Gather Estate Wedding

Gather Estate Wedding | Phoenix, AZ | Jerri + Nick

Jerri and Nick had originally planned to wed at a brand new venue in downtown Phoenix, AZ, but when construction didn’t seem to be coming along as quickly as it should, they scrapped their plans and discovered The Gather Estate.  You wouldn’t have any idea that this simple unassuming house on a major thoroughfare in the Phoenix suburb of Mesa, Arizona is an incredible wedding venue!  The ranch style house is long and sprawling, offering great spaces for getting ready, indoor and outdoor receptions and dining al fresco under the stars.

Jerri and Nick are incredibly competitive and decided that to really set the stage for their reception that only an epic surprise lip sync battle would do.  It paved the way for an awesome dance party, an evening of celebration with their large close-knit families in attendance, and overall, an incredible fall Gather Estate wedding.

Venue: The Gather Estate | Bakery: AJ’s Fine Foods | Caterer: Pork on a Fork BBQ | DJ: Desert Music Entertainment | Bride’s Attire: Brilliant Bridal | Veil: David’s Bridal | Bridesmaids’ Attire: David’s Bridal | Groom’s Attire: Nick’s Menswear | Hair: Ynez Martinez at Plush Salon | Second Photographer: Brian Dunham

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Isla Mujeres Destination Wedding

Isla Mujeres Destination Wedding | Cancun, Mexico | Brittany + Crystal

I should quit my job now because I’m sure I’m never going to be able to top the amount of love I have for these two ladies and their Isla Mujeres destination wedding.  I want to share all their photos but I have rules against that because I’m pretty sure no one really looks after 10 images anyways, so I tried to keep it together and not go overboard.  That being said,  it was a priority for Britt and Crys to really take advantage of their location so after getting ready and their first look at the hotel, we had hours to cruise around the island on our golf cart Joaquin and take loads of amazing portraits inspired by the ridiculously awesome place we were in.  There’s a few other of my favorites that I didn’t double up on over on their sneak peek from last week.

These two gorgeous gals hold a special place in my heart: they are former neighbors of my best mate Haley.  It was an unbelievable honor to be asked to be their photographer and I hope I did them justice and that they love their photos as much as I do.  Half of my job is already done when friends or acquaintances hire me.  So much of what I do involves creating a relationship and a quick connection in order to bring out genuine moments in folks and when I already know you, that hurdle is non-existent.

This was not my first time to Isla Mujeres, and although it’s changed quite a bit since I stopped in here on my way home from Cuba in 2008, it still has the heart and soul of the island I originally fell in love with.  Isla Mujeres is relaxed: the best sort of island time.  There is inexpensive delicious ceviche at every restaurant, cold cheap Mexican beer, smiling faces and warm hearts everywhere you go.  There are no massive hotels, no high rises, and no fancy private beaches for the most part.  You can get $2 fish tacos from a man in a plywood booth that presses his own tortillas.  You can rent a wonderful apartment on Airbnb for very little.  It’s off-the-beaten path travel at it’s best and it made the most wonderful backdrop for a wedding.

After we spent the whole day jaunting around the isle, Britt and Crys were wed in front of friends and family at the Zama Beach Club, which is officially in my top five favorite venues of all time now.  Instead of cake, they had a churro cart.  Instead of a special cocktail, they had fresh coconuts handed out to drink from as guests walked in.  Shoes were expected to be removed.  Toasts were made.  Sunsets were watched.  Crowd-surfing happened.

Britt and Crys, I can’t wait to come visit you and all of your amazing friends in Philly.  I know that your life is going to be filled with dancing, laughter and unicycles, and I wouldn’t wish anything less for the two of you.

