Yes. These photos were taken in a cemetery.

I’ve always loved cemeteries. They are full of history, sweet memory, and poetic reverence. And I had the sweet pleasure of capturing Chelsea & John at the Myrtle Hill Cemetery in Rome, Ga.

They are the most intelligent, artistic, and sweet people you will meet. When you meet Chelsea & John, you always feel listened to and appreciated. The world stops for a second and you feel free of the need to be loud or to strive.

These two remind me of a couple in the book, A Severe Mercy by Sheldon Vanauken. In the book Sheldon and Davy, are consumed by the pursuit of beauty, reason, and the kind of love that can never be shaken. This pursuit leads them both to Jesus, whom they found to embody all of those things.

I find Chelsea & John to have the same pursuits, and it is a magnificent thing to witness.

Their shoot was the kick-start to my new photography season. And I couldn’t have picked a better couple to do it with. Their chemistry is intense and their love is so deep. I feel incredibly honored to have captured a tiny portrayal of their union.

Happy Anniversary, Chelsea and John.  Thank you for blessing me by being beautiful souls and by loving each other so well!


Goodness & love are as real as their terrible opposites, and, in truth, far more real, though I say this mindful of the enormous evils… But love is the final reality; and anyone who does not understand this, be he writer or sage, is a man flawed of wisdom.
― Sheldon Vanauken, A Severe Mercy



“Between the probable and proved there yawns
A gap. Afraid to jump, we stand absurd,
Then see behind us sink the ground and, worse,
Our very standpoint crumbling. Desperate dawns
Our only hope: to leap into the Word
That opens up the shuttered universe.”
― Sheldon Vanauken, A Severe Mercy



Posted by:Crystal Anne Downs

I am a professional photographer and unprofessional sociologist pursuing creative outlets that lead to beauty, social justice, and peace in this world.

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