I love getting to know couples before shooting their weddings. It’s what helps me tell their story in a way that can fit their life and hopefully be hung up on their walls! It needs to be personal. With Lucy and Melvin being in California and my home and business based in Austin, Texas, we made it work with emails and photos in the months before the big day. By the time I arrived on the West Coast and met them, they exceeded my expectations. Not only were they welcoming, their entire family and wedding party was incredible at making me feel at home. I was already in the best mood since I was able to sight see around San Francisco the day before. Something about the perfect weather is just invigorating! I had also been looking forward to this weekend since they booked. So by the time the big day came- I was more then ready. The girls and guys were all having a blast getting ready in separate houses, and I was happy to be able to go between the two to capture all the fun! While Lucy got her makeup done- the girls showed her a special message on the phone that Melvin recorded for her via video… how sweet is that? Once the hair and makeup was done and gorgeous, we got Lucy in her gown and led her down the stairs for her first look with her dad. I always love when my couples make their parents such a special part of their day. Everything was on point getting to the beautiful ceremony location at St. Mary’s Catholic Church. The mariachi band sounded even more epic with the echo of their music on the church walls. Once the ceremony started there was only one thing I wasn’t ready for… Spanish! Up until then everyone had spoken to me in English, so I didn’t think to ask. I laughed with them afterward that given my last name I feel like I should be able to speak and understand one of the most commonly spoken languages here in Texas. I kept my camera up and ready and enjoyed watching all of the beautiful traditions. The reception was at the Dan Foley Cultural Center and I could have kept taking portraits there all night! The fall colors were stunning around the water and the weather was still absolutely perfect. The new bride and groom were lead into their reception by the mariachi and the celebration began. I knew it would be a fun night when Lucy kicked on her glitter dance shoes and the music got started! There were speeches that made everyone laugh, and most tear up. Then “I would walk 500 miles” came on, and these two let loose! (Feel free to click that link and listen to the music for the remainder of your reading). What a fun dance and special song for the two of them. I already loved the song and now I have another fun memory to put with it! The photo booth full of props kept the mood up as everyone got to get crazy snapping photos. I have never seen a dollar dance be so fun, either! These two had guests lined up around the dance floor to pin money any and everywhere and wish them the best in their new marriage. I was able to steal them away for a few night portraits and then danced the night away! Usually I would say that’s all.. but you can see from the portraits that we were not quite done. The next morning they were so wonderful to wake up at the crack of dawn to get dolled up all over again and take a road trip. We visited the amazing lighthouse at Point Reyes. I am so thankful we made the long trek down the stairs as soon as it opened… there is nothing better for a photographer then a landmark with no tourist groups! We caught our breaths before heading out to the Golden Gate Bridge to get “my” photo. Yep. My main goal for heading out there was to be able to get those shots! I love San Francisco so it was a dream come true. I am so thankful for Lucy and Melvin to be so willing to go everywhere with me. This journey was every bit as incredible as I hoped.
Ceremony Venue: St. Mary’s Catholic Church
Reception Venue: Dan Foley Cultural Center