Venue: Zama Beach Club | Wedding Planning and Day Of Coordination: Sunhorse Weddings | Invitation Design: Karith Gingrow | Bridal Gowns: BHLDN, Lace and Liberty, and The Wedding Dress Shoppe | Second Shooter: Julie Pizzo

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Isla Mujeres Destination Wedding

Isla Mujeres Destination Wedding | Brittany + Crystal | Sneak Peek

The island of Isla Mujeres is a magical place where you ride golf carts from place to place, eat fish tacos from a man in a plywood stand who presses his own homemade tortillas to order, swing through the rafters of the bar on the main street after one too many tequila shots, and, apparently, have one of the most amazing weddings I’ve ever had the opportunity to photograph.  Big thanks to Brittany and Crystal, who not only entrusted me to capture their Isla Mujeres destination wedding at the Zama Beach Club, but also gave me an entire afternoon to tromp around the island taking portraits before the ceremony.  It was basically my dream come true: beach, fish tacos, plenty of hilarious women, and a wedding.  Here’s a few images from their incredible day.  I can’t wait to share more, including the ones from a day after trash the dress session in the ocean!

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Trois Estate Wedding

Trois Estate Wedding | Aaron + Ellen | Sneak Peek

It is perfectly fitting that Aaron and Ellen wed at one of Aaron’s favorite places in the world: The Trois Estate at Enchanted Rock.  Aaron has spent the majority of his adult life with an all-consuming obsession with climbing.  I’m allowed to say this because he’s one of my best friends in the world.  In fact, there’s probably not many people that can tick off my own obsessions, faults, and quirks as well as Aaron can.  Aaron’s pursuit of climbing dominates his days off, his vacations and I’m certain he went climbing on his wedding day.  So basically, everything was as it should be.

Aaron and I have known each other for 17 years.  We’ve worked at 4 different companies together and followed each other across states.  Aaron is one of the most competant people I know and my favorite person to toss back a beer or two on a porch with.  He’s a homegrown Texan, which means that slow languid small talk comes easy to him which is exactly why he’s done so well in the retail world.  Ellen is adventurous, unbelievably smart, super laid back and one of the best people he’s ever brought into my life.  Not only am I unbelievably happy that two of my good friends were wed, but I’m incredibly honored to have photographed their intimate Texas destination Trois Estate wedding.

In short, this is an incredibly awesome pair of rad people who I feel incredibly lucky to consider friends.  I mean, really, who doesn’t want friends that can sabrage a champagne bottle?  That’s a skill y’all.

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Winspear Opera House Engagement

Winspear Opera House Engagement | Whitney + Richard | Sneak Peek

These two are quite the pair.  Self described as “reversed” from the norm, Whitney wanted nothing to do with engagement photos… at first.  Two days later, she’s posting on her facebook about how excited she is to see them.  Apparently, I’m fun to hang out with but they are the real fun: Whitney and Richard will jumping at the chance to climb, roll, run, and acrobat through their two hour session, which started out with drinks at The Mansion Bar, in The Mansion at Turtle Creek, a location significantly fancier than the three of us put together.  I was immediately in love with both of them and I can’t wait to force them to be my new Dallas friends.

Until I’m done, here’s a few images to hold you over from their awesome Dallas Winspear Opera House engagement session.

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Gar woods wedding

Gar Woods Wedding Photographer | Published at Borrowed & Blue

Borrowed and Blue is one of my favorite wedding blogs to contribute to.   They manage to keep things fresh with individual blogs for various locations.  Over the years they’ve been extra kind to me, publishing me at their Napa wedding blog, their Bay Area wedding blog, and now, for the seventh time, at their Lake Tahoe wedding blog.  They always write really fun, kind, complimentary things which gives you extra warm fuzzies inside and their post on Brooke and Blake yesterday was no exception.  I’m so honored to have been chosen as Brooke and Blake’s Gar Woods wedding photographer.  Their day was exceptionally amazing from start to finish and it was so worth getting in the Lake for that group shot on the pier.

Follow this link to relive Brooke and Blake’s wedding, featured on Borrowed & Blue Lake Tahoe.

You can also follow Borrowed and Blue on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook.

North Lake Tahoe Wedding

Culver City Portrait Session

Culver City Engagement Session | Published at Ever Ours

This one time, Lydia over at Ever Ours published one of my engagement sessions and I waxed and waned about how honored I was to be part of her amazing photographic community.  She celebrates real love, great photographers and amazing photos and I’m overjoyed to be featured on her blog for the 2nd time, with this gorgeous Culver City engagement session for Andy and Sarah.

You can also follow Ever Ours on Tumblr, Twitter,Facebook, Pinterest, and Instagram.

You can see the entire feature over at Ever Ours via this link.

Culver City Engagement Session

Winters CA Wedding Photographer

Winters CA Wedding | Courtney + Vince

Here is yet another wedding that I waited way to long to share, though thankfully, it’s only been a few months, not half a year!  Vince and Courtney were my first wedding of 2015 and I can’t imaging a cooler couple to have stolen that memorable and celebratory spot in my 2015 wedding year.  I’m so honored Courtney’s mother connected with me and that I could photograph their special Winters CA wedding!

Vince and Courtney have an unbelievably unique and romantic story: they are both in the Air Force and met while stationed in Ohio.  Soon after meeting, Vince received orders to go to San Antonio.  He didn’t want to leave Courtney behind so he proposed to her Christmas Eve 2013.  They had to act fast, otherwise he wouldn’t be able to attach Courtney to his orders.  He was scheduled to leave in April of 2014!   They ended up having a civil ceremony in Ohio in the court house on January 3, 2014 and no family was able to attend.  Fast forward to one year later: the gorgeous couple arranged to visit Courtney’s family during the holidays and they came up with the idea to hold their official wedding, vow exchange and reception for family and local friends on their anniversary. In the end, it was a small intimate affair of about 50 unbelievably fun people with a rocking dance party (and really exceptionally good steak).

Venue: Buckhorn Steakhouse | Floral Arrangements: Lindsey Berg

Denver Engagement Photography

Denver Engagement Photographer | Union Station | Maya + Dylan

I’ve considered Maya to be a good friend for a very long time.  How long exactly, I can’t remember, but it dates back to at least 2006.  I met Maya on the internet in a wonderful community of people on a secret message board dedicated to awesome folks who love great EDM.  Did you know that in my past life I was a raver?  Just so you know, I still love dark seedy clubs with deep dark house but I don’t see the inside of those walls very often anymore since I live in the rural mountains.

When I found out I was traveling to Colorado for a wedding, I jumped at the chance to help Maya celebrate her new engagement to Dylan with an engagement shoot.  Maya and Dylan both have a laundry list of awesome to their names: they are both rad, adventurous, sweet people that love to cook, drink adult beverages, sometimes dress as gnomes, and DJ, among other things.  I’m pretty excited that Maya found Dylan and I’m pretty excited that Dylan found Maya.

We had thrown a few ideas around about where to shoot – I thought something more urban was key for the two of them.  When Dylan suggested the newly renovated Union Station, I was more than game, despite having never laid eyes on it.  What a wondrous place for a photographer!   It had everything I love: great light, beautiful lines, neat textures and a retro furniture and best of all, alcohol!

Congrats Maya and Dylan!  I’m so thrilled for the two of you.  You guys are fucking rad and together you are fucking rad x gazillion.

San Antonio Wedding Photographer

San Antonio Wedding Photographer | Los Patios | Published at A Paper Proposal

Jimmy and Karlie’s wedding will forever remain one of my favorites.  It’s stood out for me all summer long as a highlight wedding: from the lush green lawn of the ceremony, to the DIY details, to the epic dance party and the amazing bouquet and garter toss.  I knew that I wanted it to be published in a place deserving of it’s special nature and A Paper Proposal was the perfect spot.  Sarah, over at the Paper Proposal, likes to promote passion and creativity when it comes to wedding planning and Karlie had that in spades.

You can see the full post over at A Paper Proposal via this link.  You can also follow Sarah via Twitter, Facebook, and Pinterest.