There are a few of us left, we are almost extinct; Twilight fans willing to openly admit that we still appreciate the love story intertwined with vampires, werewolves, and the Pacific Northwest. I am one of these few, quiet about it usually but supportive when the topic comes up. Probably something you don’t know is I had the honor of meeting Taylor Lautner (Twilight’s Jacob) 1on1 at the 2011 San Diego Comic Con (no photos allowed but I have a witness), and Kiowa Gordon (Twilight’s Embry) in 2010 (photo at the end of the Blog). Naturally I was thrilled to finally visit Forks & La Push here in WA. Enjoy the video of our day in Forks & La Push before reading more about our Twilight adventure:
One of the 1st things on my WA State Bucket List was to visit Forks, WA & La Push in the Quileute Nation again. As a child I frequented both in summers as a happy camper passing by or stopping for lunch. Things have definitely changed.
I met Jessie, also a Twi Fan, a few years ago in San Diego when we were hired to photograph her engagement photos while her fiancé was stationed there – even added a little vampire love to one of the extra photos since she wore her UW shirt.
We also photographed their wedding in Wisconsin before her husband was stationed in WA with the Navy. She has become such a great friend of mine, her family is practically our family now too so I was excited about living near them once we got news of our move up north. :) Together we planned for our January girls day. I picked her up from the ferry and we headed west. We stopped briefly by Lake Crescent in the foggy morning to grab a snap shot and allow a tailgater to pass on this two lane road trip. Let’s just say it’s a bad idea to tailgate a photographer, looking only at the road is practically impossible.
We barely arrived in Forks in time for our 11AM “Team Forks” Twilight Tour. We knew it was the off season and in the summer tours are led by Twilight look-alikes. This wasn’t going to be the case, they were making a special tour day just for us (they have them year round on most days). The guide worked at the gift shop for some time, but our tour would be his very first Twilight Tour of Forks.
We realized pretty quickly that you can’t be the shy type riding in a van like this. The entire town knew who we were and why we were there – dead give away. At stops people did gawk for sure, there were just the two of us riding alone in that big bus, making stops and drive-by photo snaps. I grabbed a drive-by glimpse of the Outfitters where Twilight’s Mike & Bella worked …corporate stores weren’t as happy to be part of the tour I assume because we didn’t stop and they weren’t mentioned.
Our 1st stop was visiting the truck Bella got from her dad (purchased from Billy & Jacob Black). Forks had a tourist info area where they were perfectly displayed. The book version…
And the movie version:
2nd stop was at the Swan House where Charlie would have lived. I didn’t realize that there was actual real-estate research done in the making of the books. So the houses that were described were actual houses in Forks.
We drove by the Forks hospital where Dr. Carlisle Cullen worked and around the back there it was! His office and designated parking spot.
We took a momentary detour looking for a locally popular herd of deer to photograph but we were minutes late, they were into the forest already for the day. So, our next stop was the famous Forks welcome sign. Team Forks brought cardboard characters for us to play with at our stops.
We stopped at the Police Department, and looked at their little indoor Twilight display before heading out to the Forks police car that Bella’s dad Charlie drove.
Just down the street was the Cullen’s house, the book description, not the movie. It wasn’t as elaborate or hidden far in the forest as either suggested but rather just a couple blocks from the main street. It was a cute Twilight tribute. I especially liked their lawn ornament castle (it was in the video) and if you looked in the windows there were surprises and memorabilia. Including a collage of graduation caps on display.
The main drag had stores that were trickled with Twilight goodies and I am sure during the summer, tourist season, it is even more so than January. From what we heard the town has had some issues with fires in the past year or so. Fires that burned down some of the popular Twilight stores, as well as some fraud from out of town business owners promoting the Twilight fun in town but leaving before paying employees etc. I was sincerely sad for Forks. The town struggled horribly before Twilight, since logging was it’s original source of income and as that took a decline so did the economy. Twilight was such an amazing change, I followed the towns transformation during the height of it all and only hope that it will survive the drop in fans as well. As they say, support what you want to last – so we did.
Our last Forks stop before the end of the tour was at Forks High School, which happened to be in session so we couldn’t wander around campus photographing the lunch room etc.
Team Forks even offered us the opportunity to be photographed with their Prom Set Up, if only that shadow of Edward was real so we could dance the night away. Thanks Team Forks for a wonderful trip! Your mascot retriever was adorable!!
Once the tour was over we hopped in the car and asked ourselves, ‘La Push, Baby! You in?’ Of course!!! It was just a few miles away and a must see.
