Category Archives: Wedding

(s)mitten

Tucked against the foothills of the San Bernadino National Forest, Redlands is a hidden gem sprinkled with independent coffee roasters, vibrant wall murals, a striking juxtaposition of trees (pine and palm alike) and a charming small town vibe. This is where Lauren and I found ourselves on a recent Sunday, there to accompany a pretty rad couple on their wedding day. We had such an amazing time photographing Mel and Danny’s quite perfect ceremony and reception at the Mitten Building, and I’m so grateful for the opportunity to join in celebrating their love.

 

Here are a few favorites to share:
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Be cool and pop over here to stay up to date with Lauren’s beautiful work.

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Jereme + Kory | Lake Tahoe Wedding

There is something so peaceful about being in the forest. Removed from the noise of cars, machines, and the passing blur of urban society, the trees afford a quiet stillness accompanied only by the sound of chirping birds and the wind blowing through the pine needles. What a perfect setting this was for Jereme’s and Kory’s wedding at Gar Woods in Carnelian Bay. I was so honored by the opportunity to photograph this wedding A) because I appreciate ANY chance to learn and practice photography and B) because Jereme is my cousin who, 29 years ago, walked down the aisle at my parents’ wedding as the cheeky ring-bearer who stole the hearts of all the guests in attendance. Today, it is safe to say that Jereme has stolen another heart: Kory’s. When I arrived at her cabin on the afternoon of the wedding I was surprised to find none of the chaos and bustle that usually surrounds a bride and her entourage in the midst of wedding day preparations. Instead, there was a calmness that reflected the same peace in the surrounding forest and the peace within Kory’s heart…

Kory’s sons, Ryan and Westin, were proooobably my favorite people to photograph that day. Sorry, Jereme and Kory, I realize this was your wedding day and all, but these guys are just too cute!

My Uncle Gary had chosen a few verses to share during the ceremony emphasizing marriage as a picture of true love and commitment that reflects God’s love for us. Such a special moment he was able to share with Jereme and Kory.

The setting could not have been more perfect. Lake, pine trees, and a beautiful couple? Check.

Jereme hand-crafted this cake stand. Hand…crafted. I was completely unaware that such skill existed in my gene pool.

Such a beautiful end to a truly beautiful day.

Amanda + Jon | Wedding Day

The morning began at Starbucks. As the tea chased the sleepiness from my brain I began to feel the full force of the excitement surrounding the day: Amanda and Jon were getting married. I can still remember the tangible joy I felt upon receiving Amanda’s picture message of her engagement ring last summer, followed by the phone call in which she invited me to be one of her bridesmaids. While this feels like eons ago, I still could barely believe that their wedding day had actually arrived. After mentally and spiritually preparing for the weight of the day with a few verses from Ephesians, I convened with a couple of the other bridesmaids and we made our way across the street to the Newport Marriott to begin the beautification process…

Amanda’s amazing friend Kaitlyn was one of our talented hairstylists, and I know Amanda immensely appreciated having her joyful self around for the preparation process.

Amanda’s mom, Nancy, has taken to choosing a new background theme for each month. Appropriately, July was very wedding-themed.

As Amanda was having her hair done, the groom sent a messenger with a wedding morning surprise…a beautiful bouquet of flowers, champagne, and orange juice for all of us to enjoy.

I guess we all had the same idea that morning…

The following image makes me melt…a happy bride, beautiful creamy light, and the reflection of Fashion Island in the background.

Okay, so Katie broke out these tiny toothbrushes. We were highly entertained for a solid ten minutes.

Natalie, Amanda’s twin sister and maid of honor, had planned and executed everything so perfectly for the wedding day and the many months of preparation that precluded it. When I saw the emergency kit she packed for Amanda I was astonished at how carefully she had thought everything out. She even had white chalk, which I learned is the best way to hide a stain on a white wedding dress. News to me!

Again…melting.

At about this time, the mother of the groom, Jeanine, made me promise to put my camera away and enjoy myself at the wedding. The thing is, I am probably the most connected to life when I am taking pictures. Photography IS me enjoying myself. However, I did need to be as helpful as possible as a bridesmaid, so I wasn’t able to get too many more pictures as soon as we were on the move. I absolutely love the image below, though, of one of Amanda’s last moments with her dad before she became a Mrs. 

And finally, one of the few reception pictures I was able to snag. 

What a truly beautiful wedding day this was! From the perfect light and eager anticipation that surrounded our time at the Newport Marriott, to the ceremony at St. John Neumann Catholic Church in Irvine, to the beautiful reception back at the Marriott, the day could not have been a more appropriate beginning to Amanda’s and Jon’s lives together.

Amanda and Jon, I hope you are having an amazing honeymoon in Jamaica and I cannot wait to visit you in Colorado!

Jenni & Paul | Wedding Day

When I walked into the banquet hall at Green River Golf Club I instantly saw Jenni and Paul marked all over the room. Gold and purple. The Lakers. Tables adorned with centerpieces featuring pictures from their travels and bottles of wine. I think what makes a wedding truly special is seeing the bride and groom’s personalities and interests shine through. Jenni and Paul were no exception. For these physical therapists and Laker enthusiasts, their wedding felt like a glimpse into their journey from the beginnings of friendship to their engagement. I was so happy to have the opportunity to document their wedding and celebrate with them as they begin their lives together and continue to grow closer every day.

Jenni and Paul, thank you so so much for including me! I had so much fun every step of the way and I am eternally grateful for the chance to really experience a wedding from the photographer’s perspective.

This was my first experience shooting a wedding. Ever. I was definitely a little apprehensive initially but as soon as I arrived I think my instincts kicked in and I entered photographer mode. Looking forward to more weddings and learning more about this profession every day! Special thanks to one of the other photographers, Joe Lengson, for being so supportive. I pretty much told him he could dropkick me if I was annoying and getting in his frame but he only offered encouragement to get in closer and be more involved.

Congratulations again, Jenni & Paul!

Jenni’s Bridal Shower

A couple weekends ago I had the honor of photographing my friend Laura’s sister Jenni’s bridal shower (I don’t really know how to make that sound less convoluted). Laura and I have a unique friendship in that certain circles of our friends have developed pseudonyms for us to compensate for the undeniable confusion of us having the same first name. So, for just about 4 years now, I have grown accustomed to responding to Laura 2, Number Two, Laura Blonde, and, on some occasions, Dolores.

Anyways, I diverge. I was so happy to be a part of the celebration with Laura Brown, Jenni and their family and friends. Jenni looked absolutely radiant–and I’m pretty sure this was the first time I’ve ever seen her in a dress. She totally rocked it. I can tell that she and her fiancé Paul have built a solid partnership and that they are embarking on what is sure to be an incredible adventure and life together.

Laura, Master of the Sangria.

The first obligatory bridal shower game: What’s in your purse? I definitely got a kick out of watching all the guests empty their purses and hunt for the various paraphernalia on the list.

Watching a bride-to-be open her shower presents is always such a joy. With each unwrapped gift we all began to see the makings of Jenni’s and Paul’s lives as a married couple come together.

The proud Mother of the Bride 🙂

While Jenni unwrapped the presents, Elaine carefully and expertly constructed the ribbon bouquet.

These cupcakes, made by Laura…yep, they were to die for.

This was truly a lovely afternoon with Jenni celebrating her upcoming wedding…I know we’re all excited for the big day!