BIG SUR elopement photographeRS

turning your love story into


visual masterpiece that echoes through time

BIG SUR elopement photographeRS

turning your love story into


visual masterpiece that echoes through time

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Henry Tieu & Sergio - Elopement Photographers

We’re one of the original elopement photographers before elopements became popular. Since 2018, we’ve helped over 200 couples elope all over Big Sur and across the world.

Although our main duty is capturing you and your love in the most breath-taking landscapes, we are more than just photographers. We help couples craft an intentional experience that allows honest emotions to reveal themselves because everyone deserve to truly and fully immerse themselves into the day that commemorates the beginning of something new, magical, and worth every second living for.

Sergio from Henry Tieu Photography photographing wedding couple at sunset

World’s Best Wedding Photography 2019 – 2022 | Judge of World’s Best Wedding Photos 2023 Rangefinder Magazine’s 30 Rising Stars of Wedding Photography | Looks Like Film’s Artist Of The Year | World’s Best Wedding Photography 2019 – 2022 | Judge of World’s Best Wedding Photos 2023 Rangefinder Magazine’s 30 Rising Stars of Wedding Photography | Looks Like Film’s Artist Of The Year |


Adventurous BIG SUR Elopement – Epic Love Deserves An Epic Location

We photograph love the way love naturally occurs: organically and tenderly. On your elopement day, you should be able to forget the world and just be with the one(s) who matters the most

Same sex couple eloped in Big Sur on a cliff with rugged rocks
big sur elopement at pfeiffer beach
Bride and groom draw heart with sparklers on the beach at Big Sur
California Beach Elopement


Elopement Guest Etiquette 101

Attending an elopement as a guest is a special honor. Read this guide to learn elopement guest do’s and don’ts and learn our top elopement guest etiquette tips.

How to Plan Your National Park Elopement and Wedding

National park elopements are a great way to combine your love for the outdoors with an intentional wedding experience. quickly become a popular choice for couples looking to elope in nature. Visit the blog to learn how to plan your national park elopement and see the top places to elope in a national park.

Bursting Elopement Myths: 6 Misconceptions about Modern Elopements

Want to know the truth about elopements? There are so many ideas about what an elopement is or isn’t or what they should or shouldn’t be. The meaning of the word has changed over the years and the modern day elopement looks very different from the original meaning of the word. Read this blog post to discover some elopement myths and learn more about what today’s elopements actually look like. | Adventure Elopement Photographer | Elopement Myths | Elopement Wedding
death valley national park desert elopement

How to Elope in California [Updated for 2024]

What scenery do you envision for your elopement? Chances are whatever you’re dreaming of California has it! From deserts to beaches to forests this state has it all. Learn what it’s like to elope in California!

The Ultimate Big Sur Elopement Guide [Updated for 2024]

Big Sur is one of the most beautiful regions within California and is one of our favorite places for elopements. With stunning views of the coastline and secluded forests with towering Redwood trees, Big Sur offers so much variety for couples looking to elope. Read more on the blog and learn all about how to elope in Big Sur as well as the best locations to visit and stay.

BIG SUR Wedding & Elopement Stories

Bride and groom couple portraits on the beach in Santa Cruz, California

California Micro Wedding at Sequoia Retreat Center

Jen and Craig’s California micro wedding took place at one of the most beautiful forest wedding venues in Northern California! Visit the blog to see more from their forest wedding ceremony and adventure photos on the beach!


Sergio framed each shot to make us and the landscape look amazing.

We had an incredible experience working with Sergio. During the planning process he helped us determine the specific location for the ceremony and answered our many questions. On the day-of, Sergio was professional, fun, and helped ensure we had an amazing day. The photos are incredible. Sergio framed each shot to make us and the landscape look amazing.

mya & michael | eloped in big sur, california

couple eloped on a foggy moody day in big sur



same sex elopement in big sur

1) Anyone can elope but elopement is not for everyone. You don’t want to regret your wedding day. Read these 6 things to consider before eloping

2) Plan early in order to guarantee a wedding permit (applicable some State Parks or specific locations around Big Sur)


Even though we were behind schedule (which is normal) he never rushed us and he really made sure we were enjoying ourselves and savoring every moment.