As we followed my GPS to the beach we were surprised with a bunch of Twilight attractions. The first of which was the Treaty Line!
We stopped at the cafe at the Treaty Line for a BITE to eat. Loved their menu!
The Vampire Shake was delicious (cherry) and the decor was all Twilight to our surprise.
Even had Cullen historical photos, like most restaurants show local history. This is Edward in his first car lol.
The Vampire Threat was Dangerously High so we were headed to La Push Beach in hopes of seeing some werewolves or vampires.
Along the road was this gem! Jacob Black’s house! You can stay there, it is a rental home. Seems like a fun idea to me.
As we arrived at the beach our first sight included a roaming werewolf..well sort of! There were strays roaming around the beach and town, it was interesting. Normally I am not one to like the idea of roaming canines – my 4 fur kids are indoor family members – but seeing them in this town was different. It made you wonder how real the legend was.
I know it looks like it was warm, but it was definitely not. Photo taking in the wind was on a time limit before rushing back into the car and away from the wind that slapped our faces.
I specifically wore this outfit for the day, not sure if you recognize some of it from the Twilight movie but this is the blue jacket (replica) Bella wears when her and Edward are in the forest and he reveals he is a vampire. The shirt is the one she wore when she was in the motel in Arizona being chased by James. Thanks to Aimee & Tisha, friends who have gifted me these lovely fashion statements. When I wore them to the movies some fans actually recognize them but besides that it is not an everyday realization.
The driftwood was as gorgeous as the books and movie suggested.
The clouds were being creative on a typical cold day with on and off rain.
It was easy to imagine Victoria swimming in the ocean or cliff diving teens from cliffs all around.
…or the bon fire day when the group of high school students just walking along the beach…and Bella and Jacob had their first conversation about the cold ones.
Jessie and I had a wonderful day, we thought about talking to the old man Black who was a local story teller you could sometimes see, but we needed to leave our Twilight paradise and head back to reality.
On our schedule was a quick dinner stop in Port Angeles, where Bella spent time shopping with the girls amongst other events, and of course having her first date with Edward at Bella Italia. (cell phone pic)
I was a nerd and ordered the mushroom ravioli, same dish as Bella of course. It was delicious!(cell phone pic)
Sometimes I wonder if any clients would consider doing a Twilight themed photoshoot with us now that we’re in the perfect state for one. (If so, do let me know!) While in CA I had a few requests to play around during sessions…even our stylist Tisha was a HUGE fan! She brought Edward with her to all of our shoots together…he protected us all.
If you’re a fan of the TV show “Switched At Birth” on ABC Family you’ll recognize this handsome vampire, Ryan Lane, at his modeling/headshot session. If only they included a Deaf vampire in the series I’m certain he would have got the role…something like the Twilight character, James.
Courtney was a high school senior and we happened to be in a meadow of wild flowers, too perfect to not have a sparkling smile.
I’ve also converted a pin up boudoir babe, Brittany, into a vampress of love from the infamous bedroom scene.
I even wondered how fun it might be to if I were part of the Denali Clan – until I saw them in the movie and well, they just looked too funky for me.
But perhaps my favorite was my good friend Aimee’s daughter, I like to call ReneseMaddie. Aimee had a son a year later and named him Carlisle!! Perfect!
If you follow our posts you know that we’ve attended Comic Con for 5 years now. In our Comic Con adventures I have had the chance to see the Twilight cast panel twice. Enjoy some Comic Con Twilight fun in this video with Robert Pattinson, Taylor Lautner, Kristen Stewart, Ashley Greene, Elizabeth Reaser, Julia Jones and Nikki Reed as well as The Hillywood Show Twilight Characters.
My last bit before I end the longest blog I’ve written, I don’t think most people know I was a big fan of Ashley Greene (Twilight’s Alice) as a Pin Up model long before she was cast in the movie. She modeled for one of our favorite brands of dresses “Stop Starring“, this photo is NOT ours but I wanted to show you why I especially love Ashley as a pin up aficionado myself…
Well, I am sure you think I am crazy at this point and I guess I accept that role in life, lol. You won’t find Twilight around my house, besides the books and a couple movies. I still love Twilight though, its characters and the Northwest. It would be dreamy to photograph any of the cast in an actual photoshoot, it is on my wish list. I leave you with this image from my 30th birthday, with Kiowa in 2010.
Some like vampires
Some like werewolves
Some Like It Shot