San Diego Elopement

Maribel and James's Downtown San Diego Elopement

Maribel and James's San Diego Court House Elopement 2018 (5 of 25).jpg

This past Thursday I had the honor of capturing images for James and Maribel. These two love birds have some amazing children (ranging from 19 all the way down to 3) and a lifetime of love, so it was amazing being able to share this day with their sweet family. Maribel's original wedding plans were for something more traditional, but when her eldest babe went into the Navy she knew she might need to do something different to make sure her whole family was there for their special day.  

So to ensure James jr. made it to their big day, this sweet couple decided to move their wedding from Oklahoma, to San Diego, where James Jr. is currently stationed. Having a son in the military may have complicated this couples wedding day, but they wouldn't have wanted it any other way. Congratulations guys! I can't wait to share the rest of the images with you but hopefully you love these sneak peaks!




Flowers: La Belle Bloom

Dress: David's Bridal

Groom's Outfit: Dillard's

Hair and Makeup: CP Wedding Artistry Cinthya Preclaro

Bride's Shoes: Antonio Melani

Bride's Veil: Bella Styles


Stephanie and Joe Walland Lomas Santa Fe Country Club Wedding Reception

Joe and Stephanie Reception-6.jpg

This Saturday, I had the pleasure and honor of documenting Stephanie and Joe Walland's Wedding Reception at the beautiful Lomas Santa Fe Golf Course. Stephanie and Joe had their beautiful ceremony on a windy cliff in Hawaii and an outstanding celebration with friends and family here in San Diego. And I was lucky enough to be chosen to document the celebration! So here are a few sneak peaks of their sweet reception here in SD that I am so excited to share. :)

Up above and in lots of pictures below is the couples sweet little 3 month old pup named Barkley (which by the way is the cutest name ever!), and I am so thrilled he got to be part of the festivities. He was such a doll and honestly just a natural in front of the camera. With sweet Hawaiian details like leis and tasty Mai tai's, this party was one for the books. Congratulations to the Walland's and may your life together be as sweet and beautiful as your wedding celebration! Thank you so much for including me in your big day. 

Reception Venue: Lomas Santa Fe Country Club

Reception Photography: Great Woodland Photography

Wedding Dress: BHLDN

Florist: Evermore Floral

Shoes: Kate Spade

Rings: Collins Family Jewelers

Hair and Makeup: Hair & Makeup by Lici Beas

What's a "First Look" and why you should do it!

When I first heard about doing a “First Look” from my wedding photographer I knew it was the ideal situation for my wedding day, but I was worried I would be missing out. But I was soooo WRONG! Not only did Eddie and I share a First Look on our wedding day, I encourage all my future brides and grooms to do one as well! First Looks are amazing and SO incredibly helpful to photographers! Here are the top reasons I hear against wanting to do First Looks: 1. Family/ moms expectations 2. The Bride wants that WOW moment to be when she is coming down the aisle and 3. Way too non-traditional.

Well, my answer to brides and grooms that are thinking about doing a first look is:

I love families, buuuuutttt it’s your wedding and you do what you want lady.  

I also understand wanting him to be wowed as you come down the aisle. Understandable, I wanted that too! The thing is, he is still going to be “in awe” of you coming down the aisle no matter what. Eddie still cried his eyes out when I came down the aisle (seriously we even paused the ceremony for me to tell him to breath), even though we had seen each other maybe 20 minutes earlier.  The moment you walk down the aisle is so incredible that it doesn’t lose that feeling if you see each other before hand.  Eddie can attest that even though we saw each other, when I walked down the aisle, it was still the most memorable part of our ceremony.

True, this is a non-traditional concept but here some of my reasons you should consider it:

·      Your guests will not have to wait for you to arrive at your reception for sometimes over an hour! When do portraits after the ceremony, (family, bridal party, romantic portraits and then travel to the reception) that usually takes an hour and a half (yes it takes that long), sometimes longer if the couple wants a ton of awesome portraits of just the two of them! Because this is so time consuming, it often leads to rushed portraits and can cause unnecessary stress for the Bride and Groom because they aren’t enjoying their portraits together, they are worrying about their waiting guests.

·      A first look allows you to have some alone time. When couples decide to see each other for the first time in private, it is an emotional moment that the two of them share and it’s so incredibly intimate. And for me it’s so awesome getting to be there and document it.  This is a time when you get to love on each other, for the groom to tell his bride how beautiful she is. AND as a bonus this moment serves as a once in a lifetime photo opportunity for me. You look amazing and this is a chance for your groom to tell you, versus waiting till after the ceremony.

·      Couples that choose a first look end up with about 40% more portraits than those who do not opt for the First Look. PLUS the bride’s makeup is still intact (sometimes tears from the ceremony can require a makeup touchup and this can take 15 minutes).

·      It calms both of your nerves, but this is especially huge for the groom. Eddie and I talked about it after the fact and he was in full freak out mode until we had our first look. ALL grooms that have experienced a First Look admit that seeing their bride beforehand eases the wedding day shakes and allows them to relax and enjoy the ceremony!

·      Finally, a First Look is the answer to the wedding day timeline crisis!  It creates ample portrait time and allows the bride and groom to celebrate freely. AND you end up with more portraits than couples who don’t opt to do a first look.

Attention all late fall, winter and early spring brides…. you will most likely run out of great light for portraits after your ceremony. A First Look is a great solution for this issue!!

So while it is clear that I love first looks, I never absolutely never pressure my couples into doing them. I always give them the reasons why it’s a smart choice but if they really aren’t interested, OK. It’s their wedding day! It’s my job to make them happy and to help them have a great time and a solid schedule for pictures. It’s your decision, no judgement. I’ll make your day as perfect as possible. I get that it is a BIG decision but I have never had a couple that wasn’t happy that they decided to go for it!