Arizona, Red Rock State Park: The setting sun creates an impressive interplay of light and shadow on the red rocks of Sedona. Against this backdrop there is a couple gazing into each other’s eyes with love and sincerity while being photographed. Behind the camera are Lucas Mobley and his partner Kathryn Denelle Stevens. With their Sprinter the professional wedding photographer duo travels throughout the country to capture the most beautiful moments in the lives of two people.
The two had their first formative contact with photography at a black and white photography course during their schooldays. After an internship at a local newspaper, Lucas finally studied photojournalism at the University of Ohio. Kathryn initially decided to study journalism only, but later found out that she also wanted to become a photographer. After working as photojournalists for about eight years, they quit their jobs and started their own business in wedding photography. But why this sudden change? Around 2006, the Internet hit the newspaper industry with full force. Numerous layoffs and forced retirements were the result. A bitter competition arose among the remaining (photo) journalists. The industry as they knew it no longer seemed to exist. A good time to start something new. Why wedding photography? Kathryn is good with people and has an open mind. For Lucas it is something special to be allowed to capture the magical connection between two people.
For some time now, Lucas and Kathryn have been among the most sought-after wedding photographers in Seattle and beyond. Their recipe for success: Photographing couples in the most natural and authentic way possible. Easier said than done. After all, almost every photographer wants to take authentic pictures, right? The difference lies in the approach. And this is where Lucas and Kathryn have their own philosophy. Often they place their protagonists far away from hectic everyday life, in the great outdoors. Through specific questions, Lucas then tries to help the couples to put themselves back in a special moment in their relationship. But the photographer himself must also establish a relationship with his photographic subjects so that more than just a superficial image can emerge. “Really great images capture a bit of that impossible to define something that is the human experience,” says Lucas.
Since October 2016 Lucas has been living permanently in a Mercedes-Benz Sprinter 3500, more precisely in its camper van version “The Plateau XLMB” from Pleasure Way (see info box). A year later Kathryn also moved in. Before that he lived in a wonderful apartment including a customer showroom in Seattle. But when the rents there started to explode, he decided to live in a van. It was no problem for his work either.
On the contrary: Van-Life minimalism even helps them to take their photographs with even more certainty. And if you don’t feel like it, just take time off, go out into the countryside, meet friends and cook something healthy. After all, it costs much less to live in a van than in an apartment in the city, which is why they can afford some downtime.
Before Van-Life Kathryn had a professional slump. Her professional life was not as she had imagined. The self-doubts gnawed at her and she no longer knew exactly what was important to her in life. If you find yourself in such a situation, it is important to take care of yourself and to work on a good work-life balance. This helped Kathryn to regain more self-confidence and optimism.
Lucas and Kathryn really like Van-Life, that much is certain. After about one and a half years, however, they now also know what they will be looking for in their next van: An all-wheel drive and a larger fresh water tank for more flexibility. And last but not least: More space – for their future kids!
Mercedes-Benz / Pleasure Way
3500 Chassis / The Plateau XLMB
Year of construction
Gross vehicle weight
The shown conversions were carried out by independent third parties. The suppliers and conversions were not checked by Mercedes-Benz. In this respect, these illustrations do not represent an assessment of the supplier and/or conversions by Mercedes-Benz.