When I got engaged the most exciting part of planning was choosing a photographer. The minute I came across Henry’s work, I knew that I wanted him to capture our big day not just because his work is absolutely breathtaking, but because he works with and highlights ALL love stories and equally showcases them on his page. Getting to work with and meet him was so surreal. What I loved most about working with him was how calm he was. Even though we were behind schedule (which is normal) he never rushed us and he really made sure we were enjoying ourselves and savoring every moment. Afterwards, he was QUICK to deliver a LARGE amount of sneak peeks and we have never gasped so hard. His work perfectly captured how we were feeling on the best day of our lives. I am so happy we invested in his work. If I could do it all over again, I would 100% choose Henry.


big sur elopement with dramatic cliff coastal view



Your Elopement Day Is Your Wedding Day

And You Deserve An Experience That is Honest, Meaningful, and Memorable

more answers to your


We operate fully on transparency and empowerment. We believe that YOUR elopement day is YOUR wedding day and this day will forever be a part of you and your legacy. It signifies the beginning of your next chapter and hold significant meanings to every aspect of your life.

Therefore, you deserve a photographer whom you can truly connect with as they are the one who’s in charge of fleeting moments and memories of your day

We hope we can be your Big Sur Elopement Photographers but We STRONGLY believe that you should look around for options, view each photographer’s portfolio, read their reviews, and talk with them in order to really have a clear picture of how they work and how they can help you. Each photographer’s approach to wedding photography is like their DNA, it’s an extension of who they are

For us, we focus on an INTENTIONAL EXPERIENCE & ARTFUL PHOTOGRAPHS. In order to do so, we do more than just photography. We’ll be there with with you every step of the way to help you though this journey

We also believe in the power of your story, what makes you unique, and what you value rather than how you look or how your photos should look because of trends.

To learn more about what it’s like to work with us, view our Elopement Experience.

For Big Sur, you can elope anytime; however, November – April often get moodier with fog (we personally love it but we just want to make sure you’re aware). Since Big Sur is so close to Monterey, Carmel By The Sea and other metropolitan cities in Northern California, it is quite easy to get there. This also means Big Sur often gets busy during its peak season. Therefore, we recommend eloping on week days to avoid crowds and tourists.

Just like elopements anywhere in nature, keep in mind that Big Sur’s weather can be unpredictable, so it’s essential to have a backup plan and be prepared for any surprises. And of course we’ll be there every step of the way to help you plan for the unexpected and unknowns

One hundred percent. Elopement isn’t just about running away or keeping it all a secret. It should be an experience where you can enjoy the whole day with whomever you would like to be there. Therefore, for us, we consider elopements and intimate weddings the same.

Although we don’t limit the amount of guests you should have, some National Parks, State Parks, BLM Lands place limits on the guest size to protect trails and native plants.

We’ve noticed that a guest list of about 30 or so can still ensure a low-stress experience. If you are interested in having more than 30 guests, we can always chat to figure out a location and a plan to give you the best experience and photos.

You can elope without photography for as low as $60 (marriage license cost) or up to $33,900+ (with vendors, locations, etc…). How much your elopement will cost depends on what what you want to experience and your guest size. At a minimum, you’ll need wedding attires and a photographer.

We have an entire blog post on how much does it cost to elope that also includes a handy elopement calculator.

Our California elopement packages start at $6,900. To learn more about everything that’s included in our services and how we can help, please visit our Pricing Page.

You can apply for your marriage license online 90 days before your elopement date. California requires an ordained officiant and 1 witness (unlike many other States that often require 2 witnesses). We will be there every step of the way to help you with important deadlines to make sure your elopement experience not only legal but also magical. For a full guide on how to elope in California, read our guide here. In addition, some places in Big Sur also require a wedding/elopement permit so you can have your ceremony there. You can read our Big Sur Elopement Guide for some general info. Of course we will be there to assist you with any necessary permit requirement during the planning process.

