I photographed a wedding in North Carolina in a hurricane. The bride gave up worrying about her beach side ceremony and switched into a go with the flow outlook. It was a fantastic wedding!
Marc Howard shot Carlie andJoe's wedding at Carmel Valley Ranch. I was the second shooter at their wedding. Before the ceremony Marc took these great still lifes...These are the shots we like to take while the bride is finishing her hair and makeup.
The Ceremony site overlooks the Pinot Noir Vineyards at the Ranch. It also has a spectacular view of Carmel Valley...not a bad backdrop for the bride and groom.
I like that the Vineyards are right there....Marc Howard's great shots of the bride and groom
Rarely do I photograph newly engaged couples that I have a long time connection to....I have known Derek since before he was born...so it was with extreme pleasure that I was able to spend some time with this fantastic couple.
The rehearsal dinner kick starts or initiates the wedding celebration. I love shooting the rehearsal dinner as the the celebration finally (after all the wedding planning) has begun, and the energy of the family and bridal party is great. It's also a good opportunity to get to know the family and friends or key players in the upcoming wedding.
At this particular rehearsal dinner, at the Monterey Peninsula Beach House in Pebble Beach, the parents seemed to know all of the bride and grooms friends. The rehearsal dinner is also when most of the toasts can take place, and they are heartfelt and entertaining....sometimes there's a bit of a roast involved as well.
In some situations the bridal couple is too busy with their party to take a moment to shoot a few shots of just them...here, we were at this great venue on Spanish Bay, and Morgan and Jennifer were into having some photos of just them.
At Bernardus Lodge couples get married in a rose garden setting with a view of the mountains. It's a great country walk for the bride to walk from the resort down to the ceremony site. Another great wedding to shoot...Mark, the father of the bride was very involved in the wedding planning, and I tried to capture his moment walking his daughter to her groom.
The shoes, the brides jewelry and bouquet create a still life. For me, it's like painting with my camera.
I always say a bride is not a bride until she puts on her wedding dress. To me, it's a significant part of the wedding.
The groomsmen's shoes- I am always looking for these detail shots.....
Carmel Valley weddings are a great setting for an elegant wedding. The Father of the bride making "the walk"....
During the ceremony we had 2 photographers. I always like to have 2 angles of view, and especially during the ceremony. One view of the groom, and one photographing the bride.
Another favorite group shot.
Wedding rings are a symbol of eternity with no beginning or end. They represent the continual bond of when two people fall in love. The circle of the rings are also symbolize the sun, earth and universe and represent holiness, perfection and peace. The reason the wedding ring is worn on the fourth finger is it was believed that it is the closest to the vein that runs to the wearers heart - also known as "the vein of love."
As a wedding photographer, I always view the wedding rings as art and place them in or around the bride's bouquet, wedding invitation and sometimes with the bride's shoes or jewelry. I usually photograph these shots as the bride finishes getting dressed and before the ceremony. I want them to look like sculpture or a painting.
I prefer not to shoot the rings on the hands as the fingers can be distracting. I use a special macro lens and selective focus to highlight the design of the rings.
Shooting a pre bridal or engagement session is a great moment for me and for the newly engaged couple. I get a chance to get to know the future bride and groom and explore whats meaningful to them. Our clients also have fun, and have an opportunity to relax in the session and celebrate the fact they are soon going to be married. Couples tell me how much they like looking back at their photos after the wedding. Its a completely different experience than the wedding as we generally encourage couples to dress casually, and shoot in a setting that has a personal connection for them as people. I shoot a lot of these on the beach as the Monterey, Carmel, and Pebble beach have so many choices for a great beach.
We have also had some great sessions in some of the vineyards and country settings that are in Big Sur, Monterey, Carmel Valley.
With Lucy and Kyle they wanted to go to a spot on the beach near her parents home, and basically they played….every session is different an unique to the people I am shooting. The images from the engagement wedding photo sessions are generally used in a save the date announcement and we include an enlargement with a signing matte…we also have created and designed beautiful wedding guest signing albums using these shots, and guest enjoy seeing the bride and groom in a more informal setting.
Maia and Peter and very specific ideas bout their session and we use a variety of natural backdrops for theirs….just like a wedding no two engagement sessions are the same…I love my job.
whether your wedding is in Carmel, Pebble Beach, Carmel Valley, Big Sur or beyond- it's important that your wedding site fits your style and personality. There are a few exceptions...I have seen over the top elegant weddings in a very rural and rustic setting...just make sure you book the venue first thing, and that you love it.
Every wedding venue has something special to offer, and this can be part of your decision making process for choosing where to have your wedding. If you love the ocean there are numerous places to hold your wedding. Spanish Bay (in Pebble Beach) wedding site is a short walk to actually being on the ocean. Both Marc and I love the shots of the bride with the dramatic ocean backdrop.
The reveal or first look is becoming extremely popular. There are so many reasons to seriously consider having a reveal. We like to place the bride in a place with a background that her groom will always remember. Remember in a traditional setting the groom is in front of 100+ people and to see his bride for the first time it is an emotuiopai experience. The shots we get the groom at that time he often has a look of overwhelming nervousness we call it “the deer in the headlights” expression. The reveal offers several advantages; the groom sees the bride like a painting hence a visual moment never to be forgotten, we can capture this intimate and emotional moment where as in a traditional setting the aisle makes this difficult, the couple has a moment to connect, and the bride and groom shots that come from this are incredible. With a first look or reveal the couples also less nervous and more present during the ceremony.
In some instances the family and/or bridal party is off to the side watching. Following the reveal we can do the family/bridal party shots, which mean following the ceremony the bride and groom can enjoy their party. We always tell our couples that a reveal does not weaken the wonderful drama of the bride walking down the aisle….with a reveal the bride has 2 entrances for her groom.
These are shots form Chelsea and Matt’s reveal. She is wearing tennis shoes under her dress and we have place a sheet under her so she will not tarnish the dress on th beach….you can see from their reveal what it meat to them. After this Chelsea freshen up at her hotel and was driven to her ceremony in Carmel Valley.