the afternoon.

Some of the best adventures are those shared with a friend.

The Shoutout series is all about recognizing that our success and where we are in life is at least somewhat thanks to the efforts, support, mentorship, love and encouragement of others. So is there someone that you want to dedicate your shoutout to?
There are so many in my life that deserve recognition for where I am in my life.

My husband is the first one that deserves recognition. He’s been very supportive of my business from the very beginning and is the one that truly believes that I have what it takes to be a well known photographer. He also does all my financials, so thank the Lord for him!

My mom is the next one that truly deserves recognition. She has never pushed me in any direction in life, just to be happy and to enjoy what it is that I do. I’ve worked as an engineer for the last 10 years and am working on going full time in my photography business. She was the first to truly encourage me to live the life I truly wanted to live.

And to my dad who when I first photographed a wedding, he told me that he thought I chose the wrong profession by choosing engineering and that I should be photographing as that’s what I truly love to do.

Website: www.wynkoopphoto.com

Instagram: www.instagram.com/wynkoopphotography

Facebook: www.facebook.com/wynkoopphotography

Image Credits
The two images of me (in the purple hair, black pants and green top) : Joanna Kosmider Photography All other photographs : Wynkoop Photography

Nominate Someone: ShoutoutColorado is built on recommendations and shoutouts from the community; it’s how we uncover hidden gems, so if you or someone you know deserves recognition please let us know here.