Most of our elopements average between 6-10 hours but how many hours you need will depend on how many locations you want to experience, how many guests you would like to have, and what activities you would like to experience for your elopement day.

A half-day elopement is around 6 – 8 hrs. Couples interested in both sunrise and sunset or multiple locations book a full day (10+ hrs.) Couples who want both a wedding experience where they spend the whole day with guests and also an elopement experience where they can spend private time together on a separate day book us for 2 days.

See our elopement packages for additional information and if you have any additional questions or are ready to book, send us a message and let’s get started!

Adventure elopements for us aren’t always about hiking. We believe that YOU DON’T NEED TO HIKE TO HAVE A BEAUTIFUL ELOPEMENT DAY

If hiking is what you enjoy, we’ll be ready with our hiking boots and some snacks to share. However, if it’s not something you love, we can certainly help find easy access locations for you and your family.

We’ve found that majority of beautiful places to elope in Big Sur won’t require much hiking. However, as you’ll probably be walking on cliffs and loose rocks, we recommend shoes with good tractions. We’ll be there with resources and packing list to make sure you are prepared.

If you’re looking to hike, there are some really amazing trails that are stunning (and mostly super quiet as tourists don’t often hike). We recommend no more than 2-3 miles each way since hiking for an elopement experience is different from hiking for fun as you’ll be carrying gears and outfits you’d typically not have.

  1. Once you’ve decided that eloping is for you, reach out to us on our contact page.
  2. We’ll get on a call to get to know each other and for us to share with you more knowledge, details, tips and resources.
  3. Once we figure out the best date for the best weather at your dream location, we’ll prepare a contract in order to reserve that date right away.
  4. After that, we go into planning mode together to make sure this experience is personalized and customized to your vision and your needs.

Trust us, it is as easy as it sounds 🙂


Love Letters from Our Happy Couples

couple eloped in big sur in front of a vintage car



To describe this day as magical would be an understatement. Sergio has such an incredible talent and such a beautiful spirit. It felt as if I had known him our whole lives. We aren’t photogenic people but the way the pictures turned out would say otherwise. He made us feel so comfortable and confident through the whole thing. He had a game plan and didn’t let us worry about a single thing, besides the freezing cold wind lol. Even then, he knew how to work in the wind in our favor and it produced incredible outcomes. We keep getting compliments every time we share our photos and we are quick to refer Sergio! Truly our best investment from our day!

double exposure elopement photography in big sur

KATIE & erik


Henry was absolutely amazing – we truly loved having him as part of our wedding day! From day one, he went above and beyond and made the entire process not only seamless, but special and an experience unto itself. If you’re thinking of hiring him, do it! It was the best decision we made.

After putting our wedding on hold multiple times due to COVID-19, we decided to have a micro wedding but didn’t know where to start so we reached out to Henry. We had been following him on instagram for awhile and connected with the way he was able to capture how moments felt, rather than just taking pretty/posed scenery shots.

After connecting via Facetime, we knew he was it! He was humble, kind and clearly very, very talented. From the moment we booked, he took care of everything! We shared our vision for the day and he (plus Viet of Rain and Pines) did the rest – he scouted our location, created the timeline, checked in with us regularly via text, etc. And then on the wedding day itself, he was phenomenal! Kind, professional, funny, relaxed – he put everyone at ease and it, honestly, felt like we were just hanging out with a friend.

And his photos – wow. I still can’t believe they are ours! Also, did I mention that he sent us a framed photo as a wedding gift with a card thanking us? If anyone deserves to be thanked, it’s Henry!

So thank you, Henry!! We love you!


mengyue & kevin


I knew I wanted to have Henry as our engagement photographer after scrolling through his instagram account for hours non stop. He provided us very detailed instructions for the day and has a great eye for choosing locations for couples. He is such a personable person that made us feel so relaxed even though this is my husband and I’s first professional photos together. I’m completely in love with all the magic moments Henry has captured for us, so unique and eye-catching!! I cannot wait to invite him for future advantures and record our stories through his lense again!