31 August 2009

Wedding Photographer FAQ - Sites

i sat on the floor, my back against the couch, as a dozen of us listened and shared attentively. the group of us had started a conversation; a conversation about how we could better share with the world who we each uniquely were as photographers, as people. then our host, david jay offered a solution and asked for our help.

that was back in february of this year, from one of the countless hotel rooms overlooking las vegas. and it was at that little user group that carlie and i launched our wedding photography website that now serves as our "handshake" [coined by our friend jasmine] to potential clients.

since launching our site, we have received a constant stream of inquiries asking who made our site. and it has become obvious that tons of our colleagues in the photo industry are looking for a solution to create something unique and marketable.

to answer the question simply, we made it ourselves.

and that is the beauty behind showit sites [which is the solution we have chosen for our website]. with showit, we can make any change to our website that we can dream up, and we can do it without forking over a small fortune to a programmer.

however, the real answer to that question, is that we had A TON of help. first off, we had the fortune of knowing an incredible artist, melinda moen, who drew up all the custom illustrations you might see on our site. we also summoned the expertise of the showit team, who was more than willing to answer all of our "how-the-heck-do-i-do-that" questions. and most valuable, we had the help of our colleagues: our fellow photographers. in fact, most of our wppi experience this past year, was actually spent in conversation with other photographers, and we couldn't be more thankful for our friends in this industry.

so, when it comes to making a killer website that tells the story you want to tell, i recommend a few things:

[1] first, get clear on WHO YOU ARE. what do you bring to the marketplace?
[2] find a solution that works for you. how easy is it to add content or make changes in the near future?
[3] invest in good people. what can you do to add value to someone else? chances are, they might return the favor.

and, because blogs are more fun with photos, here's a little something... about two weeks ago, we shot quyen & jon's wedding, and melinda [our good friend & artist] was in attendance with her husband & her barracuda. i couldn't help but snap something fun with melinda and her ride.


26 August 2009

Backyard Wedding Photography - Sarah and Jeremy

if you follow me on twitter, or if you saw their laguna beach engagement shoot, you probably already know the love affair i have for our new friends sarah & jeremy.

and when it comes to jumping in front of the camera, they know how to work it.

so, when we made the short jaunt up the coast to redondo beach for sarah & jeremy's backyard wedding, we were nothing short of excited. and as with most backyard weddings, we rolled up the driveway to a home busting with energy; caterers heating up the kitchen, family members dialing in the finishing touches, the occasional bridesmaid dancing from one room to the next, and the bride anxious to meet her groom.

i walked through the threshold, and sent carlie upstairs to check with the girls. shortly after, i grabbed my bag of gear and hiked the second story to the bridal suite, to find sarah, the bride, patiently waiting on the edge of the bed; calm amidst a storm of energy.

she was ready for him.

as the day rolled on, carlie & i felt the blessing to partake in such an intimate ceremony, and to work alongside some incredible vendors like brandon and his rockstar team from oc creative media.

and, at the end of the day, it was a simple story. it was about a boy that was on a journey through his own heart and about a girl whose passion for life is second to none. and it was about their excitement to take on their story together.

and, sarah & jeremy, make sure to have a red stripe for me and a virgin pina colada for carlie during what is sure to be a relaxing honeymoon in jamaica.

i love how they incorporated these eclectic letters from urban outfitters.






when asked why he chose a purple shirt & tie, sarah's dad replied because it's her favorite color. that's one happy papa.





who wouldn't love to shoot this couple, in AHHHH-mazing light down a rad alley in redondo beach?!?!
some moments only happen once... and sometimes, only for a split second.

more editorial style wedding photography.


and it wouldn't be a gabriel ryan wedding without come cropped faces or a foot shot...

enjoy the caribbean & see you soon.

if you are interested in seeing more of my work, you can view my portfolio by CLICKING HERE or if you might be interested in booking me to shoot you & your story CONTACT ME HERE.

13 August 2009

Palos Verdes Wedding Photography - Cara and Craig

they stop at nothing short of the best. so when i rolled up this past weekend to photograph cara & craig's wedding in palos verdes, california, i was thrilled. i knew all the details would be in order.

and they were.

carlie & i made our introductions with the bridesmaid's and immediately began collecting cara's accessories for some detail shots, which included a rocking pair of jimmy choo's. i told you this bride has style!

after some of the finishing touches were made, we raced over to the malaga cove plaza, to meet craig and the boys, for cara & craig's first look. from their, the day seemed to flow effortlessly, much thanks to lindsey & her stellar team with circle the date.

cara & craig, your ceremony was gorgeous, your party was rockin, and we can't imagine this year without having crossed paths with the two of you. as always, we are blessed by your invitation, but even more so by the value you have placed in what carlie & i have offered you. i don't think i have ever received so much praise, at a wedding reception, as i did from you, your family, and your guests. i was humbled & blessed.


cara's jimmy choo kicks.

cara & craig decided to exchange gifts on their big day. and cara was thrilled when she pulled her luxurious new chanel handbag out of this box.


i love the editorial feel of this pairing.
to our fellow photographer friends, fortunately cara had allotted more than enough time to shoot portraits before the wedding. but, i still find it helpful to grab a couple different angles on each shot, simply to offer a bit of variety... not to mention, it's incredibly time efficient. one pose - two photographs.



rolling hills rocked out on the floral arrangements for the grand affair.


aloha, and enjoy your honeymoon in maui. and even more, enjoy your new life together!

11 August 2009

Dana Point Wedding Photography - Noel and Brett

when we first met noel in costa mesa, over a light lunch, carlie & i couldn't wait for her engagement shoot at the lab. at the engagement shoot, we finally had the chance to meet brett. and when we met brett, we couldn't wait for their wedding in dana point. this past weekend, we photographed noel & brett's wedding in south orange county, and... you guessed it... we can't wait to see them again.

not only are noel & brett two of the most cheerful and lighthearted individuals you might run across, but the posse they run with is just as delightful. in fact, it was the first wedding where the groomsmen traveled in tandem with a rolling cooler; stay thirsty my friends. and, another first for our studio was a voice mail that carlie received just yesterday. one of the groomsmen asked noel for our phone number, and called to leave a message, simply telling us that he appreciated our attendance & work at noel & brett's nuptials.

this weekend's event ended up being one of those days where i showed up to work, to serve our clients and add value to their story, yet it turned out i was the one whose value was increased. a light thank you, simple yet intentional, and a couple so excited about spending their life together, has truly blessed me in my work.

here's some of the photos from their wedding day...


we all knew noel would be stunning, but when she slipped on her bridal gown, we all agreed. and a few of us saw a bit of resemblance to the late marilyn monroe. what do you think?




at the reception, we had just enough extra time to put together a slide show with a handful of images from the big day. the groomsmen flipped over this one... literally... i think i saw one do two double-backs in a row.

can i tell you how much i love when my client's decide to do a first-look. they are always happy they did. and happy brides usually seem to photograph so nicely.




i had to throw one of brett looking stunna, as you will notice, most of this post is overshadowed by noel's awesomeness.




you guys rule! enjoy your honeymoon in costa rica!! pura vida!!!