Thank you Mr. Google…

Thanks to the search engines, I’m often found by couples having what I’ve coined a “tiny wedding.” You know, like “tiny houses.” This L.A. couple met just 3 MONTHS ago at a fire ceremony gathering in Topanga Canyon. Sparks more than flew. They skyrocketed.

Tatiana came to this country just 1-1//2 years ago from Brazil. And Leif is an actor, producer. Tati’s cousin lives in OC and has a beautiful greenbelt in back of her home which is where the ceremony was held.

Small weddings are very special. The guests are very few that mean a lot to the couple. And Tatiana’s 92-year-old grandmother flew in from Brazil. Wait’ll you see her!

Here’s Leif waiting to see his bride come down the path.

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When lens flares happen at times like this, I can’t help feeling it looks like God is shining down on the moment.

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After their first look, walking across the lawn to the ceremony site.

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The officiant is a friend of Leif’s, in “the business” also, and perfect in every way.IMG_7142-2Listening to Tati saying her vows.

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Their personal vows were magical. And filled with emotion.IMG_7190-2IMG_7192-2IMG_7218-2IMG_7226-2

I think they’re happy ūüôāIMG_7240-2IMG_7441-2IMG_7458-2IMG_7494-2

A fun take on the sometimes boring group photo. That little lady in the stripes next to the groom is the 92 year-old grandmother. I want what she’s having.

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Another “Tiny Wedding”

I closed out 2016 with another “Tiny Wedding.” This one was the adorable Sami marrying her soldier just days before he was deployed overseas. Although the skies in Laguna Beach were dreary that day, the smiles couldn’t have been¬†sunnier. What a sweet couple.

The location was the gazebo in Heisler Park (Laguna Beach), which never looked prettier! And I love Sami’s vintage mink stole. It crossed my mind several times that she has an Adele vibe going on, don’t you think?

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Sami’s pretty maids…

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Love these lighthearted moments in an otherwise serious ceremony.

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The look of love.

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Sealed with a kiss.

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Love the colors here. And Sami looks so pretty.

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They love Heisler Park and beach, so I had to get a shot with the sign.

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Tips on makeup and hair styling for your wedding day

You’re only going to be a bride once (at least we hope that’s the case) so you want to look picture perfect. Not just for your husband-to-be, ¬†but for the photos you’ll have for the rest of your life. Although some things will surely¬†look dated after a few decades pass, you don’t want to do a trendy look that will scream out “2014”. Think timeless.

Here’s some advice I can offer after years of photographing weddings.

1. Do a makeup trial. And if you don’t like the first one, do a second…or even third. You want to still look like YOU. Well, maybe a more made-up version of you, but if you’re a “less is more” kind of girl, you don’t want to end up with thick black eyeliner and red lipstick.

This is a look I LOVE. Natural eye, and a little more emphasis on the cheek and lip. Great for photography.

This is a look I LOVE. Natural eye, and a little more emphasis on the cheek and lip. Great for photography. And let’s talk about the pearl and rose gold hair ornament.

2. Bring photos of makeup and hair that are examples of what you’d like to look like on the big day. A picture says a thousand… Of course, your particular hair length, texture and thickness will mean you can or can’t do certain things, but you can still convey the vibe. Classic, sophisticated, hippie, boho, fresh, etc. And please don’t decide to change your hair color the week before the wedding!

3.¬†Speak up if you aren’t happy during your trial. That’s why you’re doing it. It’s possible that he/she won’t get it completely right, so this is the time to let the artist make changes.

4.¬†The personality of the makeup and/or hair stylist is also extremely important. You want someone calm, positive and happy. And, PLEASE make sure they can stick to a schedule. In my experience, if hair and makeup run behind, your whole day is messed up! It all starts with them. A call to a previous or client or two should help you learn that important bit of intell.¬†I’ve had brides keep 150 guests sitting in an un-airconditioned church for an hour because the hair and makeup folks had NO sense of urgency.

5.¬†Make sure your stylists bring enough staff for you, your relatives and your bridal party if you’re all getting “did.” Very important.

6. Let the makeup artist apply false eyelashes. They don’t have to be long and super thick, but your eyes will look much better in photos. And, again, the trial will help you get used to the feeling.¬†Having them put on for the first time on your wedding day isn’t such a good idea. And, your¬†makeup should be set with a loose translucent powder. Not only will it set your makeup and help it last longer, it gives a smoother, more flawless finish.

Simply beautiful. And beautifully simple.

Simply beautiful. And beautifully simple.

7.¬†Same goes for hair extensions. While you may not need that extra volume every day, they’ll add that extra “oomph.” AND, extensions hold the curl. So while your own hair is wilting from the humidity, the extensions will look freshly curled. Trust me on that.

8. The fancier your gown, the fewer accessories you need. You want to look “done”, but not over done. Curate your look and think about every detail you’re tempted to add. Do you really need earrings, a necklace,¬†bracelet,¬†hair ornament, jeweled sash, etc.

Jen rocks a pretty distinctive style in her personal life, so the red lip was perfection. But do  note lack of accessories. Anything else would've been too much.

Jen rocks a pretty distinctive style in her personal life, so the red lip was perfection. But do note lack of accessories. Anything else would’ve been too much.

9.¬†Don’t let your makeup artist apply too much shimmer on your face or body.¬†It can actually bring out imperfections and make you look sweaty or shiny in your pictures. No bueno.

10. Don’t do a crazy manicure for the big day, e.g. nails the color of your bridesmaids’ robin egg blue dresses. It will surely look outdated in no time. Don’t forget you’ll likely have close-ups of your hands to show off your ring and/or bouquet, so a¬†simple French manicure or a neutral pastel is much better.

I'm trusting you know which one is which :-)

I’m trusting you know which one is which ūüôā

Truly, if you keep these¬†simple guidelines in mind, you’ll have a flawless look that will look beautiful in person and in your photographs.

 

honored, thrilled, and other stuff

So proud to be featured (again!) in the beautiful new issue of California Wedding Day magazine’s Haute List ¬†as one of Orange County’s 10 premier wedding vendors.¬†Check out #3.¬†And I thank the ever-so gorgeous Nicole and Andy Tremba for enabling me to take such a beautiful photo on their wedding day!

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Maria + Tony get married!

I loved this couple from the moment I met them. We had a fun and fabulous engagement shoot in the historic area of San Juan some months ago¬†(you can see a selection of images on my blog) ¬†and I was so looking forward to their wedding. I wasn’t disappointed! We got some great shots at the hotel, then the church where they said their vows, followed by a killer reception at the Heritage Museum of Orange County in Santa Ana. It was truly the perfect venue for this couple! There are so many incredible backdrops for photos, plus the beautiful gardenss. Diana from Country Garden Caterers did a stellar job, as usual, and set up the props beautifully. Lots of fun details, including replicas of two vintage cars that Tony and Elena own. Of course, the food was amazing, as was the entire evening. Love under the stars …. awwwwwww.

A simple yet elegant gown.

The bow just makes it!

Handsome Tony.

Terrific details around the Heritage Museum reception. Tony plays guitar and sings, so the guitar ‘guest book’ was perfect!

The natural light from the window is what makes this image ‘sing’.

Love the ‘girlie’ shoes paired with Tony’s argyle